6 Strategies for a Powerful About Page

6 Strategies for a Powerful About Page

When was the last time you put some thought into your About page?

If you’re like most freelance writers, the answer is probably “I never think about it if I can help it. I hate writing about myself.”

You might struggle for the right words to describe your work or be uncertain about how to position yourself. Odds are pretty good that you wrote your About page in a fit of desperation when you really needed one, and you’ve studiously avoided looking at it since.

I’m going to show you why nailing your About page is one of the best things you can do for your business, helping you secure ideal clients and make them fall in love with you – just by following a few simple tips.

Strategy #1: Prove You’re Not a Robot

If your About page gives an accurate idea of who you are as a person, the prospects you draw in will be more willing to form strong working relationships with you.

A great way to begin this relationship is to use a conversational tone on your About page and get straight to the point about what you can do for your clients. A conversational tone removes anonymity and “distance” that websites tend to have, and it makes your message more memorable.

Having a photo is also a must for transparency and trust, but not just any old photo will do.

First impressions matter, so the type of photo is crucial for setting the right tone, even if you have to spend a few hundred dollars for professional photos.

I’d recommend something casual yet clear and professional — as if you were dressing to meet an old friend.

Of course, if you were after corporate clients, business clothing would be more suitable – but regardless of style and mood of the photo, make sure your face is the main focus of the photo.

You can cap off the personal connection trifecta by sharing some of your likes, dislikes or interesting facts that strategically relate to your ideal client persona to create a stronger bond.

Look no further than our own James Chartrand for an About page that does this well.

Strategy #2: Become Their Storyteller

Freelance writing is a tough gig, and storytelling is a powerful strategy to “soften up” potential clients and your journey. Even if you don’t have as much experience as your competition, you have something unique they don’t have, so craft stories to highlight these unique qualities to tantalize ideal clients.

Use stories on your About page in the following two ways:

  • Use your personal story to talk about your hardships or successes and where you came from, creating a relatable bond with your readers.

Look at Marie Foleo’s About page – she lists her impressive achievements and also explains how a “Jersey Girl” with no money and no connections built a multimillion-dollar business with just a laptop and a lot of hard work.

Crucially, she makes her story about you – showing how similar she is to you and how she can help you unlock your true potential.

  • Use a story that ups the perceived values of your services.
  • Stories about your products and services create a higher level of perceived value – charge what you’re worth and give your services a uniqueness that’s magnetic to your clients (something your competition can’t match).

    Look how Yellow Hammocks turned a rudimentary item into something much more by telling a vivid story about the product and how it helps the local community.

    Strategy #3: Play Hard to Get

    Time is valuable and successful people won’t hesitate for a second to turn away offers that don’t live up to their expectations.

    How does this apply to your About page?

    Use qualification on your page to send a message to potential clients: you’re not an average writer and you don’t work on average projects.

    Displaying what you don’t want in a client shows that you are much more likely to be better at your job, be more successful, and deliver better customer satisfaction.

    Everyone has standards, but only the confident and successful lay them out on the table in such a fashion for everyone to see.

    On this page, Neil Patel lays down the conditions of who he will and won’t work with – this sets the tone before someone occupies his time with an enquiry. He knows what he wants in his ideal clients and he’s not afraid to turn people away if they do not fit the mould.

    Using qualification is easy – state what your services are and who they are for, and add in a few light disqualifications about who shouldn’t apply. “Light” is a key word – if you seem judgmental or hostile, you’ll come off as a mean person.

    Be genuine and honest, never insulting or condescending, and no one will take it the wrong way.

    Strategy #4 – Become a Fanatic

    You want awesome clients.

    But are you being awesome? Are you on an unstoppable mission?

    Being on a mission means setting huge (but specific) goals and passionately striving to achieve them – just working hard isn’t enough.

    If your ideal client is a passionate small business owner, then make it your mission to help 500 small businesses turn into thriving small businesses.

    If your ideal client is in the tech business, make it your mission to attract a larger audience to technology – do you think doing so would get the attention of technology firms that were hiring a freelancer? Indeed it would.

    Jon Morrow does this brilliantly on his About page; he explains how he is sick of talented bloggers going unnoticed while spammers and trolls get rewarded.

