For a lot of us, it can feel kind of awkward to talk about ourselves, our accomplishments, and why people should listen to us, hire us, or connect with us. But it’s an important part of the professional world–especially in the form of a professional bio.
Talking about yourself: Completely acceptable in a professional bio.
A professional bio is a short summary of your work experience. It’s definitely helpful (and probably even essential) to have when seeking a new job or career opportunity. But it’s also helpful in clearly communicating to your audience who you are and what you bring to the table. This can be beneficial for networking, expanding your connections, and generating leads for your business–whether you own your own business, freelance, or are part of a larger company.
So how do you write a professional bio that stands out? We’ll walk through what you need to know with examples and templates to make the process easier for you.
Tips for your professional bio
Before you go through the steps of writing out a full professional bio, you need to jot down some important information that you’d like to include. Consider your past accomplishments, your future goals, as well as what sets you apart from other people.
Here are some tips to keep in mind:
- Start with your educational background. What degree do you have or working toward? What education do you have?
- Include your personal or professional accomplishments. Have you won an award? Have you been recognized by your colleagues or employer? What problems have you solved?
- Jot down some personal hobbies or interests. Your work isn’t the only thing that defines you. Including your personal interests and hobbies can make you more relatable.
- Gather your social profiles and contact information. What’s the point of writing a professional bio if no one knows how to reach you? Gather the links to all your social media accounts and include an email address in your bio.
- Think about your goals. Where do you want to be in the future? What are you working toward?
- Remember that your professional bio isn’t about you. This may seem counterintuitive after you’ve spent time reflecting on yourself. But you’re writing your professional bio for an audience. Why should they care? What action do you want them to take?
- Write multiple versions of your professional bio. You may need different versions of your professional bio depending on where you’re publishing it. You can create a “master” professional bio that you shorten, edit, or update based on where it will be placed.
Got it? Good! Let’s move on to the meat and potatoes of this article…
How to write a professional bio
Now that you’ve thought about your goals and experience, let’s dive into how to write a professional bio.
Consider the destination
Your professional bio may appear on marketing materials, social media accounts, your website or portfolio, guest posts, or speaker profiles. Think about who will be reading your professional bio and what you want them to think and know about you.
Depending on where you’re placing your professional bio, you may have different considerations, audiences, or goals. For example, your professional bio for your Instagram account is likely geared toward your existing audience. These people know you–or want to know you and connect with you personally.
If you’re writing a professional bio to include with a guest post, that audience may be unfamiliar with you. So your professional bio may need to include more information as well as a more professional tone.
Identify whether you want to write in first-person or third-person
Want to write from the first-person or third-person perspective? Writing in the third person may be more appropriate if you’re writing it for a brand. However, if this professional bio is for a personal social media account or your portfolio, the first person may be more appropriate. Regardless of what you choose, be consistent.
An example of a professional bio written in the third person.
Target the word count
You will likely have to stick to a certain word count. On Twitter, your bio can be a maximum of 160 characters, while Instagram allows a maximum of 150 characters. TikTok’s character limit is much shorter, at only 80 characters.
If you’re writing a professional bio for your website, you may not have a set word count, but you also want to keep it concise.
Differing word counts is one reason why you can write a customized professional bio and then revise it for another channel later.
Include a link to important profiles
You can only cover so much in a professional bio. Linking to your portfolio or a Linktree allows members of your target audience to explore your offerings in-depth. Most social profiles provide a space for a link. If you don’t have a website or portfolio to link to, include a link to your LinkedIn profile instead.
Write your bio
Now it’s time to get the words down. Using the guidelines above, write a first draft of your professional bio. Use a professional tone, and don’t worry about editing at this point. Your purpose is to get your thoughts out so that you can refine them later.
✍️ Need to write a business description? We’ve got you covered.
Proofread your work
You don’t want to be accidentally embarrassed when you publish your professional bio and realize that there’s a glaring error that you didn’t catch. Before you publish your professional bio, proofread it a final time.
Ideally, it’s helpful to walk away from the professional bio for a few days before returning to it so you can look at it with fresh eyes. Reread it later and make more edits. Send it to a friend, mentor, or trusted colleague for more insights.
Publish your professional bio on different platforms
Your professional bio can go far! You should include it on your website’s About Us page. You should also adapt it into an abbreviated version for all your social media profiles, including your LinkedIn, Instagram, Facebook, TikTok, or YouTube.
Professional bio examples
While understanding the components of a professional bio is important, taking inspiration from existing professional bios will help you write your own. Let’s look through a few professional bio examples to break down how to write the best one.
His professional bio on his LinkedIn page reads:
I’ve been acting for three decades now, which might be described as “a proven track record” or “delivering consistent results” on LinkedIn. I’m currently on a sabbatical to spend time with family and attempt being a 9-to-5 professional.
In recent years, I’ve built what The Wall Street Journal recently called “a business empire.” Still trying to figure out what they meant by that.
My skills include writing, re-writing, tweeting, mixing cocktails, backend engineering for software platforms and watching lower-tier Welsh football matches. Proficiency ranges from excellent to absolutely awful.
Ryan Reynolds is known for his acting, but he also owns Maximum Efforts and Aviation Gin and has invested in other companies. Ryan has a long professional history, but his bio doesn’t focus on any one success.
Instead, he’s covered his skills and experience, while touching on what he’s up to right now. Ryan also infuses his typical sense of humor throughout. It’s a great reminder that even professional bios can include a bit of personality.
Ann’s professional bio on her website reads:
Ann Handley is a writer, digital marketing pioneer, and Wall Street Journal best-selling author who inspires and empowers you to create marketing that your customers will love, igniting real results for your business.
