Episode 108

Episode 108: The Power of The Podium – Speaking Your Way To 7-Figure Success


What you’ll learn in this episode:

The stage can be a game-changer for 7-figure business owners, offering unparalleled opportunities for lead generation, networking, and brand positioning. Yet, how does one effectively harness the power of speaking? From identifying the right speaking engagements to crafting a compelling signature talk, the journey to becoming a sought-after speaker (and using it as a powerful growth tool) is intricate and rewarding.

In this episode, we’ll explore the myriad ways speaking engagements can supercharge business growth. We’ll delve into the strategies successful business owners employ to turn every speaking opportunity into a lead magnet, and how you can do the same. When your message resonates from the stage, it’s not just about gaining clients; it’s about establishing authority, building credibility, and making a lasting impact.

Join me in this special 2-part series to go behind the scenes to see how I’ve used speaking to grow my business, and how you can too!

In this episode, you will:

  • Grasp why speaking engagements are the ultimate lead magnets for ambitious entrepreneurs.
  • Uncover the art of identifying and seizing the most impactful speaking opportunities in your industry.
  • Master the structure and delivery of a signature talk that captivates and resonates with your audience.

And then stay tuned for the second episode that will drop in a few weeks sharing the exact details of what I do before, during, and after my speaking events to transform attendees into leads, clients, and raving fans.

Mentioned in this episode:

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Jessica Miller 


Hello, everyone, and welcome to the first episode in the power of the podium speaking series. I’m so excited to talk to you about using speaking in your business, and using it in a way that feels amazing, that allows you to grow your business in a robust way, and that allows you to connect with your ideal clients and your audience in a powerful way to help showcase what it is that you do to help them build their businesses. As someone who has always loved speaking, I never really grasped the power of speaking until a few years ago. I was being called to speak on bigger stages. I was being called to speak to my ideal audience in a more robust way. But I didn’t start there, I actually started by being asked to come into some small groups and speak as a guest on different workshops or topics related to helping entrepreneurs build their business. It wasn’t until I was I actually asked and had to apply to speak at one of the summits of an organization that I was part of, a certification program that I was part of, and as I started to prepare for that talk, I started to take a step back and really look at how I wanted to utilize this amazing opportunity that I felt was really the thing that could move my business in a different direction. How was I going to use that strategically and powerfully in service to me growing my business.


And so I hired a speaking coach, and I worked with my business coach to really flesh out how do I use speaking, and the things that I am speaking on, to really grow my business quickly. I am a person, if you haven’t guessed, that loves potency. I like going in deep with people, I like doing it in quick, powerful bursts. And I think the more that you can strategically siphon your energy into moments in your business growth like that, the easier and the faster your business grows, and the faster that you create an impact on the people you’re trying to help. So I started to make speaking a part of my business plan. And I found that one of the most powerful ways to use speaking, was at the top of my funnel, that front end part of my funnel, in the lead generation arena. And as I started doing that, more and more, I saw my business grow exponentially. And to this day, speaking in any capacity, whether it is on a big stage, or in a very intimate group, or using my podcast or other ways to connect with clients has been the biggest generator of impact, help, growth, money, and joy in my business.


So today, I want to break down the front pieces of speaking for you. So that looks like what is the value of speaking engagements, why are they important? Identifying the right speaking opportunities and using speaking strategically in your business. And then also some of the key pieces to crafting your signature talk. We’re going to walk through each one of those pieces step by step, I definitely encourage you to grab a piece of paper and a pen. If you don’t have one, if you are driving, don’t do that right now. But listen in. And I want you to think about how can you apply this to your business, because here’s what I’m going to say, if you’re somebody who wants to grow your business to seven figures, or if you’re at that seven figure mark, and you want to catapult it to the next level to multiple seven figures, I think one of the most powerful and fastest ways to do that is to leverage speaking as part of your lead generation activity in your business. And I want to show you today how to do that. Because I want you to walk away as someone who maybe isn’t doing this right now with the tools to do it. And if you have done it and maybe you just forgot about it, which happens, I want this to be the reminder and the best practices that you need to get out there and start doing it again. Okay, so let’s jump in.


