In this episode, I share my journey of rebranding my agency and changing its name from Shannon Bain Digital to Eastbound Digital.
I explain the reasons behind this decision and the thought process, the pros and cons of personal branding versus business branding and how they can coexist. I also share my insights on building a personal brand and the importance of trust and relationships with your audience. I emphasise the need to align your brand strategy with your long-term goals and offer valuable advice for anyone considering a rebrand.
Topics Discussed In This Episode:
- Reasons for changing the business name [00:00:00]
- The conflict between personal brand and business brand [00:03:47]
- The approach of building a personal brand and launching businesses under it [00:07:55]
- My plan to grow both a personal brand and the agency [00:11:32]
- The importance of clarity and aligning with your long-term goals [00:15:10]
- What to expect in terms of services and the podcast [00:17:28]
- The visual rebranding process and the effort involved [00:19:08]
- Conclusion and invitation for topic suggestions [00:23:13]
Resources Mentioned In This Episode:
- New Website: https://eastbound.digital/
- Eastbound Digital Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/eastbound_digital/
- Shannon Bain Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/shannonbain1
Note: The timestamps provided are approximate and should be adjusted as needed based on the actual audio content.
My brand has naturally evolved and changed over the years. When I first started Shannon Bain Digital, I was a full-service marketing agency doing everything for everyone. And as I’ve talked about in previous episodes, that has then niched down into being a website design studio, search engine optimization services and consulting. The last few years have been the most incredible journey, and I’m so proud to say I’ve loved every single second of this journey. But after reviewing my long-term strategy and how I wanted to move forward with this business, I’ve actually decided to change my trading name.
This was not a decision I took lightly. It was one that I thought about for a long, long time and considered. But as I announced on social media this week, Shannon Bain Digital is no more. And the new name of my agency is drumroll, please, Eastbound Digital. This isn’t just a name change. There are some other changes. And so in this podcast, I’m going to talk through my thought process and my marketing strategy moving forward so that I can communicate why these changes are happening, but also so that you can know in real time what it looks like to make these types of decisions and some things to consider for your own brand strategy as well.
The initial thoughts of changing my business name really came down to my personal vision and business goals not really aligning with having my name in the title. Even though this name had served me so well over the past three years, the only reason I named it Shannon Bain Digital in the beginning was really because I didn’t have any other idea. And I wasn’t going to be one of those people that stopped myself from taking action because I didn’t have something like the name figured out. And I really was so sick and tired of these perceived limitations stopping me.
So when I went out there to start my business, I was like, it’s going to be Shannon Bain Digital. It didn’t put me into a box as to the digital services I was going to provide, and it also wasn’t anything creative. It was my personal name, and I just went out there and did it. But after this many years, the business has grown to a point where it doesn’t really make sense for me to position it to be all about me. And I didn’t want to continue to be perceived as a one-person business because it hasn’t been a one-person business for a long, long time. And I also wanted to set the precedence that this company is made possible from a team of people who are all working towards helping our clients achieve the outcomes that they want. It’s not all me behind the scenes.
Even though my business name being Shannon Bain Digital definitely never held me back, I think there is a lot to say for what a business name represents. And I do think that it tells a story about your brand and the way that you want to be perceived. There is absolutely nothing wrong with having your personal name in the business name. In fact, I think it could actually be a huge advantage because one of the most important parts of building a business is to build trust and relationships with your audience. Because if your audience doesn’t trust you, there’s just no way they’re going to buy from you. And you’re way more likely to trust a person whose face you see and name you know and that you connect with in some way than a business name that doesn’t have that level of personalization.
But that is where we need to look at comparing the pros and cons of personal brand versus business brand. It isn’t so much about what is right and wrong, but what is right for you and the business that you want to build. I went back and forth about changing the name for a long time, and I felt like I had built a personal brand under Shannon Bain Digital. But at the same time, I was almost holding myself back from really pushing my personal brand because I wanted to build a business brand that wasn’t just me. So I had been stuck in this in-between, kind of like the business was me, but it wasn’t really me because I have goals to build a bigger business that isn’t revolved around me, but I also want a personal brand. So I had this kind of conflict of like, what should I do? How should I move forward with continuing to build my business but still leverage my personal brand that I’ve created over the last three years as well?
I’m a big advocate of personal branding, and I think that with the rise of AI and all of these super impersonal technologies in the industry these days, I think our personal brands are our point of difference. And I think that everyone who wants to have longevity in their business journey and adapt and grow and change and have different opportunities should really prioritize building a personal brand. That is because your personal brand is you, and you’re going to be with you your entire life, no matter what businesses that you go.