Ann Handley writes and speaks about how businesses can escape marketing mediocrity to achieve tangible results.
And she will inspire you to do work you’re proud of.
Ann Handley’s professional bio is short and concise. Ann’s bio speaks directly to her target audience. Ann writes about how she “empowers you” and how her marketing is “igniting real results,” to convince businesses and professionals to work with her. Her bio is an excellent example of why it’s important to talk directly to your target audience.
On Naeiri’s website, her professional bio reads:
Naeiri Zargarian is a strategy director who believes well-crafted brands have the power to shift culture and accelerate business
Naeiri has spent more than a decade honing the craft of brand-building – from her design degree to advertising and brand consulting. She is passionate about consumer-first, experience-led brands who are not afraid to make bold bets towards the world they want to create.
She has worked at some of the world’s best advertising and branding agencies, including, Anomaly, Rethink and Interbrand. Naeiri likes to engage with a wide range of clients from cultural icons like The Ritz-Carlton and Beats by Dre to industry-specific powerhouses like Thomson Reuters and Prudential. She leads Breakthrough Brands (challenger brands on the verge of mainstream success) and the global luxury think tank at Interbrand.
Living in Toronto, Los Angeles and now New York, Naeiri is a born explorer who draws insight from the edges, the unlikely places, helping clients find original perspective on their industries and audiences.
Naeiri’s professional bio is written on her website in the third person. Her straightforward tone covers her long professional history. She leads with her professional passion (brand building), before diving into her relevant experience, and then closes her bio with a bit of personal information.
Maria’s professional bio on her LinkedIn profile reads:
I spent nearly a decade diving into what makes various B2B and B2C industry content tick, from financial services to high chairs.
Now in the B2B SaaS, AI, and HR tech space, I’ve got a knack for relatable messaging and building brand personality where it’s harder to come by.
My innate passion for relationship-building and networking (oh hey, LinkedIn) mean ramping up connections in a new-ish industry is more valuable than ever.
Posts about: copywriting, content marketing, parenting, working while parenting, human-centered workplace culture, AI, and random musings.
More about me: my collaborative spirit means I’m easy to work with but know how to get stuff done. If you’re a personality-assessment nerd like me, you’d appreciate learning that I’m an Enneagram 3w2, ESTJ, Slytherin, and candied walnut salad topping (probably).
Check out dtcmom.com/about for more.
Maria West kicks off her professional bio with a little background that showcases her as an authority in the B2B and B2C content marketing space. She then dives into what she’s doing now and how she does it well along with information about her areas of expertise. She closes it out with some fun personal details.
It’s a great structure you can use to create your own professional bio. Lead with your background, include professional information, and close with a fun fact or two.
Ashley C. Ford
On Ashley’s Instagram, her professional bio reads:
New York Times bestselling author of the memoir Somebody’s Daughter. Podcast Host. Hoosier. Running up that hill. Rep’d by @beotis & @mmqlit.
Instagram doesn’t give you many characters for a personal bio, so you must carefully think about what you want to communicate. Ashley C. Ford’s bio is straight to the point: she’s an author, podcast host, and Hoosier. In very few words, Ashley communicates her profession and location, and includes a link where people can learn more about her.
Ali’s professional bio on his Twitter reads:
👨⚕️ Doctor turned entrepreneur + world’s most followed productivity expert ✍️ I share evidence-based strategies and tools to help you build a life you love 🚀
Twitter only gives individuals a short space for their professional bio. Ali Abdaal uses the space wisely by using one line to quickly describe his professional history. He then highlights what he shares on social media to entice people into following him. The inclusion of emojis is a fun way to add some personality!
Professional bio templates
There is no one-and-done professional bio template. You’ll need to customize your professional bio template to your personal preferences and goals. Always tailor your professional bio template to any new social media accounts or professional opportunities.
For example, if you are publishing a nonfiction book, you should mention the years of reporting you’ve done. On the other hand, if you’re applying for a grant for a non-profit organization, you may want to include a funny anecdote about the community you serve.
Here are some professional bio templates you can work off of.
Third-person short professional bio template
This short professional bio promotes your past accomplishments and touches on your educational background.
“As a [job title] at [employer], [your name] has helped achieve [accomplishment] and solve [problem]. Drawing on the knowledge [name] gained at [university attended], [your name] implemented a new [strategy/project/idea] that resulted in [important accomplishment].
[Your name] has been recognized as [professional personal characteristic]. Outside of work, [your name] enjoys spending time [hobby/interest] and [hobby/interest].”
First-person short professional bio template
Here’s a short professional bio in the first-person that you can edit:
“I am a [job title] at [employer], I have achieved [accomplishment] and solved [problem] by [your skills or workflow]. I have implemented a new [strategy/project/idea] that resulted in [important accomplishment]. Currently, I am [working/studying] toward [next professional goal]. Outside of work, I enjoy spending time [hobby/interest] and [hobby/interest].”
Recent graduate short professional bio template
Recent graduates should mention their degrees and undergraduate experiences.
“As an undergraduate student at [university/college], I have successfully [accomplishment] and [other accomplishment]. I hold a degree in [major] and studied [subject matters or minors]. When I am not [job/student responsibility], I can be found [hobby] or [other hobby].’
Create your professional bio now
Writing a professional bio that includes your job title, accomplishments, and interests is a worthwhile task. People will read your professional bio to better understand who you are.
As you write your personal bio, make sure that you customize it to your audience. You can always return to your professional bio later to revise it as you gain experience and knowledge or when you change the course of your career.
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