If the thought of writing your About page makes you cringe, I have good news! Your About page doesn’t have to be about you at all.
I know you’ve heard this advice before—every website copywriter under the sun is making you the same promise—but I’m not here to give you basic marketing advice. I’m here to give you a solution:
The Not-About-You About Page Formula. A Between The Lines Copywriting special.
This formula is for you if…
I’ve got your back.
This tried-and-true—literally! I’m gonna show you an actual example from a recent site I wrote and walk you through it—About page formula is for entrepreneurs who want their About pages to have a more customer-centric POV, with almost all the focus can be on your ideal client (so practically none of it has to be on you).
The only thing you need for this formula is a deep understanding of who your ideal client is. That’s it.
(PAUSE: If you don’t have that yet, you’ll want to grab my Target Audience Development Workbook—it’s a must-have resource for business owners who care about making meaningful connections with dream clients—and it’ll help you get to know them like the back of your hand, making ALL of your marketing efforts WAYYY easier.)
Whit was *not* down to write about herself—hence the whole hiring me thing—and when it came to her About page, she didn’t feel comfortable including much about her personal life.
…so we didn’t.
It just didn’t feel relevant to her! And that’s a perfectly fine reason to not want to include a ton of detail about yourself – it doesn’t mean you’re a super shy person (she’s not) or that you’re not interesting (she definitely is).
Whit’s just not the type to talk about herself (let alone brag about herself) and my goal as a website copywriter is to always depict the client as the most authentic (ew, buzzword, I know, but stay with me) version of themselves as possible.
Whit prefers to be behind the scenes, which actually makes a ton of sense, given her role as what could be called Professional Back-End Optimizer for Business Owners.
You’ll learn more about what she does in a sec.
Her About page is the perfect showcase (if I do say so myself) of how to write “about you” without actually writing ABOUT YOU.
She and her ideal clients both have the same story—more on why this matters, and how we put it into action, later in this post—so we played into that and focused on the transformation of “I’ve been where you are, so I understand what you’re going through, and I know how to help.”
…then we rounded it out with a few fun details, added a relevant call-to-action, and called it a day.
Straight up and to-the-point, without making it too minimal or too involved; just the right amount of personal without being personal, and – best of all – simple.
We kicked things off with a question as a headline, which is a great tactic to use for an About page – a webpage that is classically difficult to write headlines for, because of our bizarre compulsion to write things like “our story” and “about me” and “hi, I’m ____!” and “get to know me” and… other boring, played-out stuff.
Asking a question also immediately gets the reader involved. It takes your About page from “learn all about me, me, me!” to “hey, this is actually a conversation, and I want you to get to know me while *I* also get to know YOU.“
Plus, it helps the reader determine whether they’re in the right place – and if they are, it helps them realize that you—the owner of this website—understand them.
Whit’s ideal client has definitely wished someone could swoop in and save them from their never-ending admin tasks, as the headline prompts. In fact, they probably find themselves wishing that every single freaking day.
So, of course, we’re imagining them reading this with a “hell yes!” written across their forehead, nodding and deep-sighing as they scroll, thankful that someone gets it.
Next, we introduce the solution to their problem: Whitney.
Quick review – their problem is their never-ending admin tasks, and Whit is the solution, because she wants to help them take back their ‘me’ time.
She reassures them that she understands their struggle, because she knows “life is meant to be enjoyed, and entrepreneurship shouldn’t take away from that.”
This is one fancy way of her saying “I get it. We agree that entrepreneurship shouldn’t be filled with boring admin stuff. I’m gonna take that off your plate, bestie.”
She’s easing into the “we have the same story” part of the About page…
And this is where the magic happens.
This paragraph looks like any old blurb you’d see on a traditional About page of a service-based business owner at first glance.
In reality, though, we’re regurgitating the reader’s own story right back to them.
And we’re able to do it effortlessly, seamlessly—because we identified the similarities between Whit and the people she’s serving.
She’s a busy entrepreneur, too.
She’s a mom, too.
She knows what it’s like to question whether the whole “I work for myself and it’s awesome!” narrative is bullshit, too.
