When setting up a basic website, you probably have a good idea of how to fill out the majority of your web pages. The contact, blog, and product pages are pretty straightforward. The home page summarizes everything you do.
And then, there’s the “About Me” page.
A lot of small business owners and solopreneurs freeze when they start to fill out this page. They don’t know what to say or how to focus their message. That’s when the questions start.
Should the page be about me or my business? Is this page a marketing tool, a business introduction, or a personal story? What do people want?
If that sounds like you, take a breath. An “About Me” page can be all of those things and more. Let’s take a look at what a biographical page is supposed to do and how it helps your customers know you better.
What Does An About Me Page Do?
Good question. The purpose of an About Me page is typically twofold. In a few short sentences, you’ll want to do two basic things:
1. Provide a short history or backstory of yourself or your company.
2. Give readers a little inside knowledge that they can use to connect with you.
With that in mind, a simple About Me page bio might read something like this:
Mira Rodriguez is the founder and operator of ShirtPress, a screen printing company based in Panama City, FL.
Originally from the foothills of Tennessee, Mira relocated to Panama City after seeing water for the first time as a kid.
She attended Gulf State College, where she caught the entrepreneurial bug while organizing charity donations for Bigfoot Walks, an organization dedicated to designating and protecting Bigfoot habitats in Bay County.
She enjoys music, movies, and dating apps in her spare time.
That’s it! Doesn’t sound so hard, right?
Except it doesn’t end there. While a bio like that technically captures the basic idea of the About Me page, there’s more to it than that. Not only do you need to disclose those key facts about yourself and your brand, you also need to do it in a way that resonates with your target audience.
That takes practice — and purpose.
Writing With Purpose
As with all forms of writing, purpose matters. Your writing is much more likely to be clear and focused if you start with a well-crafted idea or outline about everything you want to talk about.
That’s true for blog posts, social media campaigns, and — you guessed it — About Me and other website pages.
Let’s keep working with Mira’s bio while considering the purpose behind her About Me page. In Example 1, we’ll retarget the page toward potential business partners, then angle the copy toward the Bigfoot community in Example 2.
While both examples will say the same basic thing, the types of details that are disclosed will change how the message lands.
See if you can spot the differences:
A longtime sketch artist, ShirtPress founder, and CEO Mira Rodriguez first discovered screen printing from an all-in-one kit when she was fifteen. Since then, she’s worked to create a line of unique, wearable of screen-printed tee shirts.
Mira attended Gulf State College, where she caught the entrepreneurial bug while selling shirts as part of a local charity auction. A former art student, Mira changed tracks and went on to achieve an MBA in Entrepreneurship.
In 2015, Mira was awarded the Bay County Small Business Startup Award, and her artwork and screen-printed tees are featured regularly in wardrobe lineups for television and movie actors around the globe.
Though designing and printing is hard work, Mira often returns home to Tennessee. You’ll find her hiking with her dogs throughout the Cumberland Plateau with a sketchbook and a pen in search of her next big idea.
As a child, Mira Rodriguez first heard the sounds of Sasquatch during a weekend camping trip in the heart of the Cumberland Plateau.
It was the experience of a lifetime — and the start of her career as a sketch artist. Seven years later, Mira found a way to promote her love for Sasquatch through the art of screen printing.
Mira attended Gulf State College and caught the entrepreneurial bug while selling screen-printed tees as part of a Bigfoot Walks charity event to protect and preserve Sasquatch habitats around Bay County.
Since then, Mira has worked hard to create a line of unique, wearable fashions highlighting everyone’s favorite cryptid. Her artwork and designs are regularly featured in television shows and movies around the globe and have won multiple international awards.
Mira is a proud member of the Bay County Small Business Council and takes pride in mentoring other young entrepreneurs.
Though designing and printing is hard work, Mira often returns home to Tennessee. You’ll often find her hiking with her dogs throughout the Cumberland Plateau with a sketchbook and a pen, in search of Bigfoot himself.
See how different each example sounds? Both have a purpose, but their intended targets are entirely different.
The top example is more clearly defined and is targeting a broad audience. This would be great copy for a large group of fans, or if Mira is hoping to attract investors who care as much about accolades and business savvy as they do about the product.
The second example is more niche. It downplays Mira’s education and instead upsells her love and passion for the Bigfoot community. Here, we take pains to highlight that Mira is a part of this niche community and that, in many ways, the interest that she’s passionate about has been responsible for her success.
Each approach is viable, depending on the marketing message and website layout. An About Me page should be a natural extension of your marketing approach. If you’re writing with a purpose in mind, you can use your biographical history to strike a chord with the type of customer you’re looking to attract.
Here’s how to do it:
How to Write An About Me Page
If writing an About Me page seems like a daunting task, here are a few tips to help you get started.
1. Start with an outline.
Answer the questions below while considering the type of client you want to attract:
1. What details about yourself, your brand, or your business are most important to your potential clients?
2. Everyone has a past. What does your past say about you or your business, and what elements of your past can you leverage to make yourself more attractive to clients?
