I’m going to tell you the story of how I got really good at getting paid corporate gigs and being able to fill up my schedule in 10 days.
At the beginning, I couldn’t get a paid gig to save my life.
I started out as a mentalist, doing mind reading demonstrations in restaurants. I would walk around from table to table showing people cool mind reading stuff but I wanted to get corporate events. I wanted to be a motivational speaker and book big corporate events to do mind reading shows but I didn’t really know how.
So I was just sitting there waiting for the phone to ring, and when someone asked me how business was doing, I would say it was great…knowing that I wasn’t getting booked.
Eventually I got sick and tired of not getting booked. I knew I was good, I knew what I had to say was powerful, and even though nothing was working, I knew that I had to change something. I knew that if I just kept doing what I was doing then nothing was going to happen.
And after I was pissed off enough, I started doing something about it. And there are three things I did that allowed me to fill up my schedule in a couple of weeks.
Most speakers, most people in general, say they want something but they don’t want to do the work.
And the reason for this is because the speaker focuses on the end result. They picture themselves speaking on a huge stage and the audience is eating out the palm of their hand. But by doing this, you’re de-motivating yourself because you’re comparing where you are (no gigs) to where you want to be (speaking for a living).
You’re picturing all this without picturing the work it takes to get there.
It amazes me at how many speakers say they want to speak for a living, charge over $5,000 for a speaking engagement, and then I ask them if they’ve joined my PLATFORM program or the SpeakPro Academy and they say ‘no.’
Now the PLATFORM program is just $348 for an entire year and there are tons of videos being uploaded that shows you the business side of the speaking business so you can get on stages. And I mean TONS of videos. You get resources to download, everything. I talk about things I’m currently doing to speak on stages.
And when someone comes to me and say’s they’re really serious about speaking on more stages and need help but they’re not a member of PLATFORM, it just amazes me. The information is right there in front of them. And $348 is a small investment. It’s less than a dollar a day.
If you’re not willing to pay less than a dollar a day to improve your speaking business then that shows you’re not serious about improving your speaking business.
So the first thing I really did was get serious. I didn’t just say it, I actually meant it. And the way you know if you mean it is if you actually do something about it…you have to change who you are, what you do, you have to change if you’re serious.
But what happened is that I ended up going from doing free shows and charging $200 to charging $1,000. Then $2,000. Then $3,500. Then $5,000. And over $10,000 for a 60 minute presentation.
I started getting hired by companies like Remax, AAA, Hilton, Best Buy, Charles Schwab, Intel, tons of other companies with big budgets…I was getting TV appearances, tons of radio appearances. I really started building my business.
I got so good at getting paid corporate gigs that I could fill up my schedule in about 10 days worth of work.
And I’m going to tell you how I did it.
Now I’m going to tell you something that will scare the hell out of you. If you’re smart, I suggest you stop listening now because the truth hurts and it hurts bad. I’m going to tell you how I got really good at booking corporate gigs but nobody wants to pay for the truth.
People would much rather here lies that make them feel good and get them all motivated rather than the actual truth that’s going to create a change in their life. They would rather have the magic pill that gives them six-pack abs rather than go through the pain it takes to actually get it.
I’m about to tell you the truth and it’s going to be a wake up call for most speakers.
The truth is this:
Most speakers will never build a speaking business because they don’t do the things that get them on stages. They do everything except the very things that matter. And what’s worse is that they convince themselves that they’re working but in reality, they’re not working on the right things and they’re not working hard enough.
You can get really good at booking corporate gigs, you just need to control your psychology. Don’t let your thoughts confuse you because you will always tell yourself how bad you want to build a speaking business. But pay attention to what you do. That’s the real indicator of how serious you are.
And speaking of psychology, that’s the first thing that allowed me to get booked in the corporate market.
I understood their psychology. I knew what they were looking for and how they hire. It took me awhile to figure this out because there’s a ton of misinformation out there, even from the event planners themselves.
What I mean is that if you ask an event planner what’s the number one thing they look for when hiring a speaker then they’re going to tell you that they look for the message.
I can tell you that this is very deceiving because although the message and content is important, that’s not what they look for when they hire a speaker.
Think about it…
You can’t know if a speaker’s content is good until after you’ve already hear the speaker speak. But you have to hire the speaker before he comes to your event.
On top of that, if the message was the number one thing then why hire a professional speaker? Why not just figure out what message you want your audience to have and then just tell someone who works for you to get up on stage and give the presentation? It’s definitely much cheaper.
I knew that when people hire speakers for their event, they’re not just hiring for a message, they want entertainment. And I don’t mean juggling or anything, I mean that they want a pro who will keep people engaged from start to finish.
