The Latest

Aug 18, 2014

#Branding Moment: Economic Downfall from the Mike Brown Shooting Aftermath

Note: I felt compelled to express myself about this growing issue in my community of St. Louis, Missouri. In two weeks, I will be back on schedule. Thanks!

My biggest concern after the Mike Brown shooting was the local response of citizens, media and community leaders.  It was dishearten to find that some of the general public decided to take the streets in a manner that I thought would never exist in present day St. Louis.  Looting, vandalism and violent protesting has become commonplace when describing the small town of Ferguson, Missouri to the national and international media after the grueling demise of Michael Brown, Jr.

As of today, the following entities were either burglarized and/or vandalized due to the shooting:

  • QuikTrip #616 ( Was burned down by Looters and Vandals)image
    • 9420 W. Florissant Ave. Ferguson, MO
  • Foot Locker: Plaza on the Blvd
    • 8023 W. Florissant Ave. Jennings, MO
  • Ross Dress for Less: Clocktower Place
    • 11298 W. Florissant Ave.  Florissant, MO
  • Zisser Tire & Auto: Dellwood
    • 9990 W. Florissant Ave.  St. Louis, Mo
  • Shoe Carnival: N. County Festival
    • 10845 W. Florissant Ave. St. Louis, MO
  • Taco Bell: Dellwood
    • 9951 W. Florissant Ave.  St. Louis, MO
  • Family Dollar
    • Location Unknown (4 Locations on the West Florissant strip)
  • Walgreens: Country Club Hills
    • 5790 Lucas and Hunt Country Club Hills, MO
  • Hibbett Sports: Ferguson
    • 10990 New Halls Ferry Rd. St. Louis, MO
  • DTLR: Crossing at Halls Ferry
    • 10835 Old Halls Ferry Rd.  St. Louis, Mo
  • Sprint Store
    • Location Unknown (Both locations on the West Florissant Strip are owned by Wireless Lifestyle, an authorized retailer)
  • Radio Shack: N. County Festival
    • 10861 W. Florissant, Ferguson, MO
  • Wal-Mart: N. County Festival
    • 10741 W. Florissant Ave.  Ferguson, MO
  • Meineke Car Care Center: Ferguson
    • 402 S. Florissant Rd.  Ferguson, MO
  • Andy Wurm Tire & Wheel
    • 201 S. Florissant Rd. Ferguson, MO
  • Northland Chop Suey (Still Open)
    • 9240 W. Florissant Ave.  St. Louis, MO
  • Ferguson Market & Liquor (Where the alleged incident took place between Brown and Officer Wilson)image

    • 9011 W. Florissant Ave.  St. Louis, MO

Now, this is not a complete list of businesses, large and small, that were tampered with during the tragedy. Don’t forget the many entrepreneurs who had to close their doors due to the street closures on the W. Florissant strip due to the erratic behavior of citizens and law enforcement officials. 

After the “Black Rage” in Ferguson is over, who is ultimately hurt by the downfall of these businesses?  Currently, the US Dollar is weakening.  Presently, we can say that St. Louis has taken an active part in destroying the national economic development due to the irrational actions of citizens and community leaders in Ferguson.  I’m not saying be passive but think intellectually about this situation.  Now, we do not have any dollars funneling through the local economy effectively because we are not making sense in the county and city of St. Louis due to unjust issues between citizen, business owner, law enforcement and elected official. 

Currently, Ferguson is doing well in the housing market.  With the lack of revenue hitting the streets, where will Ferguson and other nearby municipalities be in 3 months, 6 months, 12 months or even 24 months?  It will take up to 15 years for this area to show its former glory, if that. 

Ndidi

Photo: Associated Press

 

 

One of my favorites from the upcoming Altuzarra for Target collection.
To learn more, go to http://contributors.luckymag.com/post/first-look-altuzarra-for-target-collection
Aug 17, 2014

One of my favorites from the upcoming Altuzarra for Target collection.

To learn more, go to http://contributors.luckymag.com/post/first-look-altuzarra-for-target-collection

Aug 15, 2014

#FranklyFriday: The Ugly Truth

In the aftermath of the Mike Brown Shooting, I’m still very shocked and disappointed.  In a matter of one weekend, my personal brand and business is jeopardy due to the irrational actions and motives of a community of citizens, community leaders, media and law enforcement in the city of St. Louis.  I never thought that I would be sitting here reevaluating my plan of action and finding myself rethinking movements and changes that placed me living in the current state of business in St. Louis.  I realized that all things happen for a reason but the inconsistency in the county and city of St. Louis is deafening today.  In my mind, it doesn’t make sense that a city of this size still lives in a past era of glory and affluence and has yet to embrace present achievements and future goals.  The death of “Mike Mike” has shown me a definite digression in the community, government officials and law enforcement of St. Louis along with the State of Missouri that I didn’t normally noticed. His demise was not in vain though.

