Think Tank Public Relations & Marketing Blog

Where Ninjas Shout Their Messages From Rooftops

A Ninja’s Right To Shoes April 5, 2009

So I think I may have to be admitted into rehab.  I have a serious, serious addiction and I don’t think I can kick it on my own.  What is it, you may ask?  Alcohol?  Gambling?  Online social media?  Networking?  Working too much?  No, no, no!  My addiction is something that I am not even shameful of….I am addicted to shoes.

What is it about shoes?  Why are they so amazing?  How is it that they can take me from feeling so very average to feeling on top of the world with one tiny slip of my insole into a Manolo Blahnik?  Why is it when I am in an outfit from Old Navy and I put on a pair of Dolce & Gabanas and rock the Main Street sidewalk I feel as though I can CONQUER THE WORLD?  Hmmmm……

I pondered this very question as I shoe shopped the other day.  I walked into Nieman Marcus in St. Louis and did the “dance”.  I slowly go up the escalator, and make my way to the amazing shoe department.  I have this strange ritual where, as I walk up to the shoe department, I will not allow myself to actually LOOK at the shoes – as though there is an eclipse! – I will no allow direct eye contact until I am there, firmly in front of the shoes staring squarely upon the Christian Louboutins.

My crazy “Nieman’s Shoe Department Approach” is reminiscent of when I would go to church with my grandparents – the old Vatican I days in the Catholic Church – where you would go up to the communion railing, slip your hands under the starched white cloth, and wait for the priest to lay the body of Christ upon your tongue.  It is with the exact same fanatical ritual in which I approach the shoe department of Nieman Marcus.  Perhaps too many years of Catholic schooling?  Perhaps I SHOULDN’T have gone to a Catholic college?  Anyway… back to the shoes…

As I approached the shoe department, like a girl with a crush on a boy who won’t look directly at him, I smell the familiar smell of leather.  Mmmmmmmm…..I inhale deeply and then lay my eyes upon my prey.  I look at each individual shoe on it’s own, pondering it for seconds before looking at the next.  I appraise each one – the height (first and foremost for this vertically challenged Ninja), I appraise the design, the aesthetic, the materials, the brand, the buckles, EVERYTHING.  Nothing goes by unnoticed by my keen, addicted eyes.  I appraise it like a raging alcoholic appraises top shelf vodka.  With skepticism, with respect, with lust.

I refuse to make a selection without first giving each individual shoe a once-over.  After the initial dance is done, I then make my selections.  Sometimes it is only 2 or 3 pairs of shoes, sometimes it is 15.  It depends on the season, the designers, the thirst in which I feel I NEED the shoes.  Then the fun begins…

I place my newly pedicured feet into the finest of designer shoes.  I walk around Nieman’s imagining how my life will change simply by WEARING each pair of shoes in my everyday life.  One by one, I try on the shoes – walking fast, walking slowly, sashaying around the department like the addict I have become, until I find my perfect mate.

With complete reverence I place the shoes that have not made the “cut” back into their cloth bags, and then firmly back into their beautifully designed boxes.  Goodbye Prada, goodbye Manolo, until next time Christian… I have found my fix for the time being.

I walk up to the cash register, giddy from the anticipation of taking my shoes home.  I am already thinking of all the different events in which I can wear them.   I imagine how, with these shoes on my feet, I am going to change the world.  I will go from regular Ninja Trish to Superhero Ninja Trish with the simple slip of the shoe onto my foot.  No superhero cape needed.  I have Dolce.  Dolce and I can change the world!

After my day of shoe shopping I come home spent – tired but exhilarated – and I start to think about what it is about these shoes that make me feel so enamored.  I mean, I am the kind of Ninja who will wear Old Navy clothes, Target jewelry, Forever 21 accessories, and Walgreens nail polish.  What IS IT about designer shoes that send me into such a state of euphoria?

Or…better yet….how can I REPLICATE this sentiment and incorporate it into my own marketing?  How can I get my clients products to have this same amazing, salivating, orgasmic effect that designer shoes have on me?  I feel as though it is the secret of the Holy Grail.  If only I can answer the questions right at the gate…

Designer Pink Shoes

Mmmmm....shoes....

Until then, I guess I will have to keep going back to Nieman’s for Market Research.  After all, a Ninja has a right to designer superhero shoes…

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Ninja’s Can Be Passionate Too, You Know! March 15, 2009

So, I’ve been giving a lot of thought to the word “passion” lately.  Webster’s Dictionary defines passion as “intense, driving, or overmastering feeling or conviction” as well as “ardent love”.  Hmmm….ardent love?  I’m starting to think of a Harlequin Romance novel…me in a flowing dress, some hunky guy holding me in his enormous arms, the back drop of some surreal vista, a gentle breeze blowing, a passionate kiss…(snap out of Trish, snap out of it!)

