Describe any measures you propose to make to differentiate the .org TLD from TLDs intended for commercial purposes. Your proposal should describe in detail any planned marketing practices designed to differentiate the .org TLD, promote and attract registrations from the global noncommercial community, and minimize defensive and duplicative registrations.



  • Under NeuStar's proposed Code of Conduct for .org, NeuStar sponsored marketing activities must be targeted solely at the noncommercial community and not targeted at attracting commercial registrants to .org.

  • NeuStar's marketing plan, which is based on NeuStar funded primary research and our experience with the .biz intended purpose TLD, will differentiate .org by preserving and strengthening the association of .org with noncommercial organizations.

  • NeuStar is prepared to make the additional necessary investments in marketing and public relations to ensure widespread awareness and use of the .org TLD.

  • NeuStar will geographically diversify the .org registrant base by conducting targeted marketing and channel development activities in markets with low .org penetration.

  • NeuStar has proposed specific examples of new services that have the potential to meet the specific needs of the noncommercial community, differentiate the .org TLD and drive geographic and sector diverse registrations.


Differentiation of the .org TLD


NeuStar will differentiate the .org TLD from commercial, generic, and other special purpose TLDs with marketing specifically tailored to the global noncommercial Internet community.  NeuStar will also explore potential future services that meet the needs of the community as expressed through the proposed .org Global Policy Council and through other outreach activities.

Based on NeuStar’s both primary and secondary market research, some of which is outlined in this proposal, as well as our practical experience with the .biz intended purpose TLD, NeuStar has developed a plan which we believe will differentiate .org in the following manner:

  • Preserve and enhance the .org “brand” as being associated with noncommercial organizations;

  • Minimize defensive or protective registrations; and

  • Introduce differentiated services that specifically appeal to the noncommercial community.

Preserving and enhancing the .org “Brand”—Based on the primary research conducted by NeuStar, Internet users and prospective registrants do currently identify the .org brand with noncommercial organizations.  In addition, the .org brand is viewed as being far more trustworthy than all other gTLDs, see Proposal Section C38.3, Primary Research. 

NeuStar is prepared to invest in marketing activities that build on the current level of awareness and continues to affiliate the .org TLD with qualities like trustworthiness.  The marketing activities, which is described in more detail in Section 38.4, are as follows:

  • Public relations;

  • Partner program;

  • Website/Online;

  • Advertising with search engines; and

  • International print campaign.

NeuStar’s ability to successfully execute target marketing at a specific market through strong branding is demonstrated by the result achieved with the .biz TLD.  Currently, ninety two percent of live .biz websites are associated with business.  NeuStar will pursue the same level of brand integrity within .org.

Minimizing defensive or protective registrations—First and foremost, it is important that the new registry operator ensure the intended use for .org not compromised in any way.  Past marketing practices designed to promote .org to commercial registrants has resulted in a significant number of commercial registrations within the .org space.  Specifically .org names have been offered as promotional giveaways or offered at a discount to commercial organizations registering other gTLDs.  As demonstrated by the current renewal rate for .org, this approach may generate near term revenue, but in the long term this only serves to undermine the brand. 

NeuStar is committed to combat this issue by targeting all NeuStar supported marketing of .org domain names specifically at the noncommercial community, including any potential registrar programs that involve NeuStar co-marketing funds.  This commitment is evidenced by our proposed Code of Conduct provision restricting NeuStar funded promotional activities to those that target the noncommercial community and restricting NeuStar from marketing efforts designed to attract commercial companies to .org.  The proposed Code of Conduct Provision is as follows:

“NeuStar shall not market .org domain names or offer promotions or incentives that are specifically targeted at encouraging commercial registrations within the .org TLD”.

NeuStar operates all of our current businesses under strong Codes of Conduct.  Strict adherence is central to NeuStar’s position in the marketplace as a trusted neutral third party.  We fully intend to abide by both the intent and the spirit of the above provision of the .org Code of Conduct as one means of minimizing defensive or protective registrations.

Introduce differentiated services—Noncommercial organizations are increasingly relying on the Internet to provide information, communicate with their members or constituency, to provide important services, and to raise funds.  In many ways, however, the noncommercial community is only beginning to harness the power of the Internet to more effectively carry out their respective missions.

Many noncommercial organizations, however, cannot afford to invest in the dedicated infrastructure required to address what would be very useful applications. Although the community is very diverse, common needs, which are best addressed by a shared infrastructure, do exist.  NeuStar intends to work with the noncommercial community to develop differentiated services within .org that specifically meet the needs of the noncommercial community.  

Several examples of potential future services are described in Section C38.5 including the following:

  • Noncommercial Global Directory Service;

  • Noncommercial Website Promotion Service; and

  • Noncommercial Search Engine Service.

These services should not be considered to be definitive, however.  It is NeuStar’s intention to collaborate with the noncommercial community after the successful transition of .org, through the .org Global Policy Council and through outreach activities, to identify applications for which would best serve the community and differentiate the .org gTLD.


