The Smart Guide to Writing Your ‘About’ Page – Part 1

Be transparent

Do you struggle to write about your business? Are sentences on your ‘about’ page stuffed with we instead of you? You’re not alone.

Many businesses suffer the same fate as they plough their way through years of experience, or fish out dog-eared certificates to prove their worth.

If you catch yourself writing a self-indulgent historical piece on your business, it’s time to rethink your copy.

Instead of panicking, look at it from a different perspective. When you buy from someone, or enlist a service, what process do you go through? Perhaps you:

  • Read reviews/testimonials
  • Look for trust signs
  • Rely on known brands
  • Check whether the business is credible
  • Consider value/benefits

Whilst it’s impossible to be all things to all people, this mini series will help you shape an ‘about’ page to complement your business.

You’ll also discover some of the typical pitfalls to avoid, as well as sound techniques that encourage website visitors to enquire further.

It’s how you tell it…

As well as writing many ‘about’ pages over the years, I’ve read some cracking, as well as downright cringe-worthy ones.

What is the trick? How do you write about yourself without sounding like you’re giving an Oscar acceptance speech? Or regurgitating platitudes making you sound like every other website?

Here’s how to do it:

Be human

People buy from people. So if someone visits your ‘about’ page hoping to see the person behind the business and finds no sign of life, you’ve had it.

Worse case scenario is when there’s NO ‘about’ page at all. This is surprisingly common – and always fatal. Why? Simple really. It’s all about trust.

Not that visitors are naturally suspicious, but if someone can identify with you on a human level, they’ll be more likely to do business with you. So, spend time crafting your brand style.

It’s fine to explain how/why the business came about, since this can allow you to show how your business is the solution to a problem. However, don’t be tempted to give a chronological time-line as people simply won’t be interested.

This also relates to Twitter or social networking platforms. Don’t hide behind a logo, or company name. Use your own name on your profile…

Besides, if you’ve built up a solid digital footprint, your name will appear in a Google search to give you even more credibility.

Finally, don’t be afraid of mentioning non-business related comments. People love a story…

Flag up qualifications/experience:

If you’ve several letters after your name – and more certificates to prove it – bear in mind others will be less impressed. Rather than listing everything you’ve achieved, mention how your knowledge makes a difference.

Truth is, some people simply don’t care about your hard-earned experience; they just want to know what you can do for them.

Avoid long-winded resumes or CVs. Instead, use experience/credentials to show how this helps prospects. Turning features of your service into benefits to the visitor is the art of good copywriting.

For example, if you are a VA with specific secretarial skills that lighten a client’s workload, you can make time pay for itself.

By performing time-consuming tasks, you remove some business pressures allowing owners to focus on growing their mini empire, instead of being side-tracked by paperwork.

Everyone has a story about how they’ve got to where they are today. It can be powerful to reveal this.

Also, if you’ve been featured in magazines, mentioned in books, been interviewd in the media etc – why not have links? Sometimes, you have to blow your own trumpet to prove you are dedicated to your business and have been recognised for it.

Smile at the camera:

Whilst you might dislike your appearance or can’t find the right photo, people might wonder what you’ve got to hide if your business isn’t crystal clear. Being open and transparent is a powerful technique that really works.

Even if you don’t have a professionally produced image, use a positive one that reflects you as you are. A photo used across several platforms also helps you to be easily identified; this inspires trust in you and your brand.

Avoid using a host of different images so you don’t confuse anyone, or one from 10 years ago that doesn’t resemble you now. Unless of course you can defy age.

A great way to engage with your visitors is to create and upload a friendly, promotional video. An excellent face-to-face approach that breathes life into your website.

At the very least, ensure your ‘about’ page gives clear contact details.

Key tips:

  • Reveal who’s behind the business
  • Include a photo/video/podcast
  • Show how business features benefit prospects

In the next post, you’ll discover one of the biggest mistakes business owners make with their ‘about’ page copy. It can cost you more than you imagine… Be the first to read it.

In the meantime, tell me about you. What difficulties do you have with your ‘about’ page and what success have you had?



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4 Responses to The Smart Guide to Writing Your ‘About’ Page – Part 1

  1. Pingback: Common website errors and how to avoid them | Copy Break

  2. Alice Hendriks says:

    Fascinating!

  3. Pingback: Smart guide to writing your about page - Part 3 | Copy Break

  4. Jenny says:

    Hi Nikki, I am really enjoying reading your blog. I found you through a link in Jenny Stewart’s blog. I am starting out in business as a coach (life, performance, success-not narrowed that down yet) I must sort out the sad, generic copy on my website as I have a new project that is in the planning stages and what I am reading today is inspiring me to make the changes, so thank you :-)

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