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‘All The World’s A Stage’ delves into the nitty-gritty of personal branding in a storytelling format: Ambi Parameswaran

Parameswaran, branding and marketing expert and author, recently launched his 11th book which can be useful and in-turn be of great value to a wide cross section of executives, especially younger executives in the age group of 25-40 years

Ambi Parameswaran

Ambi Parameswaran, the author and brand expert, who largely writes on branding, advertising and consumer behaviour has recently released his 11th book, - titled ‘All The World’s A Stage’, which emphasises that the concept of personal brand building is relevant for everyone.

“The usual mistake is to assume that it is only for CEOs and Stars. My book is, therefore, of use to a wide cross section of executives. That said, I think younger executives in the age group of 25-40 years will find some of the lessons in the book of great value,” Parameswaran added.

Commenting as to what gave him the idea to write his 11th book, Parameswaran stated that the idea germinated during the peak of the lockdown when he delivered a series of webinars on branding at IIT Madras Alumni Association.

“Of the many topics, personal branding was the one which got several requests for a repeat session and thus, I thought they might have an appetite for a book on the subject,” he added.

As per Parameswaran, the stand-out feature of his latest book is that it is probably the first book on branding which is presented like a story, a dialogue or ‘Adda’ among friends.

“The book is presented as a discussion with its own breakpoints,” he said.

Commenting on the conciseness and on-point learnings from the book, Parameswaran postulated that the book is not a heavy read and can probably be completed in a flight from Mumbai to Delhi.

“You cannot expect it to change your life. But that being said, the book can give you a lot of useful ideas to take and implement in your own personal branding journey,” he added.

Furthermore, Parameswaran also revealed that the idea of the book was born in June 2020, post which the research went on for another 12 months, followed by writing it down which relatively took less time.

When asked which is his personal-favourite chapter of the latest book which consists of 13 chapters, Parameswaran stated that in his views, the most interesting chapter would be the one on networking.

“We often see networking as a necessary evil and do lip service. But real wide and deep networking can be a big help in your personal branding journey,” he asserted.

Moreover, he also went on to add that the other chapter which has piqued the interest and comments of several readers is the one on Mahatma Gandhi.

Reckoning that there is a prevalent misconception amongst modern day millennials and GenZs, mainly referred to as the ‘netizen generation’ owing to their avid activeness on social media as well as the creators who have hyped up the concept of building one’s own brand, Parameswaran stated that there is some confusion that personal branding is equal to social media activity. “I have tried to explain how these two are different in the book. Also, I have suggested some useful ideas to take out and implement in the book,” he said.

“You can build a powerful personal brand without being hyper active on social media. I see a lot of youngsters posting stuff randomly on social media. That again is not going to help them build their brand,” he added.

Clearing the air around the industry-wide practice of moonlighting as a way of building personal brands, Parameswaran said, “If you are employed full time with a company, you need to be clear what are the social media policies of the company as you cannot work at cross purposes. Find out the policy and stay within the ‘Laxman Rekha’,” he said.

Furthermore, he also went on to add that just because an individual’s company has a rigid social media policy, one need not be silent at all times. “All social media policies offer enough scope for executives to build their personal brand. If you are in doubt, clear it with your immediate superior,” he added.

‘All The World’s A Stage’ has been dedicated to Mahatma Gandhi - who is also referred to as the most enduring personal brand to emerge from India.

Commenting as to why he specifically decided to dedicate his latest work to Gandhi, Parameswaran said that he had written an article for IAA’s book titled ‘Mahatma Gandhi - The Great Communicator’ and he thought that chapter could be repurposed for this book on personal branding.

“What impressed me when I read Mahatma Gandhi’s autobiography was the way he went about crafting his personal brand, from the dress he wore to the language he used and so on and so forth,” he said.

Parameswaran had spent a major part of his career as an ad man and had led several brands during the same. When questioned if the readers can see some of his personal experiences in the new book, he replied, “I have written several books on my experience with brand building. This book does not repeat those lessons.”

On a concluding note, Parameswaran also emphasised that all his previous books including the Brand Building Advertising Cases book, Nawabs Nudes Noodles, Sponge and Spring, are all full of advertising stories from his journey.

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