Sina Port is not your average marketing-loving gal.
In between leading global campaigns for Adidas and creating a multi-faith room for her fellow Muslim colleagues, Sina is an entrepreneur and incredible storyteller who helps women everywhere build their personal brands without compromising their faith and beliefs.
Yup – Sina's life is a busy yet exciting one, which is why we were honoured to get the chance to sit down with her and pick her brains!
We spoke about everything from creating with huge brands, to how her perspective on personal branding changed when she reverted to Islam.
Let's dive in! 👇
The storyteller, entrepreneur, podcast host and Muslim revert who used her love of marketing to become the brand communication genius for Adidas.
When she's not sharing her branding secrets with us on her podcast or delivering an inspiring keynote address, Sina is leading some of the biggest campaigns for major household brands.
But where did it all begin?
Sina's been working in marketing ever since her teenage years when she decided to create promotional campaigns for the local tennis club.
After moving to Malaysia to gain experience in marketing start-ups, Sina built her first marketing agency which is where her passion started to build momentum.
But it wasn't until Sina reverted to Islam in 2017 that her whole perception on 'personal branding' and the world of marketing took a different, slightly more refreshing turn...
"Reverting to Islam Meant Having a Personal Rebrand"
In her early twenties, Sina was on a mission to revamp her social image and create a personal brand that reflected her new Muslim lifestyle.
"When I reverted to Islam, I needed to re-imagine my professional career and start working for brands that not only deserved good marketing but that could also contribute to my legacy."
This meant working on her own identity and promoting these new values and environments she had now found for herself.
When moving around the world, Sina experienced a struggle that so many of us have encountered, which is finding halal-friendly networking events. The late-night, alcohol-fuelled, mostly flirtatious corporate events are no match for Muslims looking to build their work connections.
Sina was determined to create a career that didn't require her to compromise her new lifestyle and so, with the launch of her new podcast, Shared Diversity, Sina opened up the much needed conversation of:
How big brands can use their marketing to solve real-life problems in the consumer market
How women can build a personal brand without giving up their morals, beliefs and practices (especially in the realm of Islam)
Building a Personal Brand as a Women of Faith
While many Muslim women do not wish to show their face on social media, it begs the question of...
How can they build their businesses or even market themselves in the media-obsessed, visual-heavy world we live in?
Where face-centred Instagram reels and 'over-sharing' daily YouTube vlogs are all the craze, building a personal brand became increasingly difficult for anyone who...didn't want to share parts of their identity!
This was the very gap in the world of marketing that Sina was determined to fill.
Using her professional expertise, Sina created courses and educational resources for these women who found themselves at this crossroad between building a successful brand and choosing not to show their face.
Her marketing strategies have helped women to look into forms of media that allow them to promote themselves whilst adhering to Islamic guidelines.
"In a world where 'marketing mentors' are explicitly telling women to use their beauty to build their brands, I wanted to bring about refreshing strategies that didn't put women in this narrow box."
For a lot of us, building a bold personal brand can seem scary – especially when you don't feel comfortable putting your face out there.
Knowing this, Sina created 'personality-based' strategies that help people figure out where they are on the introvert-extrovert scale and apply methods that feel comfortable to them.
"With introverted clients, we focus on building their brand with blogs, articles, and even podcasting/audio media. Whereas more extroverted people, you can bring them into the world of live workshops and so on."
Although these days, marketing mentors and influencers are encouraged to move with the trends, Sina discusses how you can still do this whilst not overstepping your own boundaries.
"Right now, short and snappy reels under 30 seconds are going viral. But you can still do this without showing your face. Look at these faceless Korean vloggers on Youtube who talk you through their entire day – they have over 3 million views!"
As Sina went onto explain, you can always take your personality and beliefs and find a way to combine it with a trending strategy – whether it's snappy audio clips from a podcast or faceless 'spend a day with me' YouTube vlogs! 📸
Becoming the Branding Brains Behind Adidas
Sina grew up just 30 minutes away from the Adidas HQ in Germany.
With a longing vision to design clothes for the multi-national corporation during her teens years – landing the role was a special moment for Sina. But, the way in which it came about was fascinating...
After sharing a podcast episode about how brands can create products that solve real consumer problems, Sina grabbed the attention of senior members of Adidas who insisted that she uses her marketing wisdom to contribute to the global brand.
"I literally had 40 [podcast] subscribers at the time, and the guys at Adidas listened to it? Like that's just wild. It goes to show that you really never know who's seeing your stuff."
During Sina's years at Adidas, she's been on the creative teams for some of their biggest social campaigns, including the sports brand's Eid campaign in 2021.
She continues to lead the global company in their cultural campaigns to bring about social awareness for women, POC, and faith-centred consumers.
Creating a Multi-Faith Room in Adidas
Not only has Sina used her marketing expertise to put marginalised groups at the forefront of branding, she's also made her mark internally within the workplace.
What you may not know is that, in Germany, there's a big focus on neutrality. This means it's a pretty big cultural taboo to bring religion into the workplace.
This meant that there was no designated, secure place for Sina and her fellow Muslim colleagues to pray. And there wasn't enough discussion around how Islamic beliefs mould into everyday lifestyle. Praying, for example, is not something that can be left outside the workplace.
While the lack of prayer space may have been a result of a lack of awareness, Sina was determined to make a multi-faith room happen within the Adidas HQ.
"We explained to the senior team the demand for a space like this and they were so helpful in terms of bringing this to life."
No matter how big or small the company may be, standing firm on your necessities is important, and also helps to shape the culture of the workplace later down the line. Go Sina! 💓
Whether she's working with big brands or helping women build their personal ones, Sina's work is a stepping stone for companies and people everywhere to find their voice without losing their identity.
We'll leave you with these last words from Sina...
"When we go out and do the things that we believe will build our legacy, we realise just how beautiful our Islam is. "
Want to catch up on Sina's SkillShare courses to learn more about how to build the ultimate personal brand? Click here to watch and learn how to get paid to be who you are!
Let us know your thoughts on this article in the comments below 👇