Schwartz: This yearís show will focus on networking
and the largest live domain auction ever held.
The one thing we heard over and over again at the
Silicon Valley show were domainers and sponsors wanting
to connect with folks that they have done business with
for many years but have never met.
I finally met one guy
that I started doing business with in 1997 but had never
met. He was from Greece. He has paid me month
after month and we have exchanged many emails and even
talked on the phone a few times. But when we met and
shook hands and hugged, it brought the level of our
business relationship up a couple of notches. I am sure
almost every attendee has a story like that and we want
to make sure that keeps happening.
reason that no two shows are alike is because we are cutting
edge. We are trailblazing in the truest sense of the word. After
each show we reassess what we have accomplished and then
evaluate where we are at, what is important and how we can make
the show better and more important. The show we run is not a
standard trade show. We have taken an industry that was obscure
and we have finally begun to get the recognition we all knew was
live domain auction complete with a professional and
entertaining auctioneer will be the largest live domain
auction ever held. We expect millions of dollars of
domain names to change hands. The quality of domain
names that will be auctioned off make the auction itself
worth the cost of attending the show.
The auction will be a
fixture at this and future shows after the very
successful auction in Florida last year. It is run and
sponsored by Moniker.com.
bring their checkbooks or be prepared to wire the funds
within 3 business days after the end of the show.
CEO Monte Cahn (left) with
auctioneer Joe Langbaum at the live T.R.A.F.F.I.C.
domain auction in Florida (October 2005)
for the first time ever, there will be on the spot domain
financing for domain purchases (provided by Domain
Capital). Details on pre-qualifying will be emailed to
all attendees. That in and of itself is a huge development and
we expect it to play a major role in making this auction very
Tell us about some of the speakers and subject matter you have
lined up for your seminars.
We have two huge PPC (pay
per click) company seminars. We are calling the first one
Tale of Two Cities. It is no secret that there are
two giants in this field, namely Google and Yahoo!
One only has to look at their two home pages to understand that
they both have a considerably different view of the universe.
prior shows they were both included in panels with other PPC
companies. Attendees have said that they would like to see these
two companies (represented by Yahoo's Josh Meyers and Google's
Eytan Elbaz) go head to head so that they can get a clearer
picture of how they approach things and their take on the domain
channel as well as what the future might hold. This seminar will
answer those questions and we feel it will be a fascinating
exchange of ideas.
to Rumble! Josh Meyers of Yahoo! Search
and Eytan Elbaz, head of the domain channel at Google.com
the second PPC panel we will have no less than TEN
companies on stage to tell the attendees what they are doing to
better monetize the traffic that domainers have. The competition
right now is fierce and innovations are happening at a very fast
pace. The panel will include DomainSponsor.com, Fabulous.com,
Sedo.com, TrafficClub.com, Dotzup.info, PremiumTraffic.com,
SmartName.com, TrafficZ.com, NameDrive.com and
hard to imagine that just a year and a half ago there were few
domainers that had actually met the folks that pay them. Now
they do business, are friends, party with them and look for new
ways to make more money. Partners in the truest sense of the
is money involved with the levels we are talking about,
investors and Wall Street are not far behind.
These folks are very impressed with the level of profits
we have shown them and we are now on their radar screen
in a very big way. The foundation has now been laid and
the essential groups are present to move this industry
forward and upward.
Folks are partnering up
and development is on the lips of every domainer
there. As I mentioned above, financing of domains will
break things wide open. The
entire face of this industry is changing and those who
attend are finding folks very receptive to new ideas and
there are some huge deals in the works.
in the industry has grown phenomenally in the past year.
