Since this is my first post for Ad Libbing, let me introduce myself. My name is Dzu Vien Bui. I’m the son of a Vietnamese immigrant father and a White Western-European mixed mother from the United States. In the days before Google, I was always told my name was unique and made up for me – something I loved! Well, it turns out that I was misinformed. There are quite a few Dzu’s out there, as any Google search will show.
The one thing we all I’m sure have in common is that Dzu is a difficult name for people to pronounce and even harder to spell if you just hear it – it doesn’t sound like it looks and doesn’t look like it sounds. In case you’re wondering this is the closest pronunciation I can find online.
This is problem not unique personal names. Government agencies and non-profits often face a similar difficulty with their organization names. Just look at the following few examples (pronunciations in parentheses):
Not everyone can be a DOT or CDC. And in a world where one’s URL is on everything and used as a main means of communication fulfillment, we need to ask, how do we ensure good traffic with a URL that is difficult to say or spell?
There are a number of things an organization can do to alleviate the possible difficulties getting people to remember a URL based on a difficult acronym. I think the best solution is a mutli-pronged approach but any of these tactics will be a step in the right direction.
- Get a different URL (even if it only a vanity URL that redirects to your main site’s URL, a subdirectory or subdomain)
- Hypothetical Example: Main URL = www.dzu.com (for an egg branding business). If it is not possible to use a strict vanity URL and you have to keep the dzu.com as the main site, try buying EggBranding.com and redirect it to dzu.com or EggBranding.dzu.com and then optimize search
- If using a different URL is not an option, try including a mobile text option that sends the URL to a phone.
- Optimize search and keywords.
- Be sure to buy all possible misspellings of the main URL (with .com, .org, and .net) and redirect all to the main site.
- Link into site where possible (banners, profile pages and message boards).
- If you produce radio, spell out the acronym and try to repeat it at least twice
I’d love to hear of other tactics, successes and failures (we can all learn mistakes) with hard to say/spell URLs.