Hip-Hop Writer Gets Poetic as a Bullish Investor of Brandable Domain Names

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Duane Lawton makes investments in creative domain names by targeting businesses seeking to launch or rebrand their online presence.

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Matching the right brandable domain with the right buyer - is like hooking the hottest rapper up with a 'blazing' beat during the peak of his career.

Duane Lawton had ambitions of becoming one of hip-hop's most-read scribes when he started DLL Enterprises as a side hustle in the mid 2000's, just as e-commerce and social media saw explosive growth online. Lawton's hip-hop journalism career stalled but he got bit by the online marketing bug.

“DLL Enterprises is basically a one-man shop. I earned a college degree in digital marketing in 2012 and probably should have entered the industry on a corporate level but I wanted to be a work-from-anywhere entrepreneur instead of slugging through long commutes to and from a job everyday", Lawton said.

Significant success in entrepreneurship can be difficult to achieve though and even more of a challenge to sustain; Lawton has experienced a series of highs and lows in his online pursuits. “I’ve done a little bit of everything online; mostly freelance work, making YouTube videos, conducting market research projects, doing a few consulting gigs, and have continued writing about hip-hop culture. But I’ve had to hold down unfulfilling jobs because my online income has been unstable; wildly fluctuating throughout the years", Lawton admits.

In the latter part of 2015, Lawton experienced a health scare that shook up his whole world. “I was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer. It was a complete shock. At the time of the diagnosis, my youngest son was just 8 months old! I didn’t know if I would survive. I went through a 12-hour surgery to remove the tumor and then went through two grueling months of chemo and radiation treatments. I was on medical leave from my job for nearly a year and still had to have multiple nasal reconstruction surgeries. My 'new normal' has been difficult to process at times, but my faith in God along with the love and support from my wife and family has gotten me through. I feel truly blessed to be alive", Lawton says.

Lawton started investing in brandable domain names while on medical leave because it required little energy and he could get started with a limited amount of capital. “My body, mind and spirit took a beating from the cancer ordeal but eventually my creative juices started flowing again", Lawton says. "I'm a wordplay guy; I craft witty domain names that I think will appeal to cutting-edge companies and disruptive businesses looking to jumpstart or breathe new life into their brands.”

Lawton has a small portfolio of about 65 brandable domain names across a wide spectrum of business industries such as Sharpentry.com (possible fit for a blade sharpening service) and TierTitan.com (potential match for a software development company). Both brandables, as well as 30 other domain names owned by Lawton, are currently listed for acquisition at https://Brandpa.com/sellers/f7951482

"A good brandable domain name tells a story before customers even visit the website. For example, I own HeightHero.com. What's my pitch? I think it'll be a great domain name for a manufacturer of ground ladders and other apparatus equipment for firefighters. Heroes need heroic tools", says Lawton.

The highest-appraised brandable in his growing portfolio is a unique play-on-words, SuiteSugar.com. Lawton thinks the domain could be a good fit for a corporate catering business, fashion brand, concierge service, software developer or even a musical group. SuiteSugar.com is currently listed at https://www.brandbucket.com/profile/domainking77

Even though Lawton plans to significantly grow his brandables portfolio, he maintains realistic expectations; he continues freelance work and self-publishes an essay series on Medium called, "Lyrical Luminary", which is a deep-dive into the careers of hip-hop's greatest rappers (https://duanelawton.medium.com).

As a domainer and writer, Lawton sees parallels between brandables and hip-hop. "Matching the right brandable domain name with the right buyer (at the right time) is like hooking the hottest rapper up with a 'blazing' beat during the peak of his career. In fact, the hip-hop brandable is going to be my new investment strategy!", Lawton says.

Just as digital art NFTs have taken the investment world by storm, Lawton predicts brandable domain names will be the next 'new thing' to own in an investment portfolio. "I think brandables are promising investments but it's definitely a buy-and-hold game. You have to have a little luck in terms of timing and an abundant amount of patience."

Duane Lawton is a freelance writer, researcher, brandable domain investor and a fan of classic hip-hop.

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Duane L Lawton
since: 01/2020
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