So, after my …ahem….diversion, I came back to reality and started to think about what I am passionate about.  Many of you may not know that this Ninja started out as a classical musician – and that music was my driving passion for many years.  I was always convinced I would be a great Maestro on a huge stage, conducting the world’s finest symphonies.  (Hey, am I talking about a Harlequin Romance novel again?  Me in a flowing dress, the New York Philharmonic my backdrop, as I wave my diamond-encrusted baton in fevered passion at them.)  It is strange, the paths we Ninjas take, but I am glad my path wove through the amazing world of music and taught me passion, dedication, and teamwork.

Anyway, I digress!  Today I decided to take a last minute outing to the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra (www.slso.org).  I wanted to see their rendition of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 8 in F Major and Elgar’s Enigma (Op. 36).   I watched enraptured as the conductor led this talented group of musicians through movement after movement.  The way he conducted, his body movement, they way he lead them with such conviction and fervor through each piece was undeniably awe-inspiring.

There I sat, hunched over – watching intensely – forgetting to breathe.  My mind was drifting off to far away places.  I was so in the moment.  Afterwards, I walked in a daze from the gorgeous Powell Symphony Hall and I started to think about passion and what it meant to me.  Yes, I am incredibly, INCREDIBLY passionate.  (YES!  Ninjas can be passionate, let me assure you!)

What am I passionate about?  I am deeply, deeply passionate about music.  (Don’t even get me started on the new U2 album – No Line On The Horizon – that was released and how THAT makes me feel!)  I am passionate about helping others (www.edglenhabitat.org) and making the world a better place to live, I am passionate about life, and kindness, and going through this life sucking the nectar out of it.   I am passionate about my company, and I am most passionate about my clients and helping their companies grow.

I have a zest for life – I see passion and feel passion everywhere.  I am the kind of Ninja who rolls all the windows down in her car on the first warm day of Spring and sings at the top of her lungs, hair furiously blowing, devil-may-care attitude toward passersby.

I started thinking about the people I surround myself with – my friends, employees, colleagues, clients – and I noticed there is a common theme among all of them.  We are ALL passionate about SOMETHING in our lives.  I tend to gravitate toward people who are extremely passionate, and passion seems to drive our projects to take on a life of their own.

I started thinking back over my favorite clients over this past year – and my very, very favorite are the ones who walk in like a whirlwind.  They know what they want, they have a specific vision, and they aren’t gonna stop until they get it.  You listen to them and you believe – you believe in their product, in them, in the world – hell, you’d believe in Communism if they told you to because they are so damn convincing.

These are the people – these passionate, amazing people – who are going to change the world.  They are the ones who dream up innovative products or ideas; they are the ones who step up to the plate and enact positive change in the world; they are the ones who dare to dream, who never see failure as an option, who will rise to any occasion when asked.

I love these people – my friends, colleagues, employees, and co-workers.  They are the symphony, the soundtrack of my life.  And when I am riding around in my convertible, hair blowing into a 1980’s Tawny Kitaen-like rendition, these amazing people make up the symphony of my life.

Let me leave you with this thought.  Go forth, and BE PASSIONATE!!!

 

I’m Just a Ninja Who Likes to Wear Pink March 1, 2009

ninja trish“I’m just a ninja-lo, and everywhere I go, people always talk to me about marketing…” (sang to the tune “Just a Gigolo” by David Lee Roth)  Oh yeah, I did – oh yes I DID!  Don’t even get me started, I’ll start making up my own silly rhyming lyrics.  You know I’ve always wanted to be a rapper.  (This shows you how old I am.)  Okay, I’ll stop now….

So, I was inspired to start this blog by my friend and colleague, the esteemed Steve Hartman – founder of Creativille.  (www.creativille.net)  He was up in my office on Mardi Gras, adorned in beads, laughing his fool head off with me and the Think Tank Ninjas and he said (through his tears), “I should’ve brought my computer so I could blog about this!”  And….then….BING!  A light bulb moment for ol’ Trishie here.

Do you know how many times I am walking (or attempting to walk in my enormously tall shoes) when I think, “MY GOD!  I need to tell someone about this!  Now, THAT is marketing!”  And, I don’t know why, but all the IM’ing on Facebook in the world just won’t cut it or translate exactly what I am talking about.  Well, now I have an outlet.  What can I say?  WATCH OUT WORLD!!!!  Waaaahaaaaaahaaaaahaaaaaa!  (That was my evil laugh there, in case you didn’t know.)

Who knows if anyone will ever really read this fool thing – but you know what?  I’ll feel a whole heck of a lot better getting this stuff out of my head and off of my chest and into YOUR head.  After all, isn’t THAT marketing????

Check back, and check back often.  This Ninja dressed (nearly always) in pink, tottering around in her big shoes, has LOTS to say!