Market background


The noncommercial community—While it is impossible to say for certain how large the entire noncommercial community is worldwide, all data indicates that it plays a significant role socially, politically, and even economically.  The Johns Hopkins Center for Civil Society Studies recently examined the noncommercial community in 22 countries and found that this sector is a $1.1 trillion industry that employs over 19 million paid workers.  This data alone still does not capture the scope and impact of noncommercials because they attract huge numbers of volunteers as well.  An average of 28% of the population in these countries donate their time to noncommercials adding an incremental 10.6 million workers employed in the support of noncommercials.  In addition, these figures do not include religious congregations—this data adds 1.5 million paid workers to the total.  (Note:  the countries covered in the John Hopkins study include:  Netherlands, Germany, Ireland, Belgium, France, United Kingdom, Spain, Austria, Finland, Czech Republic, Hungary, Slovakia, Romania, Argentina, Peru, Brazil, Colombia, Mexico, Australia, United States, Australia, Israel, and Japan)

Market segmentation—NeuStar recognizes that the global noncommercial community is incredibly diverse.  Therefore, any attempt to fully “define” or “classify” the community can not be definitive or comprehensive.  The organization types and community sectors discussed below are provided as background to assist in the marketing analysis only.  This section, by no means is intended to define eligibility for .org registration.

The following table includes descriptions for various types of organizations that fall within the noncommercial arena.  This list was developed based on information gathered from material published by Independent Sector – a noncommercial organization that supports the non-profit and philanthropic community through research and other activities and services. While it is not intended to be an exhaustive list, it does provide an overview of many of the subcategories of organizations that operate within the noncommercial community.  A more exhaustive list of noncommercial classifications can be found in the Appendices at the end of this proposal.

Noncommercial organizations

Type of noncommercial




Institutions engaged in public provision for relief of the poor


  • Food for the Poor

  • Angel Ministries International


Organizations established by an endowment with ongoing future provisions

  • Stefan Batory Foundation

  • Bronx Hispanic Foundation

  • Ford Foundation

Social welfare organization

Organizations engaged in legislative or advocacy activities for the benefit of the disadvantaged

  • International Friends of Nature (IFN)

  • The International Association for Religious Freedom

Labor union/Trade union

Organizations dedicated to the interests of a specific group of laborers or employees

Professional association

Organizations dedicated to promoting the business or professional interests of a community

  • Academy of Scientific Hypnotherapy

  • African Studies Association

  • AFSM International

Advocacy organizations

Groups dedicated to the support of a cause or viewpoint

  • Artists without Borders

  • Conscience and Peace Tax International

  • Green Party of Aotearoa New Zealand

Nongovernmental organization

Any non-profit, voluntary citizens groups organized on a local, national or international level

  • Global Forum for Health Research

  • Inter-African Committee on Traditional Practices affecting the Health of Women and Children


  • United for Multicultural Japan


Noncommercial TLD market—There are over two million .org TLD domain registrations around the world as of May 2002.  The current registrant base is highly concentrated.  Ten countries currently hold 90% of the total .org names with the United States, United Kingdom, and Germany being the largest.  U.S. based .org registrants alone represent 65 percent of .org registrations.  .org domain names are held by all classifications of organizations.  Finally, 90% off all .org TLDs are sold through 15 registrars with Network Solutions/VeriSign being the largest registrar by far. 

In a research study conducted by NeuStar in 2001, 77% of American Internet users indicated that the .org TLD is generally perceived as the most recognizable indicator of a  “not-for-profit Website.”  In many other countries around the world, however, noncommercial sites commonly use the geographically relevant ccTLD.  Examples of this are: 

  • for associations and noncommercial enterprises in Australia;

  • for noncommercial organizations in the United Kingdom;

  • for noncommercial organizations in Israel;

  • for organizations that operate throughout  Sweden;

  • for organizations that operate in Greece; and

  • for educational institutions within Jamaica.

While ccTLDs are widely used outside of North America, additional research conducted by NeuStar in 2002, indicated that the .org TLD is familiar to 78% of Internet users worldwide.  NeuStar’s marketing plan outlines programs to geographically diversify the .org space to include potential growth markets and to position the .org TLD as a regional or global TLD for noncommercial entities.

Noncommercial organizations and technology—In a study conducted by Princeton Survey Research Associates for Independent Sector and Cisco Systems, these questions were investigated.  A sample of 203 noncommercial executives for human service organizations were asked a series of questions related to their organizations’ use of technology. Executives were drawn from small, medium, and large noncommercial organizations to form a representative sample.   Highlights of the findings are:

  • Most executives felt that information technology has changed their daily operations at least a little within the last five years. 

  • All sizes of organizations indicate that IT is a timesaving and production-enhancing tool.

  • Executives indicate that enhancing their IT either by creating or improving a Website or upgrading network capacity would improve their organization.

  • Enhanced IT would improve ability to conduct research, share reports and other important information, perform day-to-day operations, carry out programs, fundraise, and attract and retain employees and volunteers. 

  • 49% of those interviewed have a Website and use it to help explain the organization’s mission, carry out programs, recruit employees and volunteers, post reports or information, and assist with fundraising.

  • 79% of those interviewed use e-mail, and 99% of those utilize e-mail to communicate with other organizations and individuals outside their organization.

  • 77% of those interviewed use the Internet to conduct research, help carry out programs, and recruit employees and volunteers.

A summation of the findings indicates that  “Most noncommercials are interested in the Internet because of its donation potential, but having a Website and other communication technologies in place creates other benefits, such as lowering fundraising costs and to propagate their message to a much larger audience.”  These findings clearly suggest that noncommercials have benefited from IT.  Further promoting the benefits of IT and the .org TLD in particular will undoubtedly benefit the noncommercial community.


