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Monday, October 01, 2007

Behind the Pages Of My Upcoming Book: Personality Not Included

UPDATE: The book is out! See for details on the book.

Since announcing some time ago that I will be writing my first marketing book, I haven't spoken much on this blog about it.  I have, however, adjusted my working schedule and relied on the patience and flexibility of my teammates at Ogilvy to spend some time steadily writing the book over the last few months.  Now that I am well into the project, it is a good time to start sharing more details about the book and more importantly, start to get some feedback.  The initial cover design is shown at left (still subject to change) along with a brief description of the book:

Personalitynotincluded_cover_6 Personality Not Included: Why Brands Lose Their Authenticity And How Great Companies Get it Back
Faceless companies don't work anymore.  In a world where consumers have more access to information than ever, and more power to share their voice ... a brand's identity is no longer controlled through marketing and advertising.  In this new era, what you say your brand stands for is no longer good enough.  What you demonstrate to your customers matters most.  This is the power of your personality.  Personality Not Included is an essential guide for brands on putting back the missing ingredient in their marketing to build loyal customers, foster consumer (and employee) evangelists, and create a connection that goes beyond profit.  The future of business requires new authenticity.  Personality is the secret weapon that brings authentic brands to life.

As you might expect, the launch of PNI (I can't resist a good acronym) will have a lot more elements than just the book.  Here is a sneak peek at some efforts already underway as well as some things to look out for in the coming months:

  1. The Personality Project - In early 2008, I will launch a fantastic group contributed blog called The Personality Project which brings together the voices of 100 visionary minds from business, art, social media and many other industries, to all answer the simple question: what's your personality?  Some amazing contributors have already agreed to participate and the team assisting me and I will continue to gather contributions over the next few months.  Look for the landing page to be up soon at
  2. Influential Marketing Friends Group - I am a big fan of Facebook and have been considering setting up a group around my blog for some time now.  To coincide with this post, I have finally done it and the group is called Influential Marketing Friends and is targeted to anyone who is in the field of marketing or sees themselves wanting to be in it.  Not sure how much discussion this group will yet yield, but I'm still glad to be launching it.  If you are on Facebook and find the idea interesting, feel free to join.
  3. Amazon Book Page - Nothing makes you feel like your project is more "official" than when you finally get a page on  The description of the book on this page is totally wrong (so please ignore it until I can get it changed), but I am learning there are lots of tools on Amazon that help authors to promote their book which many authors don't use.  I am already working on setting up an RSS feed of my blog as a companion to the book through the AmazonConnect program, tagging and listing the book in the right categories, and filling out descriptions wherever possible.  Considering the Amazon database is pulled from for lots of other sites, I am going to experiment with doing as much as I can with this page.
  4. Social Network Connections - Borrowing a format from my colleague from Ogilvy UK, Giles Rys Jones - I have updated my list of social networks that I use in my sidebar and will be finding unique ways to engage people through each one as the time for the book launch comes closer.  For the time being, the main ones I am focused on are Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Flickr - but I'll share more on some of the more wide reaching plans when the time comes.

Already, several brilliant folks have been kind enough to offer advice for me on the book or talk about their insights on the role personality should play in marketing (some in the form of contributions for The Personality Project).  I can't share all of their names quite yet, but there are more than ten bestselling authors, a few internationally recognized filmmakers, more than twenty top notch bloggers and several unexpected "wildcards."

I'll be soliciting more stories about brands marketing with personality and looking for additional contributors to The Personality Project throughout the next few months.   In the meantime, I'm looking forward to any feedback on the cover, title, thoughts on the premise of the book, or any other ideas you might have.


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» Personality Not Included: Why Brands Lose Their Authenticity And How Great Companies Get it Back from reyes-chow :: FAITH
I have had some interactions with Rohit Bhargava via his blog, Influential Marketing. He has a new book coming out plus some other add-ons, blogs, FB Groups, etc. The book is titled, Personality Not Included: Why Brands Lose Their Authenticity And How ... [Read More]


Hi, Rohit.

I am sure this would be really interesting. Do let me know if you need any help from India. All the best!

Take care.


This look like it is shaping up to be a great project. Are you including any aspects of the religious community, many of whom are eating up all this social networking and healthy/authentic personality sharing?

Hi Rohit,

Sounds like a fascinating approach. Great personalities aren't silent (although they know when they need to be!), so if you are interested in the sound, music and voice dimension, let us know over at Sound Strategies.


eagerly anticipating the release of the book =) already joined your facebook group

Loving the graphics and blurb for the book. Can't wait to see the end result. Will there be a CI aspect?

Rohit - congrats again on the book. I am looking forward to reading it and learning from it. Great idea about the contribution blog and other social networking projects.

Looking forward to the book and your new site!


Congratulations on the book. Looking forward to reading it!

Hi Rohit,
I am really into the concept. I think personality is a critical component to build a strong brand identity. It is the consumer's first impression and if the brand is lucky, their reason for customer loyalty.
The book's cover however, I feel could do more justice to your core concept.

Manvi Drona-Hidalgo

Perhaps also host a project-based community on Facebook ss Gretchen Rubin started for her blog and book Happiness?

Also, for ways to involve your online colleagues in providing feedback on your book in the making see what Charles Leadbeater is doing with his "unfolding" book We-think

And note an academic organization called We Are Smarter Than Me. It isattempting to get thousands of people to contribute to a Web-based wiki-type book about these new wiki-type business models.

- Kare, author SmartPartnering

Hi! I love reading your blog and I can't wait for this book to be available. Thanks for everything and best of luck.

- Carolina

Does this book mostly deal with B2C or both B2C and B2B models?

Your book is of interest to me because I realized something along these lines. We had a product that we were having trouble getting going by WOM. In July we started holding real time chats & the result was phenomenal! I noticed 2 things happen: 1) my sister & I branded ourselves & more importantly 2) we gave the product personality. And I'm pleased to say that people are talking about it, using it, & happy with it!

Let me know if you want to connect about it. It happened by serendipity, but I understand what your book is about! Can't wait to read it! I'm going to follow you on Twitter & Facebook. :)

Hey Rohit!

Long, long time no speak. Eagerly waiting for your book. It sounds great!

Take care!

Hi! i look forward to your regular posts and now looking forward to reading the book. Particularly interested in reading the part about 'How great companies get it back'...

I think your book should have lots of pretty pictures. I think I know a guy who can really help you out. Hint, hint.

Everyone at Delicious Monster has been hard at work for the past several months on Delicious Library 1.5, a free upgrade that will be made available on April 29th a href=

a href= !Oh hubba hubba! Forget the sportscar, been there, done that, got the T shirt, wore it out, gave it to goodwill.

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