This past Tuesday, I took a moment to go into Prayer in a corporate setting and found myself having a flashback of when I was living in Memphis.  While sitting in the church, the ministry leader talked about vocation and focusing on what we as people should do to fulfill our calling.  I realized that back in Memphis when I heard the same conversation, I was an overzealous Christian willing to give and serve without recourse.  Now, that I am back in St. Louis, I am a skeptical Christ Believer who thinks that church and state should not mix.  I sat in near tears trying to regain focus after such a defying event in local history. 

image

After that moment, I realized I need to come to terms with my ideology and the philosophy of the city.  We’re not on the same page.  I believe in diversity and focusing on cultural growth. It appears that the city and county doesn’t.  I believe in women in entrepreneurship, ministry, and upper lever corporate positions.  The city and county doesn’t.  I believe in the respect of all people regardless of level of influence, financial bearings and misfortunes.  The city and county doesn’t.

From a business standpoint, the city is not equipped to handle sole proprietorships nor do they create environments to foster relationships on an amicable and communal level.  “You have to be done with the clique” is what I used to hear as a young 20 something in the city. I still hear it now as a thirty-four year old business owner. I had never been a groupie. My foundation made me act and handle situations as a “Daughter of the King” not a princess of the supposed affluent. As rumors would circle about my parents’ validity and financial status, I went to Memphis and started to hear everyone singing my praises publicly not behind closed doors.  For a moment, it was a place where I flourished and grew into a person who was focusing on her vocation not the words of the past.

Right now, I have made a hard decision and will be taking action to flourish in a manner that will help me go back to focusing on my vocation in a positive and healthy manner. I pray for the family of Michael Brown, Ferguson Police Officer Darren Wilson, and those handling the investigation and aftermath of the shooting in the city and county of St. Louis.  May God reign in the proceedings…..  

Until Next Time,

Ndidi

Photo: Instagram

This what I wake up to this morning in the #STL…I stole it from a fellow St. Louisian. This image is showcasing the looting in the North St. Louis County area after the #MikeBrown shooting. The thief was outside of Quiktrip on W. Florissant. I wonder if he realized that he has defeated all chances of economic freedom for his family & community due to his decision to lift some bottles of wine? #Stlouis
Aug 11, 2014

This what I wake up to this morning in the #STL…I stole it from a fellow St. Louisian. This image is showcasing the looting in the North St. Louis County area after the #MikeBrown shooting. The thief was outside of Quiktrip on W. Florissant. I wonder if he realized that he has defeated all chances of economic freedom for his family & community due to his decision to lift some bottles of wine? #Stlouis

Fashion is expensive. Style is not. Some of the most stylish girls I know are certainly not the wealthiest.
Nina Garcia (via iam-thelaw)

(via ninagarcia)

Aug 9, 2014 / 6,201 notes
Aug 7, 2014

#Event Moment: Blood on the Dance Floor

As I was working this past Saturday night, I was multitasking while watching the season finale of Starz Network’s Power (Sidebar: If you don’t know what I am talking about, check it out on DVR).  During the finale, a brief moment of that episode bothered me as an Event Planner/Designer.  The scene begins in the midst of a Vogue Magazine party where a waitress got stabbed to death by an unknown assailant. It happened in the blink of an eye.  Then sudden chaos transpired in that particular scene.  

In reality, as an Event Planner/Designer, the conversation about the well being and security of guests has fallen to the waste side.  I know that many of you may find that scene unrealistic due to the target audience that Vogue Magazine caters to in the real world.  My response to that attitude is “Honey, snap out it!”  The one lesson that I learned as an Event Planner/Designer operating in Dallas for a time is that I don’t put anything past ANYBODY. It doesn’t matter what race/ethnicity, education level, religious belief or economic standing. Mental Health can be a killer….trust.

When I discuss security with a venue or other event professionals, my guard is up.  Many of my associates feel they know their clientele well and want to believe that conversation of danger will not arise at their events. That is a crazy thought to have.  To not involve the local cops or get enough security to subside the aspect of harm during an event is an anomaly.  I do realize the economy plays a factor.  It cost a great deal to have security on staff. In addition, there are some municipalities who charge for adding additional law enforcement to an area where a major event takes place.  In the end though,  I would rather pay upfront for the additional security then have to pay it on the back end to someone who flies a lawsuit against my brand due to injuries caused at my event.