Primary market research


NeuStar was seeking information from the vantage point of both the noncommercial community and the Internet user.  Two global research studies were conducted independently, to gather the empirical data.  Study 1 was directed to the international noncommercial community.  Understanding how the noncommercial community views the .org TLD is essential as a building block for future efforts.  Study 2 was conducted with Internet users worldwide.  The noncommercial community relies heavily on the attitudes of Internet users to attract interest in the organization to seek information, fundraising, and attracting employees and volunteers.  The data gathered was instrumental in providing the foundation for a marketing plan that differentiates the .org TLD from commercial TLDs.  An overview of how the research was conducted and the key findings follows.


Study 1


Noncommercial community—Study 1 was conducted with noncommercial organizations to establish their attitudes and perceptions relative to the .org TLD.  Executive-level, one-on-one interviews were conducted with decision-makers at noncommercial organizations located in a broad range of geographic locations around the world, and representing a wide variety of groups, including health and human services, religious, trade, museums, cultural, and tourism. The overall goal of the interviews was to collect information that would be of value in determining a strategy for positioning and branding .org TLD in the international marketplace.  Complete charts of all participants sought for these interviews can be found in the Appendices at the end of this proposal.

The purpose of the study was to determine the factors that influence noncommercial organizations when selecting or changing TLDs and what attributes and benefits users associate with particular TLDs or TLD types (i.e. gTLDs vs. ccTLDs). 

The specific survey objectives were to:

  • Determine how noncommercial organizations selected their domain extensions, and who was involved.

  • Explore how these decision-makers felt the selected URL extensions represent their groups.

  • Learn what benefits the .org TLD organizations associated with the .org TLD and what benefits the associations associate with a country code or gTLD.

  • Find out how the organizations feel about changing to, retaining, or adding a .org extension.


  • A list of prospective organizations was compiled by visiting each Website.

  • A interview guide of 10—15 questions was developed.

  • Qualitative research was conducted in the form of twenty telephone interviews.

  • Each call lasted approximately 10 to 15 minutes in length and was often preceded with the interview questions e-mailed or faxed in advance.

  • A roster of organizational representatives that were interviewed and salient points made by each interviewed, is included in the Appendices at the end of the Proposal.

  • All surveys were conducted as blind tests.  Those participating in the survey were not ware of NeuStar’s involvement.


  • Ten one-on-one interviews were conducted with noncommercial entities using a .org extension and ten with noncommercial groups not using a .org extension (alternatives include .com and country codes TLDs).

  • Most interviewees were presidents, executive directors, founders, or other high-level management.

  • A significant number of study participants had been involved from the genesis of their associations’ Websites.

  • .org groups interviewed were:

    • Canada – Alcohol Policy Network/Ontario Public Health Association;

    • South America – Society of Organizational Learning (Mexico);

    • EU Countries – International Federation of Journalists (Belgium); Jewish Museum of Belgium;

    • Central Europe – Project Concern International Romania;

    • Africa – Afribike (South Africa);

    • Middle East – Israel/Palestine Center for Research and Information (Israel);

    • Asia – Conservative Baptist Association of the Philippines;

    • India – Association for Internet users Action on Safety and Health;

    • Japan – United for a Multicultural Japan;

  • groups interviewed were:

    • Canada – Hotel Association of Canada;

    • South America – Instituto Nacional de Cancer (Brazil);

    • EU Countries – European Competitive Telecommunications Association (U.K.); Luxembourg Bankers Association

    • Central Europe – Stefan Batory Foundation (Poland);

    • Africa – Johannesburg Chamber of Commerce (South Africa);

    • Middle East – The Israel Museum;

    • Asia – Australian Association of the Deaf; and

    • Japan – Japan Association for Cultural Exchange; Japan Association of Travel Agents.

Target audience

  • The key decision-maker involved in initiating the Website name selection was sought for each organization.

  • The list of all organizations we attempted to interview is included in the Appendices at the end of this Proposal.


  • Many organizations with a .org in its Website name intended to position themselves as worldwide entities. These groups see their influence and presence spanning beyond the specific countries in which they are located.

  • For the most part, organizations employing a .org extension feel it conveys a worldview.

  • NGOs employing extensions were doing so for a variety of reasons. These included government regulations, how they viewed their organization and its mission, and how vested they were in the group’s current web name.

  • Some organizations used a .com extension because they felt that they were involved in trade and business in a commercial marketplace even though they, themselves, were considered to be a noncommercial group. A few believed the resources they offered went beyond their own members to involve other constituencies.

  • Those groups with country codes in their URLs usually indicated that they wanted to ensure the visibility of their organizations in their home countries. Most did not see themselves in terms of being a “global” organization.

  • A few of the non-.orgs thought that a .org extension was intended mostly for groups with a focus on healthcare, religious, or “charitable” causes.

Analysis and conclusions

  • Use of a .org TLD makes the most sense for an institution that takes a worldwide view of itself.

  • Organizations that wish to reach constituencies beyond their own borders would benefit from a .org TLD.

  • Even organizations that choose to use a country code, having a secondary URL that includes .org offers another level of exposure. This domain name—even when linked to the existing country code Website—can provide new and different audiences, offer the opportunity for organizational repositioning.


