(One of the posts I wrote on my Swell 24.7 blog in my previous life as a gift store owner in the busy tourist town of Provincetown on Cape Cod; posts that are grouped here under the category What Else Is Swell?, and are generally about life in Provincetown, life as a retailer, our fabulous dog Jack who sat outside the store for well over a decade, and other random things that grabbed me at the time.)
Well, it's been 3 weeks since I wrote this post about us needing a new name and I think I can safely say that those were 3 of the worst weeks I've had in a long time. Firstly, the realization that we were going to have to cave in to the big boys came on the first day of the Provincetown International Film Festival, of which Nick is Operations Manager. This is a very demanding role that involves running all over town from about 8am until close to midnight making sure that people and films are where they are supposed to be, people are doing what they are supposed to be doing, tickets are in the right place at the right time, the arrows on the signs are pointing the right way, the people who donated lots of money have wine to drink at the fancy parties, and a multitude of other tasks that drain his mind, body and soul every third week in June. So, needless to say he was useless in the whole 'honey, we need a new name for the web site' conversation. On the way home each night, when he was trapped in the car and couldn't escape to a film venue or staff meeting, I would tell him my latest favorite new name and he would say something along the lines of 'that's cool, I like that'. And then the next morning I would tell him that I was going to have Sally, our graphic designer, change our logo to the new name idea so we could see what it looked like. And invariably he would say something along the lines of 'I don't like that one. Have her do the one you told me about last night'.
That was the one I told you about last night!
Like I said, useless.
Luckily, customers to the rescue. I wrote that post, put it on Facebook and Twitter and was amazed at how many people sent suggestions; lots of them really good ones. Of course none of them were available as .coms so with every good idea that lifted my spirits I was then shot back down to the depths after 5 mins of research on namecheap.com. Thank goodness for Eric and Robb, customers from new Jersey who happened to be in Provincetown during this time and thought that 'come up with a new name for swell dwell', along with whale watching, drag shows and cycling through the dunes, was a suitable way to spend their vacation in PTown. They popped in at least once a day to stop me from going with something blah, and Eric added suggestions to our Facebook page constantly.
My personal favorite? notdwell.com
Yes, they even managed to make me laugh during all this.
We were on the verge of settling for something that I can't even remember now when I got an email from my UK friend (she's not my only UK friend, by the way, she's a UK friend) Nikki who suggested Swell365 which made me think of Swell24.7 which I loved and Nick loved (and this was in the morning so I think he was compos mentis when he said that) and it was available as .com, .net, on Facebook and on Twitter.
Bingo, we had our new name. Within 10 mins I had bought the domains and breathed a massive sigh of relief.
Of course that was just the start really. We had to change the logo and get a rush order of new business cards, not to mention the ad and listing info in the magazine that went to press a few days after we decided to cave in. Thankfully Sally (who by this time was used to logging on to her emails every morning to a new new name idea that I wanted to see in a logo) was all over it and the magazine publisher was very accommodating. It was nerve wracking but we got it in and the ad looks great.
Then we had to do all the complicated stuff that I can't even begin to explain. So that was Amanda, our web designer, who changed widgets, and formats, and CMS, and static blocks and a bunch of other things I could care less about as long as they look right when a customer logs on. And that was the worst time because I a) don't understand it, b) can't do it myself and c) need to know every few minutes what the progress is. But progress was made, actually way more smoothly than I had anticipated. And no one has called saying they couldn't get on the site, or place an order, or some other snafu so I think it's all good.
As a matter of fact, we got an order today so I'm saying all good it is.
And today we also got our 25th Facebook fan (because Facebook, unlike Twitter, made us start back at square one with a whole new page) so, as of today everything has been changed...I think. I do keep finding the old name in weird places but so far nowhere that I can't change it.
I can tell it's going to be like when someone has a sex change and you keep slipping on the pronoun or accidentally using the old name. I keep giving the old address out to people verbally and then having to correct myself, and looking like an idiot while I'm doing it.
And I do really like the new name; I think probably more than the old one, truth be told.
Not that I'm happy about having to spend all that money to try not to have to change it and then to change it anyway, but what are you gonna do. The big boys are bigger and that is the way of the world.
And now that it is all over I can stop thinking about it twenty-four seven.
And that certainly makes me happy.