So number one is really thinking about the value of speaking engagements for your business to grow. So why speaking? What is it about speaking that makes it so powerful? Well as business owners and in the exchange of business, it is an emotional, energetic situation. We are vibing off of each other. We are picking up different energetic components to that situation, to that business situation. When you are speaking to someone, when you’re in that situation where you’re holding the space, especially when it is in person, I think speaking is a very powerful way to connect with your ideal clients and the people around you. I have found that getting in front of someone, and having that connection with them, whether it’s on Zoom, or over the airwaves, or in person is one of the most powerful ways that you can start to develop a relationship with the people on the receiving end of whatever it is that you’re talking about. And the more powerful that is. So in other words, as you dial up that energetic factor, I believe, the more quickly, people get to know like and trust you. So kind of in that hierarchy of, I guess, connection or relationship building, I believe speaking in person is the most powerful. Speaking maybe on a zoom where people can hear and see you is the second most powerful. And then speaking over the airwaves like this is probably the third most powerful way. But definitely those three things, I believe, are the most powerful ways to deliver a speaking engagement, or deliver a presentation or a topic to connect with your audience. And when you can connect with people, when they feel like they know you, and they like you, and they can trust you because of that energetic alignment, they start to move through your business in a very powerful way. Plus, when you give them value, so then you marry this with a next point, when you give them value, based on what it is that you’re giving them, it takes it up to the next notch.


The other thing that that speaking does for you is it establishes credibility and thought leadership as you’re delivering whatever it is you’re talking about. So when you get in front of an audience, and you provide them value, you talk about what it is, you know, you show them the results of your work, you really make them understand why they should care about what it is that you’re talking about, and how it can make their life that much better, it positions you as a person of credibility. And at the end of the day, we want to buy from people that we believe know what they’re doing that we believe are credible. So when you can deliver whatever it is that you’re talking about in a in a speaking engagement or as a guest speaker, your credibility and thought leadership increases.


The other piece that makes it hugely valuable is that you have the ability to expose your company, you and your brand, to your audience, to an ideally to your ideal audience, to those people that are actually poised to buy from you, meaning that they have the problem that you’re struggling with. And you have somebody to help them solve it. And so when you can find that opportunity to get up and talk to them, speak to them about what it is that you’re doing, how it makes their life business better, how it can solve their problems, the probability of them moving through your funnel, moving through that customer journey, and ultimately buying what it is that you’re selling, increases exponentially. So when you take all these things together, meaning that you have packaged something that’s very powerful, it makes their life better. You’re putting it in a format that encourages trust and likeability, and that you understand them, it’s a very, very powerful tool for drawing people into your business and compelling them to take an action of some sort. So the value of speaking and the value of speaking, especially to help pull people into your business, increase that credibility, increase that value exchange, and help them move to a place where they’re poised to actually buy something from you is very powerful. And in my experience of doing this in my business, or of seeing other people do this, it can happen in an instant. It could happen in a very quick 30 minutes, maybe an hour or sometimes even shorter, depending on what your topic is, and what you’re focused on. So speaking, in my opinion is very potent. And it’s a thing that can help you propel your business forward very quickly.


