Red Slice had an excellent chat with PR powerhouse Nancy Juetten of Main Street Media Savvy. Nancy helps businsses get seen, heard and celbrated in their own backyards and beyond. She just came out with a fabulous new tool, Bye Bye Boring Bio Action Guide, for crafting a winning personal bio that tells your story, gains killer exposure and scores points wih the press. We sat down to talk about what a well-crafted bio can do for your press opps and business.
RS: Hi Nancy. So, really, how important is your bio? Who reads those on websites anyway?
NJ: People do business with people they like, trust and respect. It is essential to share who you are, why you are qualified, and why it matters with a few lines of well-chosen text that tell your story in a compelling, inviting way. A bio is an efficient and essential tool to share this information so the right people will pay attention. If you are serious about speaking on the radio, commenting for the media, or getting invited to speak in exchange for professional fees, you must have a bio that makes clear the value you bring and why it matters right now.
Also, consider this: The US department of labor reported recently that 15 states are still experiencing double digit unemployment.
2) 27 million people are in some stage of “escaping from cubicle nation” to start and grow businesses of their own.
3) Plenty more are seeking out side incomes to stay afloat in this demanding economy
These circumstances have people looking for a way to stand out from the crowd so they can get the chance to dance and get on with their life’s work NOW. Don’t be boring and boilerplate with your message. Be magnetic and really great to invite more of the right opportunities.
Check your web site stats to find out how many people are reading your bio. Chances are the numbers are higher than you would have first thought. If your bio is “boilerplate” and boring, take the time to revise it to be “really great” and inviting. Then, when your ideal customers land here first and love what they read, they won’t be able to stop themselves from reading more, sending you an email, or dialing the phone to discuss how to benefit from how you serve.
This bio for Patricia Fripp is one of my favorites:
Patricia Fripp is an award-winning speaker, sales presentation trainer, and executive speech coach who delights audiences, electrifies executives who speak, and transforms sales teams. Meetings and Conventions magazine calls Patricia “one of the country’s 10 most electrifying speakers.” Kiplinger’s Personal Finance says, “Patricia Fripp’s speaking school is the sixth best way you can invest in your career.” She is also the author of Make It! So You Don’t Have to Fake It and Get What You Want. Learn more at www.patriciafripp.com.
Right off the bat, you know who she is, what she does, and for whom. It is clear that she delivers stunning results. She offers sassy sound bites that lend credibility to her offering. She makes it easy for the reader to learn more and buy. This is a winning recipe that works for radio station interviews, website bios, speaker introductions, and more.
RS: Will people think you’re not professional if your bio is too playful and personal?
NJ: I heard an executive from Microsoft quip, “Social media isn’t a job. It’s a lifestyle.” In today’s information overloaded world, where messages of 140 characters speak volumes about the sender, we all have to be mindful about the quality and texture of information we share in our bios and social networking profiles. My advice is to share information that is relevant and magnetic for your ideal customers to know, while also sharing a bit about who you are so the reader can form an opinion about who you really are. Are you an irrepressible entreprenuer? Are you someone who is known for having an endless supply of great ideas? Are you a
risk taker who loves sky diving, roller coasters, and more? If you try to be all things to all people, you end up being too little of the right things for the right people. Have courage to declare who you are, how you add value, and why you are an essential ingredient for success in your niche, and you’ll invite more of the right
RS: Sounds a lot like what Red Slice says about branding in general. Better to appeal strongly to the people who matter than blandly to many more who don’t. So how will a better crafted bio help me get more exposure and speaking engagements?
NJ: A radio station producer for a nationally syndicated talk show told me last week that the bios guests send in are often long, boring, and not well suited for radio. The downside for the guest is that the radio station producer likely doesn’t have time to re-write the bio to be suitable, so she likely captures key words and runs with it. It is far better for you to provide a few lines of well-worded text to introduce you in the perfect way than to relinquish control to someone who doesn’t care nearly as much about your story or your success as you do. It’s your story. Tell it well.
What most people want is the chance to to do what we really love with our time and our lives. At the same time, most of us fear being anonymous, not being heard, or toiling away in obscurity. And, if being seen, heard and celebrated in the media is on your priority list, a great bio is your calling card to qualify to tell your story so the right people will listen and take action. No matter where you stand on the continuum — from seeking a perfect assignment or getting known for your winning ways in your own backyard and beyond — a great bio isn’t just something to put on the “to do” list. It is absolutely essential, now more than ever.
Folks who struggle can find help with the Bye-Bye Boring Bio Action Guide. I highly recommend checking this out, and I’ve already put some of the lessons learned here into practice for my clients. And those who need a guiding hand from a PR expert to turn their ideas into a few lines of well-worded, magnetic text can consider signing up for an Extreme Bio Makeover.