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Bar aka Barman

What country are you based in?

United States.

Do you feel your location has an effect on your domain investing?

I’ve never thought about that. I supposed there is some privilege in not having issues with payment processors or anything. Maybe more so when negotiating. Everything does seem to be geared towards the Western world.

How long have you been involved in domains?

I’ve been doing this as a legitimate side hustle for about 4 years.

Are you a full time domainer?

No.

How did you find out about domain investing?

I’ve actually known about domain investing for a long time. Since the early 00’s in fact. Over the years I’ve tried my hand at it, but never found sustained success. It wasn’t until 2018, when I got more serious about the process (via DNAcademy), that I really “found” domain investing.

How many domains do you currently hold?

1,200 plus.

What's your favourite non .com tld/nTLD/gTLD?

dot io!

What's the best advice you've been given by another domain investor, either directly or through something they've said on twitter or in an interview?

I’ve heard it several times on DomainSherpa interviews over the years: “Make your money on the buy.”

Meaning, buy good names at prices where you can liquidate (to other investors) for what you bought them for (or close enough). In case anything goes wrong or you need capital or something, you always have an out. And if you’re fortunate enough to never have to do such liquidating, then your domains appreciate in value over time, all while making money as a certain percentage sell to end users.

This requires smarts, discipline and hard work because ultimately what you’re doing is digging and searching for value in all of the acquisition channels we domainers have (auctions, private acquisitions, searching forums like Namepros, etc)

Another way to put that is, don’t spend a bunch of money on a bunch of crap that nobody wants to buy. Because then you’re just holding worthless bags instead of appreciating assets.

And I’ve always like Rick Schwartz’s advice, “Don’t quit your day job.” When you don’t rely on your income from domaining, you are in a much better position to negotiate and get top dollar for your names.

What kind of goals do you set yourself?

I don’t tend to have goals related to specific dollar amounts because I am following the passive strategy. While it would be nice to say “I will make $xxx,000 this year with domain investing” that’s not entirely plausible given my strategy.

But I have had goals where I’m like “I want to acquire 5 premium .io names.” That kind of goal is easier to quantify because all of the steps can be broken down and systemized into daily steps. For example: Research the status of 100 domains, send 10 emails, negotiate and hopefully purchase 1 name.

Who are your top 3 domain investors?

I admire a ton of people in this industry. I’m not going to start naming them because I know I’ll forget a few. But I don’t think I’ve learned more than from The Big 3 Sherpas – Michael Cyger, Andrew Rosener and Shane Cultra.

What's the toughest part of domain investing?

Turning down good offers while waiting for great offers. I’ve turned down $200,000 for a name I think is worth 3x-5x more than that. (Whether that was a good decision or not remains to be seen.)

But it happens all the time. You list a name for $20,000 that you paid $1,000 for and you get a $5,000 offer. What do you do? Some people cave and take the $5,000 while others hold strong. The decision you make depends on the name and your current situation, but it’s always a difficult one (especially if you believe in the name)

More recently though, the competition has been difficult. Auction prices for expiring names have really gotten out of hand. I don’t know how people are making money. Domain names are very hard to sell no matter what. The margins are getting squeezed when people are paying 10x more than just a few years ago.

I don’t know if it’s the Covid effect or the DNAcademy effect or both, but you really have to pick your battles now.

How do you structure the domaining part of your day?

An hour or so in the morning to go through the drops, auction lists, and blogs. Some time in the middle of the day for auctions. And an hour or so in the evening to go through different drop lists.

How do you manage your portfolio?

Poorly. It used to be just a spreadsheet. But I am having a lot of luck with domain.io. It’s been a great tool for getting more organized. I can’t imagine how people with tens of thousands of names do this.

Do you also have any NFTs or Crypto in your portfolio?

Yes. We like the jpegs.

What's the most you've ever spent on one domain?

This happened very recently. $10,000 for a two-word .com.

Have you ever done outbound? If so, were/are you successful?

For sales, I’ve tried but nothing serious. For acquisitions, it’s been very successful.

You're given $10k to spend on domains, how do you spend it?

There are a handful of names I’ve been trying to acquire that don’t seem to make sense at their current prices, but I still want them. So if a free $10K fell in my lap, I’d try to pick up those names.

Outside of domains, what other business/wealth/personal growth figures do you look up to?

For personal finance, Ramit Sethi. I Will Teach You to Be Rich is a great book. All of the great sales and copywriting folks, from Gary Halbert to David Ogilvy to Joseph Sugarman and many more. Chris Voss for negotiation. For personal growth, you can’t go wrong with the man himself Tony Robbins. And most recently, Wes Watson. He is not for the faint of heart though.

What do you do when you're not domaining?

Family, programming, NFTs, working out, and trying to ween myself back into this “socializing” thing.

What advice would you give to people just starting out in domains?

Purchase and go through the DNAcademy.com course. This will get you 80% of the way there. Then go through all of the old DomainSherpa.com episodes. There are hundreds so this will take a while. This will get you 90% of the way there. Do all of this before you buy a single domain name.

The remaining 10% is up to you. There are many ways to specialize in domain investing. Premium single word .coms, two-word .coms, hand-regs, alternative TLDs like .io and .xyz, outbound sales, brokering, quick flips, and the list goes on. But you can’t really specialize if you don’t know the ground rules of how this thing of ours works.

Oh, yeah! The moment you start making money, join and support the ICA. They fight for our rights as domain investors and make this whole thing possible. Join the Discord server too, a lot of great domain investors are in there.

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