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The Blogger Behind the Curtain

When you come across a new blogger you like, or even a company product, what’s the first thing you click…

When you come across a new blogger you like, or even a company product, what’s the first thing you click on when you head to their website?

More than likely, it’s their About page. As much as we like to think that our writing speaks for itself, it’s human nature to want to learn more about the person behind that blog post you thought was totally cool or that funny article you read.

Yet, writing an About page can feel daunting. You may be thinking, Why shucks, no one wants to read about little ol’ me. Au contraire. Learning more about who you are may turn that one-time visitor into a regular reader on your site. Blogging is all about connections and community. Just like in real life, getting to know someone personally helps solidify that bond.

That’s all well and good, but how do you write a good “About” page? Here’s a few tips:

  1. Think about your overall tone:
    Remember in high school when you had to write those five paragraph essays where the middle three paragraphs were all about supporting your thesis? This is what your About page should do for your site.It’s up to us to decide how we come across on the web. You can write, re-write, edit, revise, and re-read all you want. Take the time to write down a few adjectives that describe the tone you want to achieve in your About page: What’s the overall purpose of your blog? What kind of impression do you want to leave with visitors? Don’t be afraid to write an outline, but don’t be afraid to free write, either. You can always go back and edit.
  2. Keep it short and sweet:
    The average Internet user spends less than 60 seconds on any given site, which means getting your point across before a visitor’s attention begins to wane is crucial. Prioritize what your readers need to know about you. Is this blog a professional platform? If so, let your readers know about your greatest achievement in your career. Is your blog a creative outlet? Then give visitors a taste of your artistic MO. The point is to be informative and memorable, without overloading anyone. If they want to know more, they’ll contact you.
  3. To write in first person or third:
    Remember when you wrote down some adjectives about your site’s tone? Well, now’s a handy time to refer back to those. Writing in the third person tends to lend itself to a more professional feel, whereas writing in first person emphasizes a direct connection with readers. As a handy alternative — and an easy way to organize your About page — consider breaking up your bio into a series of questions. Asking questions like, “What’s this blog about?”, “Who am I?”, and “Interested in hiring me?” visually break up your content and make it easy for your visitors to find exactly what they’re looking for.
  4. Think outside the blog:
    Adding a picture to your About page gives your readers a visual to walk away with. Without it, your site is missing an essential element: you! At WordPress.com, you can easily set up an image to add to both your About page and your blog’s sidebar by setting up your Gravatar profile at Gravatar.com.On top of a photograph, you may want to get even more personal. More and more bloggers are including video introductions on their website. Hearing your voice, seeing your mannerisms, and watching you in action gives your readers a genuine glimpse into who you are. Then, embed that video into your About page and you have a face-to-face tool for interacting with your visitors.

The most important thing of all is to make sure you have an About page. If you’re still not sold on your tone, or you’re not ready for your webcam debut, that’s okay. Getting the information out there is most important and it’s also what the Edit button is for. As you change and grow, your About page should, too; your readers will appreciate the opportunity to take the journey along with you.

Do you have any tips on how to write an About page?

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  1. Great tips. I probably need to spruce up my about page. So many things change as you continue to write your blog and this page certainly needs to keep up with our constant change. Thanks for the tips!

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  2. My About Us & Contact Us Pages always get updated.

    You’re so right about this statement: “As much as we like to think that our writing speaks for itself, it’s human nature to want to learn more about the person behind that blog post you thought was totally cool or that funny article you read.” – Whenever I see a nice post, I immediately go to About or if someone subscribed to my blog or liked a post I check their About page. :)

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  3. Beautiful thoughts that will prove really useful . Thank you. For me, whatever we do, we should never forget to give our about a piece of our “Heart.” It is about you and me and the things we go through everyday. It may not be a perfect day, but that’s how the real world works. I guess what I would like to add is, we should not be afraid to be real, to add a piece of our pain and loss in-between the happy , jubilant days. This is what makes us human and relatable. Stay blessed always.

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  4. Write a Story. About you or your blog. People love to read stories.

    In my blog I have written the story behind how I chose my blog title ‘Destination Infinity’. There is a story behind it and I have highlighted it in the About page.

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  5. In addition of what was already said I would recommend to include a “contact me” form, if you have no dedicated “Contact” page.
    I set up mine in an anonymous way, as I am concerned with safety: the form sends the message to my hotmail address.

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  6. Great tips, particularly whether to write first or third person, thanks. I did see a site that did an ‘About’ page that was a little long, but interesting. And then at the bottom, they inserted a ‘one-line bio’. I liked it enough to fix my About page but moved the one liner to the top. Then if the reader wants to know more they can raed on. I didn’t think to use questions but did use subheadings same as the key points in the one-liner.

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  7. Wonderful tips Erica. I must be very typical, because I immediately go to the “about” page of any new vistitor to my blog. I’ve seen many terrible pages – long, rambling treatise of the blogger’s life, or pages so short and obscure that one wonders if the blogger is in the witness protection program. Your tips really strike the happy medium and encourage bloggers to include what the typical reader wants to see. The worst offense is the “about” page that the blogger has never edited. My first thought is that theirs must be a spam blog, as it’s hard for me to believe that a legitimate blogger would put themselves into the blogosphere with developing an about page.

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  8. Use humour. I have a lengthy About page but people often read all the way down because it is amusing (they tell me).

    I find if an About page is too brief, I feel a little shut out.

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  9. useful. thanks. I need more help than that! I can’t really work out how to find bloggers I like or how to introduce myself to others – without spending hours and hours trawling, getting lost and distracted….. I can’t work out how to ‘change’ my blogroll either. Help doesn’t seem to include that. Where can I read ‘the whole’ lesson on blogging, right from how to set it up? you know, baby talk stuff! all jargon explained.

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  10. Very helpful! I was inspired and updated my “About” Page – extended it to include, in addition to info on the company, info on the Owner, as well as info on the Blogger (me)…and also created break-out Pages of the About Mike (owner) and About Blogger (me) Pages in case readers want to go direct to specific info. Added video to About Mike (owner) Page, and plan to create a video for my Page.
    I’d love anybody’s feedback! :) http://EssenceTalent.wordpress.com
    Thanks again to ALL for your input and subsequent inspiration!!

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  11. Add links to your favourite posts that are in your blog, people like to know what you like of your own writings/images.

    The About page is not necessarily the first thing I go to in a blog, but I always do read it!

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  12. I find it is always difficult to write about myself. Talking – well that’s another story!
    I decided that I would let people know the different ‘roles’ I have because we all have quite a few, and then the things I like and which part of the world i call home. A little snippet, but enough I think

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