Study 2


Internet users—A second study was conducted to determine Internet user attitudes towards organizations with a  .org TLD.  NeuStar conducted a quantitative research survey with Internet users worldwide in order to determine what having a .org TLD says about a noncommercial entity.  This research is pertinent to understanding how the .org brand is perceived internationally, and to gauge the general level of .org awareness of .org.  This information can be used to consider possible messaging strategies.

The purpose of the survey was to determine Internet user attitudes and perceptions of organizations with .org TLDs.  The survey objectives were to:

  • Understand market awareness of .org TLD;

  • Determine attitudes towards organizations with a .org TLD;

  • Assess general awareness of country code extensions;

  • Assess general awareness of second level .org domains—i.e.,;

  • Assess branding potential for the .org TLD;

  • Test various product-positioning statements for .org TLD; and

  • Determine potential means of differentiating the product.


  • A 12-minute online survey consisting of both open-ended and close-ended questions;

  • Internet users in regions around the worlds;

  • A sample size of 607 panelists;

  • Invitations were e-mailed to the respondent panels; and

  • All surveys were conducted as blind tests.  Those participating in the survey were not ware of NeuStar’s involvement.


  • Sample composition of 200 completed interviews among Europeans, 200 among Asians, 100 among South/Central American, 100 among North Americans and 7 in  “other” regions.

  • A total of 65 countries are represented in the survey.

  • The margin of error for the Internet user sample as a whole was 4.0% at the 95% confidence interval.


  • .com is the universal TLD as nearly everyone surveyed said they were familiar with that nomenclature.

  • ccTLDs enjoy the same cache in Europe and Asia as .com.  However, fewer than half of North and South Americans profess that they are very familiar with ccTLDs.

  • Almost four in five Internet users worldwide say they are very familiar with .org placing it as one of the leading top-level domains worldwide in terms of awareness.

  • Most Internet users worldwide have a favorable impression of .org.

  • Internet users typically use noncommercial descriptors for Websites that use the .org TLD.

  • .org has strong brand equity in every region throughout the world despite the fact that its use is predominantly used in the US.

  • Just one in five think .org is interesting or easy to remember

  • Fewer than one in ten would describe a Website that uses .org as innovative, personal, confusing, gimmicky, unnecessary, meaningless or U.S. based.

  • Whereas impressions of .org and .com are relatively consistent across different regions, opinions of ccTLDs vary depending on the survey respondents’ country of origin. European and Asian Internet users have a more favorable opinion of ccTLDs than people in other regions around the globe.

  • From a branding perspective, Internet users tell us that there is a level of trust associated with a .org TLD that does not necessarily exist for other multi-use TLDs.

Analysis and conclusions
The survey results show that international Internet users believe the .org TLD plays an important role in distinguishing one Website from another. 

Many natural uses for the .org TLD already exist.  As Exhibit C38-1, Internet users worldwide feel that any noncommercial entity ought to have .org as its suffix.  This also holds true for specific vertical noncommercial segments. In fact, Internet users in every region think that it is appropriate for noncommercials ranging from religious institutions, to hospitals, to use the .org TLD.  This perception holds true whether one is referring to a local, national, or international institution.

Exhibit C38-1.  Which of the following domain name extensions is most descriptive of a noncommercial website?

The .org suffix has important brand attributes that should be leveraged in the market place. Most importantly, more Internet users think a Website that uses a .org extension is more trustworthy than a gTLD or ccTLD.  As seen in Exhibit 38-2, this attribute makes a .org TLD particularly attractive to organizations seeking to raise funds. 

International Internet users believe that Websites that use the comTLD are easier to remember than .org TLD.  Websites are also more likely to be described as interesting if they use the .com TLD over the .org TLD.  In Europe and Asia, the .org TLD is further hampered by the popularity of the ccTLD – in those regions Internet users say the ccTLD is much easier to remember than the .org TLD. 

While .org is the preferred top-level domain in North and South America for local, national, and international non-profits, in Europe and Asia some favor a ccTLD.  Overcoming this preference in Europe and Asia may be key to international adoption of .org TLD.

Exhibit C38-2.  Which of the following domain name extensions is most descriptive of a web site that is trustworthy?

NeuStar believes that a terrific opportunity exists within the global noncommercial space for the .org TLD.  Internet users have strong, positive associations with websites that use .org as a top-level domain.   We believe that demand exists for the .org TLD and that a strong targeted marketing campaign will create the requisite interest in the .org TLD.



Marketing plan


Market opportunity
The research indicates that there are several strong opportunities to market and position the .org TLD to address the needs of the global noncommercial community:

  • .org TLD is specific to the noncommercial space.

  • Organizations with a view towards global reach will benefit from a .org TLD.

  • .orgs have strong awareness worldwide.

  • Internet users already identify .orgs with noncommercial enterprises.

  • Internet users associate the .org TLD with both local and international noncommercial organizations.

  • Favorable opinions are expressed worldwide with regard to the .org TLD.

  • There is a level of trust associated with Websites that use .org that simply does not exist for other multi-use TLDs.

Value proposition
Establishing a value proposition for a product provides the foundation around which a marketing campaign can be built.  Value propositions define the most important benefits or facts that appeal to the target group of customers.  It clearly establishes why the product is important and translates those features into customer benefits.  Marketing programs are designed around communicating those benefits to target groups.  The research indicates noncommercials are interested in receiving the following benefits from a domain name product: 

Noncommercial domain name product requirements



Available worldwide

Global exposure


High level of brand awareness by users

Highly reliable

High levels of service availability and quality

Easy to find

Capabilities that allow users to easily find me

Positioning—Product positioning defines how a product should be known, described or characterized, in the customer’s mind.  Based on the research outlined above, the following are examples of how the .org TLD could be positioned for promotional materials:


Responding to what emotion or attribute

Product feature targeted

Positioning statement

Noncommercial entities


Global exposure and reach

.org TLDs are recognized globally as noncommercial entities by businesses, volunteers, fundraisers, etc.

