How to Write a Professional Bio That Attracts More Clients
As a freelancer, gaining new clients can be a lot like applying for a job on the traditional market. You have to stand out amid a host of competitors to convince clients that you’re the best for the job. In other words, you have to sell yourself. There’s no better place to do that than your professional bio, the one-paragraph snippet that tells clients who you are as a freelancer. Follow these steps to learn how to write a professional bio that can help you hook more clients than ever.
Step 1: Create a Killer First Sentence
Some time-strapped clients may not read past the first sentence, so that initial impression is paramount. Use it to summarize who you are and what you do. Add your years of experience here, if applicable, and remember to write in third-person. Here’s an example:
“Jane Doe is a freelance editor with three years of experience helping a broad range of clients shape and refine their writing.”
Step 2: Bulk Up Your Bio With Qualifications and Experience
Remember that your professional bio isn’t your resume, so don’t write it like one. Include your education only if it’s relevant to your freelancing work. When listing your skills, avoid mentioning soft skills such as teamwork and leadership. Instead, focus on hard skills and experience, such as Adobe Photoshop CS6 or SEO optimization. One good practice for this section is to start wide and go narrow, as the following example shows.
“Emily specializes in web content writing, including product descriptions, neighborhood guides and movie reviews.”
Step 3: Mention Previous Clients
Include one to three of your most prominent past clients to add credibility to your bio. These don’t need to be Fortune 500 companies, but the more recognizable the name, the better. Before including any past clients in your bio, be sure to get the go-ahead. Some freelancing clients prefer to remain anonymous, so respect their privacy.
Step 4: Think About What Sets You Apart
One key to writing a professional bio is to step outside of the work zone to give readers a feel for who you are as a person. If you have any personal projects, hobbies or interests that relate in some way to your industry, let clients know. A freelance writer who has published a novel or runs a cooking blog is instantly more interesting.
Step 5: Edit for a Magnetic Effect
Your freelancer bio is useless if potential clients lose interest after the first sentence. To keep readers hooked, edit your writing to maximize interest. Erase cliches such as “I’m a hard worker” along with any fluff and filler, words and phrases that add no real value to your bio. One way to do this is to transform vague descriptions into concrete information. For instance, instead of “experienced professional,” write “freelance editor with four years of experience.” You can also switch out dull verbs such as “does” and “has” for more interesting ones such as “creates,” “provides” and “innovates.”
Step 6. Add a Professional Headshot and Contact Info
As a freelancer, the only contact you have with clients is often digital, so humanize your bio with a professional headshot. Take a photo with good lighting and a plain background, and wear appropriate clothing. Finally, unless your contact info is located elsewhere on the web page, add it to your bio in a separate paragraph.
A great freelancer bio should be well-written and professional, but that doesn’t mean it has to be boring. Depending on your industry, you may even get away with adding a touch of humor to your writing. Use these steps along with your best judgment to make a freelancer bio that blows clients away.