5 Tips to Write a Compelling Professional Bio
In 2021, being able to sell yourself virtually is one of the most important skills any entrepreneur can possess. A recent hiring survey supports this, with 58% of US-based hiring decision-makers surveyed confirming they regarded social professional networks as a reputable source for hiring.
The most effective way to get the attention of employers and clients online is through a compelling bio on a professional networking site, such as LinkedIn or Crunchbase.
Here are five easy tips to get you noticed right now.
1. Keep it Concise
Just like a resume, a professional bio should be clear and concise. When stakeholders have read a dozen other bios already, a 5000-word slog detailing your achievements from kindergarten to present will quickly cause them to lose interest.
Instead, keep it relevant and simple. Follow the lead of this WikiAlpha bio about Paul Esterhuizen and list key personal and professional achievements only. If a potential employer or client would like to know more, you can always expand upon this via a cover letter or informal chat.
2. Write a Stellar Headline
Research from Nielsen Norman Group suggests you’ve got just under 60 seconds to grab a website viewer’s attention before they’ll disengage and navigate away. Your headline is your first (and maybe only) chance to show your audience what you’re about. Think of it as your elevator pitch. An effective headline should succinctly showcase your unique value (such as what sets you apart from competitors). A sprinkle of creativity and humor is also an effective way to create a lasting impression.
3. Skip the Buzzwords
To compete with other candidates vying for roles, it may be tempting to litter your professional bio with descriptive language and buzzwords. Hiring managers have seen descriptions of “innovative self-starters” dozens of times and will switch off without supporting statements. Avoid this pitfall by including a concise anecdote or achievement detailing what exactly makes you “innovative.”
4. Include a Call to Action
Any good sales pitch should have a call to action – this includes selling yourself. A call to action can take many different forms, depending on your end goal. For example, if your professional bio is designed to help build your client base, your CTA may be a request to visit your product/service’s website. Or if you’re seeking career opportunities, you might end with “email me now to discuss building our professional relationship.” Websites like LinkedIn facilitate call-to-actions by allowing you to add links into your professional bio.
5. Tell Your Story
Although your professional bio shouldn’t be too long-winded, don’t be afraid to inject elements of your personality. Listing off your skills alone can come across as mechanical and forgettable.
Make yourself memorable by painting a picture of how you grew and developed within the industry, possibly even with a hint of humor. This is also a great time to showcase your core values. Personalization like this will humanize your personal brand and potentially endear you to stakeholders.
If you’re struggling to stand out in an oversaturated online market, tweak your professional bio using the above tips to start getting noticed today.