Does Sex Sell Domains?


Leading up to CES, I was bombarded with a steady stream of communication, some from talented, relationship-building professionals, and some from cheap PR flaks who are an insult to the industry. One such cheap PR stunt came from a company called Dotster (no links, I don’t want to give them any more publicity than I have to). Dotster is a Go-Daddy wannabe, offering domains, Web hosting, etc. Somehow they thought that, rather than offering innovative services that customers would want and building their business on that, they’d instead use the oldest marketing trick in the book: sex. So they launched a nation-wide “talent” <chuckle> search looking for “ambassadors” <chuckle> near the end of 2006. Just before CES they picked the best “talent” and sent everyone a press release about it – complete with a link to download an image of the new “ambasadors”. Morbidly curious about the results, I downloaded the image and it was exactly what I thought: five “babes” in sexy poses. Check out the 57 megapixel version (yeah, that’s right 50-freaking-7-megapixels, 9526 x 6029 pixels). They say there’s no such thing as bad PR, but although I now know the name of the company, I know they’re more interested in cheap marketing tricks than focusing on their services. In the interest of fairness though, I should note that GoDaddy isn’t exactly above similar tactics – but at least they make no pretense of their advertising model being an “ambasador”. They hired Danica Patrick for that – she might be pretty to look at, but the lady also has skills!