Business cards. We’ve all received them. Some glossy. Some matte. Others are embossed while some go with foil stamping.
You see the thing with business cards is that they come in all shapes, sizes, colors, and make ups. Some are great. Others are not so great…
Sure. Your potential client will remember you. But for all the wrong reasons.
That’s exactly how you should look at your author bio. Your author bio is your business card as a writer. In our bio, we get to tell our readers who we are, what we do, and where to find us.
Our First Impressions
“You never get a second chance to make a first impression.”
-Will Rogers, American Cowboy/Actor/Author
A wise man indeed.
Now, your author bio is your first impression. OK, ok. Some will disagree with this. They will say that your work is the first impression. And that’s true to a point. Definitely spend more time learning how to write a book than how to write an author bio! But your author bio is the first insight into you yourself.
This is your golden opportunity to forge a bond of trust with potential readers. In your bio, you can establish that you are an authority on the subject matter you are writing. For example, let’s take submarine fiction novels.
Michael DiMercurio is a bestselling author who has made a career writing exclusively works on submarines and submarine warfare. But what makes his work so good? Let’s check out his author bio from fantasticfiction.com:
“Michael DiMercurio was an honors graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy, a National Science Foundation scholar and graduate of MIT in mechanical engineering, a graduate of the Navy Nuclear Training Program, a Navy diver, and a chief nuclear engineer qualified officer and ship’s diver on the USS Hammerhead, a Sturgeon-class fast attack nuclear submarine of the Atlantic Fleet. During the Reagan administration, DiMercurio and the Hammerhead spent over 50 days in trail of Russian nuclear submarines. DiMercurio is the author of 10 bestselling books including Vertical Dive and Emergency Deep.”
As a former submariner myself… This is a guy I wouldn’t mind checking out.
His author bio lends severe credibility to his writings. Even if I had read his book first, I would have caught details that only a submariner would know. I then would have checked out his bio. Seeing that Michael was an actual submariner would inspire me to read more of his works.
Submarines Once! Submarines Twice!
Solidify your Brand
Not all of us are Jon Morrow, Stephen King, or Dean Koontz. (But hey, if any of you 3 are reading this… Please reach out, I’d love to pick your brain!)
Authors of this magnitude have worked hard and through their achievements have become household names. Their mention alone can spark conversation and heated debate. However, the majority of us just aren’t there.
By building our own personal story brands, we can begin our climb up the ladder of recognition. But… what does any of this have to do with your author bio?
Your author bio is a wonderful place to start to market yourself. Here you can artfully portray some major accomplishments and market your current ventures. Heck, you can even put up a sweet picture of yourself!
Something like this.
This picture shows off more than my adorable child and sweet sunglasses. (No, not my ever masculine jaw line either…) But it shows my brand.
I designed this image to include my own Kindlepreneur brand. If you compare the color scheme here to the one on my website, you will see them to be the same. This was definitely done purposely. When these colors and font appear together, I want people to think, “Oh! There goes that Kindlepreneur guy!”
Check out this Bookworks article to get more info on how I chose my bio pic.
Another thing that an author bio can do is to set the tone and style of your brand and your writing. Again, let’s use my own bio here.
“Hey Guys, I’m Dave and when I am not sipping tea with princesses or chasing the Boogey man out of closets, I’m a Kindlepreneur and digital marketing nut – it’s my career, hobby, and passion.”
If you haven’t guessed it already, I tend to take to a more informal style. To me, it feels like I can get more personal with my readers. (Seriously, I would hate to come across as one of those stuffy professors.) I want to give a little humor and try to be more approachable.
But on top of all that… there’s another layer. I emphasize my passion of Kindlepreneur (brand callback) and digital marketing. I want to establish that not only do I make this my living, but I actually believe in what I am doing.
These are just a couple reasons why your author bio is SUPER IMPORTANT. It’s not just some showy “look-what-I-did”, but more of a hidden call to action for your readers. Use your author bio to plant the seeds of trust within your readers. This is one area of opportunity you shouldn’t let pass by.
*For more information on How to Write an Amazing Author Bio, check out my handy guide on Kindlepreneur.