The second piece of this is about identifying the right opportunities. So you know me, I’m about specificity. I believe the nuances matter. And the time that you spend getting clear on exactly what it is you want to be talking about, who you want to be talking to and making sure that you’re being strategic and intentional with those pieces in all of your business, but especially as it relates to your offer, and anything that’s touching, you know, bringing people into that offer and selling that offer to them is super important. So a very important piece of using speaking engagement for your business is to make sure that you are seeking the right opportunities that you are strategically deciding who are those people I want to talk to? Where are they? And how do I find those places, so I can show up there. So one of the most important pieces about taking something sort of on the road, is researching your industry and researching the events, so that you can make sure that you’re picking the right ones, where your ideal client is hanging out. And that the theme of the event and the values and the overall, you know, place that this is, you know, in is aligned. So what I mean is that the it is the right environment for you to go and speak. So, is this conference, you know, tailored to your niche or your industry? Is it targeting the right people? Are those right people going to be in the audience? What are the specs of being able to go and actually speak in that space, all those things are really important when determining where you actually want to take your signature talk or whatever it is you’re talking about, out into that world.


And I believe it is much better for you to research that and spend the time to figure that out and have high quality interactions. So basically having speaking event at places that are very high quality, versus going out there and talking to everyone everywhere, all the time, in a very nonspecific way. Not only do I think it’s a waste of your time to do that, but it will burn you out. Because you’ll end up talking to a bunch of people who actually don’t have the problem you’re solving don’t need what you’re offering. And it just burned through a lot of your time and energy for very little return. You’ll be better off spending your time figuring out what are those right conferences? Where are those events? What are those groups? And how can I tailor my talk to those specific audiences, and go there and spend the time really focusing on them. With all the technology that we have these days, it is very easy to find these places. You could go into a business group, maybe that you’re part of Facebook groups, you could ask colleagues and peers, if you’re part of any certification programs, or any industry specific type of organizations or communities, ask them “where are the places I should go speak?” Or “is anyone looking for a speaker in these specific areas”, and get the pieces together that you need in order to go and find those right opportunities so that your time is well spent when you actually get there.


Another piece that comes up a lot in this identifying the right opportunities is the topic of being paid for your speaking or doing it for free. And I want to share with you that there is no right answer to this question. If you could get paid for your speaking event, great. If there is a free opportunity, great. There is no right answer here. But a lot of people come to the table thinking that they have to get paid to be a speaker. And while I think that’s amazing, and if somebody is willing to pay you to speak, I think you should absolutely take the opportunity to be paid. However, I want to share with you that out of the infinite numbers of times that I have gone to speak either on a stage virtually or in person, or in a small group, I have found that if that opportunity allows me to get in front of my ideal client in a powerful aligned way, it is worth its weight in gold. And if I look across all of those opportunities that I’ve had, the opportunities where I was not a paid speaker actually resulted in more return on my investment of time than the ones that were paid. So I think thinking long term around the opportunity, and really the short and long term gains of either being paid or not is really important. And not every situation is created equal. So it’s very hard to compare apples to oranges. But when you are thinking about speaking engagements, my advice would be get in front of your ideal client in an aligned environment that’s going to allow you to showcase your skills, help your audience and speak to them about what it is and how you can make their life better in any chance that you can get. And if that is not a paid opportunity, I would say, don’t worry about it. Because when you put good things out into the world, the money always follows always follows. So I think it’s just an important piece to always keep on your minds.


And then, again, just to circle back, make sure that the audience is aligned to you. That’s the most important piece about where you’re spending your time who you’re getting in front of, and is it the right opportunity for you. So researching it, weighing paid versus not paid. And then Is it really your target audience, and can you engage with them.


And then the third piece I want to talk about is crafting your signature talk. So I will share with you that when I decided what I was going to speak to most people about, when I honed in that it was about your offer that I want to talk to my clients and my potential clients about. And I decided to create a talk around my framework, and take that on the road and share it with as many people as I could share it with my business became so much easier. Now I don’t just talk about creating a Hell Yes! offer. There are different topics that I also talk about that are very tightly related to that, like how to sell your Hell Yes! Offer, or you know how to speak about your Hell Yes! Offer, you know, things like that. But the framework that surround those talks is very tight, it’s always related to my brand. It’s always related to what it is that I’m talking about. It’s always in Hell Yes! energy for me. When I started to streamline that, and instead of going out and taking every speaking opportunity to talk about anything that people wanted me to talk about, and I actually started talking about a very finite number of things, which I went out there and said, I would love to speak to your audience, group, whatever. Here’s the topics that I talk on. Which one is most relevant for your audience? Everything became more streamlined. Not only in the logistics and the operations in my business, but in how I delivered that message.