So, while technically this “About me” paragraph is about Whit, it’s about the reader, too. And that’s the key ingredient that makes this About page so successful.
That, and the fact that we used an easy-to-read, easy-to-picture-yourself-in story to illustrate those similarities. Here’s how I did it:
#1 – I used SPECIFIC examples, like “3rd cup of coffee” instead of just ‘coffee’ and “blue light burning your eyes” instead of just ‘feeling tired.’
#2 – I considered the things that her ideal clients would wish they had more time for, actually. Not on the typical ~girl boss~ level that the reader may have been expecting. That’s why I chose to say “…sick of spending my precious time away from my daughter, and my husband, and my Netflix (what?! I can’t live without TV!)” — because it made her real.
And, if you followed her on Instagram, you’d quickly find out she and her blue pig-tails are often chilling in bed, Netflix on, system-automating and inbox-clearing and course-creating away for her clients.
(Side note: one of my goals in writing high-converting website copy is always to make it a continuation of their existing persona or brand, so that when their readers interact with them elsewhere—like on Instagram, or over email, or on discovery calls—they get the same version of the person they read about on their About page, or in their web copy. Hence the Netflix reference for Whit.)
#3 – I wrote her a ‘why’ statement that I knew would be the same as (or similar to) that of her ideal clients. “I became an entrepreneur because I wanted to feel fulfilled, balanced, and excited about work.”
Actually, I wrote the entire About page based on the things I knew would make her readers think ‘yuuup, same, girl.’ That’s what effective website copy does.
There’s a reason my services page says I serve my clients by ‘writing “omg, that’s SO me” copy’ – because that’s what works! That’s what transforms readers into buyers; that’s what gets us actual results.
And it’s not hard to do.
(Stay tuned for more on how you can make your About page more ~relatable~ at the end of this post!)
ANYWAY, back to Whit…
The above story helps the reader feel like they know her, even though we really didn’t mention any personal details at all.
We didn’t mention where she lives, or what she does for fun, or what kind of person she is.
We didn’t talk about what her previous job was, or her credentials, or her experience as a Systems Expert.
And we didn’t have to.
Because all her ideal clients needed to read in order to get to know her, like her, and trust her, was that SHE UNDERSTANDS THEM. She *gets it* and she can take their pain away.
No degree or personal detail will have the same effect as “I know what you’re going through, because I went through it, too, and I have a unique understanding of how to make your current situation better for you.”
After Whit’s super-relatable “About me but not actually about me at all” story, we wrapped things up by solidifying the idea that she’d overcome her burnt-out-entrepreneur phase, and now is completely capable of helping her readers do the same.
We showed them the transformation of “this sucks” to “this is actually amazing now, thanks to this solution that’s really easy—here, I’ll help! And look how awesome my life is now that I’ve used this same solution myself!”
And, of course, we did so in a way that lets the readers envision themselves in the copy; put themselves at the center of the story.
After the above call-to-action, Whit threw in a little this-or-that moment about the platforms she uses just to add a little element of fun, then we closed out the page with a very clear, “this is how I can help you” statement:
You never, ever, ever want to make your readers guess what to do next, so it’s vital that your final CTA—and, really, all of your CTAs—are as clear as humanly possible. “Explore services” tells them we want them to click on the services page and browse. Easy next step.
Let’s break it down into easy-to-replicate steps, shall we?
Here’s a second example of an About page that follows a similar formula, but with more emphasis on ‘this is why we’re the shit.’ It packs more punch than the “not-about-you About page” of Whit’s website, but it still shows how you can write a bit less while including more of the reader’s story. The full portfolio piece is right here.
Check out this blog post — it’s all about adding personality to your About page, and if you liked this one, you’ll love that one.
If you’re looking for more help with website copywriting, here’s how I can support you:
Not sure which option would be best for you?! DM me — I’ll help you decide. 👀
I’m Sara Noel—website copywriter and marketing mentor for creatives, copywriters, and all-around cool people. If you like my content and you want even more BTL in your life, here are a few ways you can connect with me:
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