On January 17, 2017, I did something that I had been wanting to do for a long time: I hit Publish on my blog.
My journey to that single moment had been a long one. For months, I had been researching everything I could about blogging, from the basics of how to set up the blog, to more complex things, like how to insert pieces of code to hide Pinterest images in the post. I wanted to utilize all of the tips and advice that other bloggers were giving so that I could start my blog off on the right foot; to do that, I wanted everything planned ahead of time, which included my brand.
For those first few months, everything worked out well. Letters From Sunshine (the former name of my blog) had an established brand, color scheme, and a growing readership; I was proud of it. But at the same time, I had barely gotten my feet wet in the blogging community. As I learned more about blogging and developed my voice and style, I began to realize that Letters From Sunshine was no longer right for me.
The concept of re-branding was an idea that I fought with for a long time. I told myself that a name was just a name, and that I could always create a second blog farther down the road to encompass my expanding interests, as many other bloggers were doing. Although I eventually rejected the second idea, the “a name is just a name” concept stuck with me…because it’s wrong. Just as a picture is worth a thousand words, so is a blog name, and in the end, my blog name wasn’t connected to me as much as it needed to be. If I wanted my blog to truly reflect me, then it would need a re-name; I figured that if I was going to go through the trouble of a re-name, then I might as well re-brand it as well. After all, why wait to write about topics that I was passionate about?
In the end, I think it is inevitable for any blog to re-brand, no matter how big or small it is, or how well it was thought out beforehand. Even if it’s not an official “re-brand”, all blogs change over time because of their personal connection to us, and as we grow, they grow with us. Sometimes, this means that they change with us, too.
For those who are curious, the name “Letters From Sunshine” was derived from a combination of what I was told blogging was like (writing a letter) and my personality (“sunshine”, since I’m a pretty happy and optimistic person). The connections between the two were about as clear as mud unless decided to stop by the About page, and it’s indication of what the blog was about was even less comprehensible. Needless to say, re-naming the blog was a pretty big priority.
Once I finally stopped fighting the inevitability of a blog re-re-brand, I knew that I wanted to incorporate my own name in to it in some way possible. The only bad part about this? There were no clever ways to use my name that I could think of. Rhyming my name didn’t work, and there were no clever phrases that I could use with it, either. With neither of these things going for me, I decided on the name Forever Charlotte Nicole; the story behind the new name is that even though I may grow and change–my blog along with it–my name is constant and forever. Hence, Forever Charlotte Nicole.
Another reason I decided to re-brand the blog was because of my expanding interests. To encompass that, two new categories have been added–“Lifestyle” and “Blogging”–and the “Head In The Clouds” category will be taken out.
Just like my original blog name, the meaning behind the blog category “Head in the Clouds” is less than clear. After all, if any random person clicked on my site and saw this category, they wouldn’t really know what it was or what it included. That’s because the Head In The Clouds category was created as a place to put my miscellaneous posts. However, along with the confusion surrounding the name, I’ve found that I rarely ever have any miscellaneous posts. As of now, I am currently working on updating all old posts, and any posts that are currently in that category will soon be moved to a new one.
Although the re-brand isn’t *officially* over (after all, I still have plenty of posts to update), I feel like I’ve already accomplished a majority of the work. Once everything is updated, I will be able to channel all of my time and energy into the growing the blog again. The re-brand, while a temporary set back, is something that I am immensely pleased with, and am glad that I decided to do. After months of feeling like the blog wasn’t *truly* me, it finally is.
But before you go, I do want to ask you a few things: How have you liked the re-brand, or have you ever done one yourself? How do you feel when a blog/business you follow decides to re-brand? Let me know in the comments down below, or you can send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org!