Welcome to the 8th episode of Smart Brand Marketing with Tom Libelt.
In this session of The Smart Brand Marketing Podcast, I chat with Rob Dix about what the 2nd most important page on your website is… how to quickly improve it and what types of results you can get from doing so.
The About Page: What It Does For You and Why You Need to Fix It
Admit it, you have not really given much thought to your website’s About Us page. After all, the information you provide there can be repeated in other pages and can even be delivered in a more concise form by way of your marketing. It seems like the most inconsequential page in your entire website to the point that it sometimes makes no senses why you even have one in the first page.
However, your About Us page happens to be a rather integral part of your entire website and also your online marketing campaign. As a matter of fact, it’s the second most important page of your website next only to the Homepage. As such, it’s best that you consider taking a look at what your About Us page contains and how you can optimize it.
Why Optimizing Your Landing Pages is Important
Your About Us page, unlike every other webpage out there, serves a rather specific purpose. Whereas pages like your home page and services/products page can be accommodated for various transactions and activities, your About Us page is there to help people get introduced to what your business does and what kind of services/products it offers. If done right, in fact, it might just give your target audience the final nudge to convert into a paying customer.
There are also some other benefits that you can let your business enjoy from with the help of a properly designed About Uspage such as:
- 1. Standing Out
Since making yourself distinguishable is a must if you are competing with other businesses online, it goes without saying that every page on your website must exude some sense of originality and personality. Sure, an About Us page contains information as mundane as who the business is, the staff members, and the mission-vision statement. That’s pretty much the standard layout for any About Us page without making the entire page redundant or useless.
However, it is how that information is delivered that can help your entire website stand out. You can have the most boring product line or services in the market right now but have a quirky about us page and traffic to your website should remain stable for as long as possible.
- 2. Introducing Yourself to the Market
This should be a no-brainer but your About Us page is your opportunity to tell to the market who you are. It’s like a calling card of sorts but without the restrictions of having a small space to write on.
In here, you can go into full detail as to how you came up with your business and what you went through putting it up. You can even go into a full-on discussion as to your inspirations and aspirations if you want to. For instance, if you have a restaurant, then the about us page could talk about that one dining experience you had which inspired you to create the business.
The goal here is to make your brand as personal and relatable as it can possibly be. If you want a more uncluttered approach, you can have two sections for your About Us page: one the talks about the business itself and another that introduces you and your staff to your audience.
- 3. Talking to The Audience – Minus the JargonIf there is one thing that turns off a lot of audiences from any brand is that they sound either too technical or market-y. You might like to use high-falluting words in your About Us page to sound smart but it tends to be an eyesore for readers. After all, how are they going to appreciate whatever you are offering if they can’t even understand what you are saying?
Also, you might be compelled to use some buzzwords in your About Us page to reach to younger demographics but here’s the thing: people right now can tell if you are trying to be sincere or just getting their attention. If they can spot BS in your statement, they won’t return for another visit for a long time.
A properly designed About Us page should consist of short yet meaningful sentences that tell your audience what you are in the simplest terms possible. Always remember that simplicity leads to understanding and being understandable makes you a bit more empathetic.
What Should an About Us Page Contain?
Since the page is all about introducing yourself to the audience, you must do it in such a way that is memorable yet easy for the brain to process. With that in mind, you might wonder just what should an About Us page contain? Regardless of the information you are going to put there, the essentials must be in it as well such as:
Running a business is an experience in itself. Surely there must be some instance in that experience that is worth sharing to your audiences. Think of all the memorable events leading to the creation of your business or your experiences running it that are quirky, interesting, and potentially impactful.
You don’t have to tell the entire history of your company (you can save that for another section; and if you reach more than a quarter of a century) or have to repeat the same lines your marketing has said for the business. A story in itself can give your readers a glimpse as to what you stand for and what your business aims to achieve. Of course, it should entice them to learn more of your company which they can do in other pages of the website.
So, what makes you think you have what it takes to answer a specific problem your customers might have? People right now would want to trust a business for their needs which is why they would want to know what you have done in the past to make you think you are worth their time and loyalty.
