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HOW TO WRITE YOUR ABOUT ME PAGE WHEN YOU HATE IT

“How to Write Your About Me Page When You Hate It” is part of a series. Other installments include Social Media Posts, Search Engine OptimizationEmail Newsletters and Blog Posts pages.

A Black woman standing on a beach, looking out at the water, thinking about how the heck she's gonna write her About Me page.

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Gosh, I just love to talk about myself. I adore being the center of attention and listing off all my bright, shiny accomplishments and… 

Ugh, I can’t even fake it. I think most of us agree–writing an About Me page is hard. Other than supremely confident upper middle class white guys from healthy families (no shade), most people learn pretty young that self-promotion is a double edged sword. On the one hand, you should be proud of your achievements! But on the other hand, “nobody likes a braggart.” With so many mixed messages we’ve absorbed over the years from parents, friends, parents’ friends, teachers, bullies and bosses, sitting down to write about ourselves can be nerve-wracking. 

But I have great news. Your About Me page? It’s not really all about you. Sure, it’s a little about you. And a lot about what you have to offer. It’s not bragging, it’s featuring what you do best in the world that other people might be looking for. In fact, that’s all marketing is, really: putting yourself or your product out there so the people who want to find you can find you.

A woman with red hair and tattoos covering her face like she's embarassed to write her About Me page.

You know how this works, because you’ve done this search. The last time you needed a new hair product, or a tutor for your kid, or an app for your phone. You searched for the thing you wanted, evaluated the results, and picked based on which one could offer you the most of what you needed. Right?

It’s cool when a hair product uses new ingredients, but what you really care about is how it can keep your naturally curly but blown-out hair from frizzing up on a humid day. Or it’s great that a tutor has a thousand years of experience and lived in Berlin for five years, but what really matters is how they can connect with your kid and help them get their grade up. It’s not about them—it’s about how they can help you.

They call it “About Me” but it’s really about your audience.

Keep that in mind. Your About Me page is another kind of advertisement–where you celebrate yourself for concrete accomplishments, explain how your experience makes you perfect to offer what you offer, and translate that into real benefits for your customers or clients.

So here are a few tips to help you get started writing an awesome About Me page, even if you hate it:

1. Start your About Me page with 1 to 3 short paragraphs about you.

“Hi, my name is Jane Unicorn, and I love rainbows. When I was a little girl, I spent hours watching Rainbow Brite, collecting Lisa Frank Trapper Keepers and wearing down all my crayons to nubs. As I got older, I threw myself into drawing, taking art classes in all my spare time and building up a portfolio to help me get into art school.

But once I was in art school, I burned out, hard. I managed to finish my degree, but it took me a year and a half longer than I thought it would, and all my friends had long moved on by the time I graduated. 

Then, I found a graphic design job in the corporate world, and I was so thrilled to be making money doing something I loved. My work even won awards! The only problem was that I hated it. I missed making the kind of art that I made as a kid, and it felt like I lost a part of myself. So even though I had a steady job making good money and racking up accolades, I felt like something was missing.”

2. Then add 1-2 paragraphs about why/how you started your business.

“I always dreamed of working for myself, but I never quite knew how to get started. So I made an Instagram account for my art and just started posting what I was working on. Then I set up a shop with giclee prints of my art, mostly just to sell to friends and family. Little by little, my sales crept up, and I realized my art wasn’t just a fun hobby that made some side cash, it could be an actual, viable business.

I took a course on starting an LLC and promoting an arts-based business, and the rest is history. Now, I spend my time split between creating beautiful paintings of rainbows, teaching other people how to draw, and partnering with retailers on limited-edition collections featuring my prints.”

3. Now finish up your About Me page with a section about what you can do for your customers.

“Art has always been healing for me. Sitting down and drawing or painting is so meditative, and I love having a beautiful finished product I can hang on my wall. And I believe everyone deserves to have access to that–to learn how to make their own art, express themselves, and quiet their inner critic who says they’re no good.

When You Buy My Prints

In my shop, you’ll find unique prints that will bring lightness and whimsy to your home. There’s something in every color of the rainbow, to match the color palette in any room in your home. And I’ve even included the option to have them shipped in a simple frame, so your piece is ready to hang the minute you take it out of the box.

When You Take My Classes

In my classes, you’ll join an amazing community of budding artists who support and encourage each other. I have courses for all abilities, from people who have never drawn before in their lives, to seasoned artists who just want a new challenge. Every course is self-paced and encourages you to work on a new piece every day. This helps get you out of your head and practicing without judgment, because I’ve found the best way to produce better art is just to make as much of it as you have time for. 

