We had the good fortune of connecting with Courtney Smith and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Courtney, is there something that you feel is most responsible for your success?
I think the most important factor behind the success of my business was timing. I started my business at a time when a lot of people were forced to regroup, rethink, and re-strategize. Side hustles became full time jobs and so many amazing ideations came to life in garages, on kitchen tables and living room floors. Being able to play a part in the conceptualization of so many amazing new brands has been the most exciting part of my job, and being able to grow my business along with them is very indicative of the times.
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
I’m Courtney Smith and I’m the owner of ZIARIX Media. We are a boutique graphic design and digital marketing agency specializing in the fashion and beauty industries. Marketing and advertising is so essential to business growth and so I wanted to provide a resource for small businesses to stand out in such a highly competitive market. I think what sets us apart from other agencies is that we offer services that are attainable for smaller budgets, without compromising on quality, and being able to provide that kind of resource to small businesses is a big part of our mission.
I have so much fun working with fashion and beauty brands because it’s not just a job for me. It’s actually something that I’m really passionate about and that I have a lot of fun doing. I take great pride in having the opportunity to play a roll in the ideation of so many amazing brands. It’s truly inspiring to see this new wave of entrepreneurship, and I’m always excited to see the growth that my clients and I are able to achieve.
Getting here was definitely a daily challenge. My business was born at the start of the pandemic, at a time where a lot of people were forced to rethink their path in life. Starting this business was always my goal, it was the timeline that changed significantly for me. The biggest challenge was finding my focus and managing growth. We experienced a large influx of business in such a short period of time, and it took a lot strategy and quick decision making to maintain customer relations while also meeting demand.
The biggest lesson I’ve learned in business, and life in the Covid era, is the importance of being adaptable. 2020 was hand that I’m certain no-one expected to be dealt, but it was important to me that I make solutions for the situation at hand and I’m so happy that through my endeavors Im able to provide solutions for other entrepreneurs as well.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
It’s been such a long time since I’ve been out in the world, and I’m kind of a home body, but I’d say my top five favorite places in the city would start with a cute spot called Home Restaurant in Los Feliz. Their drink menu amazing and they’re great for brunch. Being the fashion enthusiast that I am, I love a stroll down Abbot Kinney. It’s such a vibe, and if you’re a fan of unique and rare fashion finds, that is the place. Bonus is Venice Beach, within walking distance. I’m a Vanderpump fan, so of course PUMP and SUR are favorites, RIP Villa Blanca. Sometimes when I’m feeling down, I put on my sunglasses and channel my inner Holly Golightly with a stroll down Rodeo Drive. No, I’ve never had a Cracker Jack ring engraved at Tiffany’s, but maybe one day. Last, but not least, is museum row. The perfect way to get the creative juices flowing. It’s also, a really great date night destination.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I wouldn’t have made it through the trenches of budding entrepreneurship without the support of my Mom who wore as many hats as I did, and the friends and colleagues that believed in my vision and rallied when I needed it the most. I’m talking late nights, hour long phone calls, and a lot of “You’re ready, just do it!”. I also have to shout out all of my clients, a lot of which are black owned businesses, who are supporting and pouring into my black owned business. Every time a dollar is exchanged within our community it brings POC one step closer to ownership and economic equality, and that’s something that is deeply rooted into fabric of my business.