OMG, it happened!

I can’t believe it.

I’m bubbling with excitement like a child who found a secret entrance to the fairy land and is about to step inside.

Welcome to my brand new shiny website!

I finally took the leap and got a new domain name.

If you’re coming from the other two websites I was running – Almaxa or Online Solopreneur – you could be wondering what the heck happened.

Well, it’s magic!

At least, it feels like it.

Several years ago I started my entrepreneurial journey as a coach.  My original website, Almaxa (still up, but hasn’t been updated for a while), was about everything related to personal development, psychology, coaching, HR, organisational culture, human learning, and any other topic under the sun that I had experience and interest in.

My head was exploding with ideas, but I didn’t really know what I was doing.

I wanted to do it ALL.  Know the feeling?

So I kept trying different niches and approaches, ran mini-projects, mega-projects, worked with coaching clients, created personal development and coaching tools, painted portraits (yeap, that’s my life-long hobby), learned web design, ran a membership site, and at some point even considered developing my own plugin for WordPress!

When eventually I started adding online courses to the mix, I knew I was on to something.  And this time, it was special.  I never felt so excited about any other projects or niches I worked on.

I registered Online Solopreneur to test the waters, and it exceeded all my wildest expectations.

Emotionally.  Intellectually.  Socially.  Spiritually.

I found my home.

I connected with incredible people, and focused on what I loved the most – creating courses, and helping other amazing experts create theirs.

Looking back, it’s not at all surprising.  When I was a child, I wanted to be a teacher.  In my 17-year-long corporate life, the best parts of the job were creating and delivering various trainings and workshops.  Whenever I thought of a perfect career, ‘training facilitator’ always topped the list.

But as a potentially full-time job it also meant pretty much full-time travel.  For a mom with a newborn bundle of joy this simply wasn’t an option.

So it made all the sense to take my teaching passion from in-person to online.

The surprise is – what took me so long to see it?

I spent several years searching high and low for my perfect niche, and it was there all this time.

Simple, obvious, overlooked.

So why change the brand?

Online Solopreneur domain was a random choice.  It was just there, available and remotely relevant.  But also faceless, characterless, generic and uninspiring.

I did not feel excited about the brand.  In fact, I didn’t see it as a brand, at all.  Just a place on the web, like a temporary rental flat, with beige walls and equally boring furniture: functional, close to transport links, but ultimately, soulless. Not a place anyone can really call home.

It didn’t fit.  I didn’t belong.  I knew sooner or later I will have to go, and the time has come.

My shiny new brand: Owl Course

Woot woot! (Or, should I now say ‘Hoot Hoot’?)

For far too long I felt like my business was devoid of any personality.  It felt so formal and robotic.

Well, it’s all changing now.  Rainbows and Unicorns galore.

I want to create more magical moments in my own life and in the lives of all the people I come across – friends, subscribers, passersby, clients and students.

I’ll be mixing potions with MovieMaker, Camtasia and Audacity, casting spells with Powerpoint and Adobe suite and adding fairy dust of LMS plugins.

But the Real Magic is my spiritual commitment to bring joy, playfulness and childlike amusement to everything I do.

I’m keeping my favourite colour scheme – green and orange.  And now I’ve got a gorgeous little mascot that I’m totally in love with: my magic friend, a wise owl, a symbol a learning and wisdom.

Hoot-hoot!  Here is to the Wonderful New Beginnings!

P.S. Yes, I’m still playing with web design!

Leave a Reply 12 comments

Alla Reply

Nata, I’ve made my compliments and congratulations via email when you launched your website. Now I have a question on the wp theme: I know that you love Thrive products and higly recommend Thrive Content Builder plugin. I am setting up my website and thinking about paid Thrive Theme plugin (49$) to make my life easier and to have evrything optimized from the start. Do I still need Thrive Content Builder plugin to go with it or it would be an overlap? Thanks for your reply and advice in advance!

    Nata Reply

    Alla, yes, you still want the Content Builder plugin. Although now it’s called Thrive Architect – they are releasing a new version and decided to rename it. There is almost no overlap. The theme is powerful and gives some flexibility, but not anywhere close to the plugin itself. The plugin lets you do… well… almost anything, in terms of design. You can view demos on their website. Check out this latest video on Architect to get a feel https://thrivethemes.com/content-preservation/

      Alla Reply

      Nata, thank you for the update on this plugin – one more proof that change is the only thing that is stable, especially with tech stuff! :). It looks like the release is scheduled for Aug 29 and those that have TCB will have this new version as an update. They will also start working on a new theme. Do you know if change of a theme is considered a new purchase and you need to pay full price again? Is theme even needed at the beginning or it’s better to buy it later when the structure of the content/website is more clear?

        Nata Reply

        Alla, if you want to buy a different theme, it will be a new purchase, so full price. Don’t buy a theme yet. There are plenty of free themes out there. I’ve changed my theme a few dozen times, and I’m not sure if this one would be my last! 🙂 So don’t rush, and don’t get too hung up on choosing a perfect theme – no matter how much you like it, you will grow tired of it at some point and change it eventually. Seems to run in 2-3 year cycles. I do recommend getting a Thrive Architect/Content Builder though straightaway. No matter what your theme is, this plugin will be amazing help.

          Alla Reply

          Nata, thanks – yes, this is what holds me back on Thrive theme – I don’t know yet how the structure of the website will look like & don’t want to be constrained. On the other hand, Thrive says they don’t guarantee full compatibility with free themes. By the way, this morning I saw one thing you will probably like – entire Hootsuite’s Owly GIF library https://giphy.com/hootsuite – enjoy!

          Nata Reply

          Hoot-hoot! That’s so cute!!

Valentina Bellicova Reply

WOW! CONGRATULATIONS!

Love the owl, love the logo, and love the domain! … and I see that while we will be working on the great courses you create (I am right now 🙂 ), we will at times board the Hogwart’s Express and infuse magic into the courses we create!

Nata! What can I say? You are amazing and I wish you enormous success.

Hoot! Hoot! All Aboard! Next stop: Natasmeade Station!

    Nata Reply

    Valentina, thanks so much for your kind words. Means the world to me! I love the Hogwarts Express thought! Didn’t cross my mind before that Harry Potter had an owl. Life’s becoming more magical every day! 🙂

Ruth Reply

Dear Nata, i like your site very much. To be honest: it are the pictures that catch my attention. The owl is so beautiful. Congratualtions!!!!

    Nata Reply

    Great to hear from you, Ruth. Thanks for stopping by! I can’t take any credit for the pictures, I’m afraid. I hope once I fill my site with useful articles and videos, they will become the main focus of attention. 🙂

Craig Barry Reply

Nata,

First of all – Congratulations on the new site – its a hoot!

I operate in the Asian Personal Branding & Online Edu space. I have one very important suggestion regarding your personal brand development… register nataaliyeva.com, and at the very least, setup a forward to your new site. Great for SEO and branding, and it will stop someone from highjacking your name on the net. The cost is around USD$12 – better safe than sorry!! Maybe we can cooperate on something in the future…all the best!

    Nata Reply

    Craig, great suggestion. I actually own NatalyaAliyeva.com (Natalya is my full name – psst, don’t tell anyone). Perhaps I need to register the short name version, too. Feel free to get in touch if you want to talk about opportunities for cooperation and other magic things. There is a contact form on this page http://www.owlcourse.com/welcome/ Or if you’re subscribed, simply hit reply to any of my e-mails.

Leave a Reply: