Many of us have difficulty writing or talking about ourselves confidently, but the great thing about a bio is you have a chance to refine and develop it by writing, reading, re-writing, re-reading and so on, until we feel happy with it.
You may love your bio from the very beginning or perhaps it's a constant work in progress, either way; it is a reflection of you and your business at that particular point in time. This is your opportunity to showcase your expertise, credibility and social proof to develop the readers trust in yourself and your brand. A bio can be likened to a resume in a short-story format, sharing your professional and some personal experience with your reader.
A key aspect of making your bio interesting and engaging is to include some your personal story and let your audience know a bit about yourself (without breaching your own comfort level of course). People relate to people, we love hearing about where you've come from and what you've overcome to get where you are, what your passions are and what drives you, allow some your personality to show through.
A bio can be used for
- The “About Me” section on your website or blog
- Brochures or other marketing material (although you may choose to use a shorter version here, referred to as an ‘elevator pitch’
- Material for sale such as e-books or downloads
- Read to an audience as an introduction at speaking engagements
- Social Networking profiles (abbreviated version)
- Consistent with your elevator pitch
What do people want to know?
In our current times we do so much of our business and spend so much personal time online that it’s important for your viewer to feel some kind of personal connection with you. A bio really doesn’t have to stick to any hard and fast rules so you can make it as personal as you like, while still maintaining your professional integrity.
- A brief account of how you came to be in this position – you may have had a career change and your previous ‘life’ has been a major contributor to your mindset or level of expertise
- Your role in your business
- Don’t be afraid to brag about any media appearances or publications you’re been printed or quoted in, this is a great opportunity to cement your credibility and position yourself as an expert
- Professional memberships you currently hold
- Ongoing professional training
- Awards, honors and certifications
- our contact information
A photo is a great way to help your readers connect on a personal level, make sure you are making eye contact and have that happy sparkle in you eye that portrays your passion for what you do
Sounds obvious but make sure your name is in the first sentence, along with your business name so the reader knows what he/she is reading from the beginning.
It may not be appropriate in every situation but a bio is generally written in the third person, as if someone else was writing/speaking about you, adding a higher level of professionalism and trust. However, if you would prefer to be speaking to your audience yourself, that’s fine too, it just might change the content a little!
What gets you out of bed?
What is your passion? What is it you can't live without? What makes it feel like you've lost hours on the clock? Is this what you've turned into a business? If it is, then write about how it makes you feel and how much satisfaction you get from doing it every day, helping people, bringing smiles, increasing sales, telling a story, sharing your soul with the world.
Don't be afraid to brag a bit. People want to hear know they using the best person for the job. Make sure you include any awards, certifications, or achievements that make you proud or turning points in your career.
Keep it Casual
Your bio will read best if it’s conversational and casual so it pays to read it out loud to ensure everything flows well. And always ask the opinion of another trusted person who can look at your bio objectively, as our view of own words can be slightly skewed, especially for this purpose.
The Long and the Short of It
Short and sharp is often the most appropriate as readers attention spans are getting shorter and shorter as the world gets faster and faster. This means only include essential, easy to digest information. You may also have an abbreviated version that can be included at the bottom of work you produce, like a guest blog or an introduction as a speaking engagement for example.
You might have an even shorter version on your LinkedIn, Twitter & Facebook profiles, where it is important to maintain consistency as you increase your social networking exposure and build your personal brand. You can also adapt a version of your bio to use in verbal situations when a self-introduction at networking events or other occasions where you feel it's important to convey your business and experience - referred to as your elevator pitch
Read your bio frequently and make modifications as your experience, goals and views change. Essentially your bio conveys who you are and what you do and is extremely important to capture the attention of a potential customer, client, employee or member of the community
Ask for help
There are PR companies & copywriters who can help to write your bio from the beginning or offer advice on the finished product. Ask a friend or family member who you trust to give an objective opinion, or even as complete stranger. All the feedback will be helpful
Have fun writing your bio!