Create a sales pitch that defines your unique brand and purpose
Almost every Web site I visit has an About Us page. It’s a personal touch on a website and one that I visit on almost every site I browse. What most small business owners or marketing directors forget when they create this page is that this page is for a specific, targeted audience. The About Us page is a concise summary for your brand, explaining why you felt compelled to start a business, why your products should get a piece of a consumer’s disposable income and why you should be trusted to deliver on your promise. In other words, the About US page is the contemporary version of the elevator sales pitch.
Who are you pitching? If it’s a B2C site selling to consumers or end-users, the About Us page should be written with that audience in mind. If it’s a B2B site selling to other businesses, the About Us page should be written to that audience.
Often, I read the About Us page and it’s a history of someone’s life, birth to age 40. Or, the small business owner talks about the family pets, her children and her husband. I understand—and love—all of the unique impetus that push people to create a new brand but telling me you love your cat, baby and hubs doesn’t make me want to buy (or rep) your brand.
Be personal—it makes you you—but also be specific and steer me down a path that makes me love you and your brand.
Here’s my About Us page:
We rep unique, cutting-edge, hand-made and small-batch product lines in addition to the big-name brands. We give each brand, and each boutique or buyer, special, individualized attention. Many of the companies we represent are family-owned and we understand the unique challenges those businesses face when finding their niche in the marketplace. We give our buyers, many of whom are nurturing families themselves, the same care and commitment. We believe that a good boutique shopping experience begins with design and manufacturing, continues with an open rep/buyer relationship and ultimately ends in happy retail customers that return year after year, child after child.”
I have a unique situation for marketing my business and services. As a sales rep, I’m B2B, or business to business, which makes my target audience much smaller than if I were marketing to a broad spectrum of consumers. The goal of my web page is to market LJBryn&Co. to two different segments of the B2B audience: store owners/buyers who might buy what I rep and designer/manufacturers who might hire me as their sales rep.
Speak to Your Audience - Buyers, Manufacturers or Both?
Note that my About Us uses specific language to address both of those audiences. I’m addressing designer/manufacturers here: “Many of the companies we represent are family-owned and we understand the unique challenges those businesses face when finding their niche in the marketplace.” I’m addressing store owners/buyers here: “…and ultimately ends in happy retail customers that return year after year, child after child.” I am pitching myself as someone who understands the balancing act of small business and family as well as the importance of the end consumer’s retail experience.
Here is Scout Baby Organics About Us page:
Scout is a family-owned and operated company. Mom Mimi is the founder and general manager. Grandma Ellen (2007 Employee of Year) is the lead artistic designer. Dad Pat manages the web site and photography. Daughters Stella and Flora manage quality assurance. Dog Ralph sleeps most of the time.
We decided to launch Scout after the birth of our first daughter when we discovered a dearth of clothes that were both stylish and practical. We struggled to find occasions to wear the cute outfits—we were lucky if it was just once at Grandma’s house! And the practical stuff seemed so uninspired. With Scout, our goal is to create clothes that are comfortable and appealing for kids, while being fresh and interesting for parents. We call it functional fashion!”
The Scout About Us page is much more personal than LJBryn&Co.’s but it’s a great sales pitch. It introduces us to key personnel in the company, why they were inspired to start a business and how their children’s clothes can work for your family and friends too.
Another reason I love the About Us page is because once you write a great one, you can use it everywhere, all the time. Looking for a sales rep? E-mail her a personalized version of your About Us page, making sure to address the rep by name and adding details about why your business and her rep group are a natural match. At a cocktail party trying to tell your neighbor just exactly what it is you do? Networking at an industry event? Pull up a mental version of your About Us page and chat away.
The uses for a well-crafted About Us page are myriad. Even the financial sector can use this info when they evaluate your business for a loan. Think about this: If you were a loan officer assessing lending someone $100K to expand their start-up, would you want to check their website and read an About Us page that chats about the family pets? Probably not (unless the start-up was in the pet care industry). If your About Us page professionally reflects your business philosophy and goals, you have a better chance of success, with the loan and with building your business.
Good Luck writing your About Us page. Please share examples of effective About Us pages you’ve read…
Next week … details on how and why sales reps decide that they’ll rep your line.
Lara owns and is the primary sales rep for LJBryn&Co., a Midwest-based, independent rep group specializing in children’s gift, toys, gear and apparel. www.LJBrynAndCo.com