By Wendy Keller, Literary Agent and Public Speaker
Got something interesting, valuable or meaningful to say to the world?
Good for you!
You have decided to add “paid speaking” to your list of accomplishments. You have an idea for a speech – or maybe even a speech written. Now what? How do you find the people who will pay you to come in and share your message with their audience?
Your best play for becoming a successful speaker comes in 3 acts:
Act 1: Get your content assembled and polished
In almost 30 years of working with new, intermediate and advanced (famous name) speakers, I can tell you this: this first part is where the magic is!
Without a strong message, laden with value for your potential audience, you won’t get far. Solution: build a strong message from the ground up.
Some sneaky ways of finding out if what you’ve got is going to be popular in the way you’re positioning it:
- Spy on your topic at Amazon.com. Are there any books with a similar message? How well are they selling? (Hint: Scroll down to the middle of the page where it says “Product Details” and look for a ranking number. Numbers higher than 200,000 aren’t selling well at all.)
- On Google, simply append the word “Speaker” to your topic niche. Not “inspirational speaker” or “business speaker” but “personal finance speaker” or “depression speaker” or “customer service speaker”. Who else is talking about your topic? You want there to be at least a few! That shows that when you customize your message, there will be a market for it.
- Again on Google, add the word “Study” – as in research study. Are there any new, interesting, cool studies being done that prove your perspective on your topic is validated by third party research? Get a copy of those studies and use them to bolster your credibility when you pitch your speech and when you develop it.
When you get the First Act right, your marketing progress will be a breeze!