Many of you will know that I am in the fortunate position of being paid when I speak at events (not always ,but often!). I thought I’d give those of you who have similar aspirations some advice which I hope will be helpful.
- Speak for free!
- When you first launch yourself on the speaking circuit take everything you are offered.
- Get in front of as many different audiences as you can.
- Aim to get yourself recognized as an expert in your field.
- Think about subjects that you could speak about which would engage a range of audiences.
- Work up talks of different lengths – 10 mins, 20 mins, 30 mins.
- Have some with visual aids and some you can deliver without.
- Start with business networking groups, rotary clubs, W.I. and similar. Sometimes you will get a meal in payment!
- Tell everyone you connect with that you are interested in speaking.
- When you have sufficient experience let people know that you have speeches to offer for regional business seminars and conferences.
- You now need 45 mins, I hour and 1½ hour presentations.
- Prepare practical seminars and formal audience addresses.
- For large audience speeches,some form of PowerPoint presentation may be advantageous but if you can interact with your audience you may not need this.
- Conferences usually require keynote speakers and seminar leaders so be prepared to do either.
- When you get to this level you can expect payment.
- Research what current fees are likely to be and pitch yours at a reasonable level.
- No one is going top pay you ‘top dollar’ until you prove your worth.
REACHING THE TOP
- When you have spoken at a conference you are likely to get bookings from companies who were present, for internal seminars, workshops or event speaking.
- Once people hear you speak at an event and find you deliver what you promised, you will get more bookings.
- Use the skills you have to speak at lots of other events too.
- Do you have any non-business topics that would be of interest to arts or sport organisations?
- Why not do what I did and apply to be a guest speaker on cruise ships?
- The WORLD can be your oyster!
- Look good – dress appropriately.
- SOUND good – be heard, be distinct, be interesting vocally.
- Be CONFIDENT- (don’t let your audience feel anxious for you)
There is no substitute for practice, so get out there and find yourself an audience.
Speak Loud & Clear!