This is how I operate my events when it comes to the security aspect of an event:

  • Event Insurance is a must. 
  • I base the number of security on the number of attendees participating in my event. 
  • I will contact law enforcement when necessary
  • People working at my door are customer service oriented. No attitudes…..
  • I’m checking everybody’s ID. No underage guests if this event is for adults only. 
  • When I use the RSVP concept for my event, I’ll only admit people who are giving me their legal given name. No stage names.
  • I will reserve my right to be selective about who can attend my events based on my requirements i.e. a style code

I want people to have fun at my events.  No one should be looking over their shoulder due to a chaotic person.   Fear and danger will not take place under my leadership.  Never. Not on my watch……

Ndidi

Photo: Starz

In an effort to present L’Atelier Indigo7 by Ndidi O. to the public, I will showcase some of my style picks associated to posts for Lucky Magazine Community.
This look is for those who are staff or faculty for any particular educational institution. Just because they are teachers or other educational leaders doesn’t mean they can’t have style…….
For more, continue at http://contributors.luckymag.com/post/fall-preview-back-to-school#.U-JexBWHzbw.twitter
Ndidi O.
Aug 6, 2014

In an effort to present L’Atelier Indigo7 by Ndidi O. to the public, I will showcase some of my style picks associated to posts for Lucky Magazine Community.

This look is for those who are staff or faculty for any particular educational institution. Just because they are teachers or other educational leaders doesn’t mean they can’t have style…….

For more, continue at http://contributors.luckymag.com/post/fall-preview-back-to-school#.U-JexBWHzbw.twitter

Ndidi O.

Aug 4, 2014

"I wake up looking this good
And I wouldn’t change it if I could
(If I could, if I, if I, could)
And you can say what you want
I’m the shit (what you want I’m the shit)
I’m the shit, I’m the shit, I’m the shit
I want everyone to feel like this…….”

BEYONCE & NICKI MINAJ | FLAWLESS REMIX

Aug 4, 2014

What?!? :Introducing L’Atelier Indigo7 by Ndidi O.

The French term, Atelier, means a workshop or studio especially for an artist or designer.  You have officially entered into the work studio of the designer, Ndidiamaka “Ndidi” C. Onukogu, MBA.  In the midst of trying to increase revenue and resolve internal issues, I came up with the concept of L’Atelier Indigo7by Ndidi O., a possible brand extension of Indigo7 Marketing and Events.  During a brainstorming moment, I realized as a Strategist I don’t have the ability to be hands on with a project like it was in the past.  As the Consultant, you give advice and counsel and the client handles the actuality of the project.

From the words of a fool, “Really, Ndi is a designer. She had been lying to y’all.”  Maybe, I have. I am not a fashion or graphic designer but I’m a Style Expert and Event Designer.  I miss getting my hands dirty while working with people so that is why I am reaching out to the consumer directly.  The mission of L’Atelier Indigo7 by Ndidi O. is to bring direct styling and design opportunities to the consumer by receiving personal bespoke moments due to his or her unique social situation. 

Now, I am particular about this trial venture. It will be available to the public from today until December 31, 2014. If all works out, it will become a brand extension of Indigo7 Marketing & Events starting February 2015.  

The services available are the following:

  • Personal Wardrobe Styling (Men’s, Women’s & Children)
  • Personal Event Planning/Design

For more information, please go to http://indigo7marketing.tumblr.com/LAtelier.

Thanks for your continued support of Indigo7 Marketing and Events!

 

Ndidiamaka C. Onukogu, MBA 

Aug 4, 2014

#Branding Moment: Celebrities vs. Regular Joe

The conversation of the celebrity influencer has always be a topic of controversy. Many brands are focused on finding the right person to vocalize and visualize its brand to a mass audience. The term, Influencer marketing is very experiential in the consumer/lifestyle goods industry.  According to experts, the concept works in a four-fold process.  The influencer cycle is based on the following movements in the branding process:

  • Recognizing influencers, and ranking them in order of importance.
  • Marketing towards influencers, to boost brand awareness of the brand within the influencer community
  • Marketing by influencers, using influencers to increase market awareness of the brand amongst target markets
  • Marketing partnerships with influencers, turning influencers into a promoter/supporter of the brand.

The reason for controversy is the conversation about the rank of importance a person may have in a community. For many consumer/lifestyle branding folks, the popularity of a person is really based on a numbers game. Focusing on social media, direct sales and other analytics, a person can become an influencer of a brand very easily.  As I play the role of devil’s advocate, what if the numbers are not accurate or organic? Is this person really an influencer?  A person can be an influencer but not a celebrity or public figure. Vice versa. When I consider using influencer marketing, I am looking at the person’s total persona publicly besides his or her social media and/or direct sales numbers.   To be honest, people draw to those who have craziness or drama in his or her life.  But does that make her the right person to present content on behalf of a brand?  We must consider how the influencer fits in the mission and vision of the brand.

 I would love to see the concept of using the “regular Joe” as a brand influencer expanded in the consumer goods arena.  Dove has a great concept going on by using “the regular Jane” to promote its products to its female consumer.  From my viewpoint, if a consumer sees a reflection of themselves in a spokesperson, the person is more willing to support and purchase the product.  Sometimes, a celebrity is gives off an unattainable aspect of a brand when chosen as the brand evangelist.

Influencer Marketing is a good concept to use but there is needs to be more objectivity used to find the right spokesperson to represent a brand.  The “Regular Joe” can hold his own with a Celebrity.

Ndidi

Photo: Google