How to Write A Bio- Tips for Building Your Personal Brand

How To Write a Bio

How to Write a Bio

Don’t know how to write a bio on yourself? You’re not alone. Bio writing is difficult, it forces you to prioritize what’s most important about you. It’s an intimidating task to boil down your entire professional life into one paragraph that’s clear, concise, and works for you. Luckily, you don’t have to start your bio from scratch. Before writing your bio, let’s dissect Dan Schawbel’s. If someone is already doing things right, why not learn from them? Personal branding guru Dan Schawbel‘s short bio is an excellent example of a brand-building, professional bio that works for him. I’m going to break it down piece by piece to show you what you can learn from it.  Let’s get right down to it:

Learn by Example: How To Write a Bio

Dan Schawbel’s Bio: “Dan is the leading expert in personal branding for the generation-y audience, with an award winning and world recognized Blog, a TV podcast series that he directs, Awards that he gives out, and a Magazine that benefits the American Cancer Society. He has written over 20 publications for major magazines and online resources and has been featured in Fast Company Magazine and Yahoo! Finance and is EMC’s social media expert. He is also establishing the first 360 degree personal branding website, DanSchawbel.com, creating a new standard for career development. Recently, he has redefined personal branding by establishing a collaborate wiki, which he is using to acquire knowledge from all the leading experts to establish a single definition for personal branding.”

Analysis of Dan’s Bio

Let’s break down Dan’s bio now, one piece at a time. “Dan is the leading expert in personal branding.” This immediately tells you Dan’s niche, without hesitation and without confusion. When you’re writing your own bio, be crystal clear about what you do from the get-go. Your first sentence should have people nodding their heads along with you… ahh okay, so that’s what you do.

“…for the generation-y audience.” This makes it very clear who Dan’s audience is. Personal branding focuses on achieving success by making you the best solution for a particular audience. It would be difficult for Dan to say he’s the leading personal branding expert in the entire world. It’s much easier to be an expert for a certain group of people – for Dan, that’s Generation Y (today’s twenty year olds). Who is your ideal audience? It could be individuals (the disabled, the elderly, women in their twenties, etc.) or groups (cancer researchers, failing not-for-profits, green startups, etc.). Choosing an audience helps you attract more ideal opportunities that better align with your long-term goals. That way, everybody wins.  In sum, choosing an audience is an important aspect of figuring out how to write a bio.

“…with an award winning and world recognized Blog, a TV podcast series that he directs, Awards that he gives out, and a Magazine that benefits the American Cancer Society.” This sentence highlights Dan’s professional accomplishments. What have you done that directly backs up your first “what I do” sentence? Include your most important achievements, but be picky because you don’t have too much space.

“…He has written over 20 publications for major magazines and online resources and has been featured in Fast Company Magazine and Yahoo! Finance and is EMC’s social media expert.” This showcases Dan’s “credibility boosters” – items that build a strong argument for his authority in his field. What credibility boosters (awards, certifications, memberships, etc.) might make you a more attractive job candidate in your bio?

…He is also establishing the first 360 degree personal branding website, DanSchawbel.com, creating a new standard for career development.” This shows what Dan is doing to stand out in his area of expertise. What things (side projects, past work, etc.) have you done that differentiates you from your peers?

“…Recently, he has redefined personal branding by establishing a collaborate wiki, which he is using to acquire knowledge from all the leading experts to establish a single definition for personal branding.” This demonstrates how Dan is contributing to his niche. Are you doing anything novel or innovative in your niche that might make you more memorable to readers of your bio? If so, be sure to include it.

Conclusion

So there you have it, a breakdown of one of the best biographies that I’ve ever seen.  So now do you know how to write a bio?   You can definitely learn a lot from seeing how Dan’s bio was broken down, if you have any more tips or tricks on how to write a bio please be sure to leave them in the comments section under the post.  Have a great day!

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  • Bethanykarlsen

     this reallly helps….,…NOT

  • Chelseyhall

    does NOT help

  • constance

    i am 23 years old lady and in the process of writing a bio but at times i get stuck on ideas and feel its a waste of time,but deep inside i know its something i really want to do and publish it some day after a completing my honors degree.Is it normal for that to happen more especially because i am writing about things that has happened in my life till this point?And thanks for the advice you are giving really get me going

    • Mike Russell

      Hi Constance,
      Are you writing a bio or a biography? If it’s the former, check out the resources that I’ve linked to, found elsewhere in these comments.
      If it’s the latter, (great!), I’d encourage you just to write, write, write for now. Don’t worry about how it will all fit together. Write when your ‘muse’ strikes. At another point, take some time to think about how you’d like to structure your experiences. Your future readers will need a logical progression to follow your story.
      Best of success!

  • http://www.7mentalgamesecrets.com/ Coach

    Excellent and very detailed. I’m definitely going to use the key points you pointed out. I was thinking about what I want to find in an author bio if I want to follow the author or not. 

  • Xx-no0ona-xx1

    thanx for sharing this was very use full for me i wanted someone to advice me how to write a bio to say it in my presentation 

  • Ann Cavanaugh

    Hi Pete: Thanks for passing along some great tips on writing a personal bio. I’m just about to pitch my first book, and after reading your post, I’m going to rewrite my bio!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Eliana-Stern/1039060030 Eliana Stern

    Great post! If you decide to use a template, they have them at www.thewritebio.com. You can always edit it to your personal style.

  • MsCondomLady

    this was sooo very helpful!  I have been “writing” my bio for over six months… and this helped me to finally accomplish that goal!  THANKS SOOOOOO MUCH!

  • Neo

    Thank you so much!!!!!!! This has helped me a lot!

  • Guychardo1

    Thank you so much … It has been helpful greatly

  • Guychardo1

    We can’t have it all…

  • http://www.facebook.com/ArtographyStudios Nicholas Wong

    Thank you for your guidelines and insight! Will keep referring back to you as a great source of branding information!

  • Aldo

    Thanks for share your knowledge!!!! Helps a lot!!

  • Samarth

    Thanks!!
    But how get a kick start for an Autobiography??
    I need to know an attractive way to start my portfolio??

  • Samarth

    adfs

  • Samarth

    I need to know it as quick as possible!!!

  • Julie

    Thank you – short precise and to the point. I appreciate your assistance and advice.

  • jaziyah

    how to write a bio for school it’s very hard for me im a 3rd grader

  • http://www.wandastrickfaden.com Wanda Strickfaden

    great help thankyou!