Photographer Website Help: Kickass About Page Formula

Photographer Website Help: Kickass About Page Formula

I cannot even TELL you how many times I have visited a photographer’s website and looked at their about page, and I have seen the same text that I see on THOUSANDS of other about pages. Seriously wedding photographers, you love love? Really? Or even better, you love capturing moments? Well hooray, so does every other photographer, congratulations!

Okay all sarcasm aside, this has to stop. And YES – I did it too when I was first starting. I had it on my homepage and my about page when I did weddings. Why? Because I really do love love.

BUT SO DO MOST WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHERS.

Can you imagine seeing a wedding photographer say “I really hate love and romance and weddings.” Not gonna happen.

If you’re wondering why people aren’t booking you, there are probably several things missing in the process, but the about page is SO KEY to sharing who you are with your potential clients, and what makes you different. On my website, I specifically ask what photo someone saw on my website that prompted them to contact me – and most of my clients will write into that box “your about page, not a specific photo.”

YUP YUP. It’s that important.

If you don’t have an about page that is accurate and really shows off why someone should hire you and what makes you different from the other photographers people are looking at, keep reading because seriously, this is a page on your website that should NOT be overlooked.

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So pull up a chair, grab a cocktail and some pretty paper and pens to start writing, this one is going to be a LONG lesson on photographer website help, but I promise it will be well worth it.

First up:

A huge key to knowing what to write comes back to knowing who your ideal client is. And I’m not talking about the fluff bullshit of where they shop and how much they make. Those things may be part of a lifestyle, but they aren’t key to who someone REALLY is.

I’m talking about their fears, their needs, their desires, their concerns. Do you know those things? I mean REALLY know those things?

Good! Let’s get going on this about page, shall we?

Secret sauce: the about page is about you, but ultimately is about how you can connect with your clients, and what makes you different.

Saying the same things that you see on others’ about pages is repetitive and boring, and will lose inquiries faster than you can say “I love love.”

Remember, it is highly likely that when your potential clients start looking at photographers, they are looking at LOTS of options. They have been through Google, they have looked at Facebook, they have asked friends for help, and they’re looking at their options. And unless you really show them how you’re different, you’re a checklist.

Ouch, that hurts, right? You’re basically on a checklist, a comparison list for them to compare you to others. And that is NOT where you want to be! You want to be the Channing Tatum on the poster on someone’s wall, the ONLY person they want!

So we have the secret sauce: how are you going to connect with your clients and what makes you really different? That can be hard to put into words, so let’s work on it.

Here is your basic equation:

Concerns and understanding + introduction & why + call to action = inquiry, and hopefully a booked client!

Let’s break this down, shall we?

Concerns and understanding:

First, you need to talk to your ideal client and let them understand that you GET their concerns. If you have emails from people who have contacted you, use the EXACT words that you hear all the time! Express to them that you hear their concerns and that they’re valid, without being too negative. Share that you not only UNDERSTAND these concerns, but what someone can do to help quell those concerns and essentially “fix” them.

Introduction:

Next, introduce yourself! Now let’s be clear here – no overshares. No one needs to know your deep dark secrets – yet. I also don’t want to see your life story. Sorry, I’m sure it’s fascinating, but let’s be real, attention spans are super short and making someone read a book about you isn’t really a great first impression. Introduce yourself, a little bit of personal, and what it is that you do. If you want to share more, this is a great place to link over to a second about page, but we’re going to stick with one here, the second is shared in great detail in my Spiff Up Your Site Course, if you want to learn more.

In this introduction, I also want to know your WHY. Again – not a book – just a quickie. Two sentences, maybe three. Tell me WHY you do what you do, and don’t use the same words you see everywhere else! No “I love love.”

Repeat after me: No “I love love.”

If you’re a wedding photographer, did you dream of your wedding since you were a little girl, and getting to be a part of that for not only your own wedding but other weddings too is what you have always wanted to do? If you’re a dog photographer, did you have a jolting experience of going to a shelter when you were little and wanting to take them ALL home but your parents said no so now you photograph dogs as a way to snuggle with doggies all day without taking them home? If you’re a newborn photographer, are your kids tweens and starting to have their own stinky little lives and you look back at their newborn pictures and wish you could snuggle them that little all over again and you want all parents to have those memories? REALLY think about your why, the reason that you do what you do, and chose your niche.

