18(b) How do you expect that your proposed gTLD will benefit registrants, Internet users, and others?
|gTLD||Full Legal Name||E-mail suffix||Detail|
|.mtn||MTN Dubai Limited||mtn.co.za||View|
GOALS OF THE .MTN TLD:
The core goals of the .mtn TLD are as follows:
1 CREATE AN AUTHORITATIVE TLD
A goal of the .mtn TLD is to develop the reputation of domain names within the .mtn TLD as authoritative points of reference for the MTN brand online, which customers and Internet users will intuitively navigate to and trust.
Operated and controlled exclusively by MTN (Dubai) Limited, the .mtn TLD will leverage the power of the MTN brand to promote .mtn domain names as the single point of reference for the wider MTN brand online. Thus, the .mtn TLD will reduce confusion for Internet users and reduce the likelihood for harm by interacting with online entities that falsely and misleadingly purport to either represent the brand, or in some cases, even impersonate the brand online. Due to the very nature of the telecommunications industry, this is always a prevalent threat. The .mtn TLD will assure users that the content of .mtn domain names is authoritative, genuine and legitimate.
This goal to be the authoritative TLD will be achieved by ensuring all content and registrations are tightly controlled and strictly authorised by MTN (Dubai) Limited immediately upon creation of the TLD.
A benefit for MTN (Dubai) Limited will be the strengthening of the MTN brand via the provision of an authoritative and coherent brand information channel. An additional benefit is the reduction in the risk that consumers may be misled by unauthorised or infringing content within other TLDs. Having this authoritative TLD will create an Internet ‘lighthouse’ that clearly displays to customers and Internet users without doubt that these websites are approved and controlled by the MTN brand.
Such an authoritative TLD could potentially deliver financial benefits to the company by reducing the need for Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) costs, due to marketing and labour not being required to be devoted to this activity. In addition, costs incurred by maintaining a portfolio of defensive domain name registrations within other TLDs and ccTLDs in order to protect the brand and internet users will, over time, be reduced as they become unnecessary.
Consumers will benefit from having certainty that all content on .mtn websites can be trusted, is authorised and company-approved. Users of .mtn domain names will be able to access, within a single TLD, information about the MTN brand, its products, services and affiliates - as designated by clear, logical domain names. The added confidence inherent in MTN (Dubai) Limited being the only possible registrant will ensure a direct and trusted line of communication between customers and the MTN brand. Internet users can also be assured that any information they access through the .mtn TLD is legitimate and supported by the reputation of the brand.
The TLD can also benefit the wider Internet and online communities by generating trust around the reputability of content. It is in the interest of the MTN brand to ensure that the .mtn TLD remains true to its mission and purpose.
Surveys will be conducted by MTN (Dubai) Limited to assess site users’ experience, alongside assessment of the authority and suitability of the information that the .mtn TLD conveys.
The authoritative goal of the TLD will be considered achieved when the majority of survey responses in a reporting cycle reveal a positive and trusting experience in using .mtn websites.
2 BUILDING THE MTN BRAND
Following the introduction of the .mtn TLD, efforts will shift to focusing on transferring the brand reputation of the existing domain names to the .mtn TLD in the marketplace, while promoting the additional benefits the TLD provides. This will serve to expand the overall attractiveness of the brand to customers and Internet users. External marketing campaigns will begin to promote the .mtn TLD and drive traffic to websites within the .mtn TLD only.
Brand building will be achieved through the organic usage and gradual replacement of the existing domain name portfolio in marketing campaigns, with the .mtn TLD to be incorporated over time into all new global and directed marketing. Once established, the TLD’s reputation will then serve as a springboard for efforts to promote the use of the TLD, facilitating the mission⁄purpose of the TLD.
