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Q: What’s So Important About a Bio?

orange monsterYou’ve heard it before and now it’s a requirement before your first lens is published: Write a bio and include a picture on your Squidoo profile. But why?

For one, it’s what professional writers do – and you’re now a professional writer, like it or not. Second, readers will trust you more if they know more about you. As you build your reputation as a writer that people can trust, your fans will start noticing you and recognizing both your name and your face at a glance as they come across your work, wherever it resides.

How do you want people to remember you? Write your bio accordingly. It’s good practice to keep the bio short and general, similar to bios you’ve provided on other social media sites. Here’s a helpful article I found that suggests presenting the same personal brand across all of your social networks by using the same bio and photo. Not a bad idea.

Speaking of photos, a good, clear picture of yourself is best, but a smart, recognizable avatar can work if you’re just absolutely too shy (or have legitimate privacy issues) to share your face with the whole wide world.

It’s amazing how quickly we establish our reputations as writers, so work hard to make your reputation a favorable one by putting some effort into creating an up-to-date profile that reflects the you that you want people to get to know.

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Susan52 didn't know she wanted to be a Giant Squid when she grew up, but here she is and she couldn't be happier about it! When she isn't doing one thing or another here at Squidoo, you'll probably find her spending time with her family or otherwise appreciating life one precious moment at a time.

  • http://www.squidoo.com/lensmasters/rms rms

    Good advice!

    • http://LifeInOut.com/ Susan Deppner

      Thanks, Robin!

  • http://www.squidoo.com/lensmasters/Kylyssa Kylyssa

    A bio is very important. After the deluge of spun content and plagiarism Internet users have experienced in the last ten years, you have to do something so readers don’t think you’re a bot.

    I don’t agree with having the same bio everywhere you write. It’s not even practical to have the same pen name everywhere because writing accepted from a female name may not be accepted from a male one and vice versa. I play pronoun games and write first person bios for my sort of male sounding byline and never refer to myself as a man or give myself any qualifications I don’t have. Nothing gets a technical article or a “manly” DIY accepted quite like a man’s name.

    • http://LifeInOut.com/ Susan Deppner

      A great point, Kylyssa. I know that these days you’re far from alone in having multiple identities online, depending on the subject matter.

  • http://www.squidoo.com/lensmasters/invictus95 invictus95

    This is some really good advice. It looks like almost everyone is using a picture. I’m using one of my drawings for now, but this post has made me consider switching to a photo. I’ll have to think about it for a little while before I decide, but I can see some obvious advantages of using a real picture.

  • http://www.squidoo.com/lensmasters/favored1 favored1

    People like to know they are connecting to an actual being and the same photo helps them identify you on the spot. I’ve wanted to change mine, but people recognize it with my pup. You can do the same thing with multiple pen names matching them according to the audiences you want to attract.

  • http://www.squidoo.com/graceonline Kathryn Grace

    Excellent advice, Susan. Thank you! I’m checking out that article now.

  • http://www.squidoo.com/lensmasters/thatgrrl thatgrrl

    I’ve had the same avatar since I drew it myself more than 10 years ago. Now and then I have switched it out but I always come back to her. I just like her happy, little red face. She never had bad hair days either.

    • http://LifeInOut.com/ Susan Deppner

      She is adorable and very recognizable. I envy her not having bad hair days. :)

  • http://www.squidoo.com/lensmasters/obattradisionalamandel obattradisionalamandel

    good

  • http://www.squidoo.com/lensmasters/obattradisionalamandel obattradisionalamandel
  • http://www.squidoo.com/lensmasters/DebMartin DebMartin

    I love to see a photo of the person whose writing I am reading. I connect so much better that way. Other images and avatars just don’t work for me. Even though I can appreciate the writing, I want to connect with the person too. Kind of like book jackets. You rarely see one without a photo of the author.

  • http://www.squidoo.com/lensmasters/lizabethjcarter lizabethjcarter

    I’m new here and I’m having a heck of a time uploading my profile photo. Does anyone have any tips about how I can fix this?

  • http://www.squidoo.com/lensmasters/aswahayah aswahayah

    Yah very intresting post…

  • http://www.squidoo.com/lensmasters/noteschrissy noteschrissy

    Hey Squidoo – I have written an awesome bio and saved it. But it disappeared! After lots of tears I rewrote another bio. And very carefully saved it! And guess what? This one disappeared.
    So what is happening to my bio – please help!! Cheers Chrissy

    • http://LifeInOut.com/ Susan Deppner

      Noteschrissy, have you seen the announcement here: http://hq.squidoo.com/ ? You won’t be needing a bio on Squidoo now, but you’ll want to write one and post it on your new HubPages account if you choose to set up shop with many of us over there. Sorry!

  • http://sunilkunnoth2012.hubpages.com sunil kunnoth

    interesting and helpful.

  • http://www.squidoo.com/lensmasters/RubyHRose RubyHRose

    Great information, thanks Susan.

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