How To Land Speaking Gigs… Even If You’re Just Getting Started


One of the things that many of us want to do more of in our business is to get out to more conferences and speak on stage.

Now, I have to say that I’m not the most sought after or well spoken stage personality out there, but I can talk about what I’ve learned from my own experience on stage and from running my own live event.

Tips for landing speaking gigs

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When it comes to booking speakers, it’s all about what the speaker can do for the audience.

So while you might have goals or aspirations for why you want more speaking gigs: like getting your name out there, becoming an expert in your field, building an e-mail list, or even selling products and programs from the stage… the conference organizer has a different focus.

They want attendees to have the best time possible at their event. Different speakers might be brought in for different reasons: to educate, inspire, or enlighten.

How to find the best speaking gigs & opportunities

One of the most important things you can do for your speaking career is to get to know other speakers so you can learn from them.

You should also make a list of places and events that you’d like to speak at. Our speakers for Off The Charts 2014 have already been confirmed, otherwise I’d be asking you to nominate yourself!

Once you know what events to target, you can find out when they’re run and how often they happen, then you can keep your eyes open for when speaker applications are accepted.

It often helps to get to know conference organizers personally. The best way to meet the people who are responsible for booking speakers is to attend a lot of conferences and get to know the organizers.

You can of course meet organizers online and further the relationships that way, too!

Perfecting your speaking proposal

You’ll want to write the best possible speaking proposal, so that organizers know you can deliver a great talk.

  1. Talk about why you are THE expert to speak about the topic you want to discuss. Go over how this topic going to be useful for the attendees and demographic of the conference. The worst thing you can do is pitch a topic that’s too advanced or beginner for the audience in attendance.
  2. This is the most important part of your proposal in my opinion: talk about the takeaways that people will have when they leave your talk.It helps to have previous speaking references, and if you’ve never spoken before then I recommend organizing your own small local event to get some experience under your belt.
  3. Put together a video reel of talks that you did in the past, so people can get an idea of your stage presence and delivery.Having a speaking reel also helps to show event organizers that you’re serious, and that this isn’t your first time speaking in public. They can also get a feel for your style, how formal or conversational you are, and how well you know your topic.
  4. Consider how you can help promote the event to your audience, too. In the eyes of the organizer, this may be a key selling point.You might think that conference organizers don’t have to worry about filling their events, but it’s actually a little harder than it looks to get people to leave home and travel to an event. But trust me, it’s worth it when everyone comes together in one place like they will for Off The Charts Live!

Let’s get started!

So here’s your homework for today: go ahead and write up a list of conferences or events that you’d love to speak at. Then come up with a great topic that you think would be beneficial to the attendees, write a solid proposal and then send it off as applications open!

Leave a comment below with a few events you’d love to speak at! You never know who might be reading and willing to offer you some speaking gigs!

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I’m the founder of a tech startup called AccessAlly, a powerful course and membership platform for coaching industry leaders.

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