One of the most important marketing pieces you will ever write is your professional bio.
Your bio should tell a bit about you, but don’t try to write a full resume in paragraph form. It should have all the elements of a good story – key character development, background established for credibility and an enticing presentation of what you’re about now. Your goal is to create a piece that enables readers to get to know, like, and trust you.
Here are some key points to help you update yours:
- Write to your audience. Write in a friendly personable tone at their reading level. Present information that will be relevant and understandable in the context it will be shared.
- Have 3 bios. One under 140 characters for your Twitter profile; one around 150 words for professional introductions, author bios and for LinkedIn, Facebook and other social groups; and a full-page bio for use on your website if you choose. I recommend you write in 3rd person for professional use and 1st person for social media.
- Keep it to the highlights. Oh, this is so hard for some people because they want to list everything. But in reality, the reader rarely cares. Name the big things and use a phrase like “including…” or “among others” or “to name a few” to keep things flowing.
- Hook them with your accomplishments early. You need to argue your case of credibility early in the bio. This is no time to save the best for last. Find a way to communicate your proof of workplace credibility. This may be a case of sharing the ‘biggie’ on your resume, the name of your book or the results and awards you’ve achieved.
- Add a personal touch. Find a way to add in one element of proof that you’re a real interesting person. Ideally shoot for something that your reader could connect with and ask about in conversation. I remember I once saw a great bio on Twitter where the woman listed her impressive credentials and then added that “[she is also] surprisingly good at Wii Bowling.” Other things you could include are hobbies, sports or volunteer activities. My item of personal interest varies from social media (where I share that I like family movie nights) to my professional bio where I share that I am a champion for at-risk kids.
- Add a way to contact you. Advanced marketers should offer a free gift that creates a reason to contact you.
Want an example? Here’s one of mine:
Marketing coach, consultant, speaker, and author Nicole Gebhardt is the founder of TheRemarkableWay.com, cofounder of the BrainQube creative coworking space in Lafayette, IN, and creator of the Breakthrough Marketing Workshop series and BookItAuthors.com – a self-publishing course for marketing with a book. Her step-by-step systems help business leaders attract their ideal clients with greater focus and ease, implement their ideas with consistency and build the profitable business they really want. A fan of all things related to marketing and personal success, Nicole is a happily married mom who loves family movie nights and great reading spots. For more business-building ideas, live workshops, and a guide to the 7 things every small business owner must know to avoid costly random acts of marketing, visit www.TheRemarkableWay.com.
More help: Don’t miss the next post: 10 Questions to Craft a Great Bio