Whenever you are in the company of great minds you will find they will challenge your thinking, blow your mind with what is really possible and – if you are in the right room – help you navigate what has been elusive.
If we are connected on social, then you will know that I invest heavily in my own personal and professional development – travelling to conferences, part of tactical education programs, and a global mastermind with Ali Brown out of Scottsdale, Arizona. That is the room that I found myself in last week.
Whilst my business is one that I have fallen in love with, crystal clear messaging is still proving to be quite elusive for me – even though I excel at that with my clients. My business baby has grown from infant to toddler to sassy teen, but to take it to the next level it needs to shift gears to a confident, vibrant adult.
So what I really wanted out of the last week was language around what I do; language so clear that you can understand it as well.
One of my greatest drivers in launching SpeakableYOU was absolute determination that ‘my people’ would never be the people to sell from stage. In fact I am adamant and vocal about the fact that you should never sell from stage when you are asked to ‘speak’, and you should not even attempt to sneakily seed a pitch (see last week’s article here if you missed it – I rant a little!).
I wanted to create a movement of people who understand the privilege of the platform – anywhere you can have a voice and be heard from – is a gift to speak, and the gift is given to the audience. If you master structure, story, charisma and influence from a position of deep expertise, deep experience or a deep way of thinking and your only focus is adding extreme value to the people in front of you (in both the real and the virtual world), then the world will respond in kind. Your profile will lift, your business will grow, and you will no longer be chasing all the people – because the right people will see you and be drawn to you.
What is challenging to get across to people until they have experienced it is this: the more powerfully you stand for adding immense value, in giving the best of you from the platform, the more valuable and powerful the work that you secure will be as a result. And it was this discussion where insight was dropped from one of the women in the room this week:
What you have created is something where conversion is a by-product of connection…
I know that when we speak to serve, share and connect with our audience, the connection we create does the heavy lifting. It creates a channel through which trust and belief can be built rapidly, and delivers powerful glimpses into the depth of our own expertise, experience or way of thinking.
I have built multiple six and seven figure businesses previously simply through speaking, and not once did I sell, pitch or seed the pitch. And yet, every time I spoke my business grew. If I wanted more work or to push our growth to the next level, I simply ramped up the number of speaking engagements which put me in front of my ideal audience.
Out of one of those rooms I picked up a single client who’s first contract was worth $30,000 and went on to spend more than $180,000 with me over 18 months.
Having the ability to articulate a strong point of view in a think tank event brought me a client I had been pursuing for more than 15 months without being able to get past the receptionist – he was in the room, was impressed, and we worked together for more than 3 years.
One of the very few times I have run the half day low cost workshop format, my crew were devastated when with 40 people in the room I ‘failed to pitch anything’… but that same afternoon just after 5pm my phone rang with a number I didn’t recognise and it was someone who had been in that room. Because I had only given extraordinary value and not once pitched or sold in the room, he felt he could trust me with his current challenges. Within 72 hours we had signed a contract to deliver both consulting and mentoring work worth $62,000.
The key is that it is not about volume; it is about well-paid work with the right clients who you grow to love; it is about stepping away from being all things to all people and connecting deeply with those that matter, who will pay you well for what you do.
But it’s not just me. In the last 2+ years as I have grown my baby to a sassy teen I have been able to replicate this.
Jim, my client in the US, was to speak at his peak body event and running through the offers he was coming up with to sell from the room (to make up for the fact that you speak for free at these events). Here was a $20,000 per engagement keynote speaker working up a $500 offer to fill a workshop, simply because that was how it was done – and hoping costs could at least be covered. I asked him to change his approach; to deliver that speaking engagement as if he was being paid his usual $20,000 fee – which made him nervous, and he kept doubting my advice right up until the night before the event when I asked him just to trust me. He did. And as a result, two people in the room referred him to conference organisers for him to speak – because they had now seen him in full force. Three people asked him to mentor them and we were able to design $10,000 90 day mentoring packages which he loved, and he had more than six leads for his high ticket bootcamp.
Lori, is another client in the US and an industry leader. She had only ever spoken to sell but had secured a keynote speaking position on a major conference program and was nervous about not being able to sell from stage. We shifted the focus of her content, built a mic-drop moment, and a strategy for what is known as The Golden Minute. The results? No drop in the sign-up rate to her online program, and her first ever six figure consulting contract with a major global beauty brand.
Closer to home, Kate, is a business coach and loved for small business speaking presentations. She came through the SpeakableYOU Intensive, bounced some strategy around with me and on the SAME 7 venue small business speaking circuit she had spoken for 3 years previously without generating any revenue: nailed the Trifecta, secured her first paid conference speaking engagement at $5,500 plus travel and accommodation for her entire family, booked $15,000 in online course revenue, and secured 6 new retained clients for her high ticket coaching programs – worth $108,000.
Heidi, an award winning financial planner with her own firm, created an astonishing keynote, showcased her natural humour and secured two keynotes at conference level (her first paid engagements.) She has leveraged what we created to secure a panellist position on Sky News, and has been featured often in The Australian newspaper – extending her profile well beyond her own industry.
This is why I love this work.
Because speaking is more than taking to the front of the room to deliver what you think matters. It is the fastest way to connect, and the by-product of that, for you, is effortless conversion.