03 Feb HOW DO YOU BECOME A PROFESSIONAL SPEAKER? HINT: IT STARTS WITH ACQUIRING PUBLIC SPEAKING EXPERIENCE
Becoming a professional speaker is an exciting but challenging journey that requires hard skills, soft skills, time, networking, motivation and persistence. A few encompassing elements underpin most successful speaking careers.
Craft Your Capability – Authenticity and expertise drive quality presentations. Most professional speakers are deeply trained or highly experienced in their topic – from business leadership to cutting-edge technologies. Speakers often have related degrees, published works or prior subject-specific careers, which lends credibility. Identify your distinct perspectives and abilities with marketing potential through self-reflection, research and feedback. Supplement natural skills with courses to hone know-how.
Build a Signature Talk – Develop a compelling signature talk targeted to client needs and your strengths. Attune the presentation to current demand – say, cybersecurity for corporate audiences. Convey depth and passion on the topic. Have the speech memorized, rehearsed and professionally slide-decked. Record video for website hosting. Transcribe the talk into blogs and books further expanding perceived authority.
Assemble Promotional Infrastructure – Every accomplished speaker maintains robust online presence and marketing materials. Build value-focused websites, content-rich blogs, email newsletters and active social media showcasing expertise. Create pamphlets, one-sheets and media kits professionally conveying capability and experience to event organizers. Join speakers associations facilitating networking and exposure opportunities through directories and conferences.
Start Local – Begin pitching nearby venues like libraries, schools, local nonprofits/associations, small conferences or area businesses to secure low-pressure talks. Use early speaking opportunities to gauge audience reception, refine content and gain confidence. Consider discounted speaking at first or offer time pro bono for causes about which you are passionate. Use video clips and attendee feedback from early talks in higher-tier marketing materials.
By combining sector insight with dynamic communication abilities, speakers grow reputable brands commanding premium presentation fees from national and global event organizers. Tenacity and mastery of diverse marketing techniques enable emerging voices to join the highest tiers of professional speaking.