Boom Online Marketing have grown considerably over the last year and added a number of new team members. All of us are active in blogging on the site and in social media so we’re keen to pull all that information together into handy Meet the Team profiles.

This led to a discussion about how we could best represent the team in a unique way on the site. How could we showcase our personalities and skills in a creative way? How could we make sure that what we created would be on brand, not stuffy and dull? Is there a way it could help our SEO and maybe net us some links?

We took to Twitter to get some recommendations of interesting and creative team pages we could learn from, both in and out of the online marketing niche. We got lots of great suggestions and picked up a few lessons along the way…

What to Include:

Photos of the team

Well I think this goes without saying! I would favour photos over cartoon representations, allow people to see the team – the people that are actually working on their projects or are likely to be working on their projects.

Bios that aren’t two lines of bland text

You hired your team for a number of reasons, don’t let them take the stiff British upper lip and get all coy about themselves. Write bios that reflect who you are, what you do – both inside and outside of work – allow people to make connections.

Social profiles

It’s likely that a number of your team will be on social media in some form or other. Make sure that you aren’t connecting them to their drunken weekend twitter account though – you need to keep some professionalism! Add your LinkedIn account, the team’s personal blogs; just make sure you haven’t hooked in their Google Buzz account.

Links to expert work

If you are doing any kind of online marketing its likely that one member (or more) of your staff are writing guest posts somewhere – add them to the bios, let people see where they are and what else they writing. If the directors are speaking publicly then make sure there is a calendar of where and when it is all happening – some of the best connections are made at conferences and speaking gigs.

Something that makes it unique

Allow yourself to stand out; don’t be stifled by what came before. Understand who your target market is and then think how you can creatively address them.

Humour (industry dependent!)

Humour isn’t always going to apply to every sector, make a decision early on as to whether it does for yours. If so you are in a position to make your team page more memorable than the next. Again make sure that the humour is aligned with the target audience in order not to alienate – approach with caution!

Here are 13 examples of creative, inspiring, linkable and shareable team pages. I encourage you to click through and have a look at them as a lot of them are interactive.

Think (Creative Design Agency)

Click on one of the team members to get a full bio – talking about inspirations and hobbies. This brings that team member to the forefront whilst making the others less prominent. The profiles also pull in tweets and latest posts.

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Amazee Labs (Web Design)

Nothing flashy about this one. It’s a simple elegant design with just enough of a bio to help you connect. Contact details and social profiles are easily accessible.

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Outside The Box (Creative Marketing Agency)

Another simply laid out page that gives you enough detail to make an impression. It’s business focused but mentions a few hobbies ;)

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Hitreach (Web Design and SEO)

Not sure about the founder of this company ;) but a well put together team page nonetheless! Hover over a picture to get a personal video. Click ‘see my desk’ to get an insight into their qualifications and hobbies.

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Rock Kitchen Harris (Advertising and Design)

Lacking in detail of the team and who they are but is included for its nice touch with the photos of them as kids.

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Distilled (Online Marketing)

The Distilled page has a few nice touches – there’s colour coding based on their office and you can hover over pictures for a less corporate photo pose. Click through for a more detailed bio with access to personal blogs and social profiles.

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Fixel (Web Design)

This covers the bases with bios but wins out in quirkiness. Click the arrows on the right to see the top half of the team photos randomly match with the bottom. Also click on the moustache in the bottom left for an odd moustache addition!

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Elegant Seagulls (Creative Agency)

Simple and elegant – nothing flashy. I’ve included this for the nice bios and the fact that it has some graphs on it!

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Inflection – Big Data Platform

These guys do data and used that to inform their infographic style team page which even includes average workday caffeine intake stats!

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Applicake (Software)

The team are represented by gifs. It’s fun and well designed. Click on a team member to scroll down to their bio – which includes work related info and also links to hobbies, map, music and social profiles.

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Digital Marmalade (Digital Agency)

Know your target audience! This page appears to be a standard set of photos but when you click it flips over a top trumps style card that covers industry, personal and super hero!

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Lateral (UX Design)

Hover over one of the team members and watch the others move their head to look at the one you are on. I think this would be better if it linked through to full profiles though.

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Less Films (Video)

And winner of the most quirky – the bios are minimal and we don’t learn much, but its memorable – and that’s important too ;)

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Benefits for Business

Gives a face to the company

People deal with people. It’s a cliché but it’s true. ‘Meet the Team’ pages give you the chance to the let the team’s (and by proxy the company’s) personality shine through. Be one step ahead!

“All things being equal, people prefer to do business with people they like. All things being not so equal, people still prefer to do business with people they like.” Jeffrey Gitomer

Showcase team skills and abilities

If prospective clients are still in the situation of making decisions of which company to contact, you can lay out your experience and skills on your team page beforehand.

Allow prospective employees to judge if they are a culture fit

None of us like wasting time. Both employers and potential employees want to know that they will fit into an existing team before they start. A solid team page will allow prospective employees to make that judgement themselves – before even thinking about applying for a position. Win–win!

Benefits for SEO

It was always going to come down to the SEO at some point! There are plenty of business reasons for team pages but does it make sense from an SEO/Social perspective?

It’s never going to set the world on fire but it’s going to bring some action to a deep page on your site:

Linkable

With the right promotion and enough exposure a good quality team page can bring in some links – it becomes a linkable asset for any of your team that have a public profile. I think we can safely say that the Lateral page has earned itself a fair number of links.

Shareable

A team page that has the edge when it comes to creativity or quirkiness has the potential to become shareable – many sites seem to have created these unique team pages but then forgot to make them shareable!

Aligns with Dan Shure’s Prop Words technique

If you haven’t read Dan Shure’s post on prop words you should go do so now – it’s highly recommended. Essentially it boils down to either leveraging existing assets (on your website or off) in order to spread your anchor text in a more natural manner.

With thanks to Chris Dyson, Chris Gilchrist, Sean Revell, Pak Hou Cheung for their suggestions and here’s a link for Barrie Moran for the chocolate run.