Thursday, May 9, 2013

3 Business Building Strategies for Professional Speakers

"If I could just find someone to book my speaking dates, life would be great!" says 90% of the speakers on the planet. Get over it. Unless you are a celebrity, or a very established speaker; it is up to you to fill your calendar. Successful motivational, sales, and other expert speakers invest 90% of their time  marketing their speaking services.

Gitomer, Shef, The Secret Speaker, Sales motivational speaker, Speakermatch
John Assaraf, Jeffrey Gitomer, and Shef in San Diego

The way that you position your expertise and style to an event planner makes a world of difference with regard to the success you will enjoy as a professional speaker! Regardless of if you are just starting in the speaking business, or if you are a veteran; these strategies will help you produce great results:

1. Specialize and Customize to Monetize
If your message is for everyone, your message is for no one. "Helping people get the most out of their lives." is a common reply that I hear when asking speakers about how an audience benefits from their message. With a few very rare exceptions, no one hires a generalist. An example of a better, more focused reply could be, "I help women entrepreneurs with children build a successful business without feeling like they are robbing their family of their time."  
My previous post titled, Un-Stick Your Speaking Business, contains a few other ideas that will help you.

2. Ask the right questions
If you walked into your doctor's office seeking relief from a broken leg, but he launched into a long conversation about allergies, you would still have a broken leg and would have wasted your time. Many speakers do the same thing. Your message is not a "One size fits all" type of message.
Some typical information that I require when someone is booking me to speak includes audience size, gender split, income range, and the key objectives and problems that the client is hoping to address with this event. By asking the right questions, you are able to craft your language to become a solution for their problem.

3. Create Pretty Promo
My promo package used to include a cover letter and a few references thrown into a Priority Mail envelope with a couple of my books. When I first visited Speakermatch (an amazing lead source for speakers), I looked at the professional-grade folders that other speakers were submitting.
From that point forward, my promo information is not only customized, but is neatly tucked into a folder. I also include a one-sheet for them to review. (Look at my Keynote Speaker One Sheet Here). Many industries suffer from the same ailments, yet replacing a few words within your promo material can make a world of difference in positioning you as an expert in the client's eyes.

You cannot steer a boat that is not moving. The only way that you will transition from someone who can speak to a professional speaker is to get moving! Civic clubs are a great place to start. I wrote an awesome guide titled, Tapping the Goldmine of Civic Clubs, and it is yours for free. Just contact my office and request it.

What has been the most effective marketing for you as a speaker?

For more information about booking The Shef for your next event, visit or call our offices at 1-563-343-5412


Unknown said...

These three strategies are for every speaker. Thank you for sharing this profitable article.

Mark Duin
Motivational Speaker

Unknown said...

Being a skilled motivational speaker, I think you can do many things with your skill. You can either go for business, or otherwise. Motivational speakers are really cool..