5 Lessons Learned From a $35K Rebrand

When I first started my business, I NEVER imagined spending nearly $35,000 on a head-to-toe rebrand of my business.

It’s a bit over the top, right?

Well, after struggling for several years with my brand at RachealCook.com, it was time to press pause on attempting to hire designers, copywriters and photographers on my own and start over.

In this episode of Uncomplicate Your Business, I’m sharing my year-long journey (it’s almost complete!) to this huge rebrand, why it was so darn expensive, and my top 5 lessons that you can take away without spending a penny.

$35K on Branding: The Breakdown…

As I started to prep for this podcast episode, I started crunching the numbers of what I’ve invested into this entire branding process…

And even now… I realized that I left out the cost of props and wardrobe! So it’s probably over $35K by the time it’s all said and done.

What made it so expensive?

Branding + Creative Direction

Thank goodness this was spread out over about 6 months! This was the full enchilada process with Sarah Ancalmo and her team… starting with her Prive process then evolving into working with her and her team for logo design, content strategy, prop and wardrobe sourcing for the photoshoot, photoshoot planning, and joining me in person for 2 full days of photoshoots!

2 Day Photoshoot

Having a photoshoot that was 2 full days took a big chunk of this rebrand! But we weren’t just shooting photos for RachealCook.com… but also for Sweet Spot Strategy, Get More Clients, Fired Up & Focused, and creating a customized stock photography vault for social media, blog posts, and more.

This photoshoot was one day in my home office and one day at Quirk Hotel in downtown Richmond VA. Not only was Sarah there with me, but I had a photographer Meghan McSweeney and my dear friend Emily Hudspeth for hair and makeup.


Photoshoot central today!!! #entrepreneur #business #branding #photoshoot #bosslady #ladyboss #biz

A photo posted by Racheal Cook (@racheal.cook) on

The second day was amazing – my amazing clients showed up to be models for the photoshoot! They were gorgeous and funny and I just love them to pieces. Once I added in the conference room rental and lunch for everyone who joined me at Quirk… that was easily another $1K.

Website Design, Copywriting, and Development

This was another huge chunk of this rebrand! Not only were we rebranding my home base at RachealCook.com… but we also had several sales pages, opt-in pages, slide decks for webinars and trainings, and an entire membership site!

If I was depending on ONE person to make this all happen, there is no way we could have started this in May and launched by August! But because we had so much content and copy ready prior to the photoshoot, my amazing designer, Kayla Rose, was able to get started quickly and work with our team on more nitty gritty details like blog post and social media graphics.

Prepping for our launch of Sweet Spot Strategy was another huge part of this rebrand! Landing pages, sales page, webinar slide decks, all new program rebranding, and overhauling our members site was a huge group effort with Kayla handling the design and my amazing techy team Amber Kinney and Katie Truman implementing much of the details.

Top 5 Lessons Learned From a $35K Rebrand!

Lesson #1: It Takes Time.

Not only did it take me a year to decide to make the leap from The Yogipreneur to Racheal Cook… I started thinking about this rebrand months before I hired anyone. I knew that taking more time upfront to hire the right person would help me avoid spending another 2 years with a brand I didn’t love.

And the rebrand itself started in November of 2015! It took us months of planning before we even got to the photoshoot in May 2016 and the website launch in August of 2016. If you’re at the point in your business where you’re doing a complete overhaul like this, please give yourself TIME!

Lesson #2: Talk to Your Clients.

Often, we start with what WE think our brand is really about. But the truth is – our brand is less about what WE think and more about what your DREAM CLIENTS think about you!

After my Creative Director Sarah Ancalmo started interviewing my clients, I realized that I had been HIDING my biggest assets. This led to the decision to shift AWAY from a mamapreneur focus and instead highlight my MBA and my work with amazing women entrepreneurs.

Lesson #3: Be 100% You.

It seems like these days, if you work with women entrepreneurs, there is a brand formula that everyone leans on. Lots of pink, gold, and glitter. Scripty fonts. Photoshoots in cocktail dresses.

That is SO FAR FROM REALITY for me and my business. Honestly, I’m a minimalist in many areas of my life and business. I have a capsule wardrobe with a handful of my favorite skinny jeans and comfortable tops. I even have a capsule wardrobe for events and public speaking so I don’t have to stress over packing – my go to wrap dresses work for every event. Sarah was amazing in helping me to select items I already loved in styles that were 100% me so that every photograph felt like ME.

And that minimalist approach to life and business was also reflected in the logo, the website design, and each photograph in our new stock photography vault.

Lesson #4: Kill Your Darlings.

Once you’ve refined your brand, be ready to take out the red pen and edit edit edit!

This was HARD. I’m incredibly attached to my first business at The Yogipreneur… and the decision to put it on pause was so difficult. But the moment I cut out all the things that were just taking up a ton of my mental energy, I instantly felt lighter and more excited than ever for the future of my business.

And Yogis – don’t despair! The website at The Yogipreneur will stay live so you can still access all the amazing content there.

Lesson #5: Know Your Overall Message.

We all have a LOT to say. Especially when you’ve been running a business for 8+ years! But honing in on my message brought back life and focus to my brand. Thanks to Sarah, we landed on the brand concept of ‘Business Minimalist’ to guide us through everything from logos to copy to design.

This also led us to lead with the message Uncomplicate Your Business. Everything I teach is about keeping it simple and strategic… so this new brand finally reflects this visually.

Show Links

How To Prep For Your Next Brand Photoshoot

Sarah Ancalmo at Public Persona

Emily Hudspeth at Real Life Beauty

Meghan McSweeney at Meghan McSweeney Photography

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