How to Get Hired for Speaking Gigs

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Being in front of an audience and speaking is both a terrifying and exhilarating experience. If you are good at it, there is the potential to make money. But in order to get paid speaking gigs, you need to build your audience and platform.

So, how do you get hired for speaking gigs? First, decide who you want to speak to. In other words, if you could talk to any audience or group of people, who would it be? When you’ve figured out who it is you want to do speaking gigs for you need to start building your audience.

Start a Conversation

Professional speaker, Steve Sapato offers advice on networking and starting a conversation as an essential tool in building an audience and getting talking gigs in How Do I Get More Speaking Gigs on My Clone Solution YouTube Channel. Attend events, hand out business cards, and follow-up with people, begin to build a list of names. This list becomes your resource. 

If there are specific conferences, you are interested in speaking at, research the speakers that they had the previous year, maybe reach out to them to get more information about the event. If you come across speaking engagements you are interested in, start researching, and reaching out. This builds a relationship.

Be Prepared to do Some Free Speaking Gigs

If you aren’t overly experienced or don’t have a large platform or following, there is a chance that you won’t get paid for the first few speaking engagements you do.  It won’t be like that forever, but as you establish your footing, don’t turn down free speaking gigs.

At the beginning, you are trying to build relationships, and a platform, so focus more on putting together a good speech or presentation that will impress the audience. 

Create a Demo Video

You need to have a demo video to get paid speaking gigs. It should be a 2 to 3-minute video that showcases your speaking engagements. Think of your demo video as a movie trailer that highlights you as a speaker. Potential clients will want to see examples of your work. It’s essential to build a portfolio as you get speaking gigs. Even small workshops, or a boardroom presentation, or you talking to an empty room is better than nothing. Just get a video of you speaking. 

Gather Testimonials

Getting testimonials provides proof to potential clients that you know what you are doing. Think back to any public speaking you’ve done, maybe a presentation from work, and who was in the audience listening. Ask them if they would give you a testimonial, it doesn’t have to belong.

A simple, “Presentation was very well prepared, and the audience was engaged the entire time” will suffice. When you’ve put a list together, produced a video demo ready, gathered testimonials, and decided what you want to speak about, you can gain more confidence to take on gigs. 

Gain Referrals for Speaking Gigs

As you gain confidence as a speaker, discover your voice, and deliver messages that resonate with your audience, people will want to hire you. The more you speak at events and leave a lasting impression, the more people will talk and refer you. Speaking is a relationship business, and you always need to be networking after speaking gigs, where you will meet influencers and decision-makers who may want to hire you for their next event. 

Final Thoughts

Remember that getting hired for speaking gigs isn’t going to come easy. You need to network and put yourself out there, and this includes taking on speaking gigs for dinner till you establish yourself. But never stop telling people you’re a speaker, handing out business cards, and developing your craft.

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