I know that the journey of becoming a successful speaker can feel like a tough uphill climb sometimes. Finding gigs, especially those that pay, can be a real challenge when you’re just starting out with your business.
And I get it – believe me, I’ve been there.
Now, some of you might be feeling a bit lost or overwhelmed. And that’s okay. The speaking business is vast and can often feel like a maze.
But don’t worry.
Today, I want to share with you five key things you need to hear, right now, as a speaker struggling to find gigs. These are golden nuggets, folks. Words of wisdom that can pave your way to success.
We’re not talking about easy shortcuts or magical formulas here. I’m afraid there’s no silver bullet to success in any business, never mind speaking.
What I’m giving you today is real, practical, down-to-earth advice that can make the difference between getting stuck in a rut and moving forward in your speaking career.
So let’s dive in, shall we?
5 Things You Need to Hear Right Now as a Speaker Struggling to Find Gigs
Here are the minute marks that cover highlights in this episode:
1. Keep Honing Your Craft
Alright, so you’re struggling to find gigs. Now, you can either sit there, moping about it, or you can do something productive with your time. I suggest going with the latter.
This is the perfect opportunity to give your speaking skills a turbo boost. Think about it. You’ve got time on your hands. Why not spend it becoming the best speaker you can possibly be?
Get out there and attend workshops and conferences. Not only will you learn a ton, but you’ll also make some valuable connections. Remember, it’s not always about what you know, but who you know. And in the speaking world, this couldn’t be more true.
Pick up a book or two on public speaking. There’s a lot of wisdom between those pages. You’d be surprised how much you can learn from the experiences of others. Or, better yet, why not listen to audiobooks from renowned speakers while you’re at it?
Use this time to develop new ideas for your talks. Experiment with different topics and styles. Play around with it. Have fun. Remember, the most memorable speeches are the ones that are unique and authentic.
And practice, practice, practice. I can’t stress this enough. Whether it’s in front of your mirror, your dog, or a small group of friends, every bit of practice helps.
2. Network, Network, Network
Remember when I talked about making connections at those workshops and conferences? Well, that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Networking is your secret weapon in the speaking business. And it’s time to wield it.
Now, don’t get me wrong. Networking might sound daunting or even a little sleazy to some. But here’s the thing: it doesn’t have to be. Networking is all about making connections, forming relationships, and offering support. In our business, it’s not just nice to have, it’s a MUST.
So, make it your mission to connect with other speakers, event planners, and industry professionals. Each connection you make is a potential gateway to new opportunities. And hey, you never know who might end up recommending you for a speaking gig.
And don’t just stick to in-person connections. The online world is your oyster! Attend virtual networking events, join speaker groups, and reach out to people on social media – especially LinkedIn.
The more people who know about you and your speaking topics, the more likely you are to be on their minds when opportunities come up. So get out there and start making those connections!
3. Don’t Give Up
Here’s something you might not want to hear, but it’s a reality check we all need sometimes – success in the speaking industry takes time and persistence.
Yes, that’s right, I said it. Time and persistence. There’s no magical shortcut, no instant success formula. But you know what? That’s okay.
Because every “no” you hear? It’s not a setback. It’s not a failure. It’s one step closer to a “yes.”
You might’ve heard of the theory that every “yes” is preceded by a number of “no’s.”
There’s a widely recognized rule in sales, often referred to as the Rule of Seven. It’s suggested that it can take an average of seven contacts or interactions before a sale is made, or in your case, before you land a gig.
This rule is not set in stone, but it’s a good reminder that persistence pays off.
So, keep putting yourself out there. Don’t let rejection get you down. Treat every “no” as a stepping stone, a learning experience. Because with each “no,” you’re just getting closer to that sweet “yes.”
It won’t be as exact as getting a “yes” after seven “no’s,” but I bet it’ll be darn close.
Remember, the most successful speakers aren’t the ones who have never heard a “no.” They’re the ones who didn’t let a “no” stop them. So, keep going. Your “yes” is just around the corner.