The promotion of .mtn TLD-based websites will also provide an efficient marketing model that encompasses both brand and product. This is a more efficient marketing approach than that currently employed - the usage of existing TLD’s which are neither brand nor product-specific. The benefit to the MTN brand will be in the enablement of internal departments to register, via an ICANN accredited Registrar, brand and product-supportive domain names. The MTN brand will be able to use these registrations to represent product lines and strategic initiatives in support of MTN brand core strategy and the mission⁄purpose of the .mtn TLD. The company will also benefit from maintaining a more marketable online identity.
A website hosted within the .mtn TLD will assure Internet users that they are accessing authoritative and reliable MTN brand, product or company information. As such, it is anticipated that more traffic will be directed to MTN brand sites and away from unreliable and illegitimate websites purporting to provide information relating to the MTN brand.
Surveys will be conducted to measure the impact of the introduction of the .mtn TLD against the existing domain name portfolio. Visit metrics will be utilised to measure the volume of traffic on .mtn websites and subsequently compared to existing data of the current domain name portfolio.
Having the .mtn TLD in the control of MTN (Dubai) Limited is another goal. This goal of control will be achieved when the TLD is delegated for use by ICANN and the company’s internal policies are in place to manage the registration of domain names. This creates numerous benefits to the company, consumers and the wider Internet community.
In addition to the aforementioned statements concerning trust and genuine content, MTN (Dubai) Limited sees additional benefits such as:
As the Registry Operator, MTN (Dubai) Limited will benefit from having ultimate control of the TLD and the policy that underpins it. This will enable policy development that serves the mission and purpose of the domain, but at the same time, allow it to be dynamic over time to support the future direction of the business on the Internet.
Being in control of the TLD gives MTN (Dubai) Limited the comfort of knowing any future products or services will have a dedicated TLD in which to reside. It allows the company a platform from which to innovate or adapt to any changes in Internet policy or best practice. Being in control of the TLD also gives the MTN brand the ability to change direction and approach quickly, and in line with the company’s current and future goals.
Being in control of the TLD will enable MTN (Dubai) Limited to register domain names without needing to compete within other TLDs and ccTLDs for domain names. This will benefit the company by allowing key marketing campaigns to be undertaken which will be promoted with shorter domain names that are easier to remember. Thus consumers and Internet users will be able to intuitively navigate and find relevant domain names – which can be trusted as authoritative from the MTN brand.
The benefits to consumers will be similar to those mentioned above. As also mentioned above, surveys will be used to measure user experience and determine that the goal of control has been met.
The leadership goal is to promote and further identify the MTN brand as a leader in innovation and online content in the telecommunications industry.
By securing the .mtn TLD, MTN (Dubai) Limited creates a platform by which the company can lead innovation within the telecommunications industry via online content, marketing initiatives and delivery.
Success will be achieved by tightly integrating existing MTN branded content about the company, as well as current, new and forthcoming products, while using the TLD as an innovative marketing and communications tool and actively involving itself in adding to the development of the Internet. As Internet usage evolves and new TLDs emerge, it is the MTN brand’s goal to be a leader in this new era of Internet development.
An additional benefit to the MTN brand will be in furthering its existing reputation as a global leader of the telecommunications industry. This will serve to enhance the MTN brand as a whole.
The leadership goal will be measured by survey results relating to the perception of the MTN brand in terms of industry leadership.
SERVICE LEVEL-RELATED GOALS
5 A CENTRALISED LOCATION FOR MTN BRAND CONTENT AND INFORMATION
A goal of the .mtn TLD is to have accessible and easily locatable information freely available online. Clients and affiliates, both prospective and existing, require readily available and easily-accessible information about MTN-branded products. The .mtn TLD will facilitate this by offering a centralised location for all MTN products and information pertaining to the brand. As previously stated, this will also be authoritative and governed by MTN (Dubai) Limited.
The MTN brand will benefit from having a cohesive and dedicated online space that will serve as a digital hub for all brand-related activities on the Internet. This will support the diverse global approach that the MTN brand utilises in its operations and serve as a basis for its corporate operations. As previously stated, this will potentially reduce the costs of SEO and reduce company-related expenditure on marketing as a whole.
