Aaron Orendorff is a contributor not just at Inc.com but also at other popular publications as well. He also states he dons different hats by day and night, giving a mention about marketing company iconiContent. Oh, and he gives a link to download his checklist in the bio. Smart, right?
How To Write A Bio: Ultimate Guide (With Creative Examples)
So, you sit down to write your online bio, pumped to reveal to the world your professional self and achievements finally, and nothing happens. All of the words and phrases you had been stockpiling for months in your head suddenly disappeared.
Finding an authentic way to describe your professional background and showcasing yourself as a credible, accomplished, and likable expert in the industry takes a lot of work. You decide your current profile is good enough. It works for you. Simple.
However, what most people often forget is that a bio isn’t just about listing professional achievements. It is a conversation starter, a way of making a digital introduction. Also, your bio — no matter how articulate and insightful — doesn’t need to appeal to everyone.
What to Include in a Bio On Your Website
The “About” section of any personal website can be a slog. A drain. A hassle. You’ve already created a whole website about yourself, so it can be difficult to muster the strength to write that final description of who you are and what you’re about.
But never fear! Your website bio doesn’t need to be complicated, it just needs context on who you are and what you’ve done. This is an open, larger space, so you have room to list a few accomplishments and give context on why they’re important. You can also add a short paragraph about who you are outside of your nine-to-five. For this type of bio, you may also want to include a contact form or email, to help prospective clients, employers, or collaborators get in touch. If you do, be sure to include a clear call-to-action for your reader to contact you.
Best Professional Bio Examples
1. Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Bio Platform: Personal Website
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie begins her professional bio with an invitation into her world. In just one sentence, she describes the depth and breadth of her body of work as it has been translated into thirty languages and several publications.
Along with her notable writing career, Chimamanda showcases her speaking career which introduces readers to a well-rounded view of who she is as a professional. From there, her bio seamlessly flows into her recent work and a glimpse into how and where she spends her personal time – the United States and Nigeria.
2. Chime Mmeje
Bio Platform: LinkedIn
What comes next is a unique differentiator in a professional bio. Instead of listing accolades, Chima shares a few wins she’s secured for her clients. This nifty section does two things: it builds the readers’ confidence in her ability to deliver results and it’s a practical way to name-drop her clients in a professional bio.
3. DJ Nexus
Bio Platform: Facebook
This New England-based DJ has single-handedly captured the Likes of more than 2,000 people in and beyond Boston, MA. And even if you don’t listen to the type of music he produces, it’s hard not to listen to his compelling Facebook bio.
For instance, consider his tagline, under “About” — “Quiet during the day. QUITE LOUD at night!” DJ Nexus tells you when he works in an awesome way. I got goosebumps just imagining a dance club he might play his music in.
In this story, DJ Nexus describes both when he “became known as DJ Nexus” and a company he founded shortly afterward — all before going to college.
This is a terrific lesson for professional bios: Customers want to learn about you. Consider how you might also lead your Facebook visitors off your Facebook page and onto your personal website to learn more about who you are.
4. Lena Axelsson
Bio Platform: Industry Website
When it all comes down to it, your professional bio is no different than any other piece of persuasive copy — no matter where it lives. One of the most common mistakes people make is thinking of it as its own beast, separate from other pieces of writing. If you think about it that way, you’re far more likely to write something painfully uninteresting.
When you sit down to write your professional bio and you’re watching that cursor blinking on the screen, think about how you would introduce a blog post. You don’t just dive right into the meat of the thing, now, do you? No. You start with an introduction.
The best bios are often concise (around 200–300 words), so you don’t have a lot of room to play around. But a single sentence that tees your reader up and provides context for the accomplishments that follow could make the rest of your bio that much more persuasive.
Take Lena Axelsson’s bio, for instance. She’s a marriage and family therapist — a job where empathy and compassion are a big part of the job description. That’s why she chooses to open her bio with a great introductory sentence: “When human beings experience trauma or severe life stressors, it is not uncommon for their lives to unravel.”
Then, she goes into why she’s passionate about her job, how she helps her clients, and how she caters her approach to each individual patient. The necessary educational information is left for the end, after the reader has been hooked.
Your bio doesn’t have to be super serious, nor does it have to start with a joke. This bio shows how you can capture your reader’s attention by being empathetic and showing how that empathy shapes a valuable professional.
5. Mark Levy
Bio Platform: Personal Website
The second sentence of the bio reads: “He was frightened of public school, loved playing baseball and football, ran home to watch ape films on the 4:30 Movie, listened to The Jam and The Buzzcocks, and read magic trick books.”
Short Bio Examples
14. Ann Handley
Bio Platform: Personal Website
But when people list out all their accomplishments in their bios, they risk sounding a little egotistical. Sure, you might impress a handful of people with all those laurels, but many people who read your bio will end up feeling either intimidated or annoyed. Think about it: Is that how you want the majority of your readers to feel when they read your bio?
To minimize the egoism that comes with talking about yourself, think about how you can list out your accomplishments without sounding like you’re bragging. Ann does this really well, choosing a tone in her bio that’s more approachable.
