Is Your Bio Absolute Trash? It May Be Missing This Key Ingredient
July 16, 2020
You know who I don’t trust?
- Mean girls.
- The man who stole my cell phone in 2012.
- Iguanas (they absolutely want to eat your brains).
- Movies that didn't cast Ryan Reynolds.
- AND…this one restaurant in Santiago, Chile, right there in the heart of the Providencia neighborhood that advertises two things on its sign: pizza……..and sushi.
Pizza and sushi, pizza and sushi, pizza and sushi! That’s not even a decent name for a hipster band.
I took it personally that these people had the nerve to try and dupe me, a person in possession of high-functioning taste buds, into thinking that either one of those things would actually be a sound dining decision. How could it be? If you’re focused on making the best pizza, you cannot also be focused on making the best sushi: that’s like trying to be good at singing and fucking. (I’ve decided you can only be good at one of those things in life—clearly my excuse for not being able to hold a tune.)
BUT I DIGRESS. Except, haha, just kidding—when have I ever digressed?
I’ve been thinking about this since the year 2011—not because I’ve got some sort of sick obsession with one of the workers there (I try to save those for places with hot dogs and lobster), but because this is the example I cite to every one of my darling clients who comes to me with their good-intentioned bio and it says something akin to the following:
I’m an entrepreneur, life coach, dog trainer, writer, teacher, misfit, vinegar lover, ancient stone gatherer, and—in my spare time—yoga instructor to the stars.
The biggest issue here is obvious: I’m the only qualified ancient stone gatherer in these parts. But secondarily, the other issue is simple:
When we read through a summary sludge, you’re telling us all of these things that you are, and yet?
We have no idea who you are.
You’re not claiming expertise on anything meaningful; anything that defines your body of work. You’re using a hodgepodge of titles to describe instead of actually describing. But if you’re trying to distinguish yourself?
You’ve got to distinguish your work.
What’s the core philosophy that guides your process? How do you approach your work, and how does it influence the outcome? What’s your signature? Your method? Your style? Your reason? What defines you as a professional—and how does that make you better at what you do?
Use that in your bio. Give me a reason to want to do business with you.
It is difficult to distinguish your work when you’re trying to define yourself as an expert pizza AND sushi, expecting us to believe you’re going to be good at either. Instead, I’m going to walk on by and think “errrrr—thanks for the summary of your life.”
Your bio isn’t a summary, it’s a tool.
And tools require a point in order to make a mark.