Author Topic: I've been heavily considering a rebrand but here's my concern......  (Read 1456 times)

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Offline Lekan Oyefeso

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A few months ago, I posted an advertising question and Todd Muskopf suggested that if I wanted to optimize my business for the web, I should change the name of my business.  This got me thinking seriously about a rebrand.  I have a concern tho.  If you do a Google search for MTM Photography, you get a crapload of hits on that name.  If I change the name of my business to my name (Lekan Oyefeso Photograhy) I'll be the only business out there with that name which would be awesome, of course.  The problem is the fact that I have a name that only a handful of people on earth can pronounce correctly.  I'm guessing that while reading this post, most of you probably paused and mentally stumbled a bit when you got to my name.  Wouldn't that be a problem for a potential client considering me for a shoot?  What are your thoughts about that one?

Offline Joe Federer

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Re: I've been heavily considering a rebrand but here's my concern......
« Reply #1 on: November 24, 2014, 01:26:12 PM »
Only clients you've already made a connection with directly google search for "yourname photography".   Most people, actively searching for a 'new-to-them' photographer tend to search along this patter:  "*location* *specialty* photographer"...   So, "Minneapolis Newborn Photographer" or "St. Paul Wedding Photographer"....

You do have a point that when you just quickly talk to someone (say at a park while you are working with you own client) yelling "MTM photography" is going to be easier for them to remember than "Lekan Oyefeso Photography".  For that reason, I'd probably not include you last name -- certainly not in your url.  I'd bet the number of people that click the wrong "MTM Photography" is probably equal to the number that wouldn't remember "Lekan"... ;)

What does MTM mean anyway?

If I was you, I'd register every possible mis-spelling of LekanPhotography.com and I'd move that way.  The sooner you settle on a brand, the better.  If you ever plan to change, now is the time.

(one possible caveat - and one reason people use things like "capture time photographer" or whatever - is to de-personalize the business name in case you ever wanted to sell.  For instance, I could never sell "Federer Photography" as a photography business... it's too closely linked with ME.  Whereas if I was "LightBangerPhotography" I could potentially sell that to someone)

Offline Todd Muskopf

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Re: I've been heavily considering a rebrand but here's my concern......
« Reply #2 on: November 24, 2014, 02:30:42 PM »
I'd go with Lekan photography or Lekan Photo  LekanPhoto.com would be good.

It's your last name that's going to stop people more than your first.  Have you ever heard Seth Godin thanking his father for naming him Seth instead of Stephen or David or something more common? 

I'm the same way with my last name.  I include all the misspellings in the tags on my web site, so even if they spell it wrong in the Google search box, it still comes up.

Yervant wouldn't be so famous if his name was Bob.  http://www.yervantphotography.com/

Offline Todd Muskopf

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Re: I've been heavily considering a rebrand but here's my concern......
« Reply #3 on: November 24, 2014, 02:34:47 PM »
Also, the first listing under MTM photography brings the client to this portfolio  http://www.modelmayhem.com/portfolio/834384/viewall

Offline Lekan Oyefeso

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Re: I've been heavily considering a rebrand but here's my concern......
« Reply #4 on: November 25, 2014, 08:30:57 AM »
I actually have worked pretty hard at SEO lately and if you do a search for MTM Photography, my Google + page shows up on the 1st page so I'm happy about that. 


Offline Todd Muskopf

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Re: I've been heavily considering a rebrand but here's my concern......
« Reply #6 on: November 25, 2014, 09:27:25 AM »
I actually have worked pretty hard at SEO lately and if you do a search for MTM Photography, my Google + page shows up on the 1st page so I'm happy about that.

Try it on a different computer--like at a friend's house who doesn't go to your page all the time.  Your cookies may be fouling your results.

Here's what I get when I search for MTM Photography

Offline Todd Muskopf

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Re: I've been heavily considering a rebrand but here's my concern......
« Reply #7 on: November 25, 2014, 09:35:41 AM »
Anyway, the bigger problem is that when I typed in "wedding photographer milwaukee", I didn't see your site pop up within the first 10 pages.

That's probably the real issue, not you getting confused with someone else.

Do you have the ability to put more plain text on your site?  I've found that text helps in Google searches tremendously.

