11 February 2008

Do's and Don'ts of Naming Your Comic and Choosing a URL

Two of the most important things you will do as a publisher are naming your comic and finding a URL for your comic. Here a quick list of dos and don'ts for both.

Dos and Don'ts of Comics Naming
- Do research to discover if anyone else has used a similar title recently. You don't want a title called Wormwood when there's a title called Chronicles of Wormwood. It creates brand confusion and makes is hard for your readers and retailers to find (and order) your book. There are a few online comic book databases that can be helpful. I suggest the Grand Comic-book Database (GCD) or ComicBookDB.com. When in doubt, you can always Google the keywords in your title with comics or comic book to see what out there.

- Do choose a title that evokes the subject matter of the series. Don't call your romance title The Forbidden Zone.

- Don't choose a title that suggests a frequency like Warmageddon Quarterly, Action Comics Weekly, or Omnibus Bi-Monthly. As a self-publisher things will go wrong and things will get delayed and the last thing you want to do is have the title of your book remind your audience that the book is late.

- Don't choose a title that is too long (or too short) as it will create problems when trying to develop a logo. It's much easier to create a logo for Warmageddon than it is for Warmageddon Illustrated or Warmageddon Quarterly.

Dos and Don'ts of Choosing Domains and URLs
- Do choose a domain that is related to your comic. If your comic is called Warmageddon, then www.warmageddon.com is a better domain choice than www.gladiatorbattle.com. Having a title and matching domain helps establish your brand.

- Do use a generic name over a totally unrelated name. For Warmageddon, it would be better to use gladiatorbattle.com than webandprintcomix.com. gladiatorbattle.com gives you a better idea of the content of the site than the latter and you want to convey as much information about your project with as few words as possible.

- Don't choose a really long domain name. www.thisisthegreatestcomicbookintheworld.com is too long and when it appears in print material no one will type it.

- Don't use slashes. When typing most will not go beyond the first slash. If you have www.ljamal.com/warmageddon then most will type in www.ljamal.com.

- Do use subdomains to redirect to slash URLs. If your web site is www.zudacomics.com/node/250/ then using thomas.ljamal.com is a more memorable URL that also includes branding.

- Don't use the dubs. Most web hosts automatically assume that www.ljamal.com and ljamal.com point to the same web site. If your web host does not than any good web host should be able to correct the problem with a short phone call. Dubs just make your URL longer without any added benefit.

- Do use .com. I never suggest owing a .net, .biz, or .anything but .com. If you are using any top level domain (TLD) other than .com, you ARE sending someone traffic.

- Don't use hypens (dashes) unless they are part of your logo and even then you should own the hyphenless domain. It's okay for Chik-Fil-A to own chik-fil-a.com because the dashes are part of their logo and that increases brand awareness. However, they also own chikfila.com. Don't go out and buy agent-of-chaos.com because agentofchaos.com because at some point some is going to ask you what your domain name is and then you're stuck saying agent dash of dash chaos dot com.

- Do avoid beginning the domain with the, a, or an. If you must own the a,the or an domain then also get the domain without the articles. Local gourmet market place, A Southern Season, owns asouthernseason.com and southernseason.com.

- Do use initial caps to separate domain names with multiple words. LongBox.com rather than longbox.com. DigitalWebbing.com and not digitalwebbing.com. The initial caps help the eye identify the words quicker which means the end user is more like to remember the URL.
It doesn't always help a lot (that's why we have other rules). thisisthegreatestcomicbookintheworld.com is still difficult to read as ThisIsTheGreatestComicBookInTheWorld.com.

1 comment:

PWN said...

i don't care how old this is, thank you for the help!!