What you’ll learn in this episode:
It’s not enough to just have an offer, we need to actively attract people into our business and our offers by creating powerful lead generators that allow us to build our audience. One of the most powerful tools I have found to build my audience is speaking. Through speaking engagements, we can show our audience how we can help them solve their problems and that we have something of value to offer them.
In today’s episode, I break down the best practices I’ve learned to create powerful and compelling speaking engagements and how to use them as a powerful tool to generate leads.
Here’s a glance at this episode:
- Why speaking could be one of your most powerful lead generators
- What you should consider before agreeing to a speaking engagement
- Why a controlling idea or juicy core message is crucial for keeping you on topic
- How to keep an audience engaged with your content so they can relate
- The most important piece to include in your speaking content so that you ensure that you invite people into your business so you can stay connected and offer value
Mentioned in this episode:
Work/Connect with me:
[0:01] Hello everyone, and welcome to this week’s episode of the It’s Your Offer Podcast. I’m Jess Miller and I’m so excited to be here this week to talk to you about a topic that has come up quite a lot recently. As we’re moving into the end of the year, we’re thinking about fourth quarter, and you know, the New Year 2023. And we’re thinking about building our business, we’re thinking about reaching broader audiences driving more traffic. And what has come up quite a bit is this concept of lead generation.
[0:33] So when you have an offer, that you sell, or you have a business that you run, in general, one of the most important pieces of it is driving traffic to your business is pulling people into your ecosystem. And in order to do that, in a robust way, you need to have a plan and a strategy around lead generation. And over the past several months, I have been trying a lot of different things as it relates to lead generation. I’ve tried, you know, Facebook ads, I have tried different documents that I put out on Instagram or social media or share in a variety of different places, things of value, like workbooks and webinars and things like that. I’ve also tried things like quizzes, and all these different things to try and, you know, offer value to my community, in exchange for them coming onto my email list so we can stay connected.
[1:30] One of the things that I did when I first started my business was, I used to do a lot of speaking engagements as part of my lead generation strategy. And I really enjoyed that. I love speaking to people were hence the reason that I’m here on this podcast with all of you. And I used to do that very intentionally, in a way as a way to connect with people and to expose them to my work and to bring them into my world. And over time, I decided I was going to mix it up and try different things, as I mentioned. But what I have found is that speaking is one of the most powerful ways to let people understand who you are, what you do, and the type of value that you provide.
[2:15] For any of us out there listening who actually enjoy physically talking to people, and love utilizing these types of mediums, whether it’s audio or video or things like that, the possibility of using speaking as a lead generator, is something I want you to really strongly consider. And although I’ve kind of gone from speaking into a lot of other different types of lead gen and a lot of different types of audience building, what I have found is I have been circling back to speaking as one of the most powerful mediums that I have. And when I’ve been working with my clients on this, I have been noticing that it is one of their most powerful lead generators as well. It’s one of their most powerful tools to connect with their audience to build relationships with their audience, and to showcase value.
[3:08] So when we started to dig into that more, what I started to understand was, it was not just enough to go out and speak to people. It was how you spoke to them and in what you spoke to them about and how you created the content around your speaking engagements that really made all of the difference. And so if you’re a business owner that wants to continue to drive business and build your audience, I want to offer to you that speaking may be one of the most robust, most powerful, and frankly, the most fun way to engage with your audience, and to show the value that you provide as a business owner.
[3:51] So today, I want to break down what I think about when I think about my speaking engagements. And I want to give you some of these best practices to think about when you go and enter into a speaking engagement of your own. When I say speaking engagement, what I mean by that is literally any medium where you are speaking to other people. So it could be on a podcast, it could be guest podcasting. It could be speaking and training at a conference. It could be doing a webinar, you know anything where you are physically speaking to people, and you’re engaging with them on a topic that’s related to your business.
[4:35] So here are some of the things that I think about when I think about speaking engagements that I have found have made the most impact on the result of my speaking engagements, creating things such as broadening my audience, building my email list or pulling people into my ecosystem and exposing people to my work in a way that is powerful and results in them changing the way that they think about their business. For me specifically, because I have focused so much on helping people create their hell yes, their magnetic offers, it’s really around people thinking about their offers differently, their business differently, and how to optimize that whole ecosystem to make their business run with ease. So here are some of the things that I think about when I think about speaking engagements.
[5:28] So number one is, I am very, very particular about the speaking engagements that I take. I want to have a speaking engagement, where, number one, my target market, my target audience of people that I can connect with are in that audience. They’re either people that I work will work directly with, or it’s people that are connected to my ideal client in a way. So that’s the first thing.
