Tim Eburne’s Catchy, Instructive New Tome on 'Personal Branding'

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Effective with warmth and an effusive sense of humour, it sports an unusual and infectious story set on the plains of Africa

A friendly, instructive how-to guide, coupled with a beautifully illustrated story, with its own hilarious plot, Tim Eburne’s Zebra Stripes - A Tale Of Personal Branding, is a “double-whammy”; part one, which is the really unusual part, introduces the tale of personal branding, told through the adventures of a clan of African zebra. The second part explores the subject of “Personal Branding” in more focused and conventional manner, although both parts have personal branding as their base subject.

Part one of the book from which the title is derived is set in an African safari park. The script and story may have been inspired by a set of advertising creatives in posh London offices. The principal character is Sonny, a bright, inquisitive young zebra. Sonny is peeved to discover that a certain set of animals – lions, elephants, rhinos, buffalo and leopards – commonly known as the ‘Big Five’, regard themselves as better and more important than any of the other animals in the park. Sonny consults Ziggy, who is the zebra clan’s sage. Ziggy explains that it is all to do with reputation. The ‘Big Five’ animals all have reputations that derive from some outstanding quality which they have successfully promoted. It is decided in council that the zebras must do something to build up their reputation. They must ‘stand out’ among the other animals in the park. Their first attempts provide most of the story’s comedy, and illustrate the mistake of trying to enhance one’s reputation by pretending to be something one is not. And so we get a succession of very funny attempts by various zebras to change their stripes, sing, dress up, make themselves sexy, and so on.

At this point, in steps Lenny, who is apparently the zebras’ head of marketing. He explains that what is needed is personal branding, and the secret of it is to establish ‘a strong personal platform’. He explains that this is done, not by assuming new, eye-catching traits, but by ‘recognizing the special personal characteristics [zebras] already possess [that are] exclusive to them and then…make every effort to emphasize or accentuate them’. Sonny is the first to jump on board this way of thinking. He canvasses other people’s views of him, considers them, and comes up with the slogan ‘I am what I am.’ The story closes with the zebras having successfully built up their reputation within the safari park.

The second, more serious, part of the book, is entitled ‘Personal Branding: What Is Branding?’ This section builds on the basic concept learned from the story. The author draws out the parallels between product branding and personal branding, and emphasizes that the latter is as important as the former. Aside from it enhancing marketability, it will help much in life, giving one personal direction. This is because it is about bringing out qualities one has rather than trying to adopt ones one doesn’t. Next comes a friendly step-by-step summary on how to brand oneself, beginning with acquiring an understanding of one’s ‘internal’ and ‘external’ brands – how one sees oneself and how one is seen by others. Using a fusion of these raw materials, readers then synthesize their personal brands and then ‘get it out there’. Unlike product branding, this is not done with advertising and packaging but can be seen how one lives his or her life. This exposition is followed by three short case studies of people who have used personal branding to enhance their lives and careers. The book finishes with a final word of encouragement, and the reminder that ‘Your brand is like your fingerprint, leave it wherever you go.’ In toto, Zebra Stripes is an unusual and very personally branded introduction to ‘personal branding’.

For more information on this book, interested parties may log on to http://www.XlibrisPublishing.co.uk.

About the Author
Tim Eburne has spent his whole life in the pursuit of helping others to uncover their inherent strengths and recognize their competitive edge in order to make them more ‘extra’ordinary in their daily lives. Firstly in the field of education, then, over the last ten years as a personal coach and facilitator, he has accompanied many who are stuck in the “mundane,” showing them that one can enhance one’s significance and standing by building a personal message which can be recognized and read by everyone you come in contact with: a message of strength, competence and confidence.

Zebra Stripes* by Tim Eburne
A Tale Of Personal Branding
Publication Date: January 12, 2012
Picture Book; UK£18.99; 48 pages; 978-1-4691-4536-5
Picture Book Hardcover; UK£28.99; 48 pages; 978-1-4691-4537-2

Members of the media who wish to review this book may request a complimentary paperback copy by contacting the publisher at +0800-644-6988. To purchase copies of the book for resale, please fax Xlibris at 44-203-006-8880 or call +0800-644-6988.
For more information, contact Xlibris at +0800-644-6988 or on the web at http://www.XlibrisPublishing.co.uk.

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