Poocho is thrilled to bring you another episode of our podcast series, Down & Dirty, and this time, Taapsi is getting Down & Dirty with Priyanka Rakshit, a freelance Personal Branding Strategist and Consultant.
Priyanka specializes in writing copies for Coaches and CXOs in the education, life coaching, and healthcare sectors. She also works part-time as a LinkedIn Ghostwriter and Operations Manager at The Organic Buzz.
Priyanka produces about 10 content pieces per day and the tool that enables her to do so easily is Perplexity.ai.
Some highlights from the episode:
- Perplexity.ai for research: “Data creates authority.” Priyanka swears by Perplexity.ai for content research and uses it almost exclusively. The tool's unique feature lies in summarizing the latest Google results on a given topic, ensuring that her content is always backed by current and reliable data.
- Perplexity v/s ChatGPT: While Perplexity's interface mirrors that of ChatGPT, Priyanka favors Perplexity for her research endeavors. Sharing her content creation process with us, she sheds light on the distinctive advantages each tool brings to the table. However, it's not just about strengths—she candidly discusses where Perplexity falls short and ChatGPT comes in to save the day.
- The Do’s and Dont’s of personal branding: “People like to talk to people. Not to [a] brand.” As a LinkedIn ghostwriter and personal branding strategist that has worked with over 45 clients, Priyanka emphasizes on the importance of building a personal brand in this day and age. Drawing from her professional insights, she shares practical and valuable tips for those looking to build trust and grow a community.
Tune in to the full episode now!
Read the transcript
Hello and welcome everyone to another episode of Down and Dirty. And today I have with me Priyanka Rakshit. Priyanka is a personal branding strategist and a consultant. Currently, she's working at Organic Buzz as a LinkedIn ghostwriter, but also someone who's managing the operations of the company. And you know, Priyanka is someone who, you know, you're in such a great space because everyone wants to build their brand especially when you're at the c-suite level and I know that's the focus of yours. So I'm looking forward to learning a little bit more about you and also talking about a tool that now you as a personal brand strategist are using and dabbling with and you know, we get into why you like the tool, but welcome aboard and maybe to get us started, you could tell us a little bit about how you got into personal branding.
Sure. Thank you so much for having me and thank you so much for the warm introduction. So, hi guys, I'm Priyanka Rakshit. Actually, I'm from Kolkata, but currently living in Bangalore. So currently I'm into personal branding, but I wasn't personal branding from the beginning, I will, I began my journey as a content writer, you can say in 2020. And prior to that, I was into corporate, I started my journey in corporate in 2018 as a research analyst. After that, in the pandemic time, I started exploring new things and thought, why not begin my freelancing journey with content writing? So, yeah, so after that, I upskilled myself and offered my other services as an SMM social media manager. Right now, since I started my own personal branding journey, it has been going pretty well and I explored so many things. So now I thought, why not you know, help others through it. So that's why I currently, I am into personal branding and helping others build their personal brand on LinkedIn and Instagram. So that's my short introduction.
So what is, what is a personal brand in your mind, in your opinion? What are you helping? What is the need from, you know, CXOs CEOs people who want your assistance to build their brand?
Sure. So one word, one sentence I would rather prefer saying about personal branding, which is people like to talk to people not to brand. So that's the one thing I would say because whenever you are presenting yourself, people can connect with you more emotionally and will know your brand through yourself. So that's the more emotional journey and people will trust you, not your brand. My brand is okay, but the brand can't talk to you directly, right? So the people a person can talk to you. So, if you have a personal brand, you can position yourself in a great way on the internet or in social media, you can build a community, then you can have a fan base who will rely on you and we will purchase from your brand. So that's the need for personal branding right now.
I understood. So for someone you know, who is also dabbling in this or may or may not know what a personal brand strategist does. Can you give us an example of what a day in your life looks like?
