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The 3 Most Important Elements of a Great Adoption Profile

A guest post from our friend Deb Slater at AdoptionProfilesByDesign.com

 

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The following is a guest post from our friend Deb Slater at AdoptionProfilesByDesign.com. She graciously shares with us the 3 most important elements of a great adoption profile. Be sure to check out her site and see the profile services she offers. Enjoy!

I’ve been a graphic designer for more than 25 years now, but I’ve never enjoyed anything as much as helping adoptive families develop their profiles. It might be that I’m also an adoptive parent, but I think it’s really that I get to facilitate, on a daily basis, acts of pure love.

This is what I know so far: Whenever a profile accurately captures the appeal of your family and the love you have for the birthparents and their child, it is the best that it can be. Toward that end, these are the three most important elements of a great adoption profile:

• Your words (as opposed to someone else’s)
• Your pictures (a great mix of posed and candids — mostly candids)
• Your style (the graphic elements that express who you are)

Your Words
At Adoption Profiles by Design, we do not write copy. We’ll assist in correcting grammatical errors, but a great profile requires your spontaneous words. Simply describe who you are and how you live.

We make this even easier by providing sections that break your story into clearly readable parts. We also value highlighting certain parts of your story with “sidebars” — small areas of text that highlight important things about you — e.g., “strengths for parenting,” “why family matters,” or “our annual vacation.”

Your profile should include a “Dear Birth Family” letter to make the reader(s) feel cherished — including such things as a thank you for their consideration of you, appreciation for their loving/brave decision, your commitment to openness in the adoption, and your unconditional love for their child.

We also recommend a “Note to Our Child,” which allows you to speak from your heart to the child as if he/she were listening. Of course, it’s for the birth family now, but it’s also something wonderful to show your child when he/she is old enough.

Your Pictures
Choose your favorite photographs and make them a mix of posed and candid shots. Perfectly posed photos, one right after the other, can become boring. Adding some “caught off guard” moments will enhance realism. Non-people pictures, such as your home or nursery, are also helpful.

Use your captions not only to briefly describe the contents of the photos, but to reveal something about you as well. For example, “Camping in the Smokey Mountains. We love the outdoors” or “At the baseball stadium. We’ve followed the Reds for years.”

If taking new photos for the profile, take them at the highest possible resolution on your camera. If scanning photos, scan them to a size that is about 4X as large as you would envision them in the finished profile.

When selecting digital photos from your computer, remember that they will appear in print about 24% of the size that they appear on your computer.

Your Style
Select colors, fonts and text/photo arrangements that reflect your style. At Adoption Profiles by Design, we offer a number of suggestions, but the final choice should be what you think reflects your family best — from playful to sophisticated.

Covers should focus on the strongest elements of your story. You might have one great, large photo for a cover page, or focus on your “Dear Birth Family Letter,” etc.

To sum it up, when your heartfelt words, photos and graphic style come together in an easily readable format, you will not only have an effective means of reaching birthparents, but something your family will treasure forever.

Adoption Profiles by Design is here to help — and, we keep it affordable, offering great design along with beautiful, professional printing at no extra cost.

May all your adoption dreams come true.

Deb Slater has been in graphic design for over 25 years and her skills run the gamut — from print (magazines, newsletters, brochures, advertising, books and more) digital (websites, email marketing) to content (writing, editing, proofreading). Her clients have ranged from large universities and hospitals to individuals writing their first book. Her recent involvement with an adoption agency led to the formation of Adoption Profiles by Design — a venture that allows her to use her skills in an area near and dear to her heart.

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