The Design Business Show 146: Using Tech & Brand Strategy to Grow Your Business with Salma Sheriff

Director : Melissa Burkheimer | June 28, 2021
Check out episode 146 of The Design Business Show with Salma Sheriff to learn all about blending tech and design in your business!

Salma Sheriff is an award-winning Brand Strategist, Web Designer and Launch Director. She works with impact-driven creative entrepreneurs, coaches and course creators to build captivating brands, high-converting websites, and automated sales funnels to generate consistent leads and clients. She has worked with six and seven-figure entrepreneurs with tech and launch support for their high-end programs to generate successful five-figure launches. Salma also provides coaching programs and courses for service-based providers to launch and scale their business and become financially independent.

Her work has been featured in Rising Tide Society, Thrive Global, Better Homes & Gardens, Homepreneur and many more. She has worked with industry leaders and experts like Shay M. Lawson, Tiyana Robinson, Brad Bizjack, Prerna Malik, and dozens more. Her mission is to help aspiring and established women entrepreneurs become the go-to experts in their niche and to provide resources & support to scale their business.

Here’s what we covered on the episode:

Salma’s Start to Business

  • How Salma and I connected online through a mutual friend
  • Salma shares that her degree is in computer science & engineering, and while she has a love for tech she is also passionate about crafting DIY creations, crochet products, etc, so during her post-graduation she decided to start a blog to showcase the designs she had done during school
  • To create her blog, Salma used BlogSpot and started posting pictures and writing about her designs; she slowly created a brand behind the blog and turned it into a profitable business where she sold her DIY and crochet products
  • Another love of Salma’s is planning and organizing, so when she saw a trend in home & organizing planners, she started designing digital planners and sold them on Etsy
  • Salma’s DIY & crochet business plus her blog went on for about 3 years, and during that time she launched many things including branding, how to grow your business and social media marketing
  • After running her business for about 3 years, Salma came to the realization that it was time to help people who are where she was was 3 years ago with the experience she had gained

Salma Sheriff Designs + Getting Clients

  • In December 2016, Salma Sheriff Designs was born and Salma started offering branding and website designs with the mission of helping other aspiring women entrepreneurs to launch their brand and online business so they can create a digital footprint to share their expertise and sell their own products online
  • How Salma still crochets for friends and family that ask, but doesn’t do it as a business anymore
  • In October 2016, Salma was transitioning her business from a product based business to a service based business and found it difficult for the first few months to know what steps to take to pivot her business and get her first client
  • The story of how Salma got her first client by connecting through a Facebook group and how this client is still a client today and one of her closest friends in the business industry
  • When Salma replied to her first clients post on their Facebook group about needing a designer/developer she didn’t have a website or portfolio so she created a PDF of what she had and created some designs for them because she didn’t want to give up; they were impressed and hired her for their project
  • When Salma first started her business, her plan was to only do graphic design services, but it slowly changed into designing websites
  • Now what Salma offers is a complete brand identity package, which includes design and strategy, she offers complete website design & development services, and says along with that she’s started offering launch services
  • Salma’s Ready-Set-Launch service is a complete A-Z of setting up the design and tech for anyone who is launching a high-end program, course, or digital project
  • Why Salma offers the tech implementation along with design services is because she really wanted to blend her two passions of design and tech into one

Taking Advantage of Opportunities + Social Media Marketing

  • When Salma sees an opportunity online to nominate your work or have an article featured somewhere, she jumps on it and explains the processes she had to go through to be picked and featured in Rising Tide Society and Better Homes & Gardens
  • Locally, Salma was awarded the best brand strategist in the Homepreneur Awards, where they had around 6,000 applicants and explains the process she had to go through for that award
  • If you’re listening and have the opportunity to nominate yourself for something similar, Salma says just take the step and do it because when you trust yourself and your work, there’s nothing stopping you
  • Salma shares what’s coming next in her business and shares that has always envisioned building her coaching program to help aspiring designers; she currently has courses for entrepreneurs but wants to help aspiring or established entrepreneurs in the design industry to help them grow their business
  • When Salma first started, she never reached out to others by DM about her services because she believes in making true, genuine relationships/friendships and then talking about business from there
  • At first, Salma utilized social media marketing, specifically Facebook because that’s where most of her target audience lived and what she would do was comment on posts that talked about needing a service she offered and shared her portfolio with them
  • Salma has people reach out to her based on her content that she writes herself – she creates value based posts that make people realize she is the expert in that area
  • Right now, the business Salma gets is through content marketing, referrals and email marketing
  • Salma explains how she started using Instagram as a platform to share her content as well and says she likes to try different things and see what works best for her, like the use of stories and reels
  • How it took Salma a lot of courage to do reels on Instagram and gained her confidence from showing up on Instagram stories
  • One thing that helped Salma with Instagram reels is joining a challenge where she had to post a story each day, which resulted in her doing reels, which were very information & value based and not about herself to start
  • For those who are nervous about doing reels, Salma suggests doing them for yourself first and saving the video until you’re confident enough to post it or says you can record your screen or what you’re writing so you don’t have to show your face
  • How you should show up consistently online, trust yourself, and trust your work – Salma says if you’re holding yourself back, just think about what it could do for others and put it out into the world
  • Connect with Salma on Facebook, Instagram or check out her website – If you have any questions make sure to reach out because she would love to connect with you

Links mentioned:

Salma Sheriff Designs Website

Salma’s Ready-Set-Launch Service

Connect with Salma on Facebook 

Connect with Salma on Instagram 


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