So we have the first two pieces of the equation, let’s do the third.

CALL TO ACTION.

This is really a whole different article for another day, but you MUST have a call to action on your about page. It doesn’t have to say BUY NOW – don’t be a sleazy sales person – but a call to contact you to book their session. Or have some fun with it and personalize it!

So to recap this equation:

Concerns and understanding + introduction & why + call to action = inquiry, and hopefully a booked client!

A few things to remember when you’re working on this:

1. Be brief. Don’t write a book, people bore easily and will move on. Highlight important points, so that if someone is skimming, they can see the most important things quickly and easily.
2. Make sure to have a professional photo of yourself, or a video. People trust people, not brands, they want to SEE you. And if you’re posting an iPhone selfie on your about page, it could make your ideal client wonder if you really value professional photography, and if you don’t, why would they? This isn’t to say you can NEVER use a selfie, but have at least one professional photo, or a video, so that people can really see you.
3. Use your VOICE – type like you talk. Don’t talk about yourself in the third person, don’t act like some stuffy newspaper doing a story on you. This is YOU. People will hire YOU. Don’t make them wonder who the heck wrote this.

Okay let’s see this in action, shall we!

I asked for guinea pigs in a rather large photographer group that I’m on the board for, and got a wedding photographer and a portrait photographer as an example! Warning: these are long, so if you’d rather not see examples, GET TO WORK on your own about page, and leave me a comment with what you came up with! You can also join the Business Straight Up Facebook group to get some personalized help too!

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First victim example:

Katie Merrill, a fantastic wedding photographer in Denver!

Katie’s text on her about page wasn’t bad, I enjoyed reading it and while there were a few technical issues and text that wasn’t readable, it was fun and very targeted. Problems: too long and no recognizable call to action, no photo or video, also no personal WHY or anything personalized at all. There is a delicate balance between sharing yourself, and relating to your clients. Usually I see more sharing about themselves, Katie went the other way.

Here is the original text:

So you’ve been crawling the internet for days… weeks maybe (make it end, and I’m dying of thirst!) to try and put together a wedding that is truly “you.”

It sucks, right? Once you start finding some vendors, it starts to get easier… but it can be so hard to get there!

The wedding world is full of people to give you those perfect dusty pink roses, pristine folded napkins, and little gold gift boxes, all designed to fit your wedding exactly into a neat little package.

But what about that sounds fun at all?

YOU WANT A WEDDING THAT’S READY TO ROCK AS HARD AS YOU DO, AND SHOW ALL YOUR FRIENDS AND FAMILY EXACTLY WHAT DELIGHTFULLY WEIRD AND UNIQUE SNOWFLAKES YOU BOTH ARE.

So I bet you don’t want the same wedding photo that everyone else has, right? You know the one I mean, heads together, smiling stiffly at the camera with a look behind your eyes that screams “make it stop!” I bet you’re real tired of EVERY single wedding photographer’s website that says the same thing.

YOU WANT TO ADVENTURE TO A CRAZY LOCATION, DRESS UP LIKE SUPERHEROES, OR WEAR YOUR UNDERWEAR ON YOUR HEAD. I WANT YOU TO DO ALL OF THAT, BUT MOSTLY I WANT YOU TO FEEL COMPLETELY ALLOWED TO BE EXACTLY — STUNNINGLY — WHO YOU ARE.

I want to document every moment that sets you apart and makes you different, find the things that you two do together that only you do, and capture every detail that you painstakingly craft to show the world your true selves!

Yes, you say… But how??

I agree, it sounds like a lot to take on. But, I promise, I got this.

FIRST AND FOREMOST, I CONSIDER BEING PART OF YOUR WEDDING A HUGE HONOR. I DON’T TAKE IT LIGHTLY, AND I WILL NOT LET YOU DOWN.

When I decided I wanted to be a wedding photographer, I thought to myself “how can I learn to do this without royally messing up a really important day that you can’t redo?” So many people skip this step, and can only backpedal when something goes horribly wrong!