Always remember that things have changed now as much as consumer behavior is concerned. Previous marketing strategies geared towards brand recognition are no longer effective as people have shifted from looking for what is identifiable to what is effective as a solution to a very specific problem.
Your credentials should give them that assurance. Start with the reasons why you went into the business, how long you have been operating this kind of trade and, if available, the awards you have won. You can even list down the people and groups you have worked with in the past especially if they are that famous.
It’s beating your own chest, tooting your own horn, and whatever cheeky self-promotion metaphor you can think of, really. But, hey, whatever it takes to get your audience to trust you will work.
Since an About Page is all about introducing yourself, you can expect for people to want to know what you and your business will look like. The reason for this is quite simple: people would want to know if they can trust you and the best way to do that is to have a peak behind the curtain, Wizard of Oz style. After all, it’s a bit hard to trust a company that evokes no human charm at all.
This is where your images will come into play as it can tell a visual story of the people behind your brand, the workplace, and how you do your services. Of course, this means that stock photos should be avoided at all costs in your About Us page.
The Services and Quality You Offer
No, you don’t have to list down every product and service that you are selling here. That’s what your Products/Services page is for. Instead, what you want to convey here is the kind of culture that your company has that makes it stand out from other similar businesses. How do you and your staff treat work? What’s a day in your workplace like? Things like these tend to make you more human to any audience.
You can even list down your philosophy for the business. This is quite different from the mission and vison statement although they might come from the same line of thought. Simply put, it is a concise description of how you view your services/products as well as the customers you are offering them to.
A Call to Action
Just like any piece of written content, your About Us page should not be just satisfied with informing and entertaining. It has to compel your audience to do something on your behalf. It can be as simple as prompting them other pages in the website like the products/services page to start the sales process or going to the contact us page to get subscribed.
On the flip side, you can also inform your audience where else they can also contact you for convenience. A link to your social media pages would suffice here. Also, bear in mind that how you and your staff respond and interact with customers on social media will tell a lot about your business’s culture more than what you say on your website.
Fixing the Page
It goes without saying that you should reconsider how you view your About Us page now and embrace a more creative approach for it. This means that you should also fix some problems in it. Here’s how:
Ditch the Superlatives
Buzzwords like world-class, cutting-edge, state of the art, and visionary are all just fluff. Always remember that it’s the customers, not you, who can tell if you are truly an outstanding brand or not. Try to stick to the facts when describing your business. Use some compelling figures to support your argument.
If none of these are available since you are just starting, your next best option is to describe what your business aims to achieve in the most realistic of terms possible. Don’t make stuff up just to impress the reader.
Compel, Not Impress
For some reason, the smaller and newer the business is, the fluffier it’s about us page will be. It’s not against the law to try to get everybody’s attention through creative writing. That only becomes a problem when you build up a standard or hype so high that you cannot hope to reach it.
The best solution here? Own it. If you are a startup, be truthful about it. If you’re an old business trying to revitalize itself, say so. You can only compel people about what you are and what you can do for them. Don’t try to be something that your business is not right now.
Don’t Stop Writing On It
Your About Us Page should reflect the current state of your business or, at the least, the general direction it is aiming for. Simply put, it’s always a work in progress and never a finished product.
Whenever your business hits a new landmark like venturing into a new market, expanding your reach into other demographics, reaching a major anniversary like 10 or 25 years, or winning a major accolade, you must put that in your About Us page. Always make sure that your page will say the same things that will accurately (and positively) describe your business today.
Shift the Focus
Writing your About Us page can either be two things. If you are a bit shy, you tend to veer away from talking about yourself here and focus on marketing. This results in a rather sales-y, fully piece which does not convince any reader that you know what you are doing.
If shyness is not an issue for you, then you run the risk of making things over the top. The end result is an overinflated puff piece about you and the business filled with hyperbole.
The best way to deal with either of these paths is to think of writing the page more for your business and less about you. So as long as you focus on facts, figures, and actual accomplishments, then writing the About Us page should not be an issue.
How did you describe your business in your About Us Page? Do you think that it’s necessary to regularly update it? The comments section below is always open for discussions of all sorts.
- Twitter: Rob Dix
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