The game of speaking is one of prestige, honour and opportunity that can open up so many doors. The business of speaking can come in many different models: corporate keynotes, training, facilitation, workshops, public events, presentation etc. Often people have this perception that making money from speaking only comes from keynotes. It's like starting your meal at dessert when someone starting out aims directly at that type of speaking. I come from the belief that you will never get the speaking gig you are not ready for, so stop worrying about the What if's....
So lets have a look at the 7 Mistakes Wanna Be Speakers Make and how to avoid them:
1. Aim to high too fast and too early in their career as a speaker. When I was starting out they said to me speak wherever you can, put your hand up and say 'YES' to any opportunity. It doesn't matter who it's in front of just get the hours up. I listened, I created a goal to have spoken 5 times each quarter in my first year and that by the end of that year I would have spoken 20 times. Anything that way 10 minutes plus counted. By the end of that year as I focussed on my goal, I ended up speaking just over 30 times. This particular year was my apprenticeship in speaking. From there I was feeling myself, knew I could handle anything and the rest was history. I grew each and every presentation.
2. They don't ASK or APPLY. This is so simple yet so many are too lazy or too shy to do it. So many times I win speaking gigs because I simply take the time to Apply where others won't. You will be eliminating so much competition by simply applying as they won't. It takes some time to fill out applications but it's totally worth it. Save some of what you write in a template so you can use it in future applications. Don't wait to be ASKED!
3. They don't have a Simple Speaker Bio. I created this one page speaker Bio a couple of years ago that still serves me and wins me gigs. Its something I have never seen wanna be speakers have. Make one - its super easy. Just model mine below.
4. They expect to be paid for speaking. They frown upon a FREE speaking gig. Please don't be silly, speaking for FREE can be just as powerful and a bigger opportunity to invite people into the next step. I speak 95% of the time for FREE in my business and monetise it through inviting those attending into my Public events that then result in clients doing my Ultimate 48 Hour Author retreats. It's a great way to get known, build your network and showcase what you do.
SAY YES TO FREE SPEAKING!
5. They go over time and don't have the right skills or professionalism to win future gigs. The worst thing you can do it not keep to time and piss off the organiser. This is why being in front of smaller audiences at first is great to build up your skills and handle challenges when they arise. If you are not professional and go over time you will not be booked again. Be helpful, learn to adjust and deliver your presentation in less time as required.
6. They lack a clear message and hook. They either ramble, sound like everyone else or are not clear on how to communicate their message. Sometimes they even jump from one message to another thinking the new thing will work. Find your message and stick it out. Learn how to make it sound sexy, unique and something people WANT!
7. Fail to share their speaking on social media. Speaking and events are something that is so visual and sharing it on social media will get people curious as to what you are doing. I have picked up so many gigs and opportunities by simply sharing what I am doing all over the country. Start doing it before, during and after events and with the power of Live Streaming get others involved.
The Game of Speaking is wonderful when you avoid the above mentioned mistakes, when you put yourself out there and share with passion and enthusiasm. Make people fall in love with you and you will never have an empty speaking calendar. You do this by being uniquely you and delivering an authentic message that serves. Remember this:
'THE PERSON THAT STANDS IN FRONT OF 1000'S HAS ALSO STOOD IN FRONT OF 1.'
Natasa Denman CSP
P.S. Below is a pic from last weekend when I received my CSP (Certified Speaking Professional) Accreditation from the Professional Speakers Association. It was a surreal moment to receive this after such a short time with the Association under 2 years in fact. Others before me have taken decades to arrive to this level which is a true honour to be recognised.
P.P.S. I recently ran a half day event called Booked Out! 7 Keys to a Full Speaking Calendar and have the filmed footage of it that goes for around 3.5 hours of speaking gold. If you want to gain access to that for Just $27 Click here and email me with the Subject Line 'Booked Out!'