    His mission is to teach passionate bloggers how to get the attention they deserve – therefore he attracts clients that are passionate bloggers or those who identify themselves that way.

    Pick a mission for yourself and stand by it to tell your clients everything they need to know about you.

    Strategy #5:  Narrow Your Sights

    If your ideal clients specialize in a specific industry, then targeting that industry on your About page is a must.

    If your ideal clients are creative – mention how soul crushing you think corporate writing is, and how writing is about the journey and expressing yourself.

    If your ideal clients are the corporate types, then play into their world – show concrete results, return on investment, statistics, and testimonials from other big clients.

    If you wanted to write for the car industry, would your chances be better than your generic competition if you displayed your classic car selection on your About page and wrote about them with passion?

    Have zero shame in targeting a niche you know your clients belong to.

    Sure, you may never get a complete match, but targeting the right prospects in the right way goes a long way toward closing the gap.

    Strategy #6 – Go the Extra Mile

    Be aware that having great written content on your About page may not be enough to win over some potential clients.

    Despite your best efforts, some people may unfortunately forget about you as soon as they leave your site.

    For these people, images are more memorable and hold attention better – and take a lot less effort to process then a wall of writing. Expending the effort to create something visually special sets you apart from your competition and may just win these people over.

    Check out Neil Patel’s page to see a great example of putting in more effort than the competition. (Although not technically an About page, you should incorporate visual masterpieces like Neil’s on your About page.)

    The page sends a clear message that Neil is highly sought after; the design quality shows he is a professional — just the kind of message you want to send.

    Moz uses another approach – they display their authority and awards via a timeline.

    This establishes Moz as a market leader in SEO in their ideal client’s eyes.

    Your About Page Deserves Better

    Stand out from the crowd and attract the ideal customers you deserve by using some of these strategies on your About page today. Which ones appeal to you? Why? What’s stopping you from putting them into action on your website today?

    Let me know in the comments which one you’re going to use – and come back and tell me when you get it up, too, so we can check it out and give you feedback and encouragement!

Post by Paul Back

Paul Back is the owner of Earn a Living Blogging, and his mission is to help grow your blog and earn a great living to boot. When he’s not glued to his laptop working, ­you can find Paul enjoying quality craft beers and backpacking around the world – find Paul here and be sure to drop him a line.

Join the Discussion. Click Here to Leave a Comment.

  1. Fab ideas!!! It’s so true, it’s easy to avoid writing an ABOUT ME page even though it is one of the most read pages on a site.

    When I started paying attention to mine by really personalizing it, adding in a short video and an optin form too… I noticed a spike in my sign ups. I also added a contact me form in my about me page and love the letters that my readers send directly to me.

    LOVE LOVE LOVE all the fab strategic tips. I’m going to jump back into mine and tweak it with these awesome ideas!

    Lynne

    • Hey Lynne

      I love your about page actually – I wish I saw it before I wrote this post!

      Very few people have a touching story to share, but if you do then don’t shy away from it. You could have easily hidden that away, but you chose to share it with us, and that is why your audience appreciates you so much.

      It can be very difficult to share things about ourselves with your audience, but I think it’s worth it. In your case it’s very genuine, and I for one love that.

      Thanks for dropping in! I really appreciate you reading and commenting, I hope you got something out of it :)

  2. Love these 6 strategies, Paul! I usually see About pages that are all about the author and not what problems the author solves for his readers.

    Great post!.
    Sue

    • Hey Sue!
      That’s a great point. I see the same thing. Like blog posts, blog pages, social media… it is about the reader, not us. Sooooooo awesome that you pointed that out!

      Lynne

    • Thank you Sue! Sorry about the delay – had to get some sleep, it was quite late at night in Australia when this post went live.

      I totally agree, It’s very smart to remind the reader what is in it for them just about anywhere you can. I think the About page is a pretty big missed opportunity for a lot of people.

      I appreciate you stopping by!

  3. Great post and good to see some examples. I’ve still got some advice from you that I’ve got to implement and this is a great reminder to do so.

    I’m curious though: Is there any advantage to foregoing an about page altogether?

    • Hey Anthony

      Great to see you here :) I’m glad that it is on your to do list still – a lot of people just never apply things even when they know that they should.