One of the key components to your signature talk is that it’s compelling and unique. And when you really dial in what it is you’re talking about, you can really tighten it up that message and make it unique. And at the end of the day, when it comes to speaking, you want it to be engaging. You want it to draw people in. Especially if you’re using it on the front end of your business for lead generation. You want it to be something that’s drawing people in and hooking them by really talking to them about the problem that they’re dealing with, and how to make their life better. So crafting that signature talk and making sure that it’s hitting on the right point, the unique point and really professionalizing it for lack of a better word, so it’s tight and you’re able to deliver it in a compelling way is really, really important. The actual structure of that talk from my experience, as well is very important. One of the key things that I learned from a speaking coach I work with her name is Michelle Barry Franco. And I will link her here in the show notes, was how to create a really powerful talk. And she broke it down into sort of an overarching theme and message and then the key points that you’re going to talk about and supporting those points with what she calls the magic mix of content. And then also crafting your slides in a way that make it engaging for the audience to watch. So some of the things that blew my mind when I was creating this talk was, or creating my signature talk was, first create your outline. So what is it that you want to talk about? What is the point that juicy she goes with a juicy core message?


What is the thing you want people to walk away with? And she crafts it in a sentence that I will never forget? She always talks about it in the way that you think – if you want to [fill in the blank], if you want to [fill in the blank], then you must [fill in the blank] So an example of this would be “if you want to have a thriving business that makes consistent money and you want to stop chasing clients, you need a hell yes offer that sells itself” or “you must have a hell yes offer that sells itself”. So that juicy core concept at the top of you know the way that you craft your signature talk then informs all the other pieces. Then she said okay, what are your three main points that you want to make through this talk? And so I would break it down and for me with my signature talk it was about having a hell yes offer. So it was the three points, the three pieces of having a high yes offer: call in your people, create a compelling solution, and infuse it with your Hell, yes, energy. And so those three points became the three main pillars of my talk that supported this juicy core message. Underneath those three pillars, was the magic mix of content. And that included using any data, statistics, any supporting ideas, and mixing in stories, to pull those concepts through. And for each one of my pillars, that’s exactly what I did. I talked about how it affected people why they should care, some of the information we had that supported that, and I always shared a client story.


And I have to tell you, I love this part. Because what it allowed me to do was through a story format, exemplify what it was that I was trying to teach the audience. But it also allowed me to showcase all my awesome clients, and it was great. And it was such a win-win situation. And so I sprinkled those stories in, and I talked about the different pillars. And then at the end, I wrapped it up, and I had a call to action. And it was so so powerful, to be able to frame it in this very tight structure that allowed me to easily deliver it as well. The other thing that she taught me, which totally blew my mind, and it still does, even though I’ve done this a bunch of times now was she taught me the power of not being afraid to have a lot of slides. And not being afraid to put pictures and imagery and text on those slides that kept me moving through the presentation. Full disclosure, I used to be a person who had a slide with a lot of bullets, and I thought less slides were better. But let me tell you, it totally rocked my world and the experience that my audience had, when I started to craft that talk in a way that was engaging. It moved and it allowed me to deliver it in a fluid and impactful way. I love my signature talk. And I love my slides. And what it allowed me to do was show up on those stages in a powerful way, as a powerful communicator, and as someone who was really embracing what it was that I was telling my audience, so that we were literally sort of dancing in the space together and exchanging that energy in such a powerful way. And I love it. And I could do the talk a million times. And it just feels so great.