With this explosion of interest, every Traffic show has
been bigger than the one before. How is Las Vegas
shaping up with respect to registration response?
bank Milbank Roy
will be among the
financial experts speaking in Las Vegas
The Las Vegas show is already our largest T.R.A.F.F.I.C.
show ever. But more important than how big the show is would be WHO
is coming. We have assembled the biggest and the best for a very
tightly wrapped event. We have eliminated the "Noise"
of a standard trade show by allowing only qualified folks to
attend. That is the reason that we will continue to remain by
invitation only. It is the reason you canít come to a T.R.A.F.F.I.C.
show for $99.
you come to T.R.A.F.F.I.C.
you know everyone there has spent thousands of dollars to
attend. That forces attendees to do business and make sure that
they get a return on that expense. Folks that donít understand
that donít come and that is okay. When folks look around they
know they are dealing with serious folks that work hard and
expect great things. They donít have to worry about wasting
their time with folks that are not qualified. For domainers and
businesses that say they can not afford to come my response is a
simple one, you canít afford not to come!
are skeptical at first and it does cost a great deal of money to
attend. But that is a great qualifier. Every domainer has
the opportunity to take advantage of what we do. It is up to
them to seize the opportunity or let it pass them by. But once
they come, they are won over in the first few hours. When they
see the level of professionalism, the quality of the attendees
and they see Howard and I and our wives greet each person that
comes and give them that extra attention, they know they are in
the midst of a life changing experience.
you have brought a fresh approach to each Traffic show,
you have also kept certain elements that have become
show trademarks unchanged, such as an upscale atmosphere
and top notch customer service. How does your venue help
you to maintain that consistency?
The Venetian is one of the best hotels in Las Vegas
and therefore one of the best anywhere. There
used to be a commercial on TV and it said something to
the effect that you could never go wrong buying the
best. The Venetian is a great example. Not only is it
the largest hotel in the USA, it has a great atmosphere,
their rooms are world class and they have more
restaurants and shops than you can even count.
The Venetian is first
class and so is the T.R.A.F.F.I.C. show. We have
followed that theme with our new home for T.R.A.F.F.I.C.
in Florida too as we will be moving to the Diplomat
Hotel in Hollywood (a Miami suburb) in
October. This is without doubt the single best venue in
all of Florida. The hotel is directly on the sand of the
Atlantic Ocean, the rooms are stunning and the facility
and management are top notch.
of the stunning corridors
at the Venetian Hotel - Las Vegas
we started looking for venues we needed more than just a
building with rooms. We needed partners that were as concerned
as much as we were that we had good service, great food and
could put on a successful event that folks would enjoy and want
to come back to. The hotels we have chosen along the way are
professionals and that makes us all look good and we can focus
on the seminars and networking and not running around trying to
put out fires.
Journal: Las Vegas has
proved to be a popular destination in the West, but Silicon
Valley, originally envisioned as a one-time event, was also a
hit for you. Do you plan to keep both west coast shows in 2007?
No question that the Silicon Valley
show exceeded all of our expectations, both in content and in
the amount of attendees and the quality of the attending
companies. Many thought we could not pull it off with just 10
weeks to plan the event, find a venue and have folks register. I
think we proved that the industry is thirsty to move forward. We
are exploring the possibility of a repeat performance but we
are also thinking of having one show a year change venues each
have been kicking around the idea of a London show. There
are lots of things on the horizon. We just want to do what will
be best for the industry. We donít want to do a show just for
the sake of doing a show. We want to kick the ball down the
field. We are already discussing 2007 and 2008. We would like to
move the Florida show to February if we can as the weather in
Florida in February is the best on the planet. I donít think
we will make a decision until we talk to the folks in Las Vegas
and get their feedback.
would you say to those who are thinking about making the
trip to Las Vegas, but aren't sure if they should
request an invitation?
or stay home you will still benefit by what we
are doing. However, if you have not attended any of the T.R.A.F.F.I.C.
events and you are a serious domainer or sponsor, not
coming is costing you money. Itís really that simple.
