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Four Ways to Make Your About Page Work For You
Would it surprise you to learn that for most websites, the “About Page” is the second-most-visited page on the site (right after the main page)? It was a surprise to me when I first heard that statistic, but as I thought about it, it kinda makes sense. When we visit a website for the first time, we (hopefully) get a sense of what the business or blog or organization is about based on the main page. But once our curiosity about the “what” is satisfied, then we want to know “who?” and “why?” This is where the About Page comes in.
Your About Page is, more than anything, an opportunity to connect with your readers. Your readers are hoping to get a glimpse of the person(s) behind the site they’re visiting. They want to see if they resonate with who you are, not just with what you have to offer.
So if your About Page to this point has been more of an afterthought, filled with awkward third-person narratives about you or your business, you’re probably missing some great opportunities to connect with your readers and build a relationship.
To help you avoid some of that pain, here’s a shortlist of simple fixes you can make to your About Page to get it working for you.
Your About Page isn’t really about YOU
This point is a little counterintuitive. Although, yes, your About Page includes information about you as the founder/business owner/leader, and hopefully about why you decided to build your organization in the first place, hidden inside all that information about you should be information the reader can connect to, and recognize themselves in, at least a little bit.
A good option is to highlight a particular struggle you encountered and solved, and one your audience also experiences. Maybe that’s impostor syndrome, or procrastination, or how to do sales without feeling icky, or how to organize your day to actually get important stuff done. Maybe it’s that you’re an avid reader, and #somanybookssolittletime. Or you could highlight a struggle you’re currently facing, and take the reader along.
If it speaks to an important part of you and your business and resonates with your readers, you’ve just created a connection.
Use the language of your readers
Related to #1, it’s important to use the language of the people you’re trying to attract. If you bog down in technical terms or describe things from your perspective as the expert instead of theirs as the reader/customer, you’ll quickly lose them.
Here’s an example: a friend of mine coaches beginning photographers on starting their businesses, and I was helping him review and improve their websites. What I noticed was these beginning photographers filled their About Pages with information about the make of their cameras, filters, lighting, and so on. Impressive to other photographers, perhaps, but to their customers? To people wanting to know if this was the photographer to get the perfect photos of their often-cranky-but-adorable baby or not-quite-tame terrier? Not so much.
Once we had these photographers focus on themselves — on the types of photos they love to take, on how they have dogs themselves and so can understand just how to bring out the personality of your pooch — that made all the difference.
What’s your role? Are you a Mentor or a Companion?
Talking about a struggle you faced or are facing may shed some light on another important aspect of your About Page (and business, for that matter): what role do you play with your readers?
Mentors are experts who’ve already traveled the path the reader is on, and have experience and wisdom and perspective to share. They’re very similar to the success pack role Charlie talks about in chapter 4 of Start Finishing. For geeks like me, a good example is The Lord of the Rings (LOTR): if Frodo is the hero (the reader), then Gandalf is the mentor (business owner).
Companions are those who walk the path alongside the hero. Perhaps they’re on their own hero’s journey, which intersects with that of the reader/hero. If you’re investigating a particular issue, or solving a problem for yourself and sharing as you go, you might be a companion. Again, in LOTR terms: Samwise, Frodo’s dearest friend, who follows Frodo all the way to Mt. Doom, is a companion.
Likely as not, you might switch between roles depending on the topic and the needs of your reader in that moment. That's to be expected. The important thing to remember is that as much as you are the hero of your own story, for your business or website the hero is your reader.
Include a Call to Action (CTA)
Last but not least, your About Page (and really, every single other page/post on your site) should give your readers something to do (and ideally, only one thing).
For most websites or businesses, this About Page CTA will ask the reader to provide their email address. This might require some sort of incentive, such as a free ebook or worksheet, your weekly tip sheet sent to their email address, or some other thing they can only get by signing up.
This gives your reader something of value to them, in exchange for something of value to you: your ability to continue to build a relationship with them.
There’s lots more that goes into creating an About Page that works for you, but if you make these four tweaks, you should see the conversions (visitors who turn into subscribers) on your page increase, which will provide you more opportunities to build the relationships that fuel your site or business.
If you’re finding yourself stuck trying to get your About Me page off the ground, PF has put together an amazing deal with our friends at SnapCopy. Take advantage of this special SNAP x Productive Flourishing offer to get pro copywriters' eyes on your most precious (and painful to finish) page. They are offering an exclusive deal: for 2 hours of your time and only $200, SnapCopy will get you your polished About Page back to you in 2 weeks or less. Take advantage of this offer today!