Craft an Effective 'About' Page in 3 Simple Steps
As an entrepreneur, often you are your brand. Your "about" page can set the tone for you and your style and give potential clients a preview of what you might be like to work with.
Here are three important steps to crafting the perfect about page.
1. Start with a hook. Pose a question to your website visitors that you and your business are going to answer for them. “Tired of not knowing what your marketing really means?” “Sick of no central sales-tracking solution?” Whatever you and your brand are about to solve for them, spell it out and hook them into needing to know more about you.
If you don’t hook them with a probing question, visitors aren’t going to care about what else you have to say. While you may think the about page is about you, it's actually about what you can do for the user. You want to show them right away that you know what their pain point is and you can identify.
2. Blend benefits with your story. You've identified your users' pain point, but now you need to blend your personal story with the list of benefits you and your brand can solve it with.
For example, as Dropbox’s Drew Houston hypothetically could have spun his service’s about page: “Tired of not being able to access your data from any computer?” There’s his hook, because yes, everyone hates that.
His benefit and story blend could then have said something like: “So was I! As an MIT student I was constantly going back and forth between my home computer and the labs at school, carrying around various USB devices and hard drives. That’s when I came up with the idea of Dropbox -- a cloud-based storage service that would allow me to access my information from any device with an Internet connection.”
Voila! Sure, that’s not what he actually said, but it would be a good start. However, a word of caution when crafting your story and benefit blend: be authentic and honest. This is a great opportunity to impart your brand’s style and tone of voice, but don’t go too far and make false claims or promise anything you can’t deliver.
3. The proof is in the pudding. They’ve heard how great you say your product is, but one thing many entrepreneurs miss on their about page is a list of testimonials and quotes to show there’s proof to back up what you’re saying. Having credible endorsements from respected experts in your niche can convey a sense of trust and ease for those new to you and your brand.
Make sure to include reviews and ask for feedback from former and current clients to share on your page. If it’s appropriate, take things one step further and request permission to display your testimonial companies' logos to further help boost your credibility.
While it may seem like your about page should read like a personal ad, the truth is it’s less about your whole life and more about how your personal experience led you to the solution you provide.
Matthew Toren is a serial entrepreneur, mentor, investor and co-founder of YoungEntrepreneur.com. He is co-author, with his brother Adam, of Kidpreneurs and Small Business, BIG Vision: Lessons on How to Dominate Your Market from Self-Made Entrepreneurs Who Did it Right (Wiley). He's based in Vancouver, B.C.