Crafting a killer bio by Barbara Bix, BB Marketing Plus


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Workshop: Polishing your professional profile

Barbara Bix, BB Marketing Plus
Every consultant needs a short bio that s/he can use for brochures, websites, directory listings, speaking engagements or in an introductory email. In fact, this bio is often the factor that determines if a consultant gets the call for a particular project. Whether you’re starting from scratch, or honing your current profile, please join the IEEE Consultants Network and Barbara Bix, to discuss what works, and then develop a bio that anticipates and addresses prospective clients’ needs. We’ll also discuss special considerations for particular venues—online and off.

Barbara Bix, Managing Principal of BB Marketing Plus, is a B2B marketing consultant with a demonstrated track record of developing and executing marketing strategies that accelerate sales of complex products, services, and solutions. BB Marketing Plus clients include high tech, health care, and professional service organizations.

Barbara earned her stripes marketing flagship products at EMC, Motorola, GE, and Wang. She has an MBA from The Wharton School and has completed postgraduate work at Northeastern's State of the the Art Engineering program and at the Harvard School of Public Health. Barbara writes for numerous publications and has extensive experience re-writing her own bio—and those of her clients.

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  • Putting up a website is like moving into a new neighborhood. You have to let people know you’re there And then it’s up to them. Your friends will come and they may invite others As for strangers: - Some will come on their own out of curiousity - Others will come if someone they know suggests that they do Still others won’t visit until they need a cup of sugar It’s ultimately up to them, If you want them to come, all you can do is make it extremely easy for them
  • Addresses readers’ key concerns Anticipates readers’ needs An Easy to absorb Concise Grammatically correct Uses the language of the target audience Forma Includes contact infromation t contributes to readability
  • Easy to absorb Concise Grammatically correct Uses the language of the target audience Format contributes to readability
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  • Recruit someone with experience making this decision
  • Crafting a killer bio by Barbara Bix, BB Marketing Plus

