|Domain Names for Musicians, Bands and Instructors
|Why Every Musician, Band, and Music Instructor
Should Have Their Own Domain Name
(EVEN If You Don't Have a Web Site!)
And What to Do With It Once You Have One
by Marty Dickinson, MusicMates.com
As the Manager of Music Mates, I've been getting about 10 questions a month about domain names for musicians and how to use them with the Music Mates system for those who do not have web sites.
So, I figured it's about time that I added an instructional page to the Music Mates site for this topic.
First, What Is A Domain Name?
In short, a domain name is a human means of translating to a computer a specific location on the Internet. www.MusicMates.com is the domain name for this site, for example.
Second, Why Should You Own a Domain Name With Your Name In It?
There are several reasons to own your own domain name, particularly one with your name included, like www.YourName.com. They are:
1) You'll be easier to find - Professional speakers and authors almost always own a domain name with their name included. BrianTracy.com, ZigZiglar.com, TonyRobbins.com are all examples.
The same can and should apply for musicians. The most important reason to have a domain with your name in it is so that your fans will always know where you are.
2) You'll appear more professional and serious - What's better to have on a business card? www.geocities.com/yourname or www.YourName.com?
3) A domain name is easier to promote - You never know when you might find yourself promoting your domain name...on the radio, on the phone, on stage, at a promotional event, in the grocery store check-out line.
4) For less than $9 a year, it's too cheap to NOT have your own domain name...at LEAST one! Many artists own up to 10 domain names!!
5) You can easily "re-direct" visitors to that domain name to your MusicMates posting if you don't have a full web site. This concept is called URL Forwarding.
What Is URL Forwarding and How Does it Work With a Music Mates Posting?
Simply stated, when someone types in your domain name "www.YourName.com" you can instruct your domain name to forward that visitor to your Music Mates posting. The person types in YourName.com and they arrive at: http://www.musicmates.com/posting/musseekbanddetail.php?pid=1234&resultpage=1&homeState=colo
You sure couldn't put THAT on a business card!
You can easily do this by adding a feature to your domain name account called "URL Forwarding" which will send visitors to whatever location you add to the system.
The great thing is that when someone gets to that web site location after typing in YourName.com, that's the exact location that appears in the address window. This happens by simply checking a box in the URL Forwarding area called "Mask Domain."
How Much Does a Domain Name Cost?
Domain names are cheap these days. Registration for a .org is typically less than $9 a year and even less if you just pay in advance for 5 or 10 years. So, there should be no financial excuse to holding off from registering a domain name for yourself or your band.
It's the URL Forwarding feature with masking that sometimes comes with an extra price. I've seen domain registrar companies (the places where you register domains) try to charge up to $20 a year for re-directing domain names and masking. That's rediculous! It's such an easy function and there are plenty of registrars out there that offer free URL Forwarding and masking. That's what you want to look for.
I've registered more than 200 domain names for clients and about 30 for myself at BestDomainPlace.com which features a step-by-step visual tutorial showing how to start an account, register a domain name and use their FREE URL Forwarding and masking feature. But, there are probably hundreds of quality domain registrars out there. Just make sure you go with a place that will actually register the domain name in your own name...that way you will be sure to own it.
What Type of Domain Name Should You Register?
Always try to get a .com with your name. If YourName.com is already taken, try to get "The"YourName.com. After all, there could be millions of JohnSmith's out there...but you are THEJohnSmith.com!
What About E-mail?
Few musicians have an e-mail address that also includes their domain name. Contact@YourName.com would be an example.
Personally, I think it's a promotional opportunity that is being missed and a time-saver that is being overlooked because:
1) An e-mail address with your domain name makes you or your band look more professional and more current in a technical world.
2) A general e-mail account protects you from getting your personal or company e-mail exposed to the world.
Expect an e-mail account that includes your domain name to be in the neighborhood of $10/year but that's a small price to pay if you consider the time you'll save.
Clearly, registering a domain name for yourself will help you on many counts. Most importantly, it will help you as a musician or your band appear more professional and be easier to promote whether in-person, on the radio, on the phone, at a promotional event, or on a business card.
With domain names as cheap as they are and even simpler to implement, there is just no excuse and every reason to do it. Register a domain name for yourself today and use the URL Forwarding feature with Masking to re-direct visitors to your existing Music Mates posting.
Visit BestDomainPlace.com to register your domain names now.