Nobody remembers what speakers say, they only remember the feeling they had while the speaker was on stage. They only remember whether or not it was a great presentation, but if you ask someone, “What did he say?” Then you’ll see them struggle just to remember one thing.
When big companies hire speakers, they’re usually hosting a big event and they want to provide an experience. The speaker is part of that experience so if you can show them how you’ll do more than just talk, if you can show them how you’ll create an experience then you’re going to get hired.
The next thing I understood was the buying process.
I knew the exact steps a big company takes when hiring a professional speaker.
First, they ask, “Who do I know?”
They think if they know of any speakers they’ve previously seen at a conference that they liked. And if they can remember a speaker then he’s almost guaranteed to get hired.
Then they ask, “Who do you know?”
If they can’t think of someone then they ask a colleague or someone they trust for a recommendation. Maybe someone else saw a speaker at a conference that they liked and think would be good for this conference.
If they can’t think of anyone, then they go to the internet.
And there are two things they can do on the internet, they can just search for the type of speaker they’re looking for or they can just go straight to a speaker bureau.
If they go to a bureau then it’s because they’re spending a lot of time doing other things like getting the venue, the decorations, and all these other little things. So by going to a bureau, you can just dump off your problem of, “Hey I need a great speaker” to someone else and they just do it for you which saves you time.
But if they do a search, and most people do, then they go directly to your website and that’s where your marketing materials come into play.
If you want to get really good at booking corporate gigs then you have to really understand the psychology of the person hiring speakers and their process. That’s the first step.
The next thing is to understand your process.
Edward Demming said, “If you can’t describe what you’re doing as a process, you don’t know what you’re doing.”
Ask most speakers how they get speaking engagements and they can’t tell you.
They might say something like, “Word of mouth” but what they’re really saying is, “I have no idea.”
Every single speaker who isn’t getting speaking engagements can’t describe their process. They just don’t know what daily activities they should be taking to get on stages. They can talk theory, but they can’t describe anything.
What I mean by describing is that you should be able to tell a random person what actions to take and that person should be able to duplicate your results (assuming they had the same marketing materials as you).
You should literally be able to say, “Go to this website, send an email to this person, here’s the email template, send X amount every day. Put these keywords into PPC. Put this ad up. Etc etc”
This is where speakers fumble.
They’re just not clear on their process.
And the worst part is that the process is the easiest thing to find out.
All the information you need is already out there.
In fact, my exact process for getting on stages is in the SpeakPro Academy. It starts out by making you build your foundation with the marketing materials and then in week 6, it goes into the process for getting on stages. Everything is there…and I mean everything.
If someone came up to you and said, “I’ll give you $100,000 if you give me $2,000.” Then would you do it? Of course you would. You would have to be an idiot not to.
What speakers don’t realize is that all the information they need is literally just a couple clicks away. You literally go to www.speakinglifestyle./slic to sign up and then every week, for 12 weeks, you’re building your speaking business.
But guess what?
Most speakers won’t do it.
Why? Because they just see the $2,000 price tag. They focus on how much something costs rather than how much it makes them.
It reminds me of that story about God and a man drowning. It goes like this:
There was a man who was drowning, and a boat came, and the man on the boat said, “Do you need help?” And the man said, “No thanks, God will save me.” Then another boat came and he tried to help him, but he said, “No thanks, God will save me.” Then he drowned and went to Heaven. Then the man asked God, “God, why didn’t you save me?” And God said, “I sent you two big boats you dummy!”
Most speakers are drowning and don’t see the opportunity in front of them. They don’t see the boat…they just see the price tag.
I was able to fill up my schedule in 10 days because I knew my process. I knew what actions to take the very second I woke up and I did them.
Knowing your process is what allows you to speak for a living.
And then doing it is what gets you there.
And that leads me to the third thing that allowed me to get really good at booking corporate gigs.
The third thing is that I had an insane level of focus. And I mean, insane.
Once again, I’m going to tell you the truth and it’s probably going to sting. But if you’re the type of person who would rather be lied to just so you feel good then I hope you stop listening to this anyways.
Being lied to isn’t going to improve your speaking business.
It’s like when a girl asks a guy if she’s fat. The guy can lie and make her feel good. Or if she’s smart, she’ll be prepared for the truth because that’s what’s going to change her life. If a guy said, “Yea, you’re getting a little chubby.” Then she can go to the gym and lose a few pounds.
But since most people would rather hear the lie, the guy says, “No you’re just fine.”
If you really have high-self esteem then you listen to things that can change your life. If you don’t, you would rather be told that everything is ok.
Women with high self-esteem would much rather hear the truth and women with low-self esteem would rather hear the lie.
I’m going to tell you the truth about how I was able to get good at booking corporate gigs and the truth is that I have an insane level of focus.
