Changing your name is no easy task. But that’s exactly what we did this week. And let me tell you … it’s freaking exhausting.
In case you missed it, we changed our name to Australian Writers’ Centre. For the past seven years, we’ve been building the Sydney Writers’ Centre brand and business. Through lots of hard work and, yes, some sleepless nights, it’s a brand that has gained recognition, established a good reputation and become a favourite among many students who learn with us. So the decision to evolve our name hasn’t been easy.
Over the past couple of years I’ve wrestled with the idea of changing our name. Canvassing the possibility resulted in a range of responses:
“But you’ll lose your SEO.”
“Oh I like the word ‘Sydney’.”
“That’s a really bad idea.”
“Go for it!”
“Have you bought your new URL yet?”
For some time, I almost convinced myself that keeping the word “Sydney” could work. We could run the “Sydney Writers’ Centre” in Melbourne, right? Ummmm, no. Well, not without a great deal of difficulty and ensuing confusion anyway.
I knew in my heart that the name had to change. And once I made the decision to rebrand to the Australian Writers’ Centre, I just knew it was the the right thing to do.
The Australian Writers’ Centre is a true reflection of our organisation today. With 40 per cent of our students learning online, we are serving a writing community located all over the country. We’ve also expanded to Melbourne – our first courses are in February 2013 and people are already enrolling.
I’m so excited about this new chapter in our journey.
However, part of this chapter is a rebranding exercise so huge that could almost make you weep. We’ve updated every single page on our website. And let me assure you, that’s no mean feat. My team have been awesome in working together to make this happen.
If you’re thinking of rebranding there’s an endless list of collaterals to update. Here are just some of ours:
- Email addresses
- Email templates
- Email signature
- Everyone’s business cards
- Outgoing voicemail messages
- Signage on building
- Signage in training rooms
- Reports and brochures
- Enrolment forms
- Course outlines
- Course handouts
- Course reminder emails
- Our newsletter
- Facebook pages and groups
- LinkedIn pages and groups
- Podcast on iTunes
- YouTube channel
- Vimeo channel
- Online courses
- and I’m only getting started!
Despite this daunting (and, let’s face it, slightly tedious) task, it’s been a good move. I’m finally seeing the result of something I’ve been thinking about for two years.
On Monday, my team simply starting answering the phone by saying: “Australian Writers’ Centre.” I realised that we didn’t have a meeting to discuss that this was going to happen. It just seemed like the most natural thing in the world.
After seven years, everything feels right.
I’m looking forward to our next stage of growth.
I’m looking forward to helping more students achieve their writing goals – whether that’s to get published or simply to write with more confidence.
I’m looking forward to working with more of Australia’s best journalists, bloggers, novelists and business communication specialists as they join our team.
And I’m finally admitting to myself … that this is the centre I’ve always wanted to build.Posted on 12 December 2012