I am by no means a Linkedin expert, but I certainly know a thing or two about copywriting and how to grab someone’s interest long enough to read a 2 minute post.
This is no small feat, considering our average attention span is somewhere in the realm of 8 seconds.
That being said, I am quickly running out of time. So, let’s dive right in.
The 4 Rules of Writing a Linkedin Bio That People Actually Want to Read
- It Should Never Take Longer Than 16 Seconds to Read
Once upon a time there was a large white cat named Indigo, whom received his name after sticking his right paw in a can of blue paint. Everywhere Indigo prowled, he left behind a single blue paw print, which had a way of terrifying the small town of East Dandelion — still to this day the town believes these mysterious blue paw prints belong to a one-legged beast called the Dandelion Jackal.
The average reader can read the above excerpt in under 16 seconds.
When crafting your Linkedin Bio, keep the following criteria in mind:
- Your Linkedin Bio should never take your visitors longer than 16 seconds to read.
- Your Linkedin Bio should never be longer than 3 sentences, ideally you should keep it to 2.
- Your Linkedin Bio should never be longer than 75 words.
2. Capture Your Reader’s Attention Within the First 8 Seconds
If the average person has an attention span of 8 seconds, this means you have very little time to pique their interest.
Your first sentence needs to be bold. It needs to hit them hard. They need to be able to feel it.
Which of the following bios are you most likely to continue reading?
Bio 1 —
Welcome! My name is Chuck Laboski and I am a world-class widget technician that is adamant about providing exceptional customer service.
Bio 2 —
I remember the feeling of mesmerization the first time I opened up a box of crayolas and watched their vibrant colors come to life on the page — 20 years later, I am still coloring, helping brands come to life through graphic design.
Unless you’re an accountant, 95% of people are more likely to keep reading Bio #2.
Because in under 8 seconds you read something that was bold, beautiful and most importantly a story — which brings us to our next point.
3. When in Doubt, Tell a Story
I could go on and on here, but I am going to hold back from sharing my deep love of story-telling for another blog post. For now, just know the best way to capture a person’s attention and ensure that they will remember you is by telling a story.
If you scroll back to point #1, you will notice I told a very short story in 16 seconds. Do you remember the cat’s name?
Of course you do. It was Indigo.
You remembered this small detail because I didn’t just spit out facts, I got your attention by telling you a story.
When in doubt, tell a story.
4. Don’t Use Words That You Haven’t Used Within the Past Week
I see a ton of LinkedIn bios packed full of big lengthy words in hopes to come across as more intelligent.
Big words do not equate to a big brain. High intelligence is having the ability to communicate complex ideas in their simplest forms, not the other way around.
A 7th grader should be able to read your LinkedIn Bio and know exactly what it is you do.
I am guessing the majority of individuals on LinkedIn don’t possess a career that is more difficult to describe than an Astrophysicist.
You can define an Astrophysicist’s job description in two ways —
- the branch of astronomy that deals with the physical properties of celestial bodies and with the interaction between matter and radiation in the interior of celestial bodies and in interstellar space.
- an individual that studies how stars and planets work.
Always shoot for #2 when describing your job description — keep it simple.
By Cole Schafer
Cole is the copy chief at Honey Copy, where he helps startups make more money through emails and landing pages that read like poetry and sell like Ogilvy. When he isn’t slinging copy, he is right here on Medium sharing ideas about life, business, marketing and cats named Indigo. Or riding alpacas.