Sure. So currently, I am a freelancer, Solopreneur, you can say, but side by side, I am doing a part-time job at a startup personal branding agency, which is Organic Bus. So there, I'm writing content for LinkedIn as well as managing operations there. So I'm managing a team of 10 to 15 people there. So my day is pretty hectic. I wake up at around 8 a.m. After that, I do my household chores because I'm a married person. So I have to do everything. So after that, I began my day working day at you can say 10 a.m. and after that, I do, I take breaks but obviously I have to do, work with, till 7 p.m. you can say, but most of the days, the work is pretty, you know, the schedule is pretty hectic and I have to work around at 11 p.m. you can say. So it is a hectic shift. Yeah.
To more than 13 hours or 14 hours, you can say.
Wow. And are you, are you working from, are you going to an office? Are you working from home? What's the setup like working from home?
That's a relief for me because if I go to the office every day, that will be another hectic thing for me. Yeah, I leave.
So you're working from home, you're managing a team, you also ghostwriting and I'm assuming you're also kind of keeping your own passion of doing personal branding alive on the side as much as you can, right? So that does sound, sound like a full plate. So in a day when you've started, when you clocked into work because you're also managing operations, but also writing. Can you give me a sense of the breakup of your time, you know, how much time are you spending in teamwork, you know, in meetings and I don't know. And you know, planning things versus actually writing or something else?
Ok. So, let me go through everything to first make your I start my day with a team meeting. So in that team meeting, I schedule everything for each team member. So it is 10 to 10:30 a.m. you can say. So I scheduled every task for the day for two each, for each team member. So after that, I start my own work. So I concentrate on my own work and in between, if anything comes up, I ask them to ping me in the slack. So my communication goes into Slack. So they ping me in Slack. And I have to be, you know, very quick to resolve those problems because it is a start-up. I have to be very quick about it. So, yeah, I do that and in the evening I have another meeting with all the teammates. So I take what, whatever is going, whatever, how the task was was. And throughout the day I took their feedback and I, I wrote, I wrote it all down after that. I update my tracker and I have another mood meeting with our founder and I tell them whatever happened in the entire day.
Ok. OK. And then are you also writing along with this?
Yes, I'm writing along with this. I'm working within the agency itself. I'm working with 33 more agent owners and founders, for personal branding itself.
OK. So you, would you say what your, how much time do you get to write? Like 20% of the day, 30% of the day, 30% a day.
Because also, I have it, it's a part-time work I already mentioned, right? So I have my 2 to 3 other you know, clients as well. So I'm writing for them as well. So I can say 30 to 40 per cent goes into writing. So every day I'm writing content, more than 10 content. I'm writing every day. Small to medium size or long size.
Wow. So, when you're writing, when you say small, what is it? 100 and 50 words, 100 words or much smaller?
50 small, you can say 100 and long size, you can say 500.
Wow, in a day, I mean, along with managing a team and this is still just part-time, right? You said you're working organic part-time.
Yeah. Yeah. Part-time, understood.
Understood. OK. So, OK, so let's start with, how do you, I imagine that? I mean, you must be a superwoman, but you must also be using some tools and resources to help you plan your, you know, personal work, your personal career, you know, your, your entrepreneurship, your journey, as well as your business as well as what you have to do at the organic buzz. So what are you using across the day to help you move forward?
Sure, sure. I'm using tools. Right now AI is a boon for us because if you can use AI in the proper way, there is a lot of time you can save. So, that's what I did. I explored AI in such a way that it can be helpful. It can be beneficial for me. It can, I can save time through it. So the planning part I do mostly on the weekend, Saturday, and Sunday, I plan all the content out of LA for the weekdays. So that's a thing I do. I plan content for planning and researching content. I use several tools I can say exploding topics. But sumo.com answers the public's answer socrates.com. These are the tools I use for planning, you know, researching for the content. After that, whenever the writing part comes, I use ChatGT but ChatGPT is an AI tool, you can humanize it, right? So, so I write the content and for research, there is another tool tool. AI tool itself. It's a tool called Perplexity.AI. I recently came to know about this and this is a wonderful tool for research. So when you have the content topic, you can research it V via the Perplexity.AIdot dot AI. And after that, you go to, you know, the tool its activity and write the content out. And after that, you can, you know, humanize it. There are a lot of AI tools for humanizing content. So you can use any of the tools and humanize it. And you can also write the hook by using it, you have to write the hook by yourself because the hook can't be written by any AI tool. So that's the thing I do and it really saves a lot of time for me and for you can say one hour, I can write 5 to 7 content. Yeah.