Best of all, Ann chooses to focus on her readers’ challenges and motivations, rather than her own. For instance, she writes, “Ann Handley writes and speaks about how businesses can escape marketing mediocrity to achieve tangible results. And she will inspire you to do work you’re proud of. “
Follow the link and you’ll be led to a page dedicated to a fuller bio, which she’s divided into two parts: a “short version” (literally a bulleted list of key facts) and a “long version,” which includes traditional paragraphs. There’s something in there for everyone.
15. Rebecca Bollwitt
Bio platform: Instagram
Instagram is a notoriously difficult platform on which to write a good bio. Similar to Twitter, you simply don’t have room for a professional bio that includes everything about you. And because Instagram is primarily a mobile app, many viewers are reading about you passively on their mobile device.
The rest of her bio follows suit, breaking up the text with an appropriate emoji and a perfect collection of nouns to tell me who she is as a person. She even links out to her husband’s Instagram account after the heart emoji (an adorable addition), and assures her followers that all of her pictures are authentically hers.
Take a lesson from Miss604, and show your personal side. Just because you’re branding yourself as a professional doesn’t mean you have to take your human being hat off. Often your most personal attributes make for the best professional bio content.
16. Corey Wainwright
Bio Platform: Blog Byline
Corey Wainwright is a Principal Marketing Manager here
at HubSpot. She’s written content for HubSpot’s Marketing Blog for years, and her blog author bio has caught my eye since before I ever started working for HubSpot. (Back then, it started with, “Corey just took a cool vacation.”)
It works in this particular context because, at HubSpot, our blog authors often prefer to make themselves as friendly and approachable as possible — while letting the content speak for itself.
It helps that authors’ social media accounts are located right below our names and above our pictures. For folks who really do want a list of Corey’s credentials, they can click the LinkedIn button to go to her LinkedIn page. (You can read this blog post to learn how to create social media buttons and add them to your website.)
17. Megan Gilmore
Bio Platform: Instagram
Fortunately, you glean most of this information immediately from her Instagram bio, which is short and to-the-point: “No fads; just real food recipes. Author of Everyday Detox + No Excuses Detox.” Her “no fads” call-out shows followers she aims to be helpful rather than gimmicky.
Plus, Gilmore includes a CTA link within her Instagram bio that leads followers to free, ready-to-use recipes. You might be thinking — Why would she do that, since it discourages people from buying her book? But that couldn’t be further from the truth.
By giving her followers the chance to try out her recipes, she’s slowly turning leads into customers. After I tried a few of her Instagram recipes and loved them, I decided to go ahead and buy her book, knowing I’d like more of what she had to offer.
18. Van Jones
Bio Platform: Twitter
Someone who’s known for a variety of talents and skills may find it difficult to capture who they are in a professional bio. When limited to just over 100 characters on Twitter, the feat is nearly impossible. But Van Jones effortlessly explains who he is and why it matters to everyone who visits his Twitter profile.
Professional bio examples
Now that you know the basics of writing a professional bio, here are some short bio examples to inspire you. You can use these examples as additional templates for guidance as you craft your own personal biography.
01. Bristol Guitar Making School
Of all the professional bio examples, Alex Bishop’s content exudes passion. Strategically placing the bio on the About page of his small business website, he highlights his skills and explains why he finds his work meaningful. In particular, we love his description of why he chose to pursue guitar making:
“My passion as a guitar maker comes from a life-long obsession with making things. From a young age I have always tried to manipulate objects and materials in order to create something entirely different. I find that working with wood is a way for me to connect with nature. The simple act of shaping wood to make something functional or beautiful brings me endless satisfaction.”
Pei Jung Ho
Artist Pei Jung Ho’s brief professional description on her graphic design website is an effective example of a short bio. She concisely highlights her skills and experience, holding the readers’ attention while sticking to the essential details. Notably, she shows why her approach is unique and how it’s rooted in her cultural heritage, helping her stand out from other artists in the field. As she explains:
“Having been an art student for 12 years, I constantly explore various disciplines to broaden my own artistic pursuits, integrating a fine art background with design studies and illustration. My current areas of interest and exploration are my Taiwanese culture, human-centered design, and branding. I begin projects by thoroughly researching and then developing my ideas through creative thinking.”
03. Amanda Shields Interiors
Amanda Shields provides us with another effective bio example on her interior design website. Importantly, she spices up her bio by explaining how home decor aligns with her personal life and why it’s so close to her heart as a mother and entrepreneur:
“After working as a product designer for numerous retailers over the years, and after I had my first child, I decided to take the plunge and start my own home staging business…. Coincidentally, a month later I discovered I was pregnant with my second child. I loved the new challenges I faced as a new entrepreneur and mom and it didn’t take long for me to discover that this was my calling…. I felt the need to expand my business and launch Amanda Shields Interiors as its own entity to focus specifically on residential interiors and design.”
By placing this content on her website’s About page, she provides potential clients with insights into her expertise and professional experience. She expands upon the choices she made along her career path, strategically making note of her achievements and acquired skills along the way.