My Solution: slave away as an assistant and extra hand until I “get” weddings enough to start photographing them. I did that, then photographed another 60 weddings with someone else doing the heavy lifting (again, so I couldn’t screw up this amazing day for awesome people). THEN I started finding people that I clicked with and entrusted me with their wedding photos.

DOING THE MATH, THAT’S OVER 200 WEDDINGS PHOTOGRAPHED.MOST PEOPLE DON’T MANAGE THAT UNTIL THEY’VE BEEN DOING THIS FOR 15 YEARS. I’VE BEEN IN IT FOR 5.

What does that experience mean for you? Well, it means that I can handle anything that comes up. We only have 10 minutes instead of 20 for family photos? No problem. Your makeup ran late so the whole day is going to run 30 minutes behind? I’ll make up the time. Your finance’s best friend ripped their dress 10 minutes before they need to walk down the aisle? We’ll sew it up. All of those have happened to me but, let’s not get into the whole stories now. Email me about it if you’re dying to hear the endings.

MOST IMPORTANTLY, IT MEANS THAT I KNOW EXACTLY WHERE TO BE AT EVERY MINUTE TO TELL YOUR STORY HONESTLY, AND IN THE MOMENT. NO “PRETENDING” OR “REDOING.”

No photo will make you look back and remember that time your photographer made you fake a kiss or a smile.
I also think that the fact that you are crazy about each other is the freaking COOLEST. That deserves to be honestly captured with attention and caring.

I like to spend time getting to know the both of you in a genuine way. I want to watch you “just hang out” and know what makes you click. So, I always meet with my couples in person. Not to talk about pricing or about the wedding day (okay, maybe just a little) but to hear about you and see interact together.

I’ve spent YEARS perfecting (and am still learning, who isn’t?) a style of posing that isn’t really posing. Do you really think anyone can capture who you really are by grabbing your arm and putting it on your loved one’s leg just so, and then telling you to stay just there for ten minutes? I sure as heck don’t! I think the way that I’m going to capture you is by giving you some room for interpretation, and by playing some really silly games that will make you think I’m a nut job. I probably am.

ALL THIS EXPERIENCE, PASSION, AND OBSESSION WITH CAPTURING YOUR LOVE FOR REAL MEANS I CAN STEP BACK AND SEE THE PARTS OF YOUR DAY THAT YOU WILL WANT TO REMEMBER.

I’ll know which decorations you made out of your favorite pages of the Harry Potter books, know that those close conversations with your grandparents mean the world to you and that you hold each other “just so” with your hands there when you’re feeling cuddly. Those moments will be frozen for you to relive for years and years to come!
DESIGN YOUR PERFECT WEDDING PACKAGE (THAT DEFINITELY WON’T PUT YOUR DAY IN A BOX)!

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My updates and changes, still a little long, but definitely shorter:

So you’ve been crawling the internet for days, weeks maybe even months, trying to put together a wedding that is truly “you.” You’ve seen the perfect roses, beautifully folded napkins, and pristine gold gift boxes – yawn. What part of that sounds fun, or even remotely close to what really fits you as a couple?

YOU WANT A WEDDING THAT COULD MEAN AN ADVENTURE TO A CRAZY LOCATION, DRESSING UP LIKE SUPERHEROES, OR WEARING YOUR UNDERWEAR ON YOUR HEAD.

You don’t want a wedding that fits perfectly into some wedding photographer’s three packages. You don’t want a photographer barking orders at you all day, in order to get the perfectly lined up family portrait – heads together, smiling stiffly at the camera with a look behind their eyes that screams “make it stop!”

I wouldn’t want that either, I would rather {insert some horrible form of punishment here}.

I WANT YOU TO FEEL COMPLETELY AT EASE TO BE EXACTLY — STUNNINGLY — WHO YOU ARE.

So how does this all work? I promise, I got you.

Hey there, I’m Kate.

{photo of you being super weird and crazy like what you want your clients to do}

{something fun ABOUT YOU that your clients can relate to, two sentences at most}

When I decided I wanted to be a wedding photographer, I thought to myself “how can I learn to do this without royally messing up a really important day that you can’t redo?” My Solution: slave away as an assistant and extra hand until I “get” weddings enough, then find the most amazing clients that I connect with to work with them directly. This means I have been honored to be a part of over 200 weddings!