[5:56] The second thing is that the people that I am speaking with, have some sort of a problem that is directly connected to my business that I can help them solve. So I am coming in and helping them to think about a problem that they have that is related to my work in a way they haven’t thought about it before, or in a way that is going to help them more easily solve their problem, so that they can move from whatever struggle or pain they’re in to, you know, a positive place. So the first things I think about are, is it my target market? And are they people who have the problem that I’m solving? In other words, are these really people that I can help?
[6:39] Alright, so that’s the first thing is, I think, a speaking engagement from a very strategic perspective, like, Who are these people? What is this platform? Am I really able to give them something that’s going to help them this is so important from the perspective of my time and my effort and energy, but also because I value the people that are in this audience that are going to be receiving this information. And their time is valuable, too. And so I want it to be win win. So it’s really important that these are my ideal clients, and that they have a problem that I can actually help them solve. When I know that that is the case, I can also take the topic that I’m going to talk about, and I can make it really, really relatable to them, I can put it through a lens that is going to be easily absorbed by them, they can relate to it, they can understand it, and they can easily take the information and apply it. So that’s the first thing I think about.
[7:35] The second piece of this is when I actually construct my speaking, whatever it is, my speaking slides are my topic of interest. I want to get really clear about what is it that I want people to walk away with and what is this sort of controlling theme. This, like main idea that I am talking to people about what is the point of this presentation, one of my speaking coaches, she talks about this as the juicy core message. And that really means like, what is the point of this talk? Why are you telling people about whatever it is that you’re telling them? This doesn’t stop just with my speaking engagements. As a side note, if you listen to my podcasts, I use the same philosophy in just about any speaking that I do. So like what is the main idea? What is the main point of for instance, this podcast or the speaking event that I want to talk about?
[8:35] So like for today on this podcast as an example, I’m talking about using speaking as a lead generator, thinking about how you use speaking in a way to pull people in and invite them into your business and the value that you provide? So what is the juicy core message that you want to communicate to people?
[8:57] Most recently I went to Nashville, and I spoke at the Made Simple summit with Don Miller and the store brand team. It was really a highlight of my career, such an incredible community, they are doing such great work. If you don’t know about Don Miller, and the Business Made Simple community and the story brand community I highly, highly recommend you go and check them out. They are amazing. Their community consists of what they call guides, which are marketers essentially, and agencies, and it consists of coaches. So when I went to speak to them at their summit, I spoke to them about creating a magnetic offer that sells itself. And when I did that my controlling idea was thinking from the idea of their businesses, and what it meant for them to create an offer that was magnetic, how would that change their life? What kind of things could they do in their businesses right now, that allows them to really think about the structure of that offer, the pieces that are really important and how to go and implement that immediately.
[10:05] So that’s an example of when I went in there it was about, the goal was to help them create that magnetic offer. And so every piece of that talk really broke down the magnetic offer the components of it, why you needed it, how to go and create it right now, why it mattered to them, and why really focusing on that piece of their business was the thing that was going to set their business free, both from a time and financial perspective. So that is the concept of, you know, having a controlling idea or a core message. That is crucial. When you think about using speaking as a lead generator, what is going to relate to these people? How is it going to entice them to give them value and want to learn more or sort of be in your world? Okay, so that’s the first thing is, what is that juicy core message? What does that mean point that you want to talk to people about?
[11:04] The second piece of that is, what are the pieces underneath that main point umbrella that you want to hit on. And the magic number, really, for me is three things. Three is kind of this auspicious number people remember threes, it’s part of our psychology and the way that our brain works. And I feel like when you use three as a target, it really forces you to get very concise with what it is that you’re talking about, like distill these big ideas into these three things, these three pillars, really these three of the most important points that you want to make underneath this main idea. And then you break those points down to make it clear and palatable for people. And often for me, I think about my framework in threes. And so when I’m talking about these main ideas, and then I’m communicating the framework, it kind of fits into that perfect structure really easily. So this next piece is about what are the three things that really support your main idea that are going to round out what it is that you’re trying to tell people. So that it, it really gives it a kind of a tight, clear path for people to follow with these three points, these three kind of main ideas that go underneath your overarching juicy core message or your controlling idea. Underneath those points, one of the things that I learned, which I thought was crucial, was this idea of having this mix of content.