Noncommercial entities and Internet users

Ease of use

Associated with noncommercial

A descriptive Website because the name indicates its type

Noncommercial entities



.org TLDs allow the Website to be used by any type of noncommercial entity

Noncommercial entities and Internet users



.org TLDs are readily recognized by people who utilize the Internet

Internet users and Businesses



.org TLDs are perceived as more  trustworthy in terms of the reliability of information and treatment of personal information

Internet users and Businesses


Community of organizations

.org Websites are dedicated to noncommercial and charitable organizations

Channel strategy
Although most registrars already offer .org names, existing sales are highly concentrated within the top 15 registrars.  In addition, sales are geographically concentrated in a handful of countries. NeuStar’s channel strategy is to create a strong globally diverse distribution network to reach the noncommercial sector.

NeuStar’s research to current .org and owners revealed several interesting points related to sales of the .org TLD. 

  • The decision makers for selecting the URL for the organization’s Website were senior level individuals: Director General, Executive Director, President, or the Managing Director of the organization.

  • Most knew of the availability of the .org TLD and many knew how to purchase a domain name.  

  • Advertising agencies or Website development companies frequently assisted with acquiring domain names.   

The information gleaned from the research conducted combined with targeted incentives provides the basis for the channel campaign. 

Partner program

  • Objectives—Create incentives for NeuStar partners to promote and grow the .org TLD space in the noncommercial arena.

  • Market—International Registrars and Resellers.

  • Programs—Co-marketing incentive programs for marketing targeted at noncommercial groups:

    • HTML e-mails, newsletters, targeted direct mail;

    • Joint participation in sponsoring events/conferences to targeted groups; and

    • Joint PR opportunities.

  • Timing—1 - 2 months prior to transition and throughout the following year.

NeuStar’s marketing strategy
In order to promote internationalization of the .org space, increasing awareness levels is essential.  NeuStar’s marketing strategy is a three-pronged approach. 

The three elements of the plan are as follows:

  • .org branding—Addressing the need to further establish the .org brand;

  • Retention programs—Ensure retention of existing registrants; and

  • to selected vertical noncommercial markets.

.org branding
Building a brand means developing name recognition and communicating the qualities of the product.  Brand identity helps to establish a relationship between the brand and the customer by generating a value proposition involving function, emotional, or self-expressive benefits.  Creating a clear, accurate, brand identity in the marketplace is critical as it sets expectations, and defines associations and feelings. 

The need to have a focused branding initiative for the .org TLD is further supported by recent quantitative Internet user research indicating that the .org TLD is not recognized by Internet users as “easy to remember.”  While the .org TLD is recognized in Web sites, it is still not as “easy to remember” as .com. 

Many of the organizations that participated in the qualitative research thought that the .org TLD was specifically for academic, religious, or civic organizations.  This data indicates that repositioning and reemphasizing the .org brand is required.  NeuStar’s brand strategy will be to widen the identity beyond just these specific areas (academic, religious and civic), to include all noncommercial enterprises, and position it such that .org is as easily identifiable as other common TLDs to Internet users and businesses.  While marketing of the .org TLD will be focused on noncommercials, the communication of the brand messaging will extend to a broader audience to ensure widespread awareness beyond the noncommercial arena.  The brand attributes that would be communicated are:

  • The .org TLD is specifically dedicated to the noncommercial community.

  • The .org TLD is ideal for regional or global organizations.

  • The .org TLD is trustworthy.

To execute the brand initiative five programs will be undertaken:

  1. Public relations;

  2. Partner program;

  3. Website/Online;

  4. Advertising with search engines; and

  5. International print campaign.

Public relations—In an integrated communication program, PR is a natural complement to advertising and marketing.  Research has shown that year-after-year, the most admired companies share one attribute: they all have an active public relations program.  They are admired, quite simply, because they are known.  To put it another way: familiarization breeds favorability.  This basic reality will drive the public relations efforts in support of the .org TLD.  The .org TLD PR program will follow several guiding principles:  frequency, staying on message, staying on strategy, and recognizing that all media is not equal.  With these principles in mind the PR program will be developed.  Key messages will be defined and modified for different audiences, and then simplified to three concise but compelling points.  Every effort will be made to capitalize on all news opportunities on-going communication with media. 

Through research and market understanding the right information has been identified—PR will be utilized to determine the best ways to deliver it.  NeuStar has proven its ability to generate positive PR both domestically and internationally.  For the recent launch of .us domestically, NeuStar’s PR effort generated over 116 million impressions in one month.  Internationally, PR was instrumental in increasing awareness and driving the internationalization of .biz.  NeuStar maintains agencies internationally on retainer to drive PR efforts to increase awareness and educate constituencies. 

Partner program—Working with all international registrars and resellers to promote the .org TLD is an essential component to the branding effort.  Brand materials including positioning, promotional materials, and online messaging will be provided to all .org registrars and resellers to encourage brand promotion.  Registrars and resellers will be encouraged to promote the .org brand utilizing testimonials from their customer base as a means of adding credibility and brand support.

