Q: I'm thinking of rebranding but I'm afraid of the consequences (losing potential clients, affecting my reputation, confusing people etc...). How should I do it?
On the eighth day, God made branding (really difficult). :P lol So, your photography business has been chugging along for a few years (or months) and you're feeling squirmy for a change. I totally get it. Either you no longer like your name or your logo or your website OR so much has changed over the years and you feel it’s time to bring your branding up to speed with where your artwork has taken you.
You’re ready to spice up your life BUT you’re worried that it’s going to be a big hassle. Just the idea of going through all that legal paperwork again to legally change your business name, adjust bank account details, spend hours online designing branding etc… is intimidating and exhausting. AND we’re all worried that we’ll be sacrificing the good reputation that we’ve worked so hard to build because no one is going to recognize us after our business makeovers.
I rebranded my business after my first 6 months. When I started my business I was convinced that I wouldn’t get any clients because nobody would be able to say or remember by mammothly long & unusual name. So I chose a cutesy business name. LOVEDUCKS PHOTOGRAPHY. (Yep, I really did that.) But one morning I woke up and realized that if anyone was ever going to take me seriously I had to operate under my own name and if I did anything worthwhile, people would jolly well learn how to pronounce it.
Changing your branding is not something you want to do on a whim because you’re right, 1) it’s a lot of work, 2) it can be confusing for clients, and 3) focusing on your brand too much will distract you from developing your artwork. But after careful deliberation and a few solid months of deliberation to make sure it’s really what you want to do, I would definitely recommend rebranding if you think it will take your business in the direction you want it to go. Think of the logistics like an early morning workout — it’s tough to get started, you’ve got to grit your teeth to survive it but you’re going to feel so good when it’s done!
As for your (potential) clients, they won't be confused so long as you keep them informed. Blog about your ideas for rebranding (before you rebrand). Blog about your dreams for your brand and have your Facebook fans vote on their favorite logo design. Make it a big exciting thing that all your followers can look forward to do. Don't surprise anybody overnight and you'll be just fine ;)