What exactly do I mean?
Well, focus is when you concentrate on one thing. And to get booked on stages, that’s what you have to do.
When you know your process and you know what actions to take every day to get booked, now it’s just a matter of doing it. But that’s almost always the hard part.
Getting on stages requires you to do just one thing. You have to know what that one thing is and do it all day every day.
I was reading an article about Peter Thiel, the founder of Paypal and investor of Facebook. He said that at Paypal and Facebook, they grew because of the ‘rule of one.’ Basically, they told their employees to focus only on one thing.
Each employee had one focus and they weren’t even allowed to talk to Peter if it wasn’t about that one thing. If they were in charge of doing something with the website and they came to Peter with a marketing idea…well…they couldn’t even come to him with the idea. That’s just it.
They made sure everyone knew the one thing they were supposed to contribute to the company and nothing else was even discussed.
Warren Buffett talked about how saying “no” is actually the key to his success. He talks about how 100 really great opportunities will come your way. And all of them will make you money, they’re all great. But you have to say no to 99 of them.
That’s what focus is.
And that’s what I did.
Once I knew my process, I knew what steps to take, that’s all I did.
I didn’t hang out on Facebook, I didn’t keep checking email, I didn’t text people, I didn’t attend networking events, I didn’t do anything, except the one thing that was getting me on stages.
If you’re an internet marketer and you’re good at PPC, then that’s your one thing. You would literally sit down all day and focus on getting traffic to your site with PPC.
The difference between the speakers who get on stages and the ones who don’t is that the ones who get on stages don’t try to implement all the techniques. They pick one, just one, and do it nonstop…it’s insane focus.
So many speakers want to find out different ways to book speaking engagements. In fact, if you google “How to get speaking engagements” then the articles that pop up will say something like, “14 ways to get speaking engagements” “10 ways to book speaking gigs.” Etc.
And I guarantee you that these articles do you more harm than good.
When you try to do everything…you try to use social media to get gigs, you try to do PPC, you try to make cold calls, you try to network at events, you try all these things, you’ll find out that none of them work.
What’s really happening is that it’s not working because you don’t have focus.
I bet you that most speakers who aren’t getting booked are doing too many things. They’re trying to post on their social networks, they’re trying to contact a few people, maybe they’re doing a little PPC, but it just isn’t working.
Every single one of these methods work.
If you’re an expert at PPC then you can put $1,000 into Adwords and book $20,000 or more worth of gigs. If that’s all you focused on and you got really good at it, and I mean really good, then you can’t not book speaking gigs.
But to get good, you would have to study it and do it nonstop. You would be reading books on PPC, you would YouTube tutorials, you would know about websites that show you how to reverse engineer another speaker’s campaigns, which I talk about in PLATFORM by the way, you would know so much about PPC then you wouldn’t be able to stop yourself from getting booked.
Unfortunately, most speakers try to do everything. And because they don’t focus, they don’t get gigs.
When you understand the psychology of the people hiring speakers, when you know your process and the day to day activities, and when you have an incredible amount of focus, you will start to get really good at booking corporate gigs.
Now there are two speakers listening to this.
First is the speaker who likes what he heard. He’s saying, “Yea that’s some good stuff. I’m going to focus and build my speaking business.” And you know what? Nothing’s going to change. This is speaker who talks the talk but can’t walk the walk.
This is the speaker who says they’re serious about speaking but won’t even invest $348 a year in the PLATFORM program to get specialized knowledge about getting on stages.
And then there’s the speaker who likes what they heard, but they do something about it. After you stop listening to this, you have a choice. You can go back to checking your Facebook, checking your email, and whatever else you were doing. Or you can get to work.
You can write down ONE task, ONE thing that’s going to get you on stages. And you do that IMMEDIATELY after listening to this.
You can join the PLATFORM program, you can demonstrate how you’re ready for the change.
Now I can hear it already, some of you might be saying, “He’s just trying to get me to join the PLATFORM program or join the SpeakPro Academy.”
YOU’RE DAMN RIGHT!!!
I know that on the other side, just a couple clicks away, is the information that can get speakers booked. I know that my information is legit, it’s what I use every single day to get booked by companies. It works. It’s right there in front of you, the boat is there, the opportunity is there.
But speakers would rather stay in their misery instead of invest a little bit of money into something that will literally change their life.
It’s amazing to me that people will email me to ask about how to build their speaking business but they don’t even look at the information that’s right there in front of them.They don’t want to do the work, they just want the result. They don’t want to invest money, they just want to make money.
If you get a change, an opportunity to invest in something that has the information you need to solve your biggest problem, then you better do it and do it fast.
But that’s enough of that.
It’s time to get serious.