So how that talk is actually constructed, like in those kind of brass tacks of the talk, but also in how you put it together on the slides, the actual, construction of that presentation. And this is true, even if you’re not a slides person, like I used to use on flip charts a lot, which was really fun, I would be like drawing things and doing that while I was speaking to people. And that was really engaging, because you’re flipping these charts. And they’re watching you draw and create things. So how you engage the audience through that signature talk both by what you’re saying, but also by the visuals and things that are happening in the room was really a game-changer. And the more that you can package it in a way that keeps pulling people in and makes them consume the information in a valuable way, also then helps the result that it’s creating. It allows you to create the result that you want for your audience, whether it’s taking that action or going and doing the thing that you want them to do or, you know buying whatever it is that you’re selling. Whatever that is it pulls it through more powerfully. And at the end of the day, if you’re putting something out there, you want people to consume it. So how you craft that talk is really important.


So just in summary, speaking is a powerful tool for you to build your business. And not only is it powerful and impactful, but it’s something that can build your business very quickly. I believe that when you use speaking as a way to bring people into your business, it is a very powerful lead magnet. it positions you in a credible and valuable way. It elevates that thought leadership and the potential reach and exposure to your ideal client and leveraging the power of other people’s networks, being on that stage in front of people allows you to touch a lot more people more quickly and more powerfully. It is super important to make sure you’re identifying the right opportunities and you’re doing it intentionally. So spending that time to really look into what are the important places in your industry that you might want to speak. You know what events are happening? Where is your ideal client hanging out, so that you can intentionally bake speaking into your business plan. Make it part of your lead generation so that it can help move people through your funnel in an easy and powerful way.


And then making sure that you craft that signature talk. Spend the time to figure out what it is you want to talk about. Make sure it is tied to your brand and your paid offer. One of the things I see the most when it comes to looking at people’s offers, and then more holistically at the ecosystem of their business, is that these upfront, lead magnets are the upfront things that people are doing, they are disconnected from their brand and what they’re actually selling. So you want to make sure that that talk is crafted powerfully to connect to your business and your your brand and what you’re ultimately asking people to buy. And you want to make sure it’s crafted in a powerful and engaging way so that your audience can receive it, and you can feel amazing actually delivering it. So you want to make sure that that it’s clear, it has a powerful, over arching, juicy core message, it has those pieces underneath it, those main points that you want to drive home, you want to make sure that magic mix of content is underneath each one of those pillars. And then you want to make sure you’re always having a great wrap up and a call to action so that you can really pull those people through your customer journey. And pull them into your business in a powerful way that makes them want to take the next step.


So I want you to go back. And I want you to look at your business. And I want you to look at your you know that project line item around speaking engagements. And I want you to see like, is it there? Can you dial it up? If it’s not there? Can you add it? How can you make this part of your business plan to grow into the seven figure and beyond earner that you really want to be and not just to make that happen, but to make it happen in a powerful and fast way.


In the next podcast episode that’s going to be dropping next week, I’m going to talk about leveraging your speaking engagement for maximum lead gen. And what that means is I’m going to take you into really the back end of what I do surrounding those opportunities surrounding those speaking engagements, and how to make them powerful and pull them through. So now you know, you’ve decided you’re going to use speaking, your recent you’ve researched where you want to be doing this, you have your talk, it’s ready to go and you’ve landed the opportunity. I want to share with you how I make those opportunities, super powerful – the lead up to those opportunities (so like the pregame while I’m actually in the room), what am I doing in my presentation, and how am I sort of working that conference to the best of my advantage and my ability to connect with people, and then what do I do on the back end. So it’s like showtime! And how do I do that. So I’m going to take you behind the curtain of that in next week’s episode.


So stay tuned and don’t miss it. Put it on your calendar. We drop every Wednesday. And that will be the second part to our the Power of the Podium series. I can’t wait to hear all the success stories and what you think, and I can’t wait to talk to you next week. Have a great week everyone!