What does that experience mean for you? Well, it means that I can handle any crazy wrench that might happen. Your makeup ran late so the whole day is going to run 30 minutes behind? I’ll make up the time. Your fiance’s best friend ripped their dress 10 minutes before they need to walk down the aisle? We’ll sew it up. All of those have happened to me but, let’s not get into the whole stories now.

Email me about it if you’re dying to hear the endings. {link this line to your contact page}

I’m not interested in having you fake a kiss or a smile. The fact that you are crazy about each other is the freaking COOLEST.

I want to spend time getting to know the both of you in a genuine way. I want to watch you “just hang out” and know what makes you click.

{link this text}Click here to email me, and let’s chat over some {whatever you want to drink or eat here with your ideal clients}.{end link} I want to know all about the decorations you want to make out of your favorite pages of the Harry Potter books, about those close conversations with your grandparents that mean the world to you, and that you hold each other “just so” with your hands there when you’re feeling cuddly. These moments are timeless, and I want to showcase your big day, and help to build a legacy for future generations!

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Do you see where this is going, and this should be SUPER personalized? She wants to reach a very specific client, not every person that may or may not visit her website.

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Let’s look at another, Danielle Jackson, who does beautiful family work in Denver.

Problems? Nothing personal, talking about services instead of about her and her clients. Not quite as relatable as it could be. Although seriously can we take a second and look at the beautiful photo? LOVE it!

Original Text:

As the mother of two busy boys, I understand the importance of choosing the best photographer for your family. I know you don’t have time for the elaborate planning that typically accompanies a photography session, so I’ve decided to make it easy and enjoyable. I consider your time with me to be an experience, and what that translates to is a day of pampering, relaxation and enjoyment for you. The camera is added in after the fact and I am able to capture gorgeous, authentic moments.

No more stressing about outfit choices, hair and makeup, and the kids “behaving.” You can let it all go. I offer carefully selected hair and makeup services, wardrobe consultation, and an after session in-home visit, where I will help choose from a variety of archival quality products to showcase the beautiful art I have created just for you and your family. If you prefer to style your own session, you have the option to customize as you see fit, a-la-carte style.

I will provide you with photographs that you will treasure for generations. My style is clean, authentic and timeless, not trendy. I shoot outdoors, in-home lifestyle, and small-scale studio style portraits which I am able to capture in your home at your request. I am also flexible with preferred locations and am willing to travel up to 30 miles at no charge to you. If you’re ready to schedule your session, please quickly review the FAQ page for more information and then use my convenient online booking system below to choose a time and date that works best for you.

I look forward to working with you!

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My updates and changes:

I feel like getting even a few seconds to sit down and write this about page is a challenge. My boys are running around and somewhat quiet right now, so I will take these few unusual minutes to chat with you a little more about what I do and why!

I say this, and I mean it – and I know you feel me too, the lack of time to ourselves. But really? This time goes all too fast. My oldest is six years old, and I still remember the first time I held him in my arms. Now he will barely hold still enough for me to wipe his face! He has these fun little things that he does, both of my boys do. {insert some weird quirk here about both boys}

I would bet that you see the little things that your kiddos do when you’re hanging out with them too, the small things that others might miss, the little things that really make them, THEM.

We all have school photos, the assembly line of okay sit here, turn your head this way, and smile. CLICK. Those photos are important, I buy them too – seeing the progression in age is the transformation of life. But what about the little things that you treasure daily, the nuances and memories that you don’t want to ever forget?

The way that your daughter holds just your middle finger because that’s her preference, while you’re helping her toddle down the hallway. The way that your son will smash every Cheerio under the milk just so before he will eat them. The way that your kids will go outside on a beautiful day and find a dandelion flower, pick it carefully, and come inside to present it to you, so proud, like they’re handing you a pot of gold.

Because really, they are.

Hey there, I’m Danielle.

I have a husband and two boys, and am constantly trying to cement those memories and little personality quirks in my brain. I enjoy a bit of romance, little love notes around the house, or relaxing and dreaming about our next vacation. Even better if that vacation can include a whiskey tasting with my love! Yep, I’m a whiskey girl, and we have even brewed our own whiskey in an oak barrel. It was CRAZY strong, but hey, it’s a learning process, right?

