“I know a lot, and I have a deep desire to share it all with the world,” you say. You’ve got the gift of gab and you feel confident in front of an audience. While attending conferences you’ve said to yourself, “I think I can do just as good of a presentation as that speaker did. I should get paid for speaking too.”
But wait! If speaking for cash was that simple, everyone would be doing it, right? Les Brown, Marianne Williamson, Tony Robbins, John Maxwell and President Barack Obama are not among the top paid speakers in the world because they are excellent orators alone. A lot goes on in the background to make sure their speeches are worthy of their audience’s investment.
There are lots of standard public speaking guidelines, marketing strategies and best practices you should be aware of as you prepare to take the stage by storm.
However today, I want to share my top ten questions to ask yourself before quitting your full-time job to shift to speaking for profit:
- Do your speeches inform, persuade and entertain?
- Who is your target audience and do they pay for speakers?
- Does your speaker sheet include your bio, speaking topics, and references?
- Can your target audience find you easily online?
- Are your audience reviews captured and available for potential clients to see?
- Do you have video clips of you speaking that include audience participation?
- Are you a member of a speakers associate or club where you can practice and refine your message and speaking style?
- Do you or your team submit RFPs (request for proposals) weekly?
- Is your speaking fee comparable to others in your industry with your expertise?
- Do you have books, products or services to sell audiences who attend unpaid speaking presentations?
These are some things to consider as you plan to add speaking for profit to your revenue streams. Although you can absolutely start where you are and get a few gigs, be clear; highly paid speakers are committed to performance and communication. They know the value of being active in organizations like Toastmasters International with 345,000 members worldwide in 142 countries.
Hanging out with like-minded people with similar goals is a great way to sharpen your skills, network, find a mentor and profit from sharing your message with the world.