Website/online—NeuStar will create a .org website that will serve as a basis for the messaging and branding identity.  The .org website will serve several functions, the most important of which, is to promote the brand with consistent messaging.  It will also communicate the benefits of owning a .org TLD, answer potential customer questions, direct customers on how to purchase a .org extension, and provide links to registrars and resellers.  A section of this website will also be set aside for the PR effort to encourage media visits.

Search engines—According to a study by IMT Strategies that asked 400 Internet user and business e-mail users how they discovered new Websites, 45.8% cited search engines as their top method.  Three of the five most visited properties on the Internet in May, 2002 were MSN, Yahoo and Google. Advertising programs with lead search engines providers offer language, geographic, and keyword targeting to guarantee a targeted campaign.    NeuStar will utilize the worlds top search engines to promote .org.

Print campaign—Creating awareness to the entire noncommercial community including those that do not frequent search engines, or those that may not yet be online is the objective for an international print campaign.  The program is designed to reach a wider audience with the .org brand message.  Key opportunities for a print promotion are:  branding messages, testimonials, and high profile user sites examples. 

Some potential print vehicles for this effort are:

  • Initiative—The Journal of the German-British Chamber of Industry and Commerce (Printed in English and German).  This publication contains information of Anglo-German Business, and reports on events held by the German/British Chamber.  Circ - 4,000

  • Le Moci—French International Trade Weekly - Gives high-level executives in France detailed, scholarly reports on sectors of the world economy, pointing out needs and business opportunities. Circ - 15,000

  • European Hospital—Pan European publication aimed at decision makers on budget and spending in healthcare institutions and organizations throughout the EU and Eastern Europe.  Circ - 31,115

  • Rotary in Great Britain and Ireland—Provides news and views on Rotary matters for Rotarians in GB and Ireland. Also covers activities worldwide.  Circ - 62,981

  • Assessment—edited for members of public services, tax and commerce unions.  Circ - 50,000

  • Al Muslimoon—Source for the Muslim world, offers news concerning Islam on a political, social and cultural level.

  • Life and Work—News magazine of the Church of Scotland.  Circ - 50,000

  • Professional Fundraising—Magazine covering techniques and the latest fundraising practices.  Read by professional fundraisers throughout the United Kingdom.  Circ. 6,000

  • Third Sector—News magazine for the charities world.   Circ. 4,873

  • Sponsoring Actueel—Dutch magazine about international trend and developments in the field of sponsoring aimed at those engaged in raising sponsorship levels.

  • Common Cause—Magazine covering issues such as education, health, agriculture, population, trade, industry and disasters in the developing world.  Read by action aid supporters, policy makers and the media. Circ. 120,000.

  • Charity Times—Magazine covering all areas of financial and business management related to charities.  Read by charity trustees, managers and their advisors.  Circ. 10,040.

  • NCVO News—The magazine of the National Council for Voluntary Organizations. Circ 3,000.

  • Voice of the Unions—A newspaper covering employment issues for trade unionists and political analysts. 

  • Le Rotarien—A cultural review of worldwide French-speaking rotary clubs.  Circ. 41,000.

  • The Chronicle of Philanthropy—Newspaper of the nonprofit world, providing news and information for executives at tax-exempt organizations in the following industries – health, education, religion, arts, and social services.  Circ. 42,460.

  • The Nonprofit Times—Magazine edited for nonprofit executives. Circ. 32,040.

Retention program
Continuing to meet the needs of the current .org community will be a primary NeuStar objective and a retention program consistent with this philosophy will be employed.  The goal of the retention program will be to achieve renewal rates higher than the current industry average of 40% – 50%.  NeuStar will partner with registrars and resellers to institute an HTML e-mail campaign as registrations come up for renewal.  All renewal program activity will be targeted solely at the renewal of noncommercial users and not at those who use a commercial TLS (e.g. .com or .biz) as their primary Internet address.  

Vertical marketing programs
In addition to the branding campaign, a promotional effort will be undertaken with registrars and resellers.  These programs are designed to drive interest and registrations within specific vertical segments.  Vertical targeting has been developed based on the research findings suggesting that there are specific areas of opportunity.   Co-marketing opportunities and programs with registrars and resellers to the targeted verticals will include:

  • HTML e-mail campaigns;

  • Online newsletters;

  • Sponsored events and conferences;

  • Co-marketing print and/or direct mail to the targeted vertical; and

  • Sales incentive programs.

These programs will be implemented in conjunction with the channel partners to ensure interested customers have a clear means to register their .org domain name.   It is likely that online programs will be the best vehicle.  In “The Chronicle of Philanthropy Subscriber Study,” 1999, 45.5% of respondents indicated they used the Internet to make purchases, 34.3% participated in online newsgroups, and 30.1% visited philanthropic publication Web sites regularly.  Key selling messages for these campaigns will be the widespread favorability of the .org extension with Internet users.   Additionally, Internet users feel that .org Websites are more trustworthy than both .com or ccTLD websites. 

The quantitative research indicated several areas of opportunity for vertical marketing.  Internet users look to .org websites to be informational and communal.  There is also an expectation that .org websites can be religious or for health care purposes.   Further, the interviews conducted with noncommercials indicated any organization that wishes to reach constituencies beyond their own borders, or that looks to generate or enhance its global visibility would benefit from the inclusion of a .org as an extension.  Given this data, there are several recommended vertical segments that are likely opportunities for promotional marketing efforts.  The vertical segments and the underlying supporting details are outlined in the table below.