[12:40] So often when people are speaking, it’s like they’re talking at you. And it could go on and on with just information and slides for like 40 minutes. And it gets really boring. And it’s not interactive, and it’s not pulling people in. One of the most powerful ways to make your content within your speaking engagement engaging, is to mix it up. It’s to talk about a variety of different things, whether it’s research or, or statistics, or you know, just general information. But one of the most compelling things that I have found in my speaking engagements that really bring it home for people and make it clear and relatable and understandable to the people in my audience is sharing stories. And this really changed everything for me when I started to create content for speaking. Even in my podcast, it was to talk about some of the experiences that I have had some of the experiences that my clients have had, and showcasing these results or these, these different stories that really exemplify the points that I’m trying to make, in my speaking engagement in a way that people can really understand them.
[14:00] We’ve all heard that facts tell stories sell. The reason is people are when you invite them into a story. They are invested, they are hooked into that story. Story opens up a loop for people and invites them in to find out what happens they want to close that story loop. And so when you open it up for them, the only way for them to close that loop is to essentially listen to you and to take the information that you’re sharing with them and connect it to closing that loop. And powerful stories also start with calling out a problem. So when you’re giving a speech, or you’re talking about a certain topic with people, one of the most powerful ways to really pull them in is to start with a problem is to open up that story loop with the problem. And we’ve seen this a bajillion times whenever we watch a movie or if you’re live sitting next to someone, you know, if they start that story in the action, like, you know, I was standing on the side of the road and this car came flying by me, and then the police car was chasing them. And they were flying through the city at 70 miles an hour. Like you’re now like, you’re hooked into that story, because you’ve opened the story loop. And the only way for it to close that problem is to find out what else it is that you’re going to say. So stories are powerful, and weaving those into your speaking engagements.
[15:34] So that they show your audience examples of, you know, how somebody moves through that or a before and after situation, or what it looks like, when you put into practice, something that you’re talking about makes that that speech, or that speaking event, so much more engaging. And people really like they lean into those stories. So weaving in different pieces of content, and especially using story is very, very powerful. And for me as a coach, one of the reasons I love this so so much, is because I love talking about my clients, I love talking about their results. I love telling people who they are, I love shouting them out. And it’s so awesome to do that on a platform where you’re trying to show people what the result looks like of implementing something that you’re sharing with them. Because people can really see themselves in these clients’ stories, and they get to know your clients. So it’s so great. It’s such a win win.
[16:39] So regardless of the business that you’re in, whether you’re a coach or not, this is something that you can do. And I really, really call you to think of those stories. What is a story that you can tell who’s a client that you want to shout out? How do you bring people into that engaging place?
[16:56] The next piece is really tying it up for people. I call this sort of the conclusion like what are these next steps, if it’s a, if it’s about your particular four formula, or your process that you use, help people understand like, this is how you step forward, here are the three things that you can do right now, to take what I’ve just told you, and actually go out right now and implement your business, give people a plan, tell them what it is that you want them to do next. And again, those like rule of three, if you can give them the three next steps are, here are the next things that you want to do right now, that is really powerful. Helping people pull through that knowledge is key, all the results that we want to create, they come after the action. It’s not enough just to think about things or know about them.
[17:51] When you’re speaking to people, you want to help them really pull it through and engage with it and implement it. So I always at the end of my talks, and I tell my clients to do this, too. Like what is that sort of take away plan? What can they go do right now, when I talk about my magnetic offers, it’s like the magnetic offers plan of action. Like, here’s the three things you’re gonna go do right now. And those are the things that are going to move your business forward. So you want to bake in though that plan of action and that sort of like tying it up with a bow and giving them a next step.
[18:27] And then last but not least, but this is so, so crucial, is you want to have a call to action, you want people to do something, you want to point them in a direction, people want to be told what to do. And especially if you are using a speaking engagement as a lead generator, you want to make sure that you are calling people to action to do something that’s going to result in them being part of your ecosystem. So if we’re talking about an email list, for example, you want to call them to action to go and, you know, sign up for your newsletter here or download this worksheet that you have put together for them at this URL, or whatever it is that you want them to do, that’s going to essentially allow them to come into your ecosystem and for them to exchange their email address for this particular piece of value, whatever that is. If you it doesn’t have to just be an email address, right? If you want to call them to action without coming somewhere else, like Come follow me on Instagram at this handle. Or come you know, come into my you know Pinterest board or whatever it is. You just want a call to action.
