I was on the phone to a potential client for my first paid speaking engagement.
I had never spoken for a ‘fee’ before and he asked me how much I was.
With a knot in my stomach and hesitation in my voice I said….”$4,000″.
Then I was silent.
To my surprise he came back with “Oh, easy. We can make that work!”
I remember thinking…wait, what?!
This is crazy. I’m getting paid almost a month’s normal salary to speak for an hour.
I was over the moon.
However, I was soon to find out why my ‘fee wasn’t an issue’.
Read to the end to find out.
This was the start of an incredible journey.
I’ve spoken on stages all around the world for companies like Coca-Cola, Hewlett Packard, Fuji Xerox and hundreds of other smaller companies. I’ve spoken at hundreds of summits, webinars and masterminds.
And I honestly love all of it!
Speaking is suuuuch a buzz.
There have been many lessons learned through my journey and I want to share a few now.
1. If you want to become a paid speaker, you have to first call yourself a speaker. This means on your bio, on your website, on your business cards. You have to first declare to the world that you speak.
2. You have to ask for a fee.
When someone asks, you have to say how much you are. Typically a beginner will make between $2,000 to $5,000 per presentation. And a mid level speaker will make $8,000 to $15,000. Then high level speakers will make $20,000 – $50,000 and celebrity speakers will make $150,000 to $300,000.
But the lesson is, say what your fee is and own it.
3. Get really good at speaking.
Your presentation is the best way to get more presentations. There will usually be someone in the audience who wants you to speak for them. So make every presentation your next best speech.
These are just a few lessons in becoming a paid keynote speaker.
And on the Expert Edge Podcast this week I got to interview a highly paid speaker.
His name is Jacob Morgan.
He’s in massive demand and commands the big bucks.
We discussed how he built his speaking career and some of the secrets for others who want to also.
Back to my story at the start…
…The reason the person said the ‘fee was easy’ was because he knew how many people would be attending the event.
But I didn’t.
I asked him right at the end of our phone call “How many people will be in attendance for the conference?”
He says “Oh yeah, about five and a half thousand”.
That’s when my brain exploded and my stomach dropped to the floor.
Yup, my first paid speaking gig was for 5,500 people.
Thankfully it went amazing and Hewlett Packard became a client of over 10 years.
I hope my story and the story of Jacob Morgan on the podcast inspire you to go after your speaking dreams.
P.S. If you haven’t yet checked out my Conversion Story Formula™ it’s been getting crazy results for people. We have had over 3,687 people join it in the last few months! So many of them are already designing their signature story in under 48 hours and are sharing it with their audience! Don’t miss out any longer!