When I first launched this website in 2014, it was branded as Savvy Jackie Designs. At the time, I was transitioning from another business and was already using the twitter handle @savvyjackie. My colleagues and friends knew me as Savvy Jackie. My last name has never been easy for folks to pronounce, so I thought it was easier to leave it out.
D’Elia (duh lee ah) is Italian, not Spanish which pronounces Delia differently.
I wanted to create something catchy, so I picked Savvy Jackie Designs. I designed a logo, ordered business cards and launched my website. It was a unique brand, but not an really what I would call an authentic brand.
It wasn’t long after that – I began to question that decision – mostly because it just didn’t feel genuine or very professional for the client market I was targeting. I was regretting my decision, thinking I was just stuck with it.
Fast forward 18 months.
I recently attended Pressnomics in Phoenix, and had the opportunity to meet some really amazing people. It was during a conversation with Emily White and Mike Hale, that I shared my desire to rebrand using my real name. They both thought it was a good idea. We discussed how I might do that, and the feedback they gave me was very helpful. I came back from Pressnomics energized and with a plan. I was going to rebrand Savvy Jackie Designs and use the domain jackiedelia.com that I already had – but was not using.
Before I made any changes, I reached out to my friend Carrie Dils for her thoughts on rebranding. Carrie’s all about being authentic and I’ve always admired that about her. She offered some great advice about building a brand around my name. I mentioned that I was considering creating a second website for my tutorials and technical posts, so that I could target my design business site with content for clients. Carrie suggested that I might want to hold off on that to minimize the SEO affect of losing that content while changing domain names.
My Authentic Brand
This week I rebranded Savvy Jackie Designs to Jackie D’Elia Design – and I updated my twitter handle to @jdelia. I did the same for my Github profile and other social media outlets. It’s simple, and it’s authentic. It’s just me. As far as separating my content – I want to give that some more thought. On one hand, having a site devoted to client services and content created to attract those clients – makes sense. I’m not sure if mixing DIY technical content helps that effort. On the other hand, I end up fragmenting my brand, while having to maintain two sites each with less content.
I hope that sharing my experience might be helpful to others. If something doesn’t feel right, change it. It was certainly helpful for me to receive some advice from folks I trust. I’d also like to thank my friend Nikki Norman. It was really helpful to get her perspective coming from outside the WordPress space.
If you’ve been feeling the same way about a brand decision you’ve made in the past – and are considering a change, follow your gut, seek out advice from those you trust – and be okay about it.