How To Expand Your Business Through Public Speaking
Public speaking is a great way to affordably target and reach your ‘ideal prospect’. Public speaking allows both entrepreneurs and corporations to build personal relationships with potential customers. Freely sharing your expertise builds credibility and desire to work with you before the discussion ever moves to price. Remember, prospects are looking for expert information. Provide relevant and informative material in the form of informational seminars, webinars, and podcasts and you will expand your reach and your business.
Public Speaking Is About Giving
Keep in mind, public speaking is about giving. You are a resource and this is your opportunity to share your expertise. If you give your prospects exactly what they need, you will develop and build strong trusting relationships.
For small businesses, speeches featuring ‘top tips’ are an interesting and easy way to organize information. It also allows flexibility because you can include or eliminate tips in your speech depending on how much time you have. Your tips should provide practical, relevant information that will apply to prospects at any stage of the buying process.
Top Tips and Secrets Make Great Public Speeches
For example a bridal shop might create a talk called: “10 Secrets Bridal Shops Won’t Tell You” or perhaps “The 5 Most Embarrassing Wedding Blunders and How to Avoid Them”. An attorney might create a speech titled, “10 Top Mistakes When Estate Planning” or doctor might create a program called, “Top Ten Tests All Woman Should Know About.”
Think back to your most commonly asked questions in your area of expertise and make them the centerpiece of your public speaking events. Keep in mind, prospects do not want to hear a fifteen minute sales pitch.
For larger organizations it is equally important to tell stories. Focus on process, focus on ideas that you can share with others in your industry, perhaps tell a story of discovery.
Build Your Credibility By Telling Interesting and Fun Success Stories
For each point that you make in your speech, have a story to emphasize your point and provide an example. Stories will make your presentation personal and fun.
And most importantly, speaking about your professional experiences will showcase your own companies abilities, target your ideal client, and provides proof that you have satisfied customers who paid for your expertise. And a big bonus is that stories are also much easier to remember than straight facts and are easier to retell. Make sure you have a few good stories up your sleeve.
Oh, and yes, you can and should include stories from your own organization, but especially for larger organizations remember to mix it up a bit by including examples from your competition or others in similar fields. If it’s only focused on your company, you run the risk of the perception as a sales pitch. (Don’t get me wrong, there is a place for sales pitches, but it should not be a the focus of your public speaking outreach.) Good stories will spread like wildfire, invest the time finding and developing your best corporate stories.
Make Speeches To Large Groups of Your Ideal Prospect
When your material is prepared, you will want to start looking for places and events to speak in public. The idea is to target places where large groups of your target prospect meet. For the bridal shop owner deliver talks at bridal shows, estate planners might target upscale assisted living facilities, while doctors might choose a health fair. Here are some additional pubic speaking ideas to think about:
Other Public Speaking Ideas
1. Create your OWN event with a team of locals that you trust. For example for the bridal shop owner gather a photographer, beauty salon, tux, limo, travel agency, etc. and have each person deliver an informational program. This way you can benefit from the cross-promotion. Remember, no sales pitches! This is all about providing valuable information so that together you build trust.
2. Contact local radio stations whose demographics are the same as your ideal prospect. Offer to be a guest speaker or participate in a live interview. Don’t know where to start, contact your local college to see if you can find a public relations intern to help you get started.
3. Start your own podcast. Start by checking out what other experts in your field are providing and create something slightly different. Perhaps use your materials to create short tip-based episodes, interview satisfied customers, interview your own team and have them tell success stories, or interview a variety of professionals in your local area.
4. Don’t have time to create your own podcast? Get yourself interviewed on popular wedding podcasts or submit the script of your presentations as short tip based articles to popular blogs in your profession. Also consider re-purposing your materials and speeches as short articles for the local newspapers.
Overall the idea is to use public speaking events to share your knowledge and expertise. This will help you build credibility and a strong reputation which in turn will create additional business for you.