Wow. And once you write it, what happens to the content? Are you posting it right there? And then are you scheduling it? Are you using other, what software are you using to do the posting part?
Sure. So whenever I finish adding all the content, I take 30 minutes to you know, review it once everything is ok or not. After that, I schedule it,, you don't need to go to any scheduler because whenever you use a third scheduling tool, sometimes the account might be restricted for LinkedIn. So I use LinkedIn itself for scheduling, LinkedIn has a scheduling feature. And also Instagram also has a scheduling feature. So I use LinkedIn scheduler and Instagram scheduler itself. And yeah, on a weekly basis, I schedule content you can say.
So let me get this right. You planned this on the weekend and then on the weekdays, you said you're writing about 10 content pieces a day, roughly. So writing these content pieces, I'm assuming this is a split between your own content pieces and content pieces for clients, right? On the stuff that you're writing for. Either one of them, you're using their native platforms, wherever you're gonna be promoting this, you're using schedulers in the native platforms itself. So every day you're writing content and scheduling, writing content and scheduling. Is that really, is that what's happening on the content at once and scheduling at once?
Because I write a week prior, I have a buffer time of one week. So I get enough time to share your content at the weekend because whenever I'm writing, it won't be possible to schedule then and there, it might be, you know, I, I should follow the content calendar as well and clients should also review the content. So I have to have us in a buffer time of one week so that I can have enough time to make the changes and all.
Ok. So you're writing during the week and then on the weekend is when you're scheduling and planning. Is it roughly what you have? I see. I see. And this is something that has worked for you. I'm assuming you've tried and tested different formats and this is what, this is the order of events that works for you? OK. So, you have I understood the content piece, but you're doing more than that, you're also organ, you're also managing, you know, operations at Organic Buzz. And is there anything that you're doing for that? Like, are there other software and tools that you're using too? You mentioned Slack as a way of communicating between, you know, team members. Is there anything else that you're using
from a productivity perspective or a scheduling perspective?
Yeah, Slack we use for communication purposes with the teammates and for communication purposes with our clients, we use WhatsApp groups. So there are two communication channels. One for clients, and one for teammates. Slack is for teammates and WhatsApp group is for clients. Another tool we use is notion, notion is a project management tool there. We, you know, manage all the projects we have in hand and for content calendar pop, we use Google Shape because it's easier to share with all the teammates in Google Shape. So that's the three tools we are currently using. So we don't want to be much complicated. So that's why we are trying to look very easier with all the teammates makes sense, makes sense.
Aha. So let's talk about I know we're gonna talk about Perplexity. It's something that you're excited to talk about. It's a new tool that you've discovered before we get into the tool itself. Can you tell me how did you learn about it?
OK. So, when I was talking to one of our teammates in Organic Buzz, he currently you know, discovered that tool and he was very excited to share it with everyone. So I talked to him and just went through all the AI tools. And so that, yeah, it's a very good tool if we can use it properly. It will be very much easier to, you know, research the whole content because in content research, it would take too much time. If you go to different platforms or different Google, it will take too much time. So if you have just one destination for content research, it will be for all the ghostwriters and content writers and we can write different, different, you know, the content in a very short time. So that's the thing I decided to do for the past two weeks and it is working for me very, you know, amazingly. So that's why I, yeah, that's why I thought of sharing this tool with you guys.
Yeah, absolutely. And we will get into it. So I have one more question. So OK, this is a tool that helps you do research right on the content before you end up writing it. You said that's when you use, you use ChatGPT for some help, and then you clean it up on your own before you put it out. So before perplexity, what were you doing before that when it comes to research?
So before that, I was completely dependent on Google and you can say different, different social media platforms because social media platforms itself is a very great research tool. If you follow the industry leaders, they definitely post very good content. So I used to follow their content and take inspiration from them instead. So yeah, it is an inspiration, not a copy because I also add some of my research inputs from Google itself. So that's what I was doing. I was also using YouTube videos, which are also a great tool for research. So yeah, those are the things I was using.