Marketing Vertical


Religious organizations

  • Already recognized by Internet users as expected to have a .org TLD

  • Provides the opportunity to fulfill stated mission of providing information to attract interest and converts worldwide

  • Gives the ability to share the organizations message across borders

  • Enlarges the fundraising opportunity

  • Improves the ability to attract volunteers

Health and human Services

  • Expected by both Internet users and noncommercial enterprises to have a .org Website

  • Improves the ability to communicate research findings and share information regarding regional studies

  • Increases the ability to provide information to solicit support outside your regional boundaries

  • Enhances fundraising opportunities

  • Improves opportunities to attract employees and volunteers worldwide

  • Increases the ability to grow your community of interest


  • Increases the region’s ability to attract interest globally

  • Provides opportunity to increase interest and provide information about your country or region

  • Enhances the opportunity to highlight festivals and events of the region

  • Provides a trusted site for tourists seeking objective information

  • Opportunity to provide visitors with a wealth of information regarding:  currency, government, history, language, accommodations, restaurants, sightseeing, folklore and traditions, transportation, shopping, etc.

Environmental causes

  • Increases ability to attract broad support for your cause worldwide

  • Improves ability to communicate issues and positions with your constituency

  • Allows notification to members of upcoming events

  • Provides the ability to solicit support for campaigns

  • Enhances ability for fundraising worldwide

  • Improves opportunities to attract employees and volunteers across borders

  • Improves ability to grow your community of interest

  • Allows individuals to become cyber activists

NeuStar has performed preliminary research into these vertical segments worldwide.  The following table provides a sampling of the types of organizations that could be targeted within each of the vertical markets noted above.  Vertical marketing efforts supported by NeuStar through co-marketing initiatives, provided they focus exclusively on reaching noncommercial entities.

Vertical market opportunities


Health and human services




Europe (UK, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Netherlands, Switzerland, Sweden, Austria)

SOLIDAR- Independent European Alliance of Development and Social Welfare

Alliance of European Voluntary Service Organizations (AEVSO)

European Tour Operators Association

European Cyclists Association (ECF)

International Helsinki Federation for Human Rights

Association of Feminist Theologians in Austria

La Asociación de Teólogas Españolas (Spain)

Climate Network Europe (CNE)

Foundation for Environmental Educational in Europe


COACH: Canada’s Health Informatics Association

Canadian College of Heath Service Executives

Northern Rockies Alaska Highway Tourism Association

Christian and Missionary Alliance in Canada

Green Ontario

Central/Eastern Europe

Polish National Center for Health Information Systems

Hotel Association of Hungary

Slavic Gospel Association

International Study of Religion in Eastern and Central Europe Association

National Society of Conservationists (Hungary)

Asia (Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong, Australia)

SAWNET: Southeastern Asia Women’s Net

Pacific Asia Travel Association

Australian Tourist Commission

Asiatica Association

Environmental Research Centre of Fukui Prefecture

Biodiversity Care Trust (Sri Lanka)


Doctors of India Online

National Institution of Nutrition

Hotel Association of India

World Association for Vedic Studies

The Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce & Industry

Peoples Commission on Environment and Development India

Middle East/Africa

SANGONeT: Southern Africa NGO Net

Health in Zambia

Arab Hotel Association

Federated Hospitality Association of South Africa

United People in Christ, Inc.

African Christian Relief

Mediterranean Information Office for Environment Culture and Sustainable Development (MIO-ECSDE)

Global scope

IDEX: International Development Exchange

International Assn of Conventions and Visitors Bureaus

Interdenominational Foreign Mission Association

The International Association for Religious Freedom

International Friends of Nature (IFN)

Center for Environmentally Responsible Tourism


Marketing plan conclusion


This marketing plan conclusively demonstrates NeuStar’s ability to successfully achieve both vertical and geographic diversification of the .org space within the noncommercial community while preserving the brand integrity of the .org as a space specifically for noncommercial organizations.  NeuStar has reviewed and addressed the key factors for success.  It has conducted research to understand what the noncommercial community and Internet users think about the .org TLD.   It is committed to the integrity of the space and will implement marketing and public relations programs dedicated to this belief.  With an understanding of the market, NeuStar has developed a plan to reach the global noncommercial community.  NeuStar recommends getting started on this plan prior to transition to ensure greater awareness within the communities of interest


Noncommercial service differentiators


Noncommercial organizations are increasingly relying on the Internet to provide information, communicate with their members or constituency, to provide important services and to raise funds.  In many ways, however, the noncommercial community is only beginning to harness the power of the Internet to serve more effectively carry out their respective missions.

Many noncommercial organizations cannot afford to invest in the dedicated infrastructure required to address what would be very useful applications. Although the community has very diverse, common needs, which are best addressed by a shared infrastructure, this shared utility does not exist.  NeuStar intends to work with the noncommercial community to develop differentiated services within .org that specifically meet the needs of the noncommercial community.  

The services presented below, including directory services, website promotion services and advanced search should not be considered definitive.  It is NeuStar’s intention to collaborate with the noncommercial community after the successful transition of .org through the .org Global Policy Council and through outreach activities, to identify applications for which would best serve the community and differentiate the .org gTLD.  Future deployment of such services would only be considered pending review and comment by the noncommercial community through the proposed .org Global Advisory Council and, if applicable under the agreement, approval by ICANN. 

