Getting started as a speaker can be scary and exciting at the same time. Most people make it harder than it needs to be. When you make the decision to speak to grow your business, you will be faced with quite a few challenges.
I will share with you how to overcome these challenges and give you two easy ways to book more speaking engagements. Grab 25 speaking events in your city to help you with ideas.
Watch this quick (less than 5 min video) to get your first steps:
Let’s begin with a description of the three different types of speaking engagements.
- First is “practice” events. These are the events that are fairly easy to get and will give you the experience of speaking.
- Then you will move to “client attraction” speaking event. These are the stages that filled with your ideal clients. You might have to travel outside your local market for these events. I call them “client attraction” because these events are more likely to get you new clients with the right speech.
- Finally, the best stages are the “game changer” events. These are the stages that can explode your brand awareness and your revenue too. Examples include the national convention in your niche or a TEDx talk that gives you massive credibility.
You can work your way up the speaking ladder with experience in each level. Great speakers are only made through speaking and mastering the art of connecting with the audience.
This article focuses on the “practice” events. It can be your very first event. Or it could be more reps to practice the craft of speaking. Don’t be worried about the people sitting in the seats…just thrilled to be speaking your message and getting the stage time.
Let me share with you how to get your first speaking gig in 30 days without cold calling.
Ask Your Network – The people that you already know are your primary sources for speaking engagements. The reason being is one word. TRUST. Trust is essential when you want to get on a stage.
Think for a second if you were the one hosting an event. You are responsible for selecting the right speaker for the event. Your reputation is on the line. You will likely only consider speakers that you know for that opportunity. They have established trust with you. If you don’t know anyone for that event, you would likely ask those in your network that you trust. Think about this when you are reaching out to others.
Your network are the personal and professional relationships that you have right now. When you start with people that you know, you already have a basis of trust with them. You can call or email them to ask a simple question.
“Do you attend any networking events
where they use outside speakers?”
This is not fancy nor does it need to be. It is the starting question to a conversation about the events they attend and about speakers needed for those events. Please remember that this is just one of the many questions that you will ask to find speaking engagements that bring in outside speakers.
Your network (the people you know) will be able to share with your opportunities that are not on your radar at this moment. All you have to do is be proactive and start up a conversation.
Flip Your Networking Script – Beyond your current network, you can attend networking events to meet new people. This is a power tip here that is so simple, and it works like a charm.
It is changing your usual script to get clients. You know the elevator speech or the “who I serve” statement. Instead, you are going to listen to others and ask about other networking that they do. Be curious about the events they are attending and why they like those events.
Your job is not to be interesting with your work…it is to be interested in them. Getting to know new people is easy when you ask questions about them. I start here to make sure you are NOT in “pitch mode” in conversations. Ask questions to build rapport.
Once you know about them and their networking, you can ask if any of those events accept outside speakers (same question as above).
Don’t make this harder than it is. It is simple to find your first speaking gigs when you focus on it.
No cold calling required. These simple strategies will help you find your first speaking gigs.
If you want a tool that I developed to help those seeking practice events. Get this free guide to 25 speaking engagements in your city.
Now it is up to you to have some conversations with friends and associates to discover local events that are accepting outside speakers. If you have questions about speaking, send them over to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.