The consumer will benefit from the naming conventions employed in the .mtn TLD (for example, voice.mtn or business.mtn); enabling a better user experience for online consumers searching for products and information, while also reducing confusion. The .mtn TLD provides for intuitive navigation which, coupled with the introduction of other TLDs, will enhance the overall navigability of the Internet.
Surveys will be conducted to assess the experience of a site user and the ease of accessing .mtn TLD websites. Visit metrics will be utilised to measure the volume of traffic on .mtn websites – where the traffic has originated from and where it is being directed to. This will be compared to existing data on the current domain name portfolio and then analysed for performance.
The .mtn TLD also seeks to create more competition on the Internet. In creating its own TLD, the MTN brand hopes to drive innovation, not only to its own market segment, but to the Internet as a whole. Having already shown this innovation and leadership in its own market, the MTN brand will give Internet users, as well as existing and potential customers, greater levels of service through the creation of the .mtn TLD. This innovation, service level increase and trust in the TLD will promote more competition on the Internet and thus increase overall levels of service across the industry.
The success of this goal will be tied to the success of the new gTLD program as a whole. As more new TLD’s are delegated to the root, more competition will be created and consequently an increase in service levels will follow.
MTN (Dubai) Limited will not have a specific measure in place for this goal, but will rely on the post-program analysis to be conducted by ICANN and the GAC to determine the overall success of the program.
ANTICIPATED CONTRIBUTION TO THE CURRENT SPACE
The .mtn TLD will make a significant contribution to the current space in the following ways:
– The TLD primarily differs from existing TLDs in relation to its unique mission⁄purpose – to promote the MTN brand and its diverse operations. No other TLD currently exists that is devoted specifically to the needs of a single brand. The .mtn TLD will be one of the first TLDs added to the root in which a brand’s digital operations and very image are communicated by and through the TLD via authoritative channels.
MTN (Dubai) Limited intends to request an exemption from clause 1b of the Registry Operator Code of Conduct (Specification 9) pursuant to clause 6 of the Code of Conduct to enable it to register domain names in its own right in this TLD. This planned operating model will allow the .mtn TLD to be one of the first TLDs added to the root in which domain names are not commercially available and are registered only by and in the complete control of the Registry Operator via an ICANN-approved Registrar. This will bring added benefits to the DNS by preventing abuse and infringement, thus increasing reliability and trust. Consequently, the .mtn TLD model and other TLDs will contribute to the development of a new level of trust and confidence on the Internet.
– The use of an authoritative space will also help reduce and⁄or eliminate the number of domain names that are registered for the purpose of infringing the trademark. When end users are educated as to the benefits of the .mtn TLD, the reliance on vast portfolios of defensive domain name registrations to protect Internet users and the MTN brand will be less warranted.
– Where existing TLDs often apply to diverse and broad markets, with no imposed cap on the number of registrations made available, the .mtn TLD will be differentiated by having a relatively small number of domain names. This means that users searching for content related to particular MTN-branded products or services will be easily directed to that content via a potentially small global number of applicable sites.
– With restrictions placed on registrations and their use and content, the .mtn TLD will distinguish itself as a TLD with an online brand identity reflecting the unique and diverse MTN brand.
The above-described features of the .mtn TLD clearly differentiate it from existing top level domains. The .mtn TLD serves to consolidate the MTN brand’s online presence by providing an easily identifiable, globally visible home for MTN brand operations.
Additionally, the .mtn TLD addresses the needs of Internet users by providing an easily identifiable and dedicated TLD, with assurances regarding the legitimacy of content. Websites within other TLDs that are providing unauthoritative information relating to MTN branded products will be easily identifiable, as they will not carry a .mtn top level domain name. This will reduce risk to Internet users of reliance on unauthorised and infringing MTN brand-related content provided by unauthorised third parties.