4. Try New Things
You know how I mentioned shaking things up in your speech content? Let’s delve a bit deeper into that. It’s all about being open to new experiences and daring to step outside your comfort zone.
Consider expanding your speaking topics or maybe even targeting new industries. Maybe you’ve been focusing solely on motivational speeches. Why not try dabbling in leadership, teamwork, or personal development?
Sometimes, we get so stuck in our ways that we miss out on the vast array of opportunities out there. Shaking things up and trying a new angle can be just the thing to get those speaking engagements rolling in.
So, don’t be afraid to experiment. Your speaking career is more than just a one-way street. There’s a whole world of directions and possibilities out there. It’s time to explore, my friend.
5. Stay Positive
Last but definitely not least, let’s talk about attitude. The speaking journey is full of ups and downs. It’s easy to stay motivated during the ups, but what about the downs? That’s where a positive attitude comes in.
Facing setbacks can be tough.
I’ve been there. Sometimes it hurts to face continual rejection or disappointment.
But it’s crucial to keep your chin up and not let the negatives weigh you down. Remember, every successful person has faced their fair share of setbacks. It’s part of the process.
Believe in yourself and your message. After all, you’ve got something important to say. Something that can make a difference. Don’t lose sight of that.
So just remember to keep your eyes on the prize. Yes, it takes hard work and determination. But with that winning combination, you’ll find the speaking gigs that are just right for you.
After all, the only way to truly fail is to give up. So, keep going, keep believing, and keep shining. Your time is coming.
Turning Struggles into Success: Your Next Steps as a Speaker
And there we have it – the five must-hear pieces of advice for any speaker struggling to find gigs.
Remember, success won’t happen overnight, but with a focus on honing your craft, making meaningful connections, staying resilient, experimenting, and keeping a positive attitude, you’re setting yourself up for success.
Your immediate takeaway? Pick one area to focus on this week. Maybe it’s reaching out to a new connection or trying a new speaking topic. Remember, small steps lead to big strides.
Now, if you’re looking for a community of like-minded individuals who are on a similar journey, I’ve got just the thing for you. I’d like to invite you to join our Private Facebook Group, Breakthrough Public Speakers.
With over 4,000 members, it’s a supportive space where you can learn from others, share your own experiences, and receive the encouragement you need on this journey. I hope to see you there!
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Recommended Resources & Links
The Charli Jane Speakers Club – If you are seeking to expand your presence on various stages, you have arrived at the ideal destination! We proudly offer our members an impressive range of 5,200 – 10,400 speaking opportunities annually. Yes, you read that correctly!
We cater to diverse interests and expertise, ensuring that there is something for everyone. Moreover, we have developed a comprehensive program known as The Booked Solid Success Path, meticulously designed to complement and enhance your speaking engagements.
Episode 153 – How Does Imposter Syndrome Affect Speakers, and How Can You Overcome It?
The Ultimate Speaker Business Building Bundle – Includes all my course kits like: Find speaking gigs, recurring 60k from one gig, meeting planner page, price your speaking, create your own one-sheet course, marketing templates, find your niche course, speaking lead organizer, and so much more.
Get a professional onesheet designed – I have been designing one sheets, also known as a speaker sheet or one-pager, for over 18 years for speakers to use in their marketing mix.
The Breakthrough Public Speakers Community – My team and I are inside this community helping you, encouraging you, and supporting you through your speaking journey… along with 4,300+ speakers.
I hope you enjoyed this training episode!
I wanted to let you know that every training session is geared towards helping you launch and grow your speaking business.
Keep up the amazing work and keep inspiring others!
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Meet Wendi McNeill
As the Founder and Owner of Charli Jane Speaker Services®, Wendi has been “Opening Doors of Opportunity” for speakers since 2002.
Charli Jane Speakers provides speakers with support, exposure, tools, tips, speaking and media leads, coaching/learning programs, and much more to assist them in growing their speaking business. Learn more about Wendi
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