And when you pay for a course, you’ll also get access to my members-only Facebook group with other students, where we share our art, trade inspirations and cheer each other on. By the time you leave any one of my courses, you’ll have a portfolio full of finished pieces and the confidence to share your artwork online.”

To recap: 1-3  paragraphs about you. 1-2 paragraphs about why you started your business. 2-4 paragraphs about what you offer your customers.

So that would be 4 paragraphs total if you’re brief, or 9 if you have a lot to say.

4. Feeling stuck? See what other people’s About Me pages are like.

Okay, maybe you’ve done the first three tips and you’re still feeling a bit “blah.” No worries. The first draft is always the hardest part, and now you can shine it up.

Take a look at how other people write their About Me pages. Search for people with similar businesses and see how they talk about themselves. Do they mention details that you forgot to add? Look up your favorite business, brands, influencers and local heroes and see how they tackled their bios. What do you like about each one? What approaches do you not like? Open your Notes app or a Google doc and write out some bullets.

For example:
  • Liked the playful language on XYZ.com
  • ABC’s person felt kind of smarmy – stay away from words like “guru,” “ninja” and “rockstar” on my own page
  • DEF site had cool formatting on their About Me page that listed out benefits to customers in two columns of bullets. Try something like that instead of paragraphs.
  • Forgot to write more about my “why”— pull inspiration from the artisan jam company and how they talk about learning from their grandma
 

This would also be a really great place to use tip number 10 from my free download, 10 Ways to Write Electric Marketing Content. Sign up for my newsletter and I’ll send it to your inbox ASAP. It’s a foolproof way to write your own About Me page, using a trick I learned in college and have never seen anyone else mention

5. Still stuck writing your About Me page? Get out your phone.

If you’re unnecessarily hard on yourself and you’re thinking, I don’t know, am I that good? Who am I to start a business? What even are my strengths? All I can think of are my weaknesses–well, I can relate. What we’re not going to do is beat ourselves up over it, because life is hard enough and you’re probably already working through it in therapy.

It’s easy to get stuck in doubts because our brains are wild, lawless places. Other people judge you by your actions out in the world. But you’re judging yourself by every failure you’ve ever had, every unkind thought, every silent judgment you made of someone else. So what you need to do is get an outside opinion. Your thoughts are like radio static–there’s a transmission coming through, but damned if you can hear it. What you need is another wavelength. Like, say, the kind that comes from a friend.

…That’s what friends are for…

So whip out your phone. Text three people right now who know you pretty well. They could be siblings, friends, old coworkers, current coworkers, a former boss you really like, an old classmate, whatever you want.

Send them a message like,

“Hey, I’m working on this website for a business I’m starting/have started and I’m struggling with my About Me page. I was wondering if you could share what you think I’m good at, or how I’ve helped you in the past. What do you think are my strengths?”

Unless you’re a total asshole on the level of Ebeneezer Scrooge, you’re going to get some good stuff back. (And if someone responds with something shitty or critical or judgey when the assignment was crystal clear, they’re not a good person and it may be time to make some new friends.)

(If you have one really great former boss…keep reading.)

If you message an old colleague or boss or classmate, you might also ask them,

“What work of mine do you remember me for the most?”

or

“When we were in class together, what did you think I was good at?”

We live in a time when self-love is all the rage. And that’s awesome, praise be to Lizzo. But because we live in an individualistic society (in the U.S., anyway), it’s really easy to forget that we need other people to love us, too. We all deserve to have a community that meets our needs — and that we can participate in.

You don’t need everyone to love you, or even a majority of people to love you–just a few really good folks. And it’s okay to turn to them when you’re feeling low, doubting your abilities, or having a horrible, no good, very bad time writing an About Me page. Because real friends want to see you succeed, babe. Won’t you let them help you?

It’s time, chickens. Open up a Google doc and write your About Me page.

And that’s it. Those are my top five tips for writing your About Me page – but I want to know how it goes for you. Leave a comment below and let me know if my tips were helpful, if you’ve tackled the beast, and how you feel about your new About Me page copy.

A white woman sitting outside, smiling at the camera.

Hi, I'm Lana.

I’ve spent 16 years in advertising, and now I’m using that knowledge to help creatives grow their own small businesses. Will that include you this year? 


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