Because domain name registrations in the .mtn TLD will be the exclusive reserve of MTN (Dubai) Limited, internal departments who register a .mtn domain name will have a distinct advantage over registration within existing TLDs and ccTLDs in terms of value proposition – due to the synonymous relationship between the .mtn string, the registrant and its aims. The .mtn TLD will be recognised by Internet users as the dedicated, authoritative and trusted online space for the MTN brand, as supported by its inclusion within MTN brand marketing activities.
REGISTRATION POLICIES IN SUPPORT OF THE .mtn TLD
All domain names registered within the .mtn TLD will be registered and maintained by MTN (Dubai) Limited for the exclusive use of MTN (Dubai) Limited, MTN (Dubai) Limited internal departments and affiliates (as defined in Article 2.9(c) of the Registry Agreement). MTN (Dubai) Limited will not sell, distribute or transfer control or use of any registration in the TLD to any third party that is not an affiliate of MTN (Dubai) Limited. All domain names will be registered via an ICANN-accredited Registrar.
Eligibility to register domain names in the .mtn TLD will be restricted to specifically-authorised MTN (Dubai) Limited marketing staff members. Clearance for registration will come from an authorised staff member within MTN (Dubai) Limited. Departments within MTN (Dubai) Limited will be able to register associated .mtn domain names to promote activities, products and services and⁄or events with authority. The safeguards against allowing for registrations in violation of this eligibility restriction, including Trademarks, are discussed in the responses to Question 28 and 29. Registration policies will strive to avoid registering any domain names that are confusingly similar to any third party trademarks or related proprietary material; offensive and obscene material will not be tolerated.
An authorised MTN (Dubai) Limited staff member will be designated as the technical contact on all registrations within the .mtn TLD. This staff member will be responsible for the ongoing technical services of websites utilising .mtn domain names.
Domain names registered within the .mtn TLD must further the published strategic goals of MTN (Dubai) Limited, as mandated by the registration policy created and maintained by MTN (Dubai) Limited.
These restrictions underpin the achievement of the goals of the TLD, in particular enhancing trust in the MTN brand and forming an authoritative source of information relating to the brand and its products.
PROTECTION OF PRIVACY AND CONFIDENTIAL INFORMATION
All domain name registrations in the .mtn TLD will be registered to and maintained by MTN (Dubai) Limited for its own exclusive internal use. No measures need be taken for protecting the privacy or confidential information of registrants in the .mtn TLD because no information of a private nature will be collected during the registration process.
MTN (Dubai) Limited will not distribute or transfer control or use of any registrations in the TLD to any third party that is not an affiliate. Use of .mtn domain name registrations will be reserved for the exclusive use of MTN (Dubai) Limited and its affiliates. Accordingly, MTN (Dubai) Limited considers that no measures need be taken toward protecting the privacy or confidential information of users of domain name registrations in the .mtn TLD.
OUTREACH AND COMMUNICATIONS ACTIVITIES
The outreach and communication activities for the .mtn TLD will be conducted in two different formats and include above the line (public) and below the line (closed and directed) marketing initiatives.
Above the line communications will focus on directed communications to internal departments, members and affiliates of the MTN brand, for the purpose of communicating the new TLD and the opportunities this presents. It is envisaged that this will be carried out and implemented by initiatives such as internal communiqués, email communications from the marketing department and public speaking opportunities at company-sanctioned events and gatherings.
Below the line communications will focus on launching the .mtn TLD to targeted audiences and prospective MTN brand customers. This will be executed via an initial awareness campaign designed to notify and educate target audiences and members on the introduction of .mtn and its benefits. The campaign will be executed via advertising and public relations activity in line with existing marketing activities already conducted by the MTN brand. Additionally, domain names within the .mtn TLD will be introduced as the primary domain names for high-profile campaigns within pre-selected market and geographic segments. This will drive end user utilisation and begin the process of behavioural change within the target audience. This is in line with the mission⁄purpose of the TLD to promote and enhance the overall MTN brand.
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