Director at Open-Xchange.com
LinkedIn: Samantha Frida
Location: Remotely, mostly Between Maui, HI and Oakland, CA
Time in the industry: Since 1999
What’s your favorite extension?: I like extensions that resonate with the end user, not just by popularity but also by purpose and so on.
Tell us which domain name you wish you owned: I don’t think about it. I don’t look back about stuff like this.
Name 3 things you can’t travel without: Headphones, Phone with music/camera and wallet.
Who would you call your mentor?
There is no one person I think of as a mentor. I am grateful to have worked with many from the industry and outside of the industry who have helped me reach where I am today. I believe all of my experiences have played a role in shaping me.
Describe a recent challenge that you overcame.
I view challenges as motivators, so I recently spent time rewriting the narratives in my head that haven’t served me well in the past. I am currently focused on executing the valuable lessons I’ve learned over the past decade and beyond to make sure no past challenge is wasted.
What kinds of changes do you foresee in this industry within the industry in the next year? The next 5 years?
A few that come to mind:
- I think the topic of Blockchain and the future of the web will become increasingly important to understand.
- Data will become increasingly important in empowering domain name resellers through customer usage of domain names to identify opportunities and risks. Therefore, more folks will have to become data literate.
- “Sales” efforts will evolve into business development and partnership efforts. I think the approach towards growth from any business will change. Metrics will adapt accordingly. Collaborations will be essential to success.
- More Domain Name Resellers will need to think like subject matter experts in the age of increased digitization and become a one-stop shop solution for the end user. There is an opportunity available for resellers willing to identify products/solutions/services that do not put their growth at risk and provide the freedom of not being associated with another ecosystem. Those who shift to focusing more directly on how to provide what the end-user needs now, and as their domain grows, will create the stickiness that improves customer retention and growth.
What are the current trends that are directly impacting your business?
Mindset. There is complacency in the mindset of many domain name businesses I engage with. They lack a long-term vision in how they position themselves to the end users (e.g., empathy in how they share content and communication with the non-savvy end user.) Many also overlook the risks associated with simply re-selling solutions without assessing the long-term impact on their respective businesses. It is challenging when conversations focus more on costs and features instead of having strategic discussions around potential long-term revenue growth. Many aren’t open to having strategic conversations about reducing customer churn, mitigating customer acquisition costs, investing in data-driven approaches to marketing, product development initiatives, and much more. Bottom line, I wish there were more strategic mindsets rather than reactive ones that often focus only on short-term gains.
What fact about you would surprise people?
I was called to the UK Bar, with affinity to Lincoln’s Inn, London and entered the domain industry originally as an in-house Domain Name Attorney (a title no one else had at the time) for a European brand. I enjoy technology and learning as much as possible, so I completed a front and backend coding course (python, react, etc.) in the Bay Area (Oakland, CA) for fun, not for work. I am more introverted and sensitive, but I do enjoy authentic conversations and don’t do well with “small talk.”
What are you most proud of?
My authenticity. I mean what I say and say what I mean, which allows me to connect authentically with people.
What was the best advice you were ever given?
Teachings of the Buddha and a few others like Khalil Gibran. A few things that stand out are learning how to let go of control, understanding mindfulness, and the knowledge that the world is divided between those who are aware and those who aren’t. These things have helped me in all aspects of my life, including business.
What’s the most recent thing you learned (big or small)?
I recently learned that the world is divided between humans who are aware and those who aren’t. Instead of allowing myself to be frustrated by this situation, understanding this has helped me tremendously in being more empathetic in my interactions with others.
What are you most looking forward to at the upcoming NamesCon?
Meeting new folks and learning new stuff. I am a connector at heart. I love connecting with people and connecting people with ideas that work.
How would you describe NamesCon to a new domainer?
A great event where you can learn from everyone you get to meet – not just from other domain investors, but from others in the Registry, Registrar, SaaS, Web Hosting, etc. If you are new, listen and observe and ask as many questions as possible. It’s a great informal event where you can learn.
If you’re attending NamesCon Global 2022, you will get an email for the featured attendee form and help the NamesCon community learn more about you before you arrive in Austin!.