5 Questions to Ask Before You Say Yes to a Speaking Gig

public speaking, speaking, booking speaking engagements, how to land speaking opportunities, presenationSpeaking is one of the fastest ways to reach your audience in large numbers and grow your business. If you are new to public speaking or just looking to ramp up how often you speak, it can be tempting to say yes to every offer that comes your way.

As eager as you may be to say yes, saying no could be the better decision. Consider the time it takes to prepare a presentation, travel to and from the event and time out of office it may require. Here are 5 questions to ask to help determine if a speaking opportunity is right for you.

Who will be in the audience? – This is a great place to start because if the audience isn’t your target market, then you can make a decision right away. Asking questions such as how many people will attend? Which industries will be represented? Are the attendees experienced execs or newbies? and What is their skill level on the topic? will help determine if the opportunity is a match for you.

What is the theme of the presentation? – Ask the meeting organizers what topic they’d like you to discuss and, in particular, if there is a specific angle they would like you to present to the group. Getting more information about the topic will help you gauge if it’s in line with your vision.

What is the format? – Find out how much time you will have to present and also if you will be presenting alone or as part of a panel. This will help you determine how much time you need to prepare a presentation in advance of the event.

What is the audience reach? – Whether the event is an in-person meeting or a virtual program, it’s important to know how many people you will reach with your presentation. If it’s a live event, how many people will be attending? If it’s a virtual event like a webinar or podcast interview, how many people will be listening live or to a replay? Also, determine how many people the organization will market to through their subscribers, membership and/or social media channels.

Is it a paid speaking engagement?  If it is a paid speaking engagement does it include travel expenses? If there isn’t a speaker fee involved, there are other benefits to consider. Can you have access to the registration list? Can you sell books, products or make another offer at the event?

Now it’s your turn. How do you determine if you should say yes to a speaking engagement? Post your thoughts in the comments below.

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