Beginner’s Guide: How to Become a Professional Speaker
Have you ever wanted to become a professional speaker? Imagine what it would be like to stand before a crowd of people and inform an audience about a topic you are passionate and knowledgeable about? Have you ever wondered how to start?
Here’s how to start:
Pick a topic. Think about your professional and personal experience. What are you passionate and knowledgeable about? How can your voice and life experiences help others encountering this topic? What do you feel confident and energized to talk about? Make sure you pick a topic that fires you up inside because this is the fire that will keep you going when things sometimes get hard.
Get specific. Identify your niche. To whom are you speaking? What is the context? The more specific you can be, the better. Don’t focus only on the seen opportunities, but think about all of the unseen opportunities you can create. Select a theme and title like, “How to [X] Without [X].”
Create an engaging presentation. The best presentations are natural, humorous, engaging and thought-provoking. Authors Chip and Dan Heath of Made to Stick, recommend these principles for a successful presentation: simple, unexpected, concrete, credible, emotional and storytelling.
Develop a one-pager. Create a handout to share that defines your presentation and background. Remember to make the introduction paragraph focused on solving a problem and write it as if you are speaking directly to your audience. Include a brief and professional background with your headshot. Conclude with your contact information.
Make a website. Translate your one-pager onto a website. Create a way for event planners and other organizers to research you and your background. Make it easy to navigate and don’t clutter your site with unnecessary information detracting from your presentation. Ensure you can collect email addresses from those who visit your site with an email opt-in offer and start building your email list. This will help you when you begin prospecting new events.
Share with your network. Once you have your topic, presentation and website created-- start reaching out to your network. You are likely to book your first speaking gig from somebody in your network. Share on your social media profiles and let them know you are available to speak to an audience.
Still need more guidance? Anthony Flynn is a nationally-renowned public speaker and trains with the Hip-Hop Preacher and the #1 Motivational Speaker in the world, Dr. Eric Thomas. If you are serious about scaling a professional speaking career, check out www.AmazingCEO.com. Take our consultation survey and learn more about our next class of the Amazing Speakers Academy where we help executives scale a speaking career.