Speaking Engagements

Ever wonder how people get on the speaking panels for conferences?

<>They go to the conference website, see who is in charge of programming, and send them a press kit, virtual or physical, meaning via email or hard copy in regular mail.

Wait. Did you think that they were just so wonderful that someone said, “Wow. I want them to speak at my conference.”…?

Sure, that happens. IF YOU’RE Stephen King!!

But, if you’re not THERE yet, you have to realize that the way you get known is by word of mouth, and usually that means YOUR word of mouth. You have to toot your own horn by sending out information about who you are, and what you can do.<>

<> I, for example, have been doing motivational speaking for 20-25 years. It doesn’t matter what topic you need addressed to your group, I can research it, and present it in the way you need it put out there.

So, this is an example of how I let people know that I am available for speaking. I post it on my blogs and websites. I send emails to conference planners. I post regularly on my blogs where I will be next.

Who is this person? You may ask that. I’m pretty much a beginner writer who understands some basics about professionalism because I was professional in other areas before I decided to write pro. And I know how to make goals and achieve success. If you or your writing friends are struggling with that, you might want to have me come and speak.

If you’ve already stopped and said WHOA, I’m not listening to a beginner, think again. Read on.

Since I write in every genre and have won over 115 awards in 3-4 years, and some of those are in every genre–I may have some simple tidbits that can really boost your writing. Also, in that short time, I’ve had cover articles on national and regional magazines, and have signed many many contracts (over 25 this year alone.) I’ve had 5 books released THIS YEAR and have more coming.
The point is…not to be obnoxious in telling my credits, but to let you know that there is a fast track to success. There are tricks to the trade. Like the first one I mentioned here about setting up speaking engagements. Some will pay well, but when you start out, most likely you will pay your own travel, and hotel expenses.

But in exchange, you will get your name in a program book that all attendees will read. You will get an opportunity (maybe more than one) to let people know what you write. And through that, other writers will learn your name, and you will be considered a professional peer.

Other engagements will follow, and they will soon begin to pay–in growing readership/fans and professional friends you can network with, and all that translates to positive word of mouth, and ultimately to higher sales.

The easiest way to advertise your book in person is to get on a panel at a conference. Someone else draws the crowd. Someone else puts the program book together that brags about your accomplishments. All you have to do is show up, be clean, and contribute with a positive energy and hopefully some good information.

The trick is…making the audience feel good about you being there. If the panel is about writing, give out some useful information. If the panel is geared to meeting the fans, make sure you’ve got something to make them feel good. Bottom line, get some eye contact with your audience. Smile. Be happy to be there.
When you talk, use the mic. If there’s no mic, speak very loudly. Half of every audience is deaf or going deaf. Never think you don’t need the mic. That’s the dumbest thing any speaker ever says. I can’t say that enough. And make love to that microphone. Put it as close to your lips as you can without touching it.

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