Noncommercial global directory service
As the number of websites continues to grow, it becomes increasingly difficult for users to easily locate the information or service they require.  Given the breadth and diversity of the noncommercial community, it can prove very challenging for end users to find the information, help, or access to the services they need

Many noncommercial organizations do not have the financial or staff resources required to promote their services in multiple venues on the Internet.  The establishment of an easily navigable noncommercial directory built upon a standard taxonomy of sectors, services and key words, has the potential to create organization from the current chaos and most importantly, connect people with the information, resources or help they need.  In addition, this directory has the potential to encourage collaboration between noncommercial organizations resulting in collective efforts that best serve society. 

This directory will enable noncommercial organizations to register pertinent information in a central location where users can easily locate them and noncommercial organizations can easily find each other.  The global .org registrar community is in an excellent position to work proactively with the community to provide a mechanism that drives widespread adoption of the directory by the community and NeuStar has the resources and technical architecture to support a global utility to support the directory in a manner that serves all sectors of the community in a responsive and reliable manner.  Pending community outreach activities and collaboration with, and review, by the proposed .org Global Policy Council NeuStar is prepared to explore the potential implementation of this Noncommercial Global Directory Service, subject to ICANN approval if applicable.  

Noncommercial website promotion service
Most noncommercial organizations do not have the financial resources required to use mass marketing techniques to drive traffic to their sites; a mechanism is needed to meet the specific needs of the community.  There are a number of services available today that offer low cost search engine and directory submission services.  There is no such service, that we are aware of, that is optimized for noncommercial organizations.  Since noncommercial organizations do have specialized needs in terms of the audience they are trying to reach, including the desire to be submitted to specific types of directories or to reach specific geographies, potential supporters, volunteers or contributors for example, the proposed NeuStar name promotion would offer submission capability tailored to these specific needs. 

NeuStar is prepared to work with the noncommercial community in a collaborative fashion to determine the usefulness of a noncommercial name promotion service, and to design the service to meet their specific needs.  Assuming outreach activities to the community, including a favorable review by the proposed .org Global Policy Council, NeuStar is prepared to explore the potential implementation of the Noncommercial Website Promotion Service, subject to ICANN approval if applicable.

Noncommercial search engine service
Some would argue that the Internet, when combined with today’s search engines, represents the world’s most powerful tool when it comes to connecting people with information.  Of course, many noncommercial organizations already use this tool to get their message out, to provide services, to communicate and to raise funds.  As powerful a tool as it is, however, the Internet, has yet to realize its full potential to connect those people who need information, advice or expertise to other people who can help.

Thousands of experts, many of whom are associated with noncommercial organizations, are already making their expertise available through “Ask-A” services (e.g., “Ask a Doctor,” “Ask a Lawyer”). A solution is required, however, that will allow anyone anywhere to get instant access to the millions of “invisible” experts and enthusiasts who are already online at any one time.  Such a capability could be thought of as a blending of a universal search engine and a universal message board enlivened with real time communication.

In order to make resources available to answer questions, each noncommercial organization, associated individuals or non-affiliated individual subject matter experts could register an “Expert Profile” with the .org registry. The following is an example of the type of information included in a profile:

  • Description of expertise;

  • List of questions the expert can answer;

  • Screen name; and

  • Restrictions (by geography, age, level of education, student, etc.).

Users enter questions into a web-based interface and receive a composite response.  The response includes information resources, relevant .org websites and a listing of experts who can answer the question, as well as an indication of whether the expert is available for a live chat session.  If available for live chat, users can chat with an expert to obtain an answer.  If the expert is not currently online, e-mail or telephone contact information will be available.  Although the pricing structure has not been determined, satisfied end users will have the ability to elect to make a voluntary contribution to the associated organization through an on-line payment mechanism.  In those cases where there is a fee associated with expert listing that will be indicated clearly so that the user is aware of any possible fees. In cases where answers are provided at no charge, end users can elect to make a contribution to the associated organization with an online payment mechanism. 

One can imagine someone needing information about heart disease, for example, using this capability to connect with someone at a healthcare organization, or perhaps someone with a question about recycling reaching an environmental organization.  Participation in this type of search by government and social service outreach programs, professional associations, philanthropic organizations, religious organizations, educators, librarians and other noncommercial organizations has the potential to fuel the return of the human voice to the Internet, and make this direct communication part of searching for the first time. 

The .org registry operator and the .org registrars are in a unique position to accept registrations of subject matter experts from within the noncommercial community. Wondir, Inc., which plans to offer the expert search capability described above, intends to operate as a noncommercial company, and has approached NeuStar about offering the service to the .org community.

Conclusion—noncommercial service differentiators
The services described above reflect NeuStar’s commitment to work collaboratively with the noncommercial community to identify new services to meet their specific needs, and differentiate the  .org name space in a manner that is consistent with its intended purpose.  These differentiated, noncommercial community specific, capabilities will also drive widespread adoption of the .org TLD in all geographies and appeal to multiple sectors of the community.  NeuStar has the financial resources and demonstrated technical capability required to meet these needs and is committed to exploring their potential implementation with the community itself, including approval by ICANN where applicable.

C39. Intentionally omitted.