Killer About Pages: Mailchimp, Godaddy, CTSI-Global, Clark Hulings Fund

Most “About Us” pages are either a wall of text sandwiched between a header and footer, or a kitchen-sink of overflowing but disconnected bits of information: Our Team, Our History, Our Services, Our Whatever. The following brands don’t roll that way. Their strong About pages make us want more. Here’s how and why they achieve that:

Mailchimp

The Mailchimp About Page is strong because:

  • Digestible Story: Amid a single, short paragraph about the facts, there’s a 6-second brand story: “The company started in 2001 as a side project. Today, Mailchimp serves millions of customers around the world, is still 100% founder-owned, and is highly profitable.”
  • Concrete Information: The deeper look is a founding story: Instead of theory, it’s situated in specific places and times, which reveal how they’ve evolved, and make the narrative more credible. A story is what happened, not what we think about things. “So, in 2007, Ben and Dan decided to shutter the web design agency and focus exclusively on Mailchimp.”
  • Takes a Stand: The Corporate Citizenship section conveys that the company is not a one-dimensional pony. Rather than fearfully sanitizing its image to protect it, Mailchimp embraces the unusual and validates the personal: “Mailchimp serves the people and organizations in Atlanta that help make our city better, weirder, and more human.”
  • Raises its Blinds: The Culture section is unbuttoned rather than buttoned up: “Mailchimp also hosts writers, designers, comedians, artists, and other interesting people at our regular Coffee Hour series for employees.”
  • The Peel Off is Controlled: There are three things you can click on if you want more: a Why page, a Press page, and a Company News page. It’s not the kitchen sink, nor a dumping ground for all their blog posts. It’s robust but restrained.

Godaddy

The Godaddy About Page is strong because:

  • Visually Satisfying: This is the first thing you see. The top part of the page is the difference between a Camry and a Saab.
  • Facts are Restrained: A short summary at the beginning (6-second read) and then rest is brief but represented as data-based factoids, so you can draw your own conclusions: “World’s largest domain registrar”; “9K employees”.

CTSI-Global

The CTSI-Global About Page is strong because:

  • Declarative Headlines: Instead of the generic “About Us”, they opt to make the headlines declarations: “60 YEARS OF FORWARD-THINKING INNOVATION—Providing Best-in-Class Logistics Solutions Since 1957”.
  • Facts Are Visual: Instead of just bullet points or generic icons to represent information, they show the info in context. When discussing their “global supply chain” expertise, they use a map to pinpoint where they have local presence – supporting their position that global logistics requires actual boots on the ground.
  • Values Are Restrained: They don’t overwhelm us with a vast scrolling section on values. Some sites do that and it comes off as cotton candy fluff that’s theoretical and never implemented. These guys hold it to five sentences: “We focus on developing deep relationships with our customers…”
  • They Tout Accomplishments: Don’t tell me who you are, tell me what you’ve done, and I’ll know who you are. E.g. “Supplier achievement award for Continuous Quality Improvement (SCQI)”
  • It Has a CTA: The About page is not an informational page that just dumps you after that. There’s a call to action—and not a namby pamby IF/THEN CTA or generic “contact us”. It’s got guts and states the new reality for those that come on board: “Gain insight. Embrace efficiencies. Reduce your spend. Work with CTSI-Global today.” They even back it up with an alternate (“visitor not ready yet”) CTA: a downloadable executive summary.

The Clark Hulings Fund

The Clark Hulings Fund About Page is strong because:

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  • The Message is Distilled: It’s down to three words: “We Build Bridges” on a full-height row. This sets up the context for the rest of the page content, forming the underlying theme.
  • The Story is Refined: It’s four sentences and a headline, but the page keeps us in the world of the narrative a little longer: “No human being is an island…” Rather than just a header with “Our Values”, the narrative is organic, like natural speech. Who starts a conversation by shouting  a preface like “Our Values!”. Not these guys.
  • It’s Outcome-Based: Instead of listing the services (they have several), they describe the bottom line outcome for the end-user. “We equip artists to flourish.”
  • It’s Audience Supported: The claims about what they achieve are bolstered by quotes or case studies from end-users. “CHF has totally rewired my brain. I now think of both cost and opportunity potential for everything I consider doing in my business.”
  • There’s a Data Narrative: It’s as simple as “CHF Gets Results” but that, paired with outcome data, is all they really need to make the case. The About page (like a home page) is not a replacement for the whole sales conversation, but a prompt to get into one.
  • It Uses Humility Correctly: Sections for staff and brand partners don’t rely on the usual “look, we have the best people”. Instead, they emphasize (This is) “A Team Effort”. Collaborative brands are “allies”. It’s personal, human, powerfully understated.
  • Instructions Included: The About page tells you how to use the organization. “Collaborate with CHF if you want to…” (e.g. deliver cost-efficient content, attract funders, etc). The outcomes are use-cases. ‘We are the tool to achieve x-result.’

Other Examples

  • Patagonia’s About Page weds the genesis story with the company’s values, producing a single narrative: “Patagonia grew out of a small company that made tools for climbers. Alpinism remains at the heart of a worldwide business…As the climate crisis deepens, we see a potential, even probable end to such moment…” Their spinoff page about Company History reveals not only their “growing pains” but their ‘aha moments’.
  • Shopify’s About Page lets us in on the decision-points in their story, complete with alternatives: “We could have listed our products on a number of marketplaces, but we wanted to own our brand and build relationships with our customers, along with selling our goods. Such a tool didn’t exist, so we built it for ourselves.”
  • Moz’s About Page uses a timeline story model that is slightly more vulnerable than average. It goes into their successive rounds of funding, acquisitions, rebranding—including a name change. It doesn’t hide that they started out small. And it suggests the story is ongoing: “Interested in our latest chapter?”
  • Nike’s About Page uses a central mission as the guiding theme for the page—’designing and protecting the future of sport’. It stands out as light on text, heavy on image, which is what they’re about, of course.
  • Uber’s About Page focuses on their vision for the future. We know what they do, but what are they working toward? “In addition to helping you get from point A to point B, we’re working to bring the future closer with self-driving technology and urban air transport”
  • Codeable’s About Page makes the point that what you’re getting, in the end, is the team. It does this by making team profiles almost the whole page which begins, “We are the people behind the idea and realization of Codeable”.
  • MadPipe’s About Page assumes you’ve seen the core message on the home page and picks up from there—explains what excites us: “We’re passionate about going after goals…” and how we achieve that excitement: “We get there by motivating others…” The page goes on to reveal some of the secret sauce: “treating all engagements as projects” and “involving the client in one seamless team”.

All of these About pages make us want more. They come from a core message or brand narrative as the central theme. They utilize design to help us parse the particulars without a wall of text. They focus on the things the company feels end-users want or need to glean from the page.

MadPipe helps brands coordinate copy and design to tell their story, so the drafts evolve into a coherent message that converts leads. Reach out, and we’ll help.

 

Daniel DiGriz

Daniel DiGriz is a corporate storyteller and Digital Ecologist® at MadPipe, which provides leadership in marketing, educational programs, and organizational transformation for brands that want a stronger connection with their audience. A Digital Ecologist® applies strategic principles from both natural and digital ecologies to help organizations thrive across multiple ecosystems. Daniel hosts podcasts, writes a Forbes column, speaks at conferences, and his ideas have appeared in Inc, SmartBlog, MediaPost, and Success Magazine.

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