Offline Jeff Behm

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Re: I've been heavily considering a rebrand but here's my concern......
« Reply #8 on: November 25, 2014, 10:48:15 AM »
When researching your search efficiency, be sure to select the Global criteria in the upper right corner of the search page (see attached).  Even with this, as Todd said, don't search from your own for best accuracy of your real place on the pages.  Also, don't search for your name, search for your keyworded chosen specialties.  If clients know your name, they'll go there without a search.  If they don't know you, and 99.9% don't, they'll be searching for what they need - i.e. wedding or portrait or product photographers in Minneapolis or in Minnesota or Wisconsin, whatever it is that defines you in THEIR search thoughts. (see small screen grab at bottom of this)

No matter how you eventually choose to brand yourself, try having someone who does this for a living do SEO for you for at least a few months.  After 4 years of DIY, I gave up and paid someone.  In my mind it was a 3 month trial run, which, since there was no contract, I could cancel at any time.  After two months, it was so successful that it had more than paid for itself, and I'm still using it 10 months later.  In fact, I upgraded.  My key areas show up first page, often in the first 2-3 slots after that paid ads.
« Last Edit: November 25, 2014, 10:51:17 AM by Jeff Behm »

Offline Lekan Oyefeso

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Re: I've been heavily considering a rebrand but here's my concern......
« Reply #9 on: November 26, 2014, 08:49:45 AM »
I'm definitely still new to SEO and I think it would be worthwhile to let someone who specializes in SEO to take care of that, at least long enough to get me down the right path.  I think i'll give that a try before worrying about rebranding.

Offline Jeff Behm

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Re: I've been heavily considering a rebrand but here's my concern......
« Reply #10 on: November 26, 2014, 09:16:07 AM »
I don't know who you use for your web domain registration or hosting, but I use Web.com, who offers the effective SEO plan I use.  It IS based upon a Wordpress blog because that maximizes the efforts.   Ask your provider.

Offline Lekan Oyefeso

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Re: I've been heavily considering a rebrand but here's my concern......
« Reply #11 on: November 26, 2014, 10:45:07 AM »
Interesting.  I use GoDaddy for my web hosting/domain registration.  I'll have to see what their options are for SEO management.

Offline Jeff Behm

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Re: I've been heavily considering a rebrand but here's my concern......
« Reply #12 on: November 26, 2014, 11:31:05 AM »
Hey, throw Web.com at them if needed.  They're in direct competition at major levels.

Offline Lekan Oyefeso

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Re: I've been heavily considering a rebrand but here's my concern......
« Reply #13 on: November 26, 2014, 12:52:26 PM »
Oh, I definitely plan too!  And I won't hesitate to drop them if they don't have a solution.

Offline Jeff Behm

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Re: I've been heavily considering a rebrand but here's my concern......
« Reply #14 on: November 26, 2014, 03:06:36 PM »
just remember, there's some sort of forced waiting period to transfer a domain from one host to another, so if you're rebranding anyway, and end up changing hosting/registration, sign up using your new brand name.  Then just leave your old name on your current server but point it at your new domain, etc.  That way you don't lose everything you've done to date.  Leave it like that for 6-12 mos. to see how it's going, then close it out.  And be sure you have a blog that you post to pretty regularly.  I try for a couple of times/month or more.  October I missed most of, but generally, keep the new written content  and photos coming on the blog.

Offline Lekan Oyefeso

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Re: I've been heavily considering a rebrand but here's my concern......
« Reply #15 on: December 02, 2014, 11:04:08 AM »
I have a blog that I've been writing weekly so that definitely helps with new content. 

Offline Agale

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Re: I've been heavily considering a rebrand but here's my concern......
« Reply #16 on: December 18, 2014, 01:07:14 PM »
Interesting.  I use GoDaddy for my web hosting/domain registration.  I'll have to see what their options are for SEO management.

Do not use go-daddy SEO ! They're a rip off, you're going to want an industry specialist. Do a Google search for "photography SEO" and use one of the top people showing up. Why? Because they're ranking in the top results for that search term! The last thing you want is someone promising results when they cant get results for themselves!
Use Referral Rock to get more referrals for your photography business.

Offline Theresa Fernandez

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Re: I've been heavily considering a rebrand but here's my concern......
« Reply #17 on: December 22, 2014, 11:45:09 AM »
The one thing I did that really helped me(well two things) : first I was hosting my own website and it just wasn't working so I moved to livebooks, and second in all versions of photography pages that I have (free portfolio sites, photographers.com etc) I have "Theresa Fernandez Photography | Dallas Food Photographer" in the title and most of the time I come up in the first page of the search. I know people will search for Dallas Food photographer, not my name specifically, but having my name next to it puts the 2 together in their mind...(I hope :-)  )

For me, the switch to livebooks made a huge difference in terms of people finding me on the web.  I don't actively market ( still part time at the photography so don't have the time to pound the pavement like I should) but since I switched, my business just from people finding me on the web has really boomed.  I know it has to do with how they do SEO - I could never get it right and it was making me nuts trying!

So what I'm saying is if you change your business name, then make sure your title has something like "Lekan Photography | Milwaukee Wedding Photographer".

Just my 2 centavos :-)
Theresa Fernandez
Dallas Food Photographer