Got it. OK. So let's get into the tool because my first question is if you already doing these things and you already, you know, were following people getting the ideas that you needed, then how does Perplexity.AI make your life easier? Let's get into the tool and you can tell me how it's different from what you were doing before.
Sure. Sure. So I share my screen. Yes, please. One second. OK. Is it visible?
OK. So OK, this is the tool I was talking about. It's very similar to ChatGPT you know, ex very similar to ChatGPT whenever you are writing or typing anything here, it will give you information about that. So suppose a to content topic with what can be a content topic like new productivity with tools for freelancers subtyping. So it will generate all the tools, new tools which are in also you know, it will be very easier to, for you to pick it up. OK? These are all the tools for freelancers for productivity purposes. Similarly, anything like new trends on social media will give you some idea. But after that, you have to do some research because whenever you are writing any content from scratch, you don't have anything in your mind, right? You need to have some input or foundation data. So this foundation data, this tool will provide. After that, you have to personalize it. After that, you have to put some data from other research tools like Google. So these are the things you can but definitely it it will be easier for you to use because whenever you are writing content in bulk, like like me, it will, you know, you know, boost your process. So that's, that's why I like this stool. And whenever, whenever I'm asking anything in the stool, it will show no, there is no problem in the stool. Any glitch I didn't find it till now.
So you know, I have a, you know, my burning question right now is how is this different from ChatGPT, why couldn't you ask the same question to ChatGPT? What are the social media trends right now? These are the very basic questions that we can ask ChatGPT as well.
But this tool also produces data. So this is the difference because you can see a quick search. These are cut, I mean whatever is going on today or tomorrow, will be updated in this, in this tool. It is not like it is a last update is a 2021 ChatGPT last updated 2021 but it is updated to date. So you can find data also here.
So, OK, one benefit is the fact that it's more up-to-date than ChatGPT and this is free. Yes, this is GPT. So ChatGPT is paid version, for example, is more up-to-date or Bing if you use Bing along with ChatGPT again, that's kind of pulling up more current data and it seems like complexity is also pulling up more current data. So one thing is OK, the current data part of it makes sense because you're a content writer, you need to be up to date with what are the most current trends and this can give you that. Is there any other way in which you find it? But let's say you want. Mm. That's the wrong question. Let me just ask you this. Is there any time when you would use ChatGPT over Perplexity.AI?
Ok. Suppose I have to write something about, you know, a very specific topic which, chat, can give me data about that specific topic. But it will be very, you know, very similar to others as well. There is a very plagiarism problem that can happen. But you will get more topics. You don't need to go to Google because Google only produce the same research data and it will summarize all the data from Google itself and it will give you. So that's the one I can more, you know, rely on this tool because it will already summarize from Google which is already up to date. Google, keeps you up to date with sub-data. So it is facing all the data from Google, which I will show you here.
Got. So, would it be fair to say then, Priyanka, that the biggest value add of Perplexity.AI is the fact that it is like ChatGPT even though its interface is like ChatGPT but it is up to date.
Yes. Yes, it is up to date and it will, it will give you also more clear data. And it, it will be good for you to use this tool if you write a content in very in-depth way. So it will be good for that.
OK. So let's kind of break that down as well. Can you give me, can you tell me what clear data means for you? What is clear data?
Yeah. Yeah. Clear data means means if that is in ChatGPT, whenever we get any data, we need to cross-check if the data is OK or not, sometimes they produce wrong data itself, but it is the data from Google itself. So Google may even find, find any, you know, wrong data. It's a very very less chance you will find wrong data in Google because it's facing data from Google. So you'll get you know, almost 99% chance you'll get the right data from you.