The little photos and memories that I have of this stage in life are priceless to me, and it warms my heart to provide those for my clients as well. Truth: this stage isn’t easy. It can be hard to find the time to do the things you want to do, especially a photography session. Outfit choices, hair and makeup, temper tantrums, that oh-so enjoyable trip to the mall for a session?

That sounds about as enjoyable as {insert some horrible experience here}.

I work with all of my clients to make a session easy and enjoyable. I want this experience to not only be a memory in and of itself, but a chance for your family – and YOU – to relax and enjoy, so that I can capture the little moments and memories that make up life right now.

{Link this line to your contact page} Ready to chat? Click here to contact me, and we will set up a time that we can talk a little more. Don’t stress about your kids in the background, mine might be too.

{Link this line to your online booking}If you’re ready to schedule your session, you can book online and choose a time and date that works best for you and your family.

{Link this line to your FAQ} Do you still have more questions? I totally get it, I like to have all of the answers before leaping too! Click here to read the questions I’m asked most often!

I can’t wait to learn more about the little things that make your family unique. {link to contact}Contact me, let’s start planning!{end link}

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The changes show a little bit of HER – and give her clients something to relate to. Most busy moms can relate to trying to find a few moments to themselves! It also shows her clients that she understands the stress that can come with a portrait session that ISN’T customized with her, but schlepping the entire family to the mall. Ew. Some would-be clients may forget that, until they’re reminded, and then think about how much they DON’T want that particular experience, and instead want an experience with Danielle.

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Thank you so much ladies, for being brave and putting yourself out there. I know that all of my changes may not fit what you’re thinking, but play around with the equation and really include yourself, and what makes you different, on this about page.

One more time, let’s recap the Kickass About Page Formula:

Concerns and understanding + introduction and why + call to action = inquiry, and hopefully a booked client!

Make sense?

Tell your visitors your beliefs, your wants, your hopes, your fears, your challenges. Sharing your story will not only help someone decide that they want your experience, but that YOU are the person that understands them and that they want to have with them during this important time. Weddings, babies, portraits, boudoir – photos are important. Remind your clients why, and remind them why YOU are a good fit for them!

If you still need more help, I have a special master class coming up that is FREE, and I can help you with your about page! Seating will be limited so we can go through the different options together, and I can’t promise to do EVERYONE’s while live, but I would love to help you write yours as well.

Click here to register for the free master class on March 15, at 2pm mountain time.

I know how frustrating dealing with your website can be. Even if you have a beautiful website, it may not be bringing you the clients that you need and want, because you aren’t putting the right information out into the world! I love working with photographer website help, and can’t wait to help you craft a message that you are confident about, and put it onto your website for the world to see.

If you’d like to listen to the podcast episode that details About Pages, click Here!

 

About the Author:

Hey hey there, I'm Brooke! I love working with creative business owners to hone their business skills. Whether it's business for professional photographers, or for creative entrepreneurs in other fields - I am excited to help you grow your business. I teach and photograph all over the world, and am so blessed to be able to share my passion with some amazing women and business owners.

5 Comments

  1. Krystal Reeves March 16, 2017 at 10:55 pm - Reply

    Wow I really thought there was an incredible amount of information in this post. I really loved the examples you gave to pull everything together, plus, you are awesomely blunt and I enjoyed reading it!!

  2. Jennie Crate March 16, 2017 at 11:41 pm - Reply

    I so believe in about me pages that say something unique and special about you–no matter what formula you use to get there 🙂

  3. Erica Swantek March 17, 2017 at 3:48 am - Reply

    I agree, the about page is so important! Great tips!

  4. Jenae March 17, 2017 at 4:07 pm - Reply

    Awesome Brooke!! I will be reviewing my About page soon– so I will be definitely referring back to this! Thank you for sharing your knowledge with everyone and helping create a positive community!

  5. Katie Merrill March 17, 2017 at 11:32 pm - Reply

    Such an amazing article, Brooke! We all struggle so hard with about pages and giving us a formula to work with to take the nervousness out of the equation is so perfect! Well written 🙂

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