5 Tips on How to Find Paid Speaking Gigs

Posted by Audrey Saavedra on May 14, 2024

d3a0f5d9-e3ba-4321-b2bb-435448d85f2f_cr_17.0.1988.1320How to Get Paid Speaking Gigs - Blog Article

Getting visibility to the right clientele and developing an effective sales strategy is essential, but only part of what goes into securing bookings as a speaker. Whether you're an expert or just starting, get 5 tips on how to find paid speaking gigs, including top advice from successful speakers on The Bash.

As a speaker, being charismatic, engaging, and connecting with the audience all make for a successful event. But, before you prepare to ensure this happens for an event, a lot goes into getting booked. With keynote and corporate to motivational speakers and more all getting booked on The Bash, we've rounded up 5 tips and tricks from some of our successful speakers to learn what they're doing to get booked. Find out where they are advertising, their key to getting booked, how they make clients happy, and more!

Here are 5 Tips on How to Find Paid Speaking Gigs.

1. Advertise Widely

There are many ways speakers get visibility for their business, including networking events, word of mouth, and having an online presence through social media, a professional website, a booking platform, a speaking bureau, and more. Reaching out to past clients also leads to future bookings (or even referrals) and only takes a friendly phone call, text message, or email. Paid advertising on booking platforms like The Bash, Google, and social media are also sources speakers utilize to find paid speaking opportunities. While it’s easy to get visibility and spread awareness for your in-person or online, don’t undermine traditional ways of advertising like direct mail!

2. Fine-Tune Your Sales Process

Determining a sales process that works best for your business based on past efforts that have led to bookings, fine-tuning it, and following it consistently, is an efficient way to ensure future bookings. It’s easy to make adjustments or to test something new once you have developed an effective sales process. Up-to-date and high-quality marketing materials are essential aspects of a sales process, according to the speakers we caught up with. Whether it be a professional website, client testimonials, promo video, a clip from a past speaking event, or other content, cultivating a portfolio to share with potential clients will show them what to expect upon hiring you, allow you to showcase your strengths, and help you to stand out from competitors. Don't forget the importance of responding quickly when fine-tuning your sales process! The sooner you respond to leads, the greater chance you'll have of connecting with them before other vendors, and the greater your chances of landing the gig.

3. Develop a Follow-Up Process That Works For You

Following up with leads is an essential part of securing gigs for the speakers we spoke to. Most speakers follow up with leads via email or text and request a phone call or virtual meeting via Zoom to further discuss event details. Recording when and how often you follow up with a lead will help you create a follow-up process that works for your business and ensure you never miss a touch-point. Following up consistently with leads not only increases your chances of getting booked because it keeps you top-of-mind, but it allows you to learn more about their event and for them to learn more about what you offer so that you can see whether you are a good fit for each other. 

"I use almost exclusively email for follow-ups and request phone or zoom calls; I like having a record of my outreach."

- Steve Fredlund | Keynote Speaker

4. Clarify Event Goals

Learning about the audience, the atmosphere, the location of the event, and its purpose will allow you to prepare accordingly and figure out how to best engage with the audience. Therefore, clarifying event goals before booking is an important step. Consider creating a list of questions to ask the event organizer to learn more about what will allow you to make the best event for them and their audience. Doing this lets the lead know that you care about making their event special, and often is a contributing factor when they decide to book your business!

Being responsive is huge, but the most important thing is ensuring upfront that you are the right fit. I understand the group, I understand the goals for the event, and I understand what the event planner is looking for in a speaker."

- Jean Briese | Motivational Speaker

5. Deliver What You Say You Will & More

When it comes to making clients happy, showing up to the event as the reliable and professional speaker they hired, plus going above and beyond, often leads to client satisfaction. Clients are already counting on you and expect they have hired an expert. Therefore, after clarifying their goals and wants for the event, deliver what you say you will and more. Make an effort to engage with clients before, during, and after the event. Arrive to the event early and prepared, and ensure you have time after the event to speak to the client and their guests.  


We also asked these two successful speakers on The Bash what their top tips for others in the industry looking to get booked. Here's what they had to say:

"Respond quickly but also personally -- avoid impersonal copy & paste responses. Be unique and authentically yourself."

- Steve Fredlund | Keynote Speaker

"I absolutely believe that the key to success is a defined sales process that you follow every day, every lead.  Get a good sales process in place and follow it.  We can't speak unless we get booked, and we won't get booked if we aren't selling every day."

- Jean Briese | Motivational Speaker

When asked how they are preparing for speaking events this year, here's what they had to say:

"I'm continuing to finetune my core message, developing strong signature talks that can be delivered with quality consistently, updating my website and other online profiles to be consistent and grab the attention of event planners, and building a portfolio of credibility as a thought leader (LinkedIn, YouTube and writing a book and a journal)."

- Steve Fredlund | Keynote Speaker

"It truly feels as if events are back in full swing. I am researching the cities where most events are scheduled and advertising in those places. It pays to be in an event planning organization as they often know the industry trends and can help you determine trends like places, venue types, and even what clients are looking for in speakers, so you can adjust your profile to showcase what is trending. This makes you relevant."

- Jean Briese | Motivational Speaker


It takes time to build a successful speaking business, but we hope these tips help you find more paid speaking gigs. If you’re a speaker who is looking to connect with new clients, get started on The Bash!



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Topics: Booking Tips

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