OK? So OK. So ChatGPT might make up an answer, we know that. So in this case, it's not making up an answer. Your, your in your, in the way you understand perplexity, it's not making up an answer. It's kind of just giving you information that's already out there. So there's some source, there's some source that you can go back to for that data. OK? You also mentioned it in depth. You said if you want to write in-depth, then you can use perplexity. It's a great tool for that. What does that mean? Can you pick a, can you pick a topic here and give me an example of what in-depth might look like? Let's say quality remains king number four. What would be, how would you take that in depth in perplexity? What if we pick, can we pick one of these and just like if you had to write a content piece on, you know, one of these trends, how, what would you do next? Like just normally, you know, what would you do next?
OK. This is suing. So some kind of data, shows showing 90% of the global market is increasing the maintaining their investment in short-term videos this year. So this is some kind of data which happened this year only. So this is a like that you can research it, this tool I see. OK. So you copy-pasted a topic that it threw up at you. You, you hand in your hand, you can copy, and paste it here and you will find data regarding that topic.
I see. And yes, you mentioned it seems that data is important to you because it's giving you numbers which are current, it is also giving you the sources, you have all the footnotes, all the all you know, all the numbers there. So if you needed to go back and read some more stuff that's important to you, it seems right.
Data creates authority. Obviously, whenever you are putting any data, any sort of data in your content, it will give you authority and catch eyeballs faster. So that's why we, as a ghostwriter or as a content writer, try to include some type of data in the hopes or in the content.
Understood. Understood. OK. So how long has it been since you've been using perplexity?
Yeah, it's just two weeks. I recently you know, discovered this AI tool, and since, since discovering perplexity, how much are you using ChatGPT versus perplexity? ChatGPT I'm using because it may reframe the content. So after getting data and after getting content from here, I try to use the GPT for content reframing purposes.
OK. And that is something that you are not using Perplexity.AIfor Perplexity.AI is just as a research. It's a research tool.
OK. Understood. So let's talk about that. Sorry, go ahead.
Yeah, we use different, different problems also in site. So those problems won't work here.
OK. OK. So tell me something. Before we talked about this, before you did a screen share, before perplexity, you were following, you know, you were following the social media post sets of influencers in an area you're doing your own Google research. How has Perplexity.AI changed that for you? Are you now not doing that much Google research or don't need to follow those many accounts or are you still doing that? Like, what, what does it look like now for you? For sure.
So whenever I'm writing very particular, very basic content, I can use this perplexity.com because I'm just exploring this AI tool right now. But whenever I am working for a client, right, I have a few clients, right? So, whenever I'm writing content for them, obviously, I have to go to Google and cross-check the data if it is correct or not, I can't wholly rely on this tool because right now I'm also totally new to it. So yeah, I am using this tool, but I'm also cross-checking the data if it is correct from Google or not. So that's the thing before I was entirely using different, different social media platforms and Google itself, I was going to different, different websites, blogs, articles. But right now I'm getting all the data here. I just need to cross-check it from Google.
Got it. Understood. OK. Is there anything about Perplexity.AI that you don't like or that you're not using that much?
Yeah, sure. So, Perplexity.AI is good for content research, but it can be better if you want to compete with CCPT, you can have different prompts, and you can use different prompts but in perplexity, you can use prompts here. So if there are any problems here. So I'd love to use there itself.
OK. So what's an example of a prompt that you would like to use here if you could?
Hmm. So anything related to research? Right? I don't have anything in mind but the research may, I can use different problems like to pick up different data in a particular section of time like the 2022 to 2023 data I want. So for a particular topic, I want data from this particular segment of time. So like that these are, this is an example of a prompt.
OK. So having a conversation and kind of scoping it and saying I want data from this time to this time and maybe some other constraints, you know, write it like this, make it conversational, do all that stuff is not happening in publicity for you. But if it did happen here, then you would drop ChatGPT and just stay in publicity.
Yes, definitely, I will use it more.
OK. And is there a difference in the interface, like just the appearance of Perplexity.AI versus ChatGPT there's, there's even though they are laid out the same way it does look a little different. Does that make a difference for you in terms of how it appears or is that, what is, at first whenever just you are starting, it will take a little bit of time to get used to it, but after some time it will be easier for you because it's not that much complex.
It's simple. Only you just need to get used to it.
