Recently, Kam told us all about About.me … Where you can make your own virtual business card with links and a photo and a little blurb about you…
Have you set yours up yet?
Even if you haven’t set up an About.me account – even if you’re not planning on directing people to a lot of links – if you have an online presence of any kind, you will probably also have an About page of SOME KIND.
You have one, right? You NEED one. Even if you’re blogging anonymously, you still need some kind of ‘about’ anchor for readers (old and new) to feel like they can get to know you …. If not, don’t tell me. Just go quietly add one to your blog or etsy account and we’ll all pretend it was there all along….
I’ve been sponsoring Campfire Chic for several months ….. and I can tell you that every time Lemon and Raspberry is featured here (or on another blog) I get a definite jump in views of my own About page. ALWAYS. It tends to be the first place that new readers will go to get a sense of the site and what they can expect.
Reading the author’s About page is 40x easier than reading through 3 months of archives to see if it’s the kind of blog I want to subscribe to!
There are no hard-and-fast rules on this – really make it your own.
But here are 5 easy ways to improve your About page for your readers and audience:
Add a photo of YOURSELF
Readers and customers want to be able to connect with you – and the quickest and easiest way to do that is with a photo. ‘worth a thousand words’ so they say.
More than 1 photo? Also excellent.
Preferably at least one without a camera or other prop in front of your face.
Your readers want to know YOU – not your product, not your child, not your studio. Yes, a photo of you and your dog is acceptable – as long as you are in the photo.
Feel free to ALSO post photos of your product, space or business. But one must be a photo of YOU.
Show your personality
Be yourself – write in first person, be funny or flippant if that is you, be serious and formal if that is more your style. Don’t be formal and 3rd-persony just because you think that is what you SHOULD be.
Your About page needs to say a lot about YOU in a little space – and the style and tone is the most efficient way to do that.
Be sure to mention what you care most about.
This also includes avoiding industry jargon. I’m sure you’re very proud of the award you won from such-and-such design industry association… but if I’m going to hire you to design my wedding invitations, I don’t really care. That association means nothing to me.
Jill of Lune Vintage talks almost exclusively about her family on her About page. Her readers know immediately where her values lie and what to expect from her blog.
Recognize what you like about other About pages
I love doing this. I love looking at what a certain blogger or company WANTS me to know about them. Plus, looking at other About pages reminds me what I can add to my own (or avoid on my own if it drives me crazy).
Ali Edwards’ About page features her top 5 principles as she approaches scrapbooking – very poignant for her readers (love that!)
Elise’s About page shares with you her love of apple slices and peanut butter as well as glimpses her relationship with her husband. I love how she immediately gives her readers that sense of intimacy in just a few sentences.
Add a Call to Action
Why do you want people to visit your site? What is your goal?
Are you trying to build an email list? Add that link to your about page.
Are you trying to drive traffic to your Etsy shop? Add THAT to your about page.
Do you just want them to stick around and maybe fall in love with you? Try adding links to your ‘greatest hits,’ most popular or favorite posts from the archives.
Kam’s About page features blog buttons for her readers to take and share. Much less explicit, but still a suggestion of a ‘next step’
Moorea’s About page features some of her favorite posts as well as links to her design work.
If you don’t have a goal or purpose why do you have a website?
Revisit the page regularly to update
Let your readers know that you are thinking of them by not neglecting your About page. If that info is old, I tend to suspect that the blog author isn’t paying attention to the rest of their blog either.
Especially when you launch a new product or service, or have a life-changing event (extra children, or moving to a new state, for example).
Rockstar Diaries successfully updated their about page to include news of their newest little one (despite having the parents-of-a-newborn sleeping schedule)
There you go …. Some steps to start with! All of them easy enough to do in an afternoon! There are a bunch of other things you might want to include (or avoid) on your About page.
Most of all: The first step is to make sure you HAVE an About page – the second step is to make it your own!
Good luck! Be sure to leave a link in the comments if you’d like to share your own About page!
Amy T Schubert blogs tips and inspiration for creatives on Lemon and Raspberry. This info on About pages will be expanded into a full chapter in her upcoming Better Blog Content Second Edition – available the first week of May. For more from Lemon and Raspberry, follow Amy on Twitter or subscribe to the L&R Newsletter.