So you know the drill you meet someone at a networking event, a potential client or prospect and they ask for your Facebook handle or your website.
YAY, awesome! But here’s what would happen………
Every time someone would ask me for my web address i’d feel physically sick and would think ‘oh lord. Please don’t go to my website’!
Yes, I put my hands up, I had MASSIVE website shame!
Why did I have such website shame:
- It was the first website I DIY’d myself as a way of just having a presence and starting my business
- My business changed ever so slightly along the way but I didn’t update any of the copy – so it felt like I was wearing someone else’s clothes
- The branding and my whole value proposition just didn’t make sense.
To everyone else it seemed fine, but to me I was dying just a little bit inside. In the end, mid last year, I thought I can’t handle this anymore and I made the decision to have a consistent visual brand identity.
So yes, you read that correctly. This has been a year in the making and I wasn’t even sure what I had to do first to rebrand my website. I didn’t even Google what to do. I just ran with it and thought i’ll figure it out along the way.
So I’ve documented the whole process step by step in this blog post and the lessons I learned so you can learn from them too.
Step 1: Branding Part 1
I hired a the fabulous chicks from Bliss Inventive to put together my branding and my logo.
I wanted to have a logo and colour scheme that represented me and my personality. So after a few iterations the final product felt just like me.
The only thing that didn’t work – was the tagline and I knew I needed to give it a little more thought. But I wanted to move forward, so I thought screw it, let’s just leave it as it is.
I wanted Bliss Inventive to create my website but they didn’t have any availability until March 2016 so I thought i’ll run with and find a web designer at some point.
Timeframe: Started in June – Finished in November 2015 6mths
Step 2: Branding Photos
While my branding was coming together I decided to get some photos taken of me. It actually felt a little self indulgent getting pictures of me without my kids being there. BUT I loved it 🙂
I got my hair and makeup done and I felt amazing! I felt Beyonce.
I had the photos taken in my favourite places in and around Canberra by the lovely photographer Jennifer Everart.
Luckily by the time my branding was being finished I received the proofs back from photographer and the designers were able to incorporate the colours of my shirt so that they matched.
I love the photos, but wish that I brought another shirt to change into, to offer some variety. But hey, you live and learn. No biggie!
August – October 2015
Step 3: Brand Message
Towards the end of 2015 I had a real breakthrough in my business. For the first time since I started my business I was crystal clear on the people I wanted to work with.
At the time and even now, every man and his dog is teaching someone how to create an online course from the big online marketers like Amy Porterfield to Derek Halpern, which is not the issue as I believe there is more an enough to go around. But they speak to a very general group of entrepreneurs and I have a slightly different demographic.
But what I realised is that the people I feel called to serve and the amazing clients I have been working with are established business owners in the health and wellness industry. SO I decided to go specific and just concentrate on this fabulous and driven group of people.
I wouldn’t have been able to get the clarity without my fabulous coach Tara Travis – she made me see that for my clients it’s not so much about them having a ‘6 or 7 figure course’ (which is a phrase that doesn’t align with me OR what I stand for).
But for my ideal clients it’s about them getting their message to a wider audience outside of their local business or practice.
For some reason I feel like i’m their champion, hero or warrior to help them get their message to the masses, which is interesting because my brand Archetype is a Warrior.
Want to discover your brand archetype take the fabulous brand archetype quiz by my friend Nikki Clark. My coach also got me to do a similar quiz and I got the same result again – so I knew I was on the right path.
The key lesson I learnt about this part of the process in particular, is that you have to be UBER clear about the people you feel called to serve that YOU KNOW 100% need your services. Without that, your brand will mean nothing to nobody.
Timeframe November – December 2015
Step 4: Website, Copy & Branding part 2
I toyed with the idea of creating my website myself but I didn’t want to go on the learning curve to be able to do that and I didn’t want to bootleg it AGAIN!
But I left it sitting in the back of my mind for a few weeks until my friend Danielle Murrell from Rich Girl Business popped up on my radar and I thought she’s the perfect person to help me bring my brand to life and help ME ‘Deliver my message to the Masses’.
Prior to working with Danielle and prior to starting this whole experience. I didn’t want people to go to my website so I would direct them to an opt in, I didn’t want to guest post or be interviewed anymore, I just wished I could pull it all down – but I couldn’t.
Yes, you could say I was being a bit dramatic and over the top but it’s truly how I felt. I had ‘website shame’ big time, and it was stopping me from moving forward.
Danielle took everything I had created to date under her wing and styled it up into something that was beyond my expectation.
But this wasn’t just a rebrand to make my website look pretty. I had to re-think everything.
The opt in, every page and it’s purpose, the web copy, how I will build my email list the works – phew!
I truly underestimated how long this would take. I didn’t want to stall and hold up the process so I had to get a copywriter in to help me with some of the pages. I had written the bulk of it, but I needed someone to make my words shine!
Writing emails, blog posts and all the other things related to my business I can do. But when it comes to sales pages or anything persuasive, I overthink it and my fingers freeze over the keyboard, so I hired Apryl Beverly Communication Strategist to be my wordsmith.
The process to get my new website created was 4 months in total from January – April 2016 and I couldn’t be prouder of what has been created. In between this time my old website crashed and got hacked and I started receiving an unprecedented amount of s p a m comments – great, so I had to deal with that!
BUT that aside …… Danielle and her team did such an Ah-mazing job. I no longer feel awkward about my website. I no longer feel like i’m wearing someone else’s clothes and I now have a digital home I can be proud of.
Yes, we have a few things to tweak here and there to get the brand consistent and removing the old branding, but just like any website there is always something that needs updating.
Here’s what my website looked like before.
Step 5: Reflection
So what have I learnt from this process? Great Q.
My biggest take away is that these things take time and you can’t rush them. It’s bloody expensive, but worth every penny once it’s finished.
I’m pleased I had bootlegged website for as long as I did hanging it together with string and nails. It taught me how to use WordPress and understand plugins and all that Jazz for a start, along with allowing me to have some sort of presence and to just.get.started.
I’m pleased I decided to update it when I did as i’m now really clear on what I want my business to look like and who I want to work with.
I hope this post has served you in understanding the steps I took to update my brand and what you need to consider. This may not be the correct way to go about updating your brand. It was a pretty organic process and it seems like the universe had my back in guiding me in the right direction which is awesome.
As I mentioned it was an 8 mth process but i’m SO pleased i’ve birthed my new website. Please take a look around and my lovely digital home and make yourself comfy.
Leave a comment below and let me know if you found this post useful and if you’re in the process of updating your website too. I’d love to hear from you.