Understood. OK. So I think what is interesting to learn about here as someone who is writing copies, especially ghostwriting and you have so much content to put out that this has given you a jumpstart to thinking about what to even write about, right? And then you get data over there. You so would it be fair to say once you've got an idea from perplexity, are you then just straight away putting it into ChatGPT and having it render an article and you tweak that article or are you first writing and then asking ChatGPT to tweak that?
Mhm Yes. All right, definitely. I fetch data from this tool after that, I write it in Google doc or Notion after that, I go to ChatGPT because you can't put the data everything into ChatGPT because GPT won't understand anything if you put it right away So, yeah, I need to put it into another tool. Maybe Google Docs or maybe Notion. So after that, you go to ChatGPT for a different purpose, understood.
So can you tell me just generally speaking, let's stop talking about the tool in particular? But how has this workflow, this ability to do quick research to write something to have ChatGPT made it beautiful? You know, and then you being able to post it, you know, using the platform schedulers, how has this workflow of yours enabled you to do your work better? Like what is it, you know, how is it, how has it impacted your work?
OK. So whenever you do any kind of task manually, it takes generally more, more be much better, much more time. But whenever you know, how to get help from any kind of tool, it will be easier for you because it's similar to having your own assistant. So AI to do does the same job for you. It helps you to save time because an example, like whenever I am searching any content manually on Google, I mean, whatever content topic can be for the next week for my personal branding on LinkedIn. So it will if I search manually, it will take more time, and I will be completely clueless, about what topic should I post. But whenever I am searching for a particular purpose, like, what are the trending topics right now or what are the topics in my, I know, niche is going into trends. So I'll go to the exploding top of Google trends and it will be much easier for me to find out because the Google trends are exploding topics. I'm searching with a particular keyword, it will appear everything, whatever is exploding or whatever is tending. So it will be much easier for me to find out and it will take much less time. So like that.
Ok, so you have Google trends and you have Perplexity. You have and you have of course your own accounts that you might be following in order to get ideas and then you move on with that. So tell me something if AI is saving us time, right? Like a lot of time from researching to writing, beautifying. What are you using that saved time for? Like what do you do when you, when you're able to do, are you doing more work or are you using the time to do something else? Let's say it saves you two hours a day from doing research work.
Yeah. Yeah, obviously because earlier, I just used to work with 2 to 3 clients, only for postwriting because I had to do everything manually whenever I was not very friendly with AI tools but since I am friendly with AI tools and I am using this one myself too for quite some time now. So I am very friendly with the process right now, so I can take more clients. And right now I'm working with more than, you know, five or six clients. So it definitely benefited my, you know, yearly revenue goal. So like that it has benefited me.
Oh, fantastic. Ok. So what this is allowing you to do is do more work and just get on more clients and make more money because of artificial as well as people you can, you know, absolutely help people with their personal brand, you know, grow yourself, right? As, as a brand strategist and make a name for yourself on LinkedIn while you're helping others make a name for themselves on LinkedIn, right? Because that's your main platform. Priyanka, thank you so much. This was really, really helpful. Are there any other comments or any you know, anything that we've not talked about that you want to share before we go?
Yeah, I mean, if you are just starting out as a, you know, you know, your personal branding journey on LinkedIn, do not leave it because I made a mistake. Once I started you know, my personal branding journey in my link in LinkedIn in 2021. And after that, I left it for five once and everything, you know, shattered. And I had to start from the ground and scratch from scratch. So don't leave it. You can you can be we can't be very consistent. You at least try to post 2 to 3 posts every week. So that LinkedIn algorithm pushes your content in a way and you don't really that LinkedIn doesn't really ghost you. So that's the thing you have to do. If you are starting your, you know, personal branding journey on LinkedIn, don't continue discontinuing your journey.
OK. Fantastic. And this is good advice for anyone whether they're building their brand or not. If LinkedIn is a platform to communicate, then stay consistent in your communication, correct? That's what you're saying. All right, Priyanka, thank you. This was fantastic and I hope you have a wonderful rest. You know, a wonderful day ahead.
Thank you so much for having me. It was great talking to you as well.
All right, bye. Thank you. See you. Bye