When you think about how to write a bio, do you cringe with disgust? You throw up in your mouth a little bit, don’t you? You’d rather clean your cat’s litter box than think about how to write a bio so that it doesn’t put you to sleep.
It doesn’t have to be that gross, but it’s not easy, per se. Here are three tips on how to write a bio that draws attention.
How to Write a Bio that Doesn’t Put You (and Your Readers) to Sleep
How to Write a Bio 01 :: Suck Up
Think about your audience. Who are they? What do they want? Start your bio by telling a story about their environment, their passions, their deep dark needs. Our world is full of about me pages that make big claims and feature long lists, but how often do you come across one that is so relatable you feel the writer has read your mind?
Here are ten questions to ask yourself to prompt a story about your readers:
- What are your readers doing right before they hire you or read your blog?
- What are their biggest challenges related to your topic?
- Where would you randomly run into them? A café? The gym? Under a big tree?
- What keeps them up at night?
- What gets them out of bed in the morning?
- Are they coffee people? Tea people? Green smoothie people?
- What problem do they crave a solution to?
- What do you have in common with them?
- What are their guilty pleasures?
- What is at stake if they don’t take action on your topic?
I kind of used this technique at the beginning of this how to write a bio blog post. How did it work for you?
How to Write a Bio 02 :: Be Passionate
Talk about your passions, not your skills. We so often fear we’ll miss a lead because they didn’t see their need listed on our website. But, we don’t get hired solely for what we do, but rather how we do it, and to what quality. The latter is our reputation, the former can be expressed through writing. What we believe in is just as important as how well we do what we do.
Check out my LinkedIn bio for an example of what I mean:
A lover of all art forms, I am known most recognizably for my practice in writing. A winner of the Alberta Foundation for the Arts Literary Arts Scholarship, my writing encompasses fiction, literary non fiction and poetry. I am also well versed in all forms of corporate content creation such as press releases, blog posts, newsletters, sales copy and all other communications materials. I am motivated by the elation of succinct and memorable prose. Sentences that stick. Words that, when united, matter.
I’m the type of person you can count on, both professionally and personally. Accustomed to leadership roles, I thrive in managing multiple projects with competing deadlines. Through imaginative influence, I seek innovation to challenge convention and aptly apply this originality to enrich my work, art and life.
Collaboration is an important value to me. Peaked by my curiosity, I aim to understand, listening attentively before responding and often encouraging deeper development of concepts through shared expression of ideas. This meeting of minds is magic. As is that space where uninterrupted inspiration cracks routine, whether solitarily or collectively stimulated. Mutual respect and engagement are essential to any pursuit.
I am also a performer, web designer, graphic designer and photographer. Ask me about any of the aforementioned and you may be pleasantly surprised.
How to Write a Bio 03 :: Party First
We’re trained to work hard to play hard. When it comes to how to write a bio, I say play first, work later. What do I mean by this? Start with a story, an anecdote, a joke, something more interesting than the list of services you slave over to “encompass all that you do!” You do a lot, give us a reason to read every item.
In my own about me page I first talk about my clients, then I talk about how I can relate to how my clients feel. It’s not until about half way in that I say what I actually do. Your bio is your place to shine. Readers can find out what you do in many other ways (i.e. home page, navigation, blog posts, social media), they don’t need a list!
Feel like your bio is full of holes? Want me to take a crack* at it? Get in touch now!
Stay tuned in the coming weeks for a few bio writing formulas! Still feeling stuck? Here are a few thoughts on success to keep things in perspective.