3. What sets your story apart from your competitors? What set of values or beliefs do you have that make you different? Which of those will resonate with your ideal customer?
4. Why did you start your business? What operational philosophies make you relevant to your target market?
5. What awards, achievements, or accolades would make you more relevant to potential clients?
For additional info on outlining, check out this article over at Grammarly.
2. Write the draft.
Once you’ve got an outline and a few basic questions answered, go ahead and write your draft. (Check out the About Me page tips below before you get started!)
Remember: You will change your first draft. It’s not set in stone; it’s just a starting point. Play around with it; test things out. Have fun with it.
3. Sleep on it.
Once you’ve got a draft that fits your marketing style and your business model, close your document out for the day. Step away from your draft. Sleep on it.
Come back tomorrow with a set of fresh eyes and reread your work.
How does it sound? Should you make changes?
Even if you feel like your entire body of text is trash, I don’t recommend starting again from scratch. Work with what you have and refine it. It’s easier than starting over.
4. Revise and finalize.
When you’re happy with the result, revise the language and finalize the text one last time. Make sure it doesn’t have any typos and that you’re satisfied.
From there, the only thing left is to put it on your website!
Tips for Writing an About Me Page
1. First- or third-person?
A big question you’ll need to answer right up front is whether or not your About Me page should be in first or third-person.
If it’s been a while since you had to re-familiarize yourself with points of view and how they work, first-person uses “I” while third-person doesn’t. For example:
First-person: I went to the coffee shop.
Third-person: Mira went to the coffee shop.
The example bios above are written from a third-person point of view. While this can sound more professional, especially for organizations where leaders and decision-makers may not be the primary point of contact, it can feel strange to write about yourself at that distance.
It all comes down to your marketing strategy. If you’re trying to be personable and approachable, a well-targeted, first-person biography page can get the job done — but it can be tricky to pull off without sounding amateurish.
2. Stay on target.
Your About Me page isn’t for you. It’s not for your mom or your family or your friends. It’s a targeted piece of writing meant to engage with your customers, fans, and potential business connections.
When you’re trying to determine which details should go into your bio and which should stay out, keep your target audience and the connection you’d like to make with them in mind.
3. Don’t oversell it.
The About Me page won’t be the most important page on your website. It’s not the be-all and end-all of your marketing plan; it’s just one piece of a larger strategy.
Don’t try to do every single thing on one page. Talk about yourself and your accolades without bragging. Refrain from piling it on.
What do I mean by that?
Take the above bio for Mira, as an example: We know she’s got an MBA in Entrepreneurship, and that’s really all we need to know. If I’d also added that she’s got a Bachelors of Fine Arts, a certificate from a couple of sketching and art programs, that she won an art contest in high school, and that she got a blue ribbon during elementary school field day in the watercolor event, I’d be piling it on a bit.
4. Stay honest.
This tip is pretty straightforward: Don’t conflate your About Me page with lies or false truths about who you are or the things you’ve done.
There’s a huge difference between lying about your achievements and selectively disclosing details that represent your public persona. All of us engage in the latter from the time we start interacting with other people. The part of us that’s “on display” often isn’t representative of our “personal” self.
You’re allowed to selectively choose what you want to disclose — it’s your bio, after all — but refrain from doing so in a way that’s a blatant misrepresentation of your abilities and qualifications.
5. Link where relevant.
An About Me page is a great place to link to other resources about you.
If you’ve recently given an interview, or if you run a YouTube channel on the side, linking out to another professional resource or to an off-topic hobby or website and encouraging people to explore isn’t a bad thing.
Someone reading your bio is interested in knowing more about you. If you’ve got something to share that doesn’t seem to fit anywhere else, consider sharing it here.
Do I Even Need An About Me Page?
This is a question that comes up often when dealing with modern web design, and the answer isn’t straightforward. It depends on your marketing strategy, what you’re selling, and how important you are to your business.
Recently, I did some work for a company that wanted me to write the text for a website landing page talking about their new app. While I briefly mentioned the company in this one-page layout, we didn’t talk about the team who built the app at all. Only the company and, even then, only the highlights.
Why? Because the app was too far removed from the people who built it. It was the product, the spotlight feature on the page, and we didn’t want to do anything to take away from that.
For small businesses, this often isn’t the case.
Especially for service providers, you’re often selling yourself as much as your product. People are buying you — your knowledge, your expertise, and your personality. If you’ve got everything they need but they just don’t like you, they may shop somewhere else.
An About Me page can help provide those key insights into who you are in a way that resonates with your clients. In that case, it’s a missed opportunity to skip this page.
Stuck? Need a Second Pair of Eyes?
In general, writing isn’t easy. It takes planning and preparation to even get started. Sometimes, it’s a struggle to even stay on message (believe me, I know).
If you find yourself getting stuck and you need an assist, don’t hesitate to get in touch. I’m happy to parachute in and help you explore opportunities around your personal and corporate biographies.