1. convert into or express in the form of value
2. earn benefit from (an asset, business, etc.).
Monetize isn't a 4-letter word that should make you feel greedy and cringe.
It's actually an 8-letter word that you must understand how to leverage if you desire a successful speaking business.
So regardless whether or not you are getting PAID for a speech, there are numerous strategies you can proactively initiate to ensure you receive value and benefit.
And whether you are just starting out in your speaking or you are already fairly established, these tips below will ensure you monetize your next speech like never before.
Besides, speakers who are establishing their speaking business won't have everything needed when they first start off ... so they learn how to monetize a speech to get them what IS needed.
"We all start the same ... the difference is what we do to finish."
Below are my top 10 tips outlining how you can monetize your next speech.
1. Realize your speech is free marketing exposure
Folks, 90%+ of my speaking comes from people who have seen me speak or heard about me from someone who did. It's rare that a meeting planner or event organizer will inquire with me about speaking if they aren't confident I can speak to their group.
2. Spin off inquiries and referrals
As long as your speech went well you will get inquiries and referrals. If you're not getting referrals and inquiries after a speech though, then the speech needs work. Read my previous "Speaker Tip" blogs here for numerous tips on obtaining inquiries and referrals in very subtle ways. And of course you have to have a delivery style whereby the audience knows you speak and they could book you to speak.
3. Stage time experience
There is no better way to improve your speaking than presenting in front of a live audience. Even if it's painful - and I've been there - you will learn your greatest lessons in a live setting. The reason I'm just as comfortable speaking to audiences ranging from 50 to 500 to 5,000+ is because I've been there before hundreds of times. So go into your next speech with a positive mindset of feeling more comfortable after-the-fact. The most extraordinary speakers are comfortable being uncomfortable at times.
4. The group you are speaking is now a client
Whether you get PAID to SPEAK or not, that organization will be a client and you should keep a list of every group you've presented. Think about it ... the only two people who know your speaking fee are you and the person asking you to speak.
(BONUS speaker tip: Make sure your contract -- even if it's a free speech -- outlines a confidentiality clause that your fee agreement is not to be shared. I have sample contracts in my book, PAID to SPEAK.)
Where do you think testimonials come from? ... from people hearing you speak!
Nine times out of ten you'll need to ask for testimonials in a clever fashion (in tip #10 below you'll read how I accomplish this), and keep reminding yourself that having them is gold. If you don't ask for testimonials, the answer will always be "no." Speakers with a few powerful testimonials will far outshine a comparable speaker with dozens of mediocre ones. Check out testimonials on my website here for ideas on testimonials. And you should be obtaining testimonials from both meeting planners booking you AND the audience.
6. Demo video
One of my best demo videos came when I just slapped a camera behind the stage facing the audience. Check it out below and click here to be taken to my demo video page for more samples.
90% of my speaking clips have come speeches where I used my own camera from the back and front of the room on a tripod. And when I first started speaking, ALL my videos were from free speeches.
Folks, if you're serious about speaking and don't have video, the only way to get video is to speak. Don't go into a studio and record yourself speaking to a camera if you don't have live audience video supplementing it. You don't need demo video to get started in speaking, but you need video to get PAID at levels you can pay the bills. Unless it's a unique situation, a meeting planner is not going to pay you $2,500 - $5,000 - $10,000+ to speak if they can't see you speak on video. It doesn't matter what your website and Speaker Page looks like if they can't watch you on video.
7. Action photos
Similar to video in tip #6 above, action photos of you speaking in front of a live audience are gold. I see speakers with photos of them speaking but there is no audience in the background. A meeting planner will rule this type of speaker OUT because they want to be confident in bringing you IN!
8. Building your list
Every time you present, there are opportunities to build upon a contact list. Strategies to accomplish this are through evaluations, text to subscribe email newsletters, giveaways on your website which you refer them to visit, collecting business cards, etc.
When I speak, I prefer just names and email so I can connect with them on LinkedIn and add them to my email newsletter. I have a short evaluation card that is handed to each audience and I also inform them that my slide deck and videos shared during the presentation are already free downloads on my website here (try it out). When they visit my website, my opt-in pop up message collects their email.
9. Share new content
Similar to stage time experience, every time you present, you should deliver something new. Perhaps it's a new content puzzle piece, a new delivery technique, or just a new angle of a common story. The best way to keep your speaking saw sharp is by sharing new content.
10. Get feedback
And similar to building your list, #8, you should be collecting feedback every time you speak in some way. It will often lead to testimonials, referrals and building your list as well! Whether I'm presenting a one-hour keynote, a 1/2 day leadership training, or a full day retreat, I always provide my own evaluation. I only ask a few simple questions - and you can view samples in my book, PAID to SPEAK . The feedback I receive is invaluable for me to be aware what worked well and what might need to be tweaked for the future in some way. The audience's feedback is paramount. How I felt my presentation went doesn't mean anything if I don't know how the audience felt.
Was 10 tips enough? Feeling overwhelmed?
Don't get frustrated or overwhelmed. There's a lot to think about ... and do.
What I've shared with you is actually just a short list of ideas to benefit from any speech. Contact me for a free coaching call and we'll talk through any questions you might have.
Whatever you do, just keep speaking. Speak for FREE until you get the FEE! And as you're speaking for FREE, you'll be monetizing that speech to get the FEE sooner than the other speakers who aren't
Stay passionate about your story, your message, and your WHY for speaking. You'll get there. Contact me if I can help. See below.
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Not getting the speaking business you had hoped for?
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In addition to my own speaking business, I have a passion for helping and coaching speakers develop their own. Whether it's in crafting a speech, identifying target groups who can pay, and/or how to get the speaking gig itself, I can help. I've keynoted over 1,150 presentations in practically every industry you can imagine. My book, PAID to SPEAK, outlines a proven model for speakers. If you are serious about becoming a professional speaker, contact me for a free consultation. I don't want you to flounder like I did and be frustrated. If you're not a subscriber to these speaker articles, submit your email today!
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