The lure of making multiple appearances and getting paid is attractive for most if not all professional speakers. What may sound like a good idea is often the fastest route to being seen as a circuit monger. Too many bookings with the same content leads you fast to the slush pile in no time. Fresh content sells. Custom presentations are even better. Your purpose is to educate not alienate your audience. How do you do this? By being careful with your choice of gigs.
Daniel Day-Lewis is one of the most respected actors in the world. He selects film roles very sparingly and there is a length of time between movies. Despite this he has won two actors precisely because he is selective and strategic. Day-Lewis has showcased his range and form over three decades and it has paid off. This approach is what professional speakers looking for longevity need to duplicate. Being a circuit favorite for a few years can easily make you become a fad that passes quickly.
Speakers seeking the spotlight run the risk of being considered a fame junkie. It is easily to see why since so many people think that they have something to say and get drowned out by the many other voices out there. A professional speaker is first and foremost an expert on a subject and stays current with developments in his or her area of expertise. Being choosy over gigs and delivering original content every time garners respect and credibility which insures future bookings. While the fundamentals of your talk may stay constant and it is important to keep key messages on point, remember that no two gigs are the same and there is no excuse for not customizing what you say from booking to booking.
Guest post: Rheba Estante