So when I was assessing if I was going to focus this next phase or strategy on building a business brand or personal brand, I was quite stumped. But then in the midst of all this and shout out to Stevie Dylan, who’s the owner of the Course Cartel, who has recently changed her business name from Stevie Says Social for many of the same reasons as me, released a podcast that gave me a new perspective on how I could do this. And this is something I wanted to pass on and share because it really gave me a different way of looking at things.
What she explained was that building a personal brand or business brand doesn’t have to be mutually exclusive, but they don’t have to be intimately linked either if you don’t want them to be. So Stevie explained this really well on her podcast. Her podcast is called the Lifestyle Business Sweet Spot. And basically, she was explaining how you look at people like Alex Hormozi, Gary Vee, the Kardashians, Conor McGregor, like all of these massive personal brands in the world, they are the primary brand. They’re them, but their companies act as projects underneath their personal brand. So instead of the business being all about them or the business not having a name or face to it at all, the personal brand remains consistent, and it’s really quite limitless when you look at it. But you can have your personal brand and launch any business under that personal brand. And if you’ve grown a good, trusted, reputable personal brand that people connect with, then the likelihood of success of that business, even if it doesn’t have essentially anything to do with your personal name, has a much higher likelihood of success.
So with all that said, this is the approach I’m going to take moving forward as I change my name from Shannon Bain Digital to Eastbound Digital. This is a company that’s going to be a project or company owned by Shannon Bain, my personal brand, and that will continue on a separate social media account. So you’ll be able to follow my personal brand, and you can also continue following the Eastbound Digital page, which you’ll still see me all the time. I’m still going to be creating content and educating my audience through that Eastbound Digital page, but I’m just kind of segregating them a little bit more. So my plan is, and I may come back and say, this plan did not work. That is what business is all about. I’m trying this, I’m testing it, we’re going to tweak it, we’re going to optimize it until we make sure it is a strategy that does work.
So basically, I’m trying to keep all of the benefits of my personal branding and everything that I’ve built over the last three years while also expanding my name beyond the agency as the personal brand and the business branding to expand the agency beyond myself. The idea, like I mentioned, is to grow both without limitations. Now, in saying all of this, this is what I’m doing for my business, and it is not to say it’s going to work for you. I just want to be completely transparent and just share with you really my journey as I go through this transformation. Making decisions in your business such as changing your branding, changing your name, changing your core offers and your target market and your niche and all of these things. The right decision depends on your business model. For my agency, I really feel like this is the best move. But let’s say you’re a coach or a freelancer who has their primary personal brand so intimately linked with their business brand, or you are the brand, you are the business. That is completely fine. This segregation of both, even though they’re going to be so closely linked, but not as intimately linked as they are currently, it may be the wrong thing for you to do. There is no right way, there is no wrong way. It really is what works for you.
So if I can say anything, it’s just get clear on what your long-term goals are and then decide from there the path you’re going to take. Don’t just see that someone else is doing something and then think that that is the right decision for you. So never want to put it out there that I am suggesting anyone does the same thing as me. I just want to be transparent about what I’m doing and hopefully you find value from that.
Now moving on to what you can expect from here, what the future holds. So I can’t tell you exactly what the next six to twelve months is going to bring, but I can tell you that nothing major is going to change in terms of the services, programs, products or offers that Shannon Bain Digital has provided. We have refined them with our new brand and new website launch. So if you are interested in learning more about that, just go to Eastbound Digital.
As for the podcast, it is going to continue as normal. It will continue as Purpose Driven Business Podcasts created by me, Shannon Bain, the personal brand and the owner of Eastbound Digital, covering everything and all of the different topics that we’ve already started to dive into. Same concept and everything.
As for the changes, on a visual perspective, you would have seen already everything’s being rebranded to Eastbound Digital. But I have to say it has been a mammoth effort to make these changes. Honestly, we have been working tirelessly to build this new website, create the new branding, even though the look and feel of the brand hasn’t changed dramatically, just changing our entire online presence and updating our systems and softwares and communications and the changes to clients and our subscribers. And it has honestly been huge and it’s still going to continue, the work is going to continue as we still change things in the back end. So trust me, if you’re thinking about changing your business name, don’t think it’s going to happen overnight. It is not a small task but definitely worth it. And I’m really excited to bring this new brand to the market.
So please come say hey on socials, send me a DM, let me know your thoughts about the business name. It would really mean the world to me if you could help get the word out about the podcast and the agency and your support just means so much to me. I really, really appreciate it.
So that’s it for this episode. I really hope that you enjoyed my breakdown of why I’m changing my business name and the thought process behind it and the strategy behind it as well. And also, please let me know if there is anything specific you would like to hear on the podcast. I’ve got some great topics planned out for our episodes moving forward, but if there’s anything specific you want me to cover, please let me know by sending me a DM on our social media accounts. I would really love to hear from you and make sure that I can continue to provide value through the podcast and our content moving forward.
So thank you again for being here, and I’ll see you in the next episode.