Whether YOU are a professional speaker, consultant, coach, author, or professional services firm owner – your Bio is one of your most powerful marketing tools that will make or break your future clients’ perception of your expertise.
Writing an effective, attractive and client-magnet bio is essential. It should be client-focused and deliver dynamic and engaging content for the reader. You need different bios for different circumstances, there is:
- your website bio,
- your speaker bio in your press kit,
- your short speaker bio for the conference brochure (unless you are the keynote speaker getting a full or half page spread),
- and your introduction.
If you google Conference Speaker Bio, you are going to get a lot of results for your introduction or press kit bio. We are discussing your conference brochure bio meant to intrigue people. If your session title and description caught their attention, your bio closes the deal and gets their butts in your seats (and not the other speakers!)
These are four speaker bio guidelines to help prepare for your next conference brochure appearance:
- Keep it short and relevant! Keep your speaker biography brief—no more than 75 to 100 words is common, some groups allow slightly longer. Check the requirements when you submit your materials and verify with the organizer when selected. Biographies that are too long simply don’t get read. Some of the entry software cuts the information off. Or worse, the organization may summarize your bio in a way that you don’t like. (FYI – I’ve significantly cut long speaker bios for publicity materials when coordinating events.)
- About you. Include your full name with current position and a brief mention of work history and experience that is relevant to your speaking topic and audience.
- Accomplishments. Include academic qualifications, awards, and a reference to published work relevant to the material you are presenting. If you note who your topic is relevant for, keep it specific to the event you are speaking at.
- Great headshot! For some events, the organizer may want a headshot. Have a current one that looks good in black and white and another that looks good in color. You can go to Fiverr.com if you have a good color image that needs to be formatted for black and white. (A good photoshop consultant sets the image up so that it isn’t flat when printed in black and white.)
Update these periodically and have somebody review it for you. It’s good to have an outside opinion. It’s also amazing the things that others find fascinating about you.
Original publication in the Summit Toastmasters blog: How to Prepare a Speaker Bio by Yvonne Bryant