I donít know how much plainer I can be. You are being
left behind by not cementing relationships and your
business is not growing as fast as it could be.
say they can buy another domain or two with the money they THINK
they are saving. I would say to them that the extra dollars
they will make by attending T.R.A.F.F.I.C.
will buy dozens of domains. Just ask anyone that has actually
attended one of our shows. I doubt you could find a single
person that was not thrilled with the result.
I said ĒYou canít afford not to come.Ē That is not
some meaningless slogan I pulled out of thin air. In 1993 I went
to Hong Kong to try and transform my lighting business.
Business was tough in those days and my back was up against the
wall. I could not afford to make that $12,000 trip. But I
could not afford not to make the trip. So I charged the
trip on my credit card and knew this was a make or break trip. I
doubt I slept for 10 hours during those 10 days. Each day I
would wake up at 5am (if I even went to sleep the night before)
and be on my way.
would have appointments starting at 8am and would not return to
my hotel until midnight. Then I would research all night until I
collapsed and then repeated the same thing day after day. That
trip changed my life and I will never forget it. When I
got home it took me 3 weeks to recover. I was a mess but I laid
the foundation that would change my life forever. Without that
trip I would have never bought my first domain name.
formula is embedded in T.R.A.F.F.I.C..
Anyone willing to step up to the plate and attend will
have their lives transformed because that is our goal
and I know we have achieved it because I have heard it
directly from each attendee. There is really great
satisfaction in knowing you have changed someoneís
life in just a couple days. I am proud of what we have
accomplished. So if you are one of those on the fence
because of cost, make the plunge. We promise a life
we are by invitation only and we will stay that way as long as T.R.A.F.F.I.C.
runs. It is not difficult to receive an invite. We just have to
know who you are by hearing a little about your company
and some of the domains you own. If that offends some people, so
be it. Nobody forces anyone to come. We just want to keep the
quality of attendees limited to serious business professionals
and folks depend on us to make sure that those that attend are
qualified. The folks that come to T.R.A.F.F.I.C. are good people and
that is really the only requirement.
are only two ways to do business, the right way and every other
way. We want to insure that folks that come to T.R.A.F.F.I.C.
do business the right way. So the bar to attend is not set that
high. We donít ask how much money you make or even care. All
size domainers are welcome as are sponsors, investors and
advertisers. We are all very fortunate to be part of such a
great industry with such a promising future.
you and Howard Neu have done a ton of legwork to make
these shows successful, they couldn't be done on such a
grand scale without the support of the forward thinking
companies that plow money back into events like this to
keep pushing the industry forward. As we noted in our March
newsletter, we think companies that give
something back to the domain community deserve
recognition. Who will be helping to pay the bills in Las
is once again the overall show sponsor and their
parties are legendary. This year they promise a
party at The Palms which is the hottest spot in
all of Las Vegas!! They are joined with more than a
dozen other T.R.A.F.F.I.C.
West sponsors that
include Yahoo.com, Google.com, Fabulous.com, Sedo.com,
TrafficZ.com, Afternic.com, Skenzo.com, Golfcourses.com,
Smartname.com, Moniker.com, BuyDomains.com, Casale
Media, Pool .com, Enom.com and several others.
will be well over 100
other companies from more than 10 countries joining with the
worldís top domainers at T.R.A.F.F.I.C.
West. When you bring that
type of group together only great things can happen. And
while we do work hard, we have loads of fun, plenty of great
food, giveaways and make money.
look forward to seeing our old friends and are excited to meet
new ones. We are truly an industry of great people that have
come from every walk of life to converge on an opportunity never
seen before. Together we have recognized the value of domains,
traffic and the chance that the Internet has given all of us to
fulfill our dreams!
Note: DN Journal will be in Las Vegas to cover
T.R.A.F.F.I.C. West for you. We plan to publish our wrap-up
article on May 11 as the second part of twin Cover Stories for
May (part 1, scheduled to appear April 27, will be our wrap-up of
Roundtable conference in Seattle which runs April