Your website’s ‘About Us’ page can be a very powerful online tool to aid in building trust, credibility, and a connection with your audience. Yet it’s often quite challenging for most business owners who question how personal they should go to strike a chord between relevance and balance.
Sharing things about yourself is one of the best ways to find people who resonate with you – which means you must relate through sharing your story with honesty and vulnerability.
There’s no one definitive way to write an effective ‘About’ page, because your company’s storyline is one of a kind. The process to producing great content and copy should always focus on honoring that unique path, rather than diluting your story to the confines of a template.
Here’s a look at six “from-the-trenches” insights I’ve gleaned over the years when it comes to perfecting your ‘About Us’ story; these tips fuel intriguing stories that pulls at heartstrings and connect with readers.
1. Seek clarity and confidence as you write an ‘About Us’ page.
It’s more than a writing exercise and coughing up some marketing fluff to fill your website. When you tell your story to a well-defined audience, speaking in a way that’s intriguing to them, you’re essentially articulating why you matter to your niche.
Through the process of articulating why your audience needs to pay attention, you’re sharing how your values, beliefs, convictions, experiences and skills are relevant to them.
When you nurture this connection with a niche audience, by defining your place in the community, you inately own why you matter. This builds confidence in your communications – and affects how you show up in your business. If you don’t fully show up in your business, how can you expect others to show up for you?
2. Share the evolution of your POV and plant seeds of trust and credibility.
A good ‘About Us’ page tells visitors how you arrived at where you are within the context of how you can help them. Through lessons learned and unique experiences, you’ve developed a unique point of view (POV).
By sharing the evolution of that POV you give your story substance. Create a captivating bold statement that evokes an emotional and aspirational response when it’s read.
Most people know that it is impossible to develop a POV unless you know the subject matter well. When you state yours with confidence you communicate credibility, establish thought leadership and build trust with your audience (which is essential to conversion).
3. Resist the urge to turn your ‘About Us’ page into a resume.
Your ideal customers aren’t interested in that laundry list of credentials unless they clearly know how you can help them. Brag in the press section of your website instead. It’s boring and it doesn’t sell.
Instead, weave credentials into your story, and reveal how the acquisition of expertise is a part of your journey that will help them achieve results.
4. Don’t navel-gaze, speak to a larger context.
Your goal is to inspire your audience to take the next step. This happens when they relate to you emotionally (through your story). Your audience should see themselves in your story and aspire to transformation and success through your POV.
Even though you’re sharing “your story”, sharing it from a first person narrative (i.e., writing from the “I” and “me” point of view) can appear shortsighted. Zoom out and relate your story to the reader. Help them see how your experience sits within a larger context and a bigger picture of human conditions.
5. Think ‘shared identity’ when you write content.
We are all more interested in stories that we can identify with. Start with something that only “insiders” would know. Insider message points can be gained from informal customer surveys and feedback, as your ideal customer shares their pain points and challenges. Reiterate those same viewpoints in your content.
Paint vivid pictures of shared experiences. It’s a quick way to make your audience feel that you really, truly understand their needs. And it helps you cultivate a deep level of trust.
6. Make your audience the hero of the story.
We are all familiar with the hero narrative: the hero “goes on an adventure, and in a decisive crisis wins a victory, and then comes home changed or transformed.” And most stories end with you or your company (the hero) achieving a certain outcome.
And “if you think about all great stories—stories that leave you smiling as you walk out of the movie theater, or that you remember long after you’ve read the last page—they all have something in common: a great ending.”
Your happy ending should mirror your audience’s desired outcomes. Less about you and more about them—revealing a glimpse of their inner hero.
To close strong ask yourself: what does it look like when your ideal customer achieves success with your help? What emotions does it evoke? How will they feel when they overcome the challenge?
Remind them that your heroic journey is a reflection of their circumstances and potential success. Aspire them to an identity which is conducive to taking the next step (i.e. a strong call to action).
7. Don’t let your ‘About Us’ page collect dust.
Good brand stories evolve over time. Use your ‘About Us’ page as a reference point for other consumer-facing touchpoint. Tell it again and again. For example, you can leverage your ‘About Us’ page to pitch media opportunities – many online publications seek out experts with first-hand experiences. A simple and high impact introduction with a “read more” call to action is a great addition to any pitch. Once your company is featured you gain exposure to a brand new audience.
This article has been edited and condensed.
Ling Wong is an Intuitive Brainiac | Copywriting Alchemist. Through her unique blend of business and marketing coaching with a mindset and psychic twist, she helps the maverick-preneurs uncover, articulate and transform their why into content that connects, resonates and converts – by way of her intuitive yet rigorous iterative process born out of her Harvard Design School training and 10 years of experience in the online marketing industry. Get her brand new website copy alchemy video here. Connect with @slideberry on Twitter.