Market Yourself Through Public Speaking

As part of your marketing strategy, a noteworthy way for you to get exposure and new customers is public speaking. Public speaking is a powerful way to get new customers and leads, so be sure to incorporate it into your quiver of marketing techniques.

By Wendy Maynard

A noteworthy way for you to get exposure and new customers is public speaking. As a business owner, it is always a more powerful position to be in the front of the room than in the back. You further position yourself as an expert and reinforce the brand as YOU. People tend to perceive speakers as being more important than non-speakers.

Create a core talk that reinforces your specialty and practice it. Then, come up with a compelling title for your speech. Remember, your presentation isn't a sales pitch; it's a way to showcase your expertise. So, provide great, practical information that is helpful to your listeners.

Make the same speech in lengths of 30 minutes, 45 minutes and 90 minutes. This will be a talk you can use over and over again. Show confidence by using humor and letting your passion shine through! During your speech, your audience gets an opportunity to meet you without obligation and to get a feel for your personality, style, and expertise. The people who like your approach will either hire you or spread the word about your company.

Your audience is a goldmine of prospects, so don't miss out on this opportunity to get their contact information. Be sure to pass around a sign-up sheet to collect the names of attendees. As an incentive, offer them a free special report or a subscription to your ezine for signing the sheet.

In every city, there are associations, service clubs, and support groups that are looking for speakers for their meetings. Check your telephone book and highlight some of these. You can start with smaller groups as practice.

After you feel comfortable with your speech, seek out larger groups who have members in your targeted audience. When you call, ask for the name of the person in charge of lining up speakers. Offer to speak for free and explain the ways in which your speech will benefit the group's members. Be sure to mention the remarkable title you developed - it will help sell your presentation.

Once you begin to promote yourself as a speaker, groups will hear about you and you'll find yourself getting requests, as well. After you begin to get more engagements and feel at ease with speaking, add more topics to promote. If a group liked your speech, you can tell them you have new material and they may ask you to return to speak again.

Develop a speaker's sheet that you can send to groups. Create a page on your website that describes your expertise, background, and speaking style. Include testimonials if you have them. Hand out information to your audiences about you, your company, and your services. If you have information products, you can often offer these for sale for people to purchase at the event.

Public speaking is a powerful way to get new customers and leads, so be sure to incorporate it into your quiver of marketing techniques. You'll find opportunities abound when you commit to getting yourself out there!

ACTION ITEM: What idea do you want to develop into your core talk? List three potential ideas right now. Then, come up with an attention-getting title. Show them to your existing customers and ask them which one is of the most value to them. Develop the winner into a speech of different lengths.


Wendy Maynard, the Marketing Maven, publishes Remarkable Marketing, a weekly ezine for small business owners, freelancers, and entrepreneurs.

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