As I shared last week, I am going through the process of making the shift to a married CEO. Well, I’m technically already married (for 39 days now), but I am making adjustments in my life and business to accommodate my new relationship status.

Since I have been a single CEO for ten years in the marketplace, I have built up quite a bit of brand equity in my maiden name. So as not to lose my equity, my team and I decided to create a phased approach to the marriage rebrand. Watch this week’s episode…

Right now, you’ll start to notice everything shift from Darnyelle A. Jervey to Darnyelle Jervey Harmon (Jervey becoming my middle name) as we warm the world up to the idea that I got married. And in about 90 days or so, you’ll start to see more and more with Harmon. Along the way, we are communicating with our community, our current clients and our previous clients so that when they go to look for Darnyelle Jervey, they find Darnyelle Harmon. We want to give our network, community and platform enough time for the world to catch up with the change.

Personal branding when you are the CEO is very important and it can be tricky if you don’t think about your brand promise, brand identity and brand equity during every step of a re-brand. Doing so comes with brand risk, so it’s important to think things through, create a plan and implement the plan, but remaining flexible enough to adjust the plan if the re-brand requires more time.

If you go through a re-brand due to marriage there are so many things you have to think about:

  • Your website – part of the reason my website was never primarily darnyellejervey.com was because I knew that one day my name would change.
  • Your social media
  • Your marketing materials
  • Your SEO
  • Your previous client database
  • What you’re known for
  • Who knew you when
  • An online inventory

Some of the things I’m doing:

  • Warm letter campaign for my previous clients
  • Keeping my middle name as my former last name to help ease the transition professionally
  • Sending out press releases for every new award or big accomplishment so that people get use to seeing Harmon
  • Announcing the name re-brand every where I can
  • Creating content under my new name
  • New website and photo shoot – same business name 🙂

One of the good things for me is that my name is not common, that is definitely taken into my re-brand consideration.

So, now I want to hear from you. What’s your two cents? What’s not on my list that I need to consider? What other advice do you have for me during this transition?

4 Response Comments

  • LaShawanda Moore  December 20, 2017 at 7:30 pm

    I too did this step down approach after I got married. While I didn’t own my own grassroots business, I was in direct sales. I built a brand for myself all my life, I was still new to Direct Sales. I chose to keep my last name as my middle name and officially changed on my government documents to that. Today, I’m proudly LaShawanda Moore, period. I have now built a brand for myself as that name.

    Keep sharing! Love it.

    Reply
    • Darnyelle Jervey Harmon  December 21, 2017 at 11:41 am

      Thanks for sharing your two cents.

      Reply
  • Paula Vincent Johnson  December 21, 2017 at 7:23 am

    Ladies, as a notary public, I highly recommend that you keep you maiden name as your middle name. There will be times in your life that you will have to prove that you are who you are (not was) in your maiden name. Your name on your birth certificate does not change just because you got married. And, a birth certificate is not proof of identity, just citizenship. Also, your marriage license only proves that you married your husband. So, now you can lawfully use his name. But the marriage license doesn’t change the fact that you were born with a certain name. So, don’t drop your maiden name from your identification. If you do, you’ll will eventually encounter problems that you might be able to overcome, but only after jumping over some unnecessary hurdles and wasting a lot of time and money proving who you are (not was). You can still verbally introduce yourself using your married name, which is what I do.

    Respectfully,
    Paula Vincent Johnson
    Civil Law Notary

    Reply
    • Darnyelle Jervey Harmon  December 21, 2017 at 1:39 pm

      Thank you so much for sharing your wisdom, Paula!

      Reply

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