You should include this in your about page if you're a personality-led brand
I'm going to put my flag in the ground and state something that I think all service providers should have on their about page. Sometimes exceptions to the rules can work very well. But that's as far as I'll go in being non-committal. (I hate confrontation, can you tell?)
Your about page should include something you're passionate about or a significant event in your life. Basically, something personal to you. Not necessarily something private, but something about you that's separate from your business.
If you're a pottery enthusiast, a windsurfer, or a collector of exotic pets it could be worth mentioning.
Hmm, that seems non-commital now, doesn't it?
'Could be' worth mentioning?
Ok, I'll come back to that, but first, let's look at why.
Emotions win the day
People want to feel emotionally connected to the brands they buy from. As a service provider, your brand is you. Ergo, they are more likely to feel a connection to a whole person. Not just a [insert job title] who does [insert job], but someone who has life experience and some hobbies.
This CV phrase is a bit ick but your hobby/life experience will say oodles about you as a person that will make you an appealing option as a contractor without your audience even really thinking this through.
Windsurfer? Wow, you must be courageous and determined. Potter? You're obviously creative and have an eye for what looks good. Survived a difficult event? You're resilient and understand what your audience is going through.
It gives you a story to tell on your about page and other content
People connect emotionally with stories and anecdotes. But not just that, stories help them to process information quickly. To understand an idea or concept in a flash.
To align your business with an activity that you do regularly will give your brand a strategic narrative and will help you tell stories in your content that resonate.
There are caveats, so what else should you consider?
Let's circle back to the 'could be'...
Well, the key thing here is to try to connect your story with your audience's pain points/desires. It's not about sharing something simply because you want to.
As Content Writer & Editor, Dominique van Werkhoven recently said on LinkedIn:
For that converting magic to occur in your web copy, EVERYTHING you write needs to be relevant to your target audience because they don't have time to read your life history.
You need to do that all-important customer research and the point is not to make stuff up. That would be especially awful If your client were to invite you to a windsurfing session and you were a complete novice.
It's about picking and choosing from the range of options in your interesting and varied life. Even if your favourite activity is putting woolly socks on and sitting on the sofa, there will be plenty to choose from.
It's also about writing it in a certain way.
Here's a (rather cheesy) example:
I’m Jane, I’m a brand photographer and comic book nerd. My superpower is helping business owners feel like a superhero in their brand photos. Every superhero has their unique ability. Let’s showcase yours.
Highlighted in blue is the genuine interest of our photographer. In pink, is copy that speaks into the customers' paint point (not being noticed amongst the competition), which connects with the comic book theme that becomes a vehicle for speaking about the problems and desires in a unique and engaging way.
A final comment
In the intro, I mentioned rules can be broken to good effect and I would say that if your personal brand is to be aloof... a closed book... an enigma then by all means, go for it.
Ultimately, it's about getting noticed and sharing what's uniquely and genuinely YOU is often the most effective and sustainable.
Thanks for reading!