Wednesday, February 06, 2013

Public Speaking Publicity: How to Write a Bio for Your Press Kit

Most bios I read are more potent than sleeping pills.

Some of the most talented authors write the worst bios. So do most professional speakers, who cram their entire life's history into their introduction, putting the audience to sleep long before they take the microphone. Don't even ask me what I think about the bios written by engineers, architects, accountants and attorneys.

Why, oh why, do we make ourselves sound so boring?

A well-written bio can convey to your potential clients, the media, and your other audiences that you are fun, creative and entertaining.

How to Find Good Material

If you're writing your own bio, here are some questions should ask yourself. The answers could be woven into the bio.

· Who is your hero? And why?

· What one event in your childhood had the greatest effect on your life?

· If you weren't doing what you do today, what other job would you have?

· What "lesson from mom" do you still live by today?

· Do you have a pet? If so, tell me about him or her.

· What's the craziest thing you have done?

You don't have to include all of the above in a bio. Even just a few interesting answers will perk up drab copy.

Forget the Resume Stuff

Part of what makes most bios so dull is that many speakers, authors, trainers, consultants and coaches lift material from their resumes, including long lists of things such as degrees earned, honors and awards, and other employment history. If you're writing a bio that's posted at your website, provide a few paragraphs of bio information, then link to your actual resume, where anyone who cares can search for details about your job history.

You're a great public speaker, but you're not making any money....