      Hmm that is a very interesting question.. I guess it is situational but, I think the about page is pretty crucial for a blogger or business page. In what sort of scenario are you thinking to leave out an about page? Or is this strictly hypothetical?

      I have seen sites where the about page is named something different or given more than one purpose but at the end of the day it’s function was largely they same.

      Thanks Anthony taking the time out to read and comment

  4. Hi Paul,

    Just a quick note to thank you for this excellent and useful list. I shall have to practise ‘having zero shame’ – but, hey, what fun!
    I am so glad you have Neil Patel and Jon Morrow as exemplars – they are so articulate and experienced they make whatever they do appear deceptively easy but, of course, they must have really applied themselves.
    Anyway, thank you again and I look forward to more of your posts.
    Kindest

    • Hey Zarayna

      Thanks so much for stopping by and reading. I’m glad you found the post useful!

      Yeh they do make it look easy – but you don’t need to have a list of achievements as long as they do to make a great about page. Sometimes just showing a little personality is enough – people want to know more about you.

      How you present that to them makes all the difference.

  5. Hey Paul – thanks for this! It’s especially timely as I work to spruce up my about page. In particular, I think I want to work on #6. That Neil Patel example is fabulous, and has given me some cool ideas to ponder!

    Muchas gracias!

    • Hey Sonia

      I’m really glad you found it useful :)

      Yeah I love Neil’s approach – I really think its a great way to screen potential customers or build a strong community feel – depending how you do it.

      I guess there is always someone that takes it the wrong way, but then again they were probably the wrong person for you and your blog.

      Appreciate the feedback and of course

      De nada!

  6. Hi Paul,

    Great post, and great timing since re-doing my About page is on my to-do list. Lucky me, I don’t mind writing about myself; my main challenge for About pages has always been to keep things short-ish and to the point (I could easily write a novel like Neil Patels but, alas, my story isn’t quite so riveting). And by the time I get things whittled down, I forget what my focus was supposed to be, I’m out of time, and up she goes. (I’ve had a few different sites over the years and a few re-habs for each.)

    Strategy #3 and #5 are winners, for sure. Good for sales pages too. I have a different opinion about Marie Folio, though. A Jersey girl without money is not quite the same thing as the rest of us without money :) (I don’t know her, but I’m from NJ and she definitely didn’t grow up in the Pine Barrens though I’m sure she’s worked her butt off.)

    Your #4 is my favorite: “You want awesome clients. But are you being awesome?” Exactly! Well said–that holds true in just about anything, I’d say.

    ??I’m not using my site for freelance gigs right now (I mainly do copyediting), but I may in the future. I’ll definitely keep your tips in mind!

    • Hey Leah

      I think the first thing to take away is that you don’t need a freelance page to use the tips – they would work in nearly all niches, if you feel like improvising a bit.

      I’m really glad it got you to think at the right moment :)

      I think if you want to keep it short then come up with a goal for your page – write something up and then be ruthless with the editing. Ask yourself – Is this sentence or paragraph helping me reach my goal?

      If not, cut it.

      It can be hard at first but you eventually start to write with more purpose. It is a weak point of mine as well!

      Thank you for stopping by and writing me a comment – I appreciate it :)

  7. I’m loving #5 as a potential About Me addition. Target, target, target! Niche is where it’s all about and I’m taking the challenge!

    • Paul Back says:

      Hey Naomi

      That’s great to hear. I think being specific about what you want and who you target is one of the most important aspects of running a business, or a blog for that matter. The better you know your audience the better you can please them.

      Glad to hear you got something out of the post! Thanks for commenting and let me know how you go with the strategy.

      Paul

  8. Paul, thank you for the really useful list and examples. I’ve found some ways how to make my personal page look better. And… Paul, what do you think about bio page from third person? Or it will still be better to write it from the first person? Thanks!

    • Hey Emily

      Really glad you like the post and I’m glad it has helped you out. I think most of the time a bio should be written from the first person, but I guess there are times where a 3rd person bio is fine. I mean, first person brings you closer to your readers so I think that is usually an advantage, but if you are trying to create distance then 3rd person can work too.

      Hope that helps.

      Paul

  9. Using qualification is easy – state what your services are and who they are for, and add in a few light disqualifications about who shouldn’t apply. “Light” is a key word – if you seem judgmental or hostile, you’ll come off as a mean person.

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