Sunday, 12 April 2015

A NAME'S JUST A STRING OF LETTERS


Choosing a name for a blog is nearly as hard as naming a child. It's an identity, a brand and it's there for life. Okay, so you could change your blog name, but a person can change their name too. Your face is your identifier, but your blog is known by its name and if that's changed then your online blog presence has to, pretty much, be relearnt from scratch.

When it came to naming my blog, I had such a tricky decision on my hands. Sometimes I'm still not happy with what I chose. When I started this, back in August 2013, it was not just something I'd been wanting to do for a while, but it was part of my task work for college. We had to create a blog that reflects our interests and who we were, we had free reign on the topics as long as we had actually created something ourselves. Finding the right name at the time has been difficult, I'd written tonnes of ideas, tested them on different social media platforms and begged people for their input. Tea and Topshop was formed out of my love for, well, tea and Topshop. I adored the name, I still do, but it didn't really seem practical or professional to brand my blog with another brand name. 

[ This is definitely something you should take into account when starting a blog or rebranding yourself, be different, don't rip off someone else. Would a company want to work with you if your name all but promoted another brand? No, they wouldn't. ]

With my decision to rebrand, my name quest continued.

So many names were thrown around, I had a vote on Tumblr, Instagram and Twitter and I nearly became I am Sam Ball to match my social media handles. After much consideration I deemed it too plain and soldiered on.

[ One thing I liked to do was imagine different scenarios where my name could be used, if you saw a feature of yourself in a magazine, would you really want to see that blog name printed beside you? If yes, then go for it. If not, don't do it, think again. It's really worth the effort. ]

Alright Sunshine came about after I found a note in an old notebook, the words Hello Fascination were printed on the first page and nothing more. I first fell in love with the phrase when I heard the track The Dressing Room by Breathe Carolina which was featured on their album, Hello Fascination. However, with the name already in use, I wasn't okay with plagiarising it for my own personal benefit and I decided to play around with the concept.

My initial thoughts were Hello Sunshine, how coincidental that that phrase has now been used on mugs, cushions, postcards and everything in between since, but after a quick Google search I was faced with so many results that I knew it was an ultimate no-go.

But sunshine was stuck in my mind and after many many alterations, I decided on Alright Sunshine.

And, it works!

I'm from the North West of England and terms of endearment are as common as saying "hello". I call everyone names such as sunshine, lovely, sweetheart etc, in fact as I wrote this on the coach back from London a few weeks ago, a lady shouted "Ta-ra sunshine!" as she exited the vehicle. It's just how we are.

Alright Sunshine not only represents where I'm from, but it's also warm sounding and a phrase I've grown to use a lot. I'm a girl (sorry, woman) of little confidence and short conversational skills, the first thing I say to someone is "you alright?", it's a filler phrase but it's something I seek comfort in.

The name fits. It's not witty or frilly or related to my blog in general, but it suits me and reflects me to my audience. It sums me up and if that's not what a blog name should be about, then what should it be?

What's your blog story? Send me your links because I'd love to know what your name means to you.

Okay, I nabbed my post title from The Dressing Room. It's only fitting!
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