developing domain names

I’ve been thinking about developing a few of my domain names into social networks, and I’ve been researching various possible software platforms. I’ve considered such varied solutions as Drupal, Pligg, a combination of WordPress and phpBB, and Ning.

All of these are open source and free except for Ning, which is a hosted application that lets you build your own full-featured social network. It’s free, but Ning runs ads on your network, unless you pay a (fairly low) monthly fee in which case you can do away with the ads or run your own if you like.

By the way, the Ning blog recently wrote a post on the unveiling of I remember July last year when the owner posted the following on the forum:

Hello everyone,I’ve owned several excellent domain names for some time, but have not posted them for feedback in a forum like this! If you have any thoughts on value or other for these domains, please let me know! I look forward to your posts! Have a great day,

The respondents valued these domains anywhere from $50,000 to $200,000 each, although one fellow had a unique offer:

I wish I had one of those names. Are you interested in my first born child?

Anyway, I’m glad the owner chose the development route and I’ll be interested to see if he sticks with the Ning platform over the long term.

In the course of my research on social network solutions I came across this fantastic article on TechCrunch, from July of last year:

Part One: Nine Ways to Build Your Own Social Network

Part Two: 34 More Ways to Build Your Own Social Network

Michael takes a superbly detailed look at all the solution providers in the social networking space. I have not yet decided which solution I’ll be using, though I’m fairly sure I’ll go with Ning for those domains that I feel have a good chance of attracting a large user base.

For communities that might be smaller (a few hundred members or less) I will choose a solution with no monthly fees and no cost after initial set up (aside from hosting of course).

Have you developed any of your domain names into social networks? What software did you use? What success have you had?

11 Comments to “Developing Domain Names With Social Networks”

  1. 2w | February 20th, 2008 at 11:40 am

    hi greeting

    please fully evaluate
    other ad-supported solutions
    b4 going only with ‘the ning

    once your social network being up
    then please let us ken it

    cheers ThANKye 2w

  2. Ryan Ogaard | February 20th, 2008 at 5:25 pm

    Hi there,

    Thank you for your blog post and links to some great articles on how to develop a social-network. I also agree, strongly, that developing was the wise thing to do!

    By the way, if you dig into Rich Schwartz’s blog a bit, as well as, you’ll find some great posts on this topic.

    Ning has worked out very well for me. I’m working on some very exciting things right now to further convert the traffic I receive to beyond membership. At some point, you need a revenue stream. As for now, my goal is to continue building traffic and registered members.

    Feel free to stop on by and join us at!

    Magically yours,
    Ryan, founder,


    Thanks for taking the time to comment, Ryan, and best of luck with your site. With a great domain like, you’ve got a big leg up.

  3. Michael Cheok | February 22nd, 2008 at 4:44 am

    Greeting from all of us @ DNHour,

    As you know, is a social networking site for domainers developed using Pligg. The main aim of is to provide a platform for domainers to collaborate and share information online. If we had started as a traditional static website, we would have had a hard time trying to update the website daily. Fortunately, DNHour’s members have been quite active in contributing news to DNHour, thus giving us more free time to venture into other virtual properties. We are hoping to develop more social networking sites in the future. Do update us with your experience using Ning. Till then, hope to see you more in DNHour!

    Michael Cheok
    – CTO of –

  4. Mearoon | February 22nd, 2008 at 7:21 pm

    Do you have any other domains in development? I would love to look at them. Can I add you as a friend?

  5. Pete | February 24th, 2008 at 12:26 am

    I took a look at For such a professional domain, the design looks quite amateur — is this due to a limitation in the flexibility of Ning as a platform? I would think that with such a premium domain name one would want the site to look more professional, so perhaps a more custom platform would be necessary? I while back I looked at Ning and I thought that they allow you full customization, though perhaps that takes a much larger investment when working with a propietary and less well known platform such as Ning?

    Does anyone have any thoughts or insights on this?

  6. Ryan Ogaard | April 17th, 2008 at 11:38 pm

    FYI – update on my domains:

    I’ve put up for auction at the Roundtable Conference… or for more info.

    Ryan Ogaard,,

  7. ray | May 24th, 2008 at 7:27 pm

    i own several domains (,,, I’m not really using these domains at the moment and am consering parking them with

    I also own and and wonder what (and how!!) to do with them. With the US elections coming up wonder if this could become social networks/blogs or even retail sites?
    any ideas?

  8. Cat Beds | August 17th, 2009 at 10:21 am

    hi, there is a good way to how Developing Domain Names With Social Networks?

  9. Mark | February 21st, 2010 at 8:30 pm

    good post, I have been thinking about developing a soc net around the domain that I recently registered, I just have a Fan Page on Facebook for it now:
    and a Twitter List.

  10. Mark | March 14th, 2010 at 3:52 pm

    there aren’t any other social domainers out there?!

  11. Hover Coupon | June 5th, 2010 at 10:11 pm

    Social networking is an invaluable way to improve the page rank of your web site. My friend who formed his own LLC recently setup a social networking page for the LLC on every possible site that exists and the in bound links helped a lot.

    Social networking is pretty lame but for SEO it’s neat.

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