This is Part 2 of a 5-part series on Rebranding. If you want to catch up on Part 1 before you continue reading, head on over here.

Yesterday’s post left off after I faced the cold, hard facts: I needed to rebrand in a big way. I started in on the research…

I began like I usually begin things: with a big-ass list.


I filled pages and pages with brain-dumps on stuff like:

  • Who’s my current market?
  • Who do I WANT my market to be? (psst: this is super important in a rebrand!)
  • Based on my current brand, how am I likely to perceived now?
  • How do I WANT Ballyhoo to be perceived?

I go through this stuff with clients all. the. time… but I found it surprisingly challenging to do it for my own business! My brain kept skipping to the end – the final brand – instead of allowing myself to go through the process. Bad brain! The process is so vital to reach an honest conclusion. This is why it’s super helpful for most people to get a professional involved. (Me, I just reminded myself that I am a professional and told myself to get it together. Ahem.)

I put in a little time picking the brains of trusted colleagues, friends, even clients. This was no time to be shy about anybody’s perceptions of Ballyhoo’s look and feel. I wanted honest feedback across the board. I asked folks about the logo. This didn’t seem likely to be very helpful… I got a lot of “I like it!” Not terribly enlightening.

When I dug a little deeper, I realized the feedback only spoke to what people knew (or thought they knew) about my brand. That was important information. Because I knewwhere I wanted to grow the business, I was careful to keep the thoughts and goals from my trusty big-ass list in mind and measure all this feedback against them.

All the same – and this is a vital part of the process too – I fumbled through a lot of stuff that didn’t work. I never intended to show these failed concepts publicly, but here we are. Work in progress and roughs revealed:


Yeah, weird, right? I completely expected to take the visuals in a different direction! After a lot of iterations, I was able to pull out what people meant when they said they “liked” the original mark, and use it to my advantage in an updated brand more in line with the future of the business. I’d gone a little far astray from the character I needed in the brand – character that had been there from the start. I re-drew, refreshed, updated and cleaned up. And it felt right again.

Now. I had major problems with the name “Ballyhoo Society Graphic Design”, and when I began unpacking this, things started getting interesting.

Come on back tomorrow for some straight talk: what do you do if you kinda sorta hate your business name? Maybe you’re just unsure about it… we’ll deal with that too. I’m spilling my guts on my own journey through marketing my business and the business name game.


About the Author

Reesa is an art school taught / self taught / eyeballs taught designer based in Toronto, Canada, and is the Owner and Principal of Ballyhoo Design. If you like this post, then you may also enjoy more marketing tips and trends via the Ballyhoo newsletter.

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