Startup Diaries: Tips for Writing an Irresistible ‘About Us’ Page!

The NextWomen Technology Theme.

Serial entrepreneur Jackie Hutchings shares some invaluable tips, and useful examples, on how to write the second most visited page on your company's site.

Writing web copy is an art form. Online consumption means that browsing and skimming are the name of the game and you need to adjust your copy accordingly.

So, with that in mind, by the time you pay attention to writing your About Us page (from here on referred to as AUP) page, it’s often one of the last pages written.  People naturally focus on their home and product pages.

And that's why I wanted to talk to you about your AUP.  Did you know that it’s the second most visited page (unless you`re a known brand)? It was a stat that surprised me too. But, when you think about it, it’s really not surprising at all.

We like to buy from people we trust (and this is why personal recommendations are so powerful). So, when we stumble upon someone new, we like to know a bit about them before we buy. And, this is your opportunity.

It’s your opportunity to engage with your audience and start building a relationship, to start building trust.

Rather than give you a list of what you should consider, I’m going to use examples. Let me tell you about Lisa or, rather, let Lisa tell you about Lisa. All you need to know, before reading this, is that she is a hat designer. 

"Once upon a time, there was a little girl who loved to dress up.  Wearing her grandmother's hats, her mother's high heels and her own creations.  A little girl born with glitter in her veins.  She loved anything that sparkled. A little girl who, no matter how hard she tried, never felt like she fitted in.   She tried so hard but, no matter what she did, she always felt different.  Then, after years of trying to fit in, she gave up; she realised some people are just not meant to fit in. They were born to stand out.....

Clients come to Lisa because they are looking for something different, something unique, a statement piece. Her work is original, theatrical, textural, innovative and extremely experimental".

You can read the full text here but, suffice to say, Lisa knows her target market well. She is talking directly to them.

Now let me tell you about Leanne.  I met her when I was part of the first cohort of Chris Brogan’s Blog Topic Master Class.  Out of 70 or so people, Leanne stood out head and shoulders and the reason I originally noticed her was her LinkedIn profile (another form of AUP). 

She dares to be different. She dares to be honest.  She will, undoubtedly, turn some people away but she absolutely attracts her target market.

Read this:

"This is the part where most people bore you with $5 words and rattle off a bunch of jargon that we've all heard before. Instead, I am going to talk to you as if we were sitting across from each other because, if we're going to connect, then we both have to drop the "image" and invite a more authentic conversation. Ready?

I believe in connection and if you've made it this far, I think you do, too. I also believe in integrity and accountability and will not compromise either for the sake of "success". Who we connect with matters. What we do matters. Sometimes, though, connections, community and people are hard to find. My job is to help you create those connections and establish a community by listening to your needs. 

By taking the time to talk with you and hear what you are saying, I can find solutions you might not have discovered and possibilities you might not have considered. Once we've identified your needs, I partner with you; shoulder to shoulder if need be, to show you the how and the why. Change, even if desired, isn't always easy. I'm here to help with that.

Often, I am asked to find a way to fix an "unsolvable" problem or create possibilities and gather consensus and buy-in. These are some of my favorite assignments. I love to find solutions and gather the right resources together to make your load just a little lighter to bear.

Helping you see past your immediate reality and showing you how to advance through rapidly changing environments is a challenge I am always ready to embrace".

And, that was the start of my relationship with Leanne.  I then got to know her better by chatting on a G+ hangout and watching how she interacts online.  She took time to understand my business and made suggestions long before there was any talk of formally working with me (which, in case you’re interested, she now is.) 

So, there you have it.  You can google “great about us pages” and come up with hundreds of articles about what you need to say and how you need to say it. 

But, my advice to you is to understand your customer and talk directly to them. Inspire them and give them a reason to connect with you. 

And remember,

  • It’s not a CV
  • Tell your story
  • Be human
  • Update it frequently.  Think of it as ‘work in progress’.

Some ‘About Us’ Inspiration – Enjoy...

Jackie Hutchings is founder of two online businesses. Scubadviser (a TripAdvisor for scuba divers) and Zlimm123, a ground breaking weight loss programme. Jackie has extensive experience in starting businesses in a career spanning nearly 40 years.  A qualified business coach and leadership trainer, she started her career in Rank Xerox, quickly realising that corporate life didn’t suit her.  She launched her first business in the late 1970s, taking that company public on, what was then, the Unlisted Securities Market.   

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