[19:48] Also, if it’s a lead gen or it’s something more like converting clients to a paid client, that call to action could be I’m having a special you know sale right now or the cart is open for 24 hours just for you go do this thing. And you’re really pointing them toward that. But the call to action is crucial. And here’s the other piece about this, you want it to be bold. None of this like learn more or like see this or passive things like that do not result in clear action. You want people to go download this specific thing, book a call, buy this thing, whatever it is, you want it to be bold and clear. And you always want to have that call to action at the end of any speaking engagement that you do. Again, it could be guests, podcasting, your own podcast, it could be you know, a speaking engagement at a conference, whatever it is, you want to think about how do I pull these people into my world into my ecosystem in a way that allows me to stay connected with them, and continue to warm them up and share my work with them. So that it can be a positive experience for everybody.
[20:59] So just to recap, you know, first and foremost, you want to make sure that you’re being very, very picky about your speaking engagements. You want to make sure your target market and the people that have the problem that you’re solving are where you are showing up to speak to people that includes, you know, podcasting, guest podcasting, being at a conference, doing webinars, whatever it is, you want to make sure that you are strategically being particular about where you’re going. After that, when you actually start to construct your talk, or whatever you’re gonna teach people or talk to people about, you want to make sure that it number one has a sort of a controlling idea, a main idea, a juicy core message, there’s this overarching theme and clarity about what it is that you’re going to be talking to people about to you want to make sure that you then support it with I like three main points that are going to support this overarching theme.
[21:58] So what are the three things that you could teach people, or share with people that are going to support this controlling idea? Three, what is the mix of content that you can put in there? How can you mix that up to make it engaging and interesting for people, most importantly, focusing on story as a medium, story engages people, it pulls them in, it keeps them captivated. And it is so relatable to people, it’s also a great way to take those clients or experiences that you have and share them with other people. It is just win win it’s so great for is you want to tie everything up with a bow, you want to give them a plan of action, what is this next thing that they can do to go and really pull through what you’ve taught them into their own work? And I like, again, threes, like what are the three things they can do right now to go and actually make this happen and pull it through to chart changing their business in their life immediately.
[22:59] And last but not least, you always want a call to action. You want to tell people what to do. You want to always be thinking about when you’re speaking to people, especially if you’re thinking about it from the perspective of a lead generator, how do you pull them into your ecosystem, so that you can continue to develop a relationship with them, warm them up, give them valuable content, that they will then really value and they will stay in your world. And ultimately, the goal is for those people that have the problem that you’re solving, and need more support, that they’re going to become paying clients of yours. And so you’re always thinking about how do you call people to action, so that you can get that information from them. Your email address, or whatever it is that you’re wherever you’re calling them to action to go, so that they can come into your world. So do this mix of things. And it really will take your speaking engagements, and that type of lead generation do a whole new level.
[23:58] The other thing I want to mention that I learned as I was going through this that I think is so important is if speaking is your thing, if you love it, but you just want it to work for you more, you’re not exactly sure how to do that. But you know, you’re made to do it on the big level. I invite you to consider hiring somebody who does this as their main focus. When I hired my speaking coach, Michelle Barry Franco, my entire world of speaking changed the way that I viewed myself as a speaker, how I utilized information and, put together the things that I spoke about the focus of it, the clarity of it, all of that changed. She helped me to be able to construct my thoughts in a way that was compelling. That was organized because I could you know many of you could probably relate to this. You could sort of go off on a tangent, you know the ability to hear what I wanted to communicate, to help me get it out into the world to structure it in a way that was compelling, and relatable, and clear, changed everything for me.
[25:11] And I highly recommend if you’re looking for a speaking coach that you check out, Michelle Barry Franco, and her contact information is in the show notes. Because hiring a professional to help you get your voice out there, say the things that you want to say in a way that people can really hear them, and it can compel them into action is a total game changer. And if you’re that person that feels like you have that message, you want to get out into the world, it will be the best money that you could ever spend in your business. So consider hiring a professional, if it is something that you want to take to the next level.
[25:51] But in short, what I shared with you today will get you started for sure. So I want you speaking of plan of action, here are some things that you can think about right now to take this and put it into action. So number one is where strategically, can you show up to share your message to engage with people and speak? That’s number one.
[26:13] Number two are what are some of the things that you could talk about? How can you take this model that I talked about, and started thinking about topics that you know, that you talk about or you like to talk about that are related to your brand, that you could then put into this model to create a structure for you to go out and speak.
[26:33] And then last but not least is how do you have a call to action that is ready at the ready so that at the end of the speaking engagement, you can point people right to that place, where they’re going to give you their email address can follow you on social media, whatever it is, so that they can be pulled into your ecosystem easily. I promise you that the more that you tighten this up, and the more that you go out and start doing this right now, you will see your business shift in powerful ways that you never thought possible.