    1. 1. Bios that work <ul><li>Presented to IEEE Consultants, February 2012 </li></ul><ul><li>By </li></ul><ul><li>Barbara Bix, Managing Principal </li></ul>
    2. 2. What is a bio? <ul><li>A brief description of: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>You </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Your value </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Your capabilities </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Your credentials </li></ul></ul><ul><li>An essential marketing material </li></ul>
    3. 3. Applications <ul><li>Directories </li></ul><ul><li>Email introduction </li></ul><ul><li>Website </li></ul><ul><li>Social media profile </li></ul><ul><li>Speaker profile </li></ul><ul><li>Other? </li></ul>
    4. 4. Why should you invest in doing it well? <ul><li>Often required </li></ul><ul><li>Can shape decision maker’s criteria </li></ul><ul><li>Frequently determines whether you make it to the next step </li></ul><ul><li>Can elevate your brand above the competition </li></ul>
    5. 5. Bios vs. resumes <ul><li>Shorter </li></ul><ul><li>More informal </li></ul><ul><li>More applications </li></ul><ul><li>Greater control over content </li></ul>
    6. 6. Goals <ul><li>Address readers’ concerns </li></ul><ul><li>Shape their selection criteria </li></ul><ul><li>Contribute to your brand </li></ul><ul><li>Elevate your brand above the competition </li></ul><ul><li>Create a desire to learn more </li></ul>
    7. 7. Other criteria <ul><li>Concise </li></ul><ul><li>Easy to absorb </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Language </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Grammar </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Format </li></ul></ul>
    8. 8. Exercise: Assess sample bio <ul><li>Who are the likely readers? </li></ul><ul><li>Does it address the goals we discussed? </li></ul><ul><li>Does it address other criteria? </li></ul>
    9. 9. 7 Steps to an effective bio <ul><li>Articulate your ultimate goal </li></ul><ul><li>Identify your audience(s)? </li></ul><ul><li>Recruit at least 1 member of the target audience to assist you </li></ul><ul><li>Research audience’s information needs </li></ul><ul><li>Draft a bio that addresses those needs </li></ul><ul><li>Test your bio </li></ul><ul><li>Revise as needed </li></ul>
    10. 10. Exercise: Planning <ul><li>Who is your audience? </li></ul><ul><li>What do you want the audience to do as a result of seeing your bio? </li></ul>
    11. 11. Exercise: Research <ul><li>Recruit a member of the target audience </li></ul><ul><li>Ask him/her to describe the typical selection process </li></ul><ul><li>Find out who else they typically involve? </li></ul><ul><li>Determine: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>At what points someone might review your bio? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>At that time: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>What information will he/she require? </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>With whom you may be competing? </li></ul></ul></ul>
    12. 12. Group Exercise: Research <ul><li>Who has engaged consultants? </li></ul><ul><li>What types of consultants have you engaged? </li></ul><ul><li>Who needs to recruit someone with different experience? </li></ul><ul><li>Conduct your research (20 minutes) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Recruit a member of your target audience </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Gather information </li></ul></ul>
    13. 13. Preparation: Develop content strategy <ul><li>Articulate the value you can deliver </li></ul><ul><li>Analyze your competition </li></ul><ul><li>Develop your value proposition </li></ul><ul><li>Marshall evidence </li></ul><ul><ul><li>What evidence would be most convincing? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>What evidence do you have available? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>What evidence will you include in your bio? </li></ul></ul>
    14. 14. Exercise: Develop content strategy <ul><li>Develop content strategy </li></ul><ul><li>10 minutes </li></ul>
    15. 15. Exercise: Prepare content <ul><li>Name </li></ul><ul><li>Contact information </li></ul><ul><li>Background summary </li></ul><ul><li>Value proposition </li></ul><ul><li>Credentials </li></ul>
    16. 16. Consider including additional details <ul><li>Industry experience </li></ul><ul><li>Sample clients </li></ul><ul><li>Past employers </li></ul><ul><li>Education </li></ul><ul><li>Skills </li></ul><ul><li>Personal information </li></ul><ul><li>Publications </li></ul>
    17. 17. Exercise: Write your bio <ul><li>Review your goals </li></ul><ul><li>Review the audience’s needs </li></ul><ul><li>Draft your bio </li></ul><ul><li>Edit aggressively </li></ul><ul><ul><li>More is less </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Include just enough detail to get to the next step </li></ul></ul>
    18. 18. Test your bio <ul><li>Identify opportunities </li></ul><ul><li>Submit it for consideration </li></ul><ul><li>Review results </li></ul><ul><li>If possible, gather feedback </li></ul>
    19. 19. Get feedback from the group <ul><li>Does it address the goals? </li></ul><ul><li>Does it meet the other criteria </li></ul><ul><li>What improvements would you make? </li></ul>
    20. 20. Revise your bio <ul><li>As needed </li></ul><ul><li>An ongoing process </li></ul><ul><li>Is the level of detail appropriate? </li></ul>
    21. 21. Special considerations <ul><li>For directories? </li></ul><ul><li>For email introductions? </li></ul><ul><li>For your website? </li></ul><ul><li>For your partners’ websites? </li></ul><ul><li>For use in social media? </li></ul><ul><li>For speaker profiles? </li></ul><ul><li>Other? </li></ul>
    22. 22. Summary <ul><li>Know your goals </li></ul><ul><li>Find out what it will take to achieve those goals </li></ul><ul><li>Develop your strategy </li></ul><ul><li>Execute </li></ul><ul><li>Test </li></ul><ul><li>Revise and refine </li></ul>
    23. 23. Thank you! <ul><li>Barbara Bix, BB Marketing Plus </li></ul><ul><li>Consultant / Business advisor </li></ul><ul><li>Email: [email_address] </li></ul><ul><li>Social media </li></ul><ul><ul><li>@bbmarketingplus </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Presentation on SlideShare </li></ul>