Welcome to another brand new series on the TONIC Blog: The Tonic Lookbook.
It’s like Christmas every time we get another “My site is live!” notification from our beloved Tonic Regulars, since it means they have a space on the web that allows them to be seen and known for who they are and what they do best. We often find ourselves awkwardly cheers-ing the air from our desks in their honor (or just furiously texting each other, “DID YOU SEE THIS? OUR SWEET LITTLE NEGRONI IS ALL GROWN UP?!”
On this fine post-Labor Day morning, we’re raising our macchiato & chai filled mugs to none other than Mrs. Erica Rose. She’s teamed up with our own Jeff Shipley at J. Shipley Creative to create a new brand identity & website, and we couldn’t be more excited to see one of our favorite designs — Vodka Soda — looking all soft, moody, adventurous and, well, perfectly Erica.
We sat down (with our keyboards) and chatted with her about what brought her to the decision to rebrand + launch a new site, the process of creating her new look, and the impact it’s had on her business in just the few weeks it’s been live. (Spoiler alert: a WAY bigger immediate impact than we expected!)
So, pour yourself your beverage of choice, say hello to Erica, and join us for a little tour of her new slice of internet heaven:
Tonic: If there’s anything we can all agree on, it’s that there’s nothing like a good makeover. So tell us, what prompted you to do a rebrand? What wasn’t working about your previous brand / site that led to your deciding to overhaul your site with a TONIC design?
Erica: I first paid for a Showit site design back in ’09 or ’10, and essentially, that is the same site I’ve been using since (cringe…I know … this was long overdue). It got to the point where I knew that my online storefront did not communicate the experience and work that I create for my clients, and it just wasn’t something that I was proud to show off. Also, in 2012 I moved from Chicago (read: very urban couples) to Anchorage (read: very adventurous and outdoorsy couples), and I wanted a site that would attract the kind of people who I wanted to work with in my new market. Lastly, with the development of Showit 5, I knew that I just wasn’t utilizing the platform to its fullest potential, so I definitely wanted to change that.
on timing your rebrand:
“Even though I knew that this rebrand was long overdue, I think it ended up happening at the perfect time. At this point, I now know clearly who my ideal clients is, I have a portfolio that speaks to that client, and I know what direction I want to take my business moving forward. If I had tried to do this a couple of years ago when I lacked clarity on some of these things, I’m pretty sure we wouldn’t have gotten such great results.”
T: What do you love most about your new TONIC site? Any favorite pages or sections or features?
E: I’m in love with the galleries — the easy navigation and giant images!
E: Also, Jeff encouraged me to consider adding more personal stories to my site to communicate my adventurous side & share more of myself. I love how the “Storytime” section came together, and I definitely think it serves its purpose.
T: Why were you drawn to the Vodka Soda design to begin with? How did you know it was the site for you?
E: I was torn between Vodka Soda and one of the other designs (they’re all so beautiful), but something about this one just spoke to me. I love how clean and modern it feels, and that it lets the images shine — front and center (& big, too)!
T: We love that, too! So, to close here, how has your new site impacted your business – both the perception of it, and the actual business? And further, how has it changed you FEEL about your brand / online presence?
E: It is pretty incredible how drastically my business has been impacted by the launch of this new brand. In every client meeting I have had since the launch, potential clients have remarked about how beautiful it is and that it stands out among other sites they had been looking at. I have had other local wedding vendors say that they are sure that more of their couples are going to want to work with me, simply because of this new look. The work I produce hasn’t changed, but people will see it in a new light because of the way it is being presented online. For the first time since moving to Alaska I have had several inquiries where people are wanting to book on the spot, just based on what they see online. Personally, I am SO proud of my new site! I want to show it to everyone, and I even find myself scrolling through it over and over.
“It is pretty incredible how drastically my business has been impacted by the launch of this new brand…. In every client meeting I have had since the launch, potential clients have remarked about how beautiful [my new site] is and that it stands out among other sites they had been looking at…”
T: Oh man, that couldn’t be more exactly what we hope to hear. We’re so proud of your site, and so happy you love it. Thanks so much, Erica!
Interested in the TONIC Original “Vodka Soda,” the site Erica used to create her beautiful new online presence? Click to here learn more and to shop our full collection of customizable websites for creatives.
For more of our favorite real TONIC client sites, click here to browse the lookbook.