Filed in : For Creatives

Why I Rebranded to Using my Name as my Business

By now I’m sure you know (or have been annoyed by – sorry!) that I have officially rebranded from Mad Photo and Design to Maddie Peschong Photography. I am so excited about this change that comes after literal years of indecisiveness. It feels so good to not only have a shiny new business name, but also one that feels like me–and not just because it uses my name! (Although, of course that helps!)

Mad Photo and Design began as a college project years ago. I was designing my senior project website and I wanted something more interesting than ‘Maddie Essig.’ I also wanted something with longevity, and since my last name was going to be changing (Jeff and I were engaged at this point), using my maiden last name didn’t make much sense.

To be perfectly honest, I also thought that having a business that wasn’t my name was just … better. It seemed more creative and more official that ‘just’ using my name, so when my mom suggested ‘Mad Photo and Design’ as a play on my first name, I was all for it.

And honestly, Mad Photo and Design had a really good run! I don’t think I’ll ever dislike that name, and even just a couple weeks into my new brand there are moments when I miss it. But I recognized that it was time for some change and a little growing up.

There are so many things to consider when looking into a rebrand, but I’m so happy I’ve finally decided to build a business around my name. Here are a few of the reasons for the change.

1. More Personal

I know there’s a saying, ‘It’s not personal, it’s business.’ But my business is personal. It’s one of the most personal things in my life. I’ve built it from the ground up and I’m so incredibly proud of it. My business is so much of me, and I want it that way! I want clients and potential clients to be able to follow me on Facebook, or read my website, or watch an Instagram video, and feel like they know me. When people meet me in real life, I want them to say, You’re just like you seemed online!

The biggest thing I deliver to clients besides photos is an experience, and so much of that experience is me. To be totally frank, if you don’t like me as a person, I’m confident that we shouldn’t work together. I love infusing myself and my personality into my business. You should know exactly what you are getting when you book me, even if that means you aren’t interested. I get it! And knowing that is so powerful.

2. Less Formal

This sounds silly, but I started noticing that I felt strange introducing my business. When I was introduced at events as ‘Mad Photo,’ I found myself wishing people would just use my name. There’s definitely a vulnerability that comes with using your name for your business, but because I’ve also tried to build a personal business, it was a natural vulnerability. I felt like I was hiding behind a name, and that I couldn’t totally be myself.

3. Change of Services

Wondering what happened to the ‘Design’ in ‘Mad Photo and Design’? Yeah, me too 😉 I still do design projects here and there, but I’ve been blessed with an extremely full photography calendar. I don’t do as much freelance design as I used to, so it didn’t make much sense to still include it in my name. But, because of other existing businesses, I couldn’t rebrand to just ‘Mad Photo.’

4. Longevity

It’s ironic that I’m including this as a reason for a rebrand. It was initially a reason I used ‘Mad Photo and Design’ as opposed to my name. Now that my name is what it will be, I can’t think of anything with as much longevity as my name.

I hope to be photographing for the next 20 years, but I am also continually reminded that life changes. There are so many things that get me fired up now that I never thought I would be interested in. Who’s to say what the future is going to bring? I’m excited that by using my name as my business, I have more freedom to pivot if my passions change. While I don’t think this business will change to ‘Maddie Peschong Underwater Basket Weaving,’ who am I to make predictions?! Keeping it simple allows me to accept the changes as they come.

I’m honestly so thankful to be able to make this choice to rebrand. If you’ve been following since the beginning, THANK YOU for your incredible support. Thank you for allowing me to show up as me and just come as I am. Even though it took me years to decide if I should rebrand, looking back it is such a no-brainer. That is because you all have allowed me to build a business around my own personality and passions. It’s such a gift! I’m so excited to keep doing what I love and grow it even bigger. Stay tuned!

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Hi! I'm Maddie.

If I’m giving you my elevator pitch, I’m a Sioux Falls, South Dakota, brand photographer and educator for creative women.

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