A lot of speakers want help building their business and I tend to ask a lot of speakers what they speak about and exactly what they need help with.

In fact, you might have gotten an email from me where I asked you…what do you speak about and what do you need help with?

Now what I’m about to tell you next is going to be very helpful to a lot of you out there because if you do this wrong then you’re going to lose out on a lot of speaking gigs without realizing it.

First, let me give you some examples of what people say when I ask what they speak about and what they need help with…

One answer is, “I help people overcome their fear and limiting beliefs, take action, and have the life we deserve.”

Another answer is, “I help people achieve their goals and dreams. Overcoming adversity.”

Another answer is, “I’ve had success in the women’s market. Helping with child abuse, animal abuse, spousal abuse.”

And lets do one more. Their answer is, “I like to help people find their true self.”

Now your answer is probably very similar to theirs. If I were to ask you what you speak about, most people answer in a very similar way.

So what’s the point?

The point is this…

Almost everyone who answers the question is interested in getting paid speaking gigs. Getting a well known company to pay them $10,000 or more to speak. But here’s the thing…and this is the thing that’s going to cause you to lose out on speaking gigs without you realizing it…

You can’t confuse the seminar market with the corporate market.

If you’re listening to this and you want to get paid speaking gigs then listen very closely.

Almost all the answers I get to the question of what do you speak about are more related to the seminar market, but they want to get booked in the corporate market.

Let’s take the last one for example where she said she’s had success as a speaker who talks to the women market about child abuse, spousal abuse, and that type of stuff. Well…think from a corporate standpoint.

We are having our annual event where we give out awards for the best employee and all that other stuff. We are looking for a keynote to start off the event with a bang and get everyone excited.

Now let me ask you this…

Does your message about child abuse make us want to hire you?


We want to have fun at this event. This isn’t an intervention. We want to get people energized. We’re not interested in buying a product or anything…we just want people energized for the event.

Basically, what you talk about as a speaker doesn’t match the market you want to get hired for.

And the same goes with the other answers.

You have to remember who’s hiring you in the corporate market. If you want to get paid to speak then the person hiring you as a speaker doesn’t care if you talk about finding your true self or if you talk about ducks. What they care about is…can you energize the room? Can you make the event a success?

How are people going to respond when they hear you speak?

Most speakers confuse the seminar market with the corporate market for getting paid gigs.

In the seminar market, you can lead with your message. But in the corporate market, you have to lead with the end result people get from hiring you.

Your message in the seminar market might be that you’re helping people with their dreams. But when it comes to getting paid gigs, they just want to know…is the crowd going to be laughing because you’re funny? Are they going to be energized because you’re doing all kinds of things on stage? The corporate market is only interested in what’s actually going to happen.

Now as I was thinking about this…I realized that the reason speakers confuse the seminar market with the corporate market where you’re actually getting paid to be in stage…is because of the people you learn from.

Most speakers learn from seminar speakers.

If you’re listening to this then you’ve probably learn from someone who was doing a seminar and they were telling you to create your message and all that stuff. And that’s fine if you want to do seminars…but you can’t confuse the two.

If you go to Les Brown’s website and click on the ‘meeting planners’ tab then notice how he talks to the meeting planner who’s about to hire him. He doesn’t say, “I give people a chance to live their dreams.” No. He says, “If you need a speaker to make your event a success…” And he goes from there.

There’s nothing wrong with doing both, you just have to know the difference between the two because your entire marketing strategy is completely different.

For the seminar market, you’re mainly focused on building your list. For the corporate market, you’re more focused on creating an experience when you’re on stage, you’re more like an entertainer so you’re focused on only talking to the one person who’s hiring the speaker.

With the seminar market, you want to build a following of people who are interested in what you have to say.

With the corporate market, you want to build a database of people who hire speakers.

And the way you talk to each market is completely different.

So keep that in mind as you want to build your speaking business. Decide which market you want to get into and go from there.