In her own words: Strategist Adryenn Ashley
Name/title: Adryenn Ashley, Business Architect/Launch Strategist
Number of years in this job: 7
Years in this profession: 25
Education: MA Film Production/Finance, PhD Jurisprudence
Last book read: pre-release copy of “The Evil Stepmother Speaks” by Barb Goldberg
Favorite flick: “Fifth Element”
What’s on your iPod: Five hours of dance music, Ke$ha, Brittany, J Lo, anything to get the body moving
Spouse, kids or pets: Single mom, to one brilliant almost 10-year-old boy, and Maggie, the cat on a hot tin roof.
Northern Nevada Business Weekly: Tell us about your company and the duties of your position.
Adryenn Ashley: I own Wow! Is Me, a creative agency specializing in monetization strategies through social media, traditional media and strategic alliances. I design unique and highly successful launch plans for companies, brands and entrepreneurs.
NNBW: How did you get into this profession?
Ashley: In 2006 I was a successful film producer working on a failing documentary about father’s rights, “Anarchy Ahead: The Harvesting of American Families.” It wasn’t good. It was dark, depressing and solution-less — everything I am not! I knew the content had to make it into the mainstream, but there was no way with the current format to do that. So I switched gears, took all the research and years of interviews and wrote the book, “Every Single Girl’s Guide to Her Future Husband’s Last Divorce” an empowering book for future second wives. In it I protected women (totally allowable in modern society) and burst into the spotlight in a major way. It worked. The launch catapulted me to international acclaim, the book won awards, but even better was that I realized the process I used would work for anyone, any business, not just a book. So I began using the same strategies and tactics on other business, with the same great results. And that’s how I became a business pimp. (I’ve been told now that I live in Nevada I have to be careful using that word!)
NNBW: How do you balance clients’ demands with your own expertise?
Ashley: My clients come to me because they are good at what they do, they are the experts in their field. And they know they aren’t experts in mine. I carefully select my clients. It helps me skew my success rates by only choosing businesses that I know have what it takes to go BIG! So my clients’ demands are agreed upon in advance, this is what we are going to do, and then we do it. It’s wholly collaborative and always fun!
NNBW: What’s the most important thing you have learned in your career?
Ashley: Flexibility leads to success. As in indie filmmaker I had to solve every problem in two minutes or less and with no budget. That trained me to be super flexible, creative, and learn to use rapport building to get what we needed to keep moving forward. Don’t be so married to a concept or strategy that you can’t/won’t change it when the results prove you should.
NNBW: Is your job stressful? How do you cope with job-related stress?
Ashley: My job is fun — I thrive on air-traffic controllering my projects and hitting home runs. So for me, while it’s busy, and the travel for all the red-carpet appearances can be hectic, I love my job.
NNBW: What was your first job.
Ashley: I’ve been an entrepreneur since I was 7. I designed and made decorated headbands and sold them to the dance shop down the street.
NNBW: Tell us about your dream job. Why aren’t you working it?
Ashley: My dream job is producing my own television show, and I am working on it. I’ve already gained credibility in the entertainment industry, and I’m producing other shows now and mastering the launch strategies and social media/second screen opportunities that are materializing.
NNBW: What’s the most fun you have had on the job.
Ashley: Breaking into banks. Hacking into a new online banking system (my bonus was based on how much I could steal) at the request of the bank, just to see if it could be done.
NNBW: What’s the best advice anyone ever gave you?
Ashley: Lisa Zimmerman read my astrological chart in July 2007 after only knowing me for five minutes. She told me that I was destined to be a healer on the world stage. I said, “So long as healer can mean curing unemployment, I’m in!” And since then I haven’t had stage fright — no fear at all.
NNBW: What are your favorite hobbies or pastimes? How do you spend your time away from work?
Ashley: I like to travel and read books, I’m obsessed with Dancing With The Stars, and playing with my son.
NNBW: If you could live your life over again, what one thing would you change?
Ashley: I am who I am because of the path I took to get here. I wouldn’t be me if I changed anything, but if I could, I’d really like to not have fallen off a truck while working on “I Know What You Did Last Summer.” But then I wouldn’t have morphed into a movie producer, so it’s a tough call. That accident and not being able to walk for six years led to where I am now, which is awesome!
NNBW: What has been your biggest professional accomplishment?
Ashley: Being acknowledged for my efforts in media through movies and books.
NNBW: What did you dream of becoming when you were a kid?
Ashley: An actress. I memorized Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” when I was eight cover to cover and could perform it.
NNBW: What can you do that someone else can’t?
Ashley: Extrapolate data. I can take seemingly random bits of information and string it together into plot points that make sense and profit.
NNBW: If you had enough money to retire right now, would you? Why or why not?
Ashley: Retirement for me would be focusing on philanthropic efforts and pushing forward with the Curing Unemployment Tour. So yes, I would, happily! Of course there would be many tropical beaches involved…
NNBW: What’s the last concert or sporting event you attended?
Ashley: Reno Aces game last season. It was our first baseball game, and the family next to us was nice to explain what was going on! It made the whole game even more fun!
NNBW: Where’s your perfect vacation spot?
Ashley: Near water, with sun (and shade for me because I burn easily), preferably the ocean, but lakes are good too. Non-work books, mid-day naps, great food, music, and most of all, friends.
NNBW: You are a relative newcomer to northern Nevada — why did you choose a career here, and what do you like most about working/living here?
Ashley: Reno is awesome! From the moment we arrived, everyone has been so nice! We found the perfect place to live, an awesome homeschool teacher, and I immediately connected with the local entrepreneur groups to meet people. Mount Rose is only 20 minutes up the hill, Lake Tahoe is 30 minutes, and from my back door I can hike for hours. I’m from the San Francisco Bay Area, so I can still easily go back to see family, but Reno has a great airport, is committed to business growth and I’m the unofficial Queen of the California Exodus! I’ve already gotten several friends to start their moves here with their companies. The attitude is awesome. Reno is the place for entrepreneurs who want a life. Even rush hour here is easy! I see Reno transforming into the next hot spot for media/technology/entertainment companies because of the favorable tax laws, and the easy access to talent.
Since launching its new pediatric products two years ago, Neo Medical has seen a 35% growth in sales; moreover, the company has seen revenue grow 15% year-over-year since relocating to Sparks in late 2012.