Speaking at Events

Hey there,

I thought I’d write a quick note about why you want to become a speaker in order to boost your business….

I started speaking at events like chamber of commerce small business luncheons, women’s groups, sales meetings and leads group meetings about 3 years ago. I found that by doing so, it really catapulted me into more of an expert role in my industry. People looked to me as more of the go-to person for marketing in their area plus I got a lot more free publicity in the local papers and business journals.

Speaking can be a challenge for many in regards to the following:

  • Who do you speak in front of?
  • How do you initiate a speaking gig?
  • How do you prepare for a speaking presentation?
  • How do you know what topics are of interest?
  • How do you capitalize on the publicity you could potentially receive?
  • How do you promote yourself during the talk?
  • What do you bring or handout to promote yourself?
  • How do you follow up after a speaking gig?

How do you overcome these obstacles or figure out how to accomplish them?

  1. You can ask other speakers how they do it.
  2. You can ask the people who book the speakers at such events, they’ll tell you.
  3. You can read books and online articles about the subject.
  4. You can get coaching and advice from someone who helps others on this topic.

What do you do first?

First you want to develop a few topics, survey an audience of people if you aren’t sure what kind of topics. Then write up a quick description or outline of a possible 20-30 minute talk on those topics, something with bullets, short and to the point showing how the audience will benefit.

Then put those topics on a word document, add your photo and a short bio as well as your contact info to book you for a speaking gig and whoala! You just developed your speaker sheet.

Next, you send it by email or mail to all those persons responsible for booking speakers for their events; you can normally find them on the organizations’ websites or call to ask who’s in charge of such a thing for each one.

Then you want to follow up with a phone call or another email and try to get the person on the phone so you can quickly chat with them and brainstorm how you can serve their audience in a talk you can give.

Finally, remember to contact these organizations way ahead of time. Many of them book their speakers for the year in the fall of the previous year so if you contact them in February, it might be too late for that year, but make sure you’re on their list for the following year then.

Oh, and one last thing….remember to practice your talks, get feedback and keep revising them to stay current, interesting and valuable.

Kat out —

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About Katrina Sawa

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