Advice for Speakers and Presenters: 7 Ways to Turn a Free Gig Into a Financial Windfall

You’ve been asked to speak for an audience. However, the event organizer or meeting planner tells you they can’t pay you. Your heart sinks knowing that speaking for free will cost you in the long run. You think of all the expenses you’ll incur – gas, parking, photocopying materials, babysitter – and speaking for free means you won’t be reimbursed for these incidental costs.

Although a free gig can eat into your bottom line, you don’t need to refuse it altogether. If you’re still building your expertise, free gigs can help you to refine your message and try out new concepts on an eager audience.

The only way you can make money if you’re speaking for free, is to sell something. You just have to. Otherwise, known as back of the room (BOR) sales, here are some tips for ensuring that you rake in the cash even if you’re speaking for free.

Develop an information product that relates to your speech. You can sell a special report, a CD or a booklet that contains detailed information from your speech. For example, I do a speech called 7 Brainless Networking Techniques to Avoid. After my speech, I encourage attendees to buy my ebook on CD called Schmooze Your Way to Success for further reading and research. Even if you don’t have an ebook or physical book to sell, there are ton of information products you can develop. Here are some ideas:
Photocopies of a 10-page special report
An audio CD containing a teleclass you led
A data CD containing a collection of reports, articles or an ebook
A booklet with dozens of tips
A DVD with a training session you did for another group
Sell something that people can take away with them. People want to buy something that they can hold in their hands and walk out the door with. Coaching sessions, digital downloads and other intangible products may be a tougher sell since people can’t hold or touch it. Opt to sell a CD, a booklet or a book instead.
Ensure that your product is inexpensively priced. If it’s too expensive, attendees won’t buy. If it’s too cheap, attendees will ignore it. Anything priced between $10 to $20 is appropriate for BOR sales.
Accepting credit cards is a must. People are impulse buyers, especially at special events. If there’s a rush to the table to buy your product and you only accept cash, you will miss out on potential business. At least 45% of my BOR sales are through credit cards. Many credit card processing companies can set you up with a telephone call-in service within 2-weeks. You collect the credit card number at the event, then you call-in later from your home or cell phone to authorize it. Simple as pie.
Mention your product at the end of your speech. Never, ever, mention your product throughout your presentation. This will turn people off. It’s tasteless to introduce a concept in your speech, and then say, “You can find a more detailed, step-by-step process in my ebook.” Instead, graciously give attendees 45-minutes worth of useful information, then at the very end, after the Q&A, pitch a 2-minute commercial for your product.
Try to videotape or audiotape your presentation. You always want to improve on your speech and being able to review it later is always helpful. Hire a videographer to tape your presentation. If you can’t find one, record your presentation using an audio recording device. Capturing a recording of your speech will do 2 things:
You can evaluate the audience’s reaction to your sales pitch. If sales were low, you can tweak it. Or, if sales were high, you can duplicate what you said word for word at other speaking engagements.
If your speech was amazing, you can package the video or audio and sell it at your next speaking engagement. Imagine how grateful your audience will feel knowing they don’t have to take notes because they can purchase your presentation and review it at their leisure.
Remember to ask if you can make sales. Before saying yes to a free gig, always get the permission from the meeting planner or event organizer for BOR sales. Most times, they will say yes to your request. In the odd event that they say no, tell them you’ll donate a portion of sales to their group. This should win them over. If the meeting planner or event organizer still refuses your request for BOR sales, you may want to rethink doing a free gig for them.
Free speaking engagements can cost you big, but not if you incorporate BOR sales into your strategy. Follow the tips above and you’ll gleefully say yes to a free gig knowing that you’ll be able to cover your costs with the product sales you’ll make at the event.

Cheap Christmas Presents Using eBay Discount Codes

Everyone this year is tightening the purse strings to save some money. Well here’s a suggestion. Cheap Christmas presents using eBay discount codes. I know many of you have never heard about these discount codes because they are very difficult to find. You see the same so called great people who provide these codes are the same people who make them very difficult to find.

Anyways I’m not going to dwell on that because it’s Christmas and not a great time to be looking down on others. The point here is to save you some money using eBay discount codes. It’s pretty simple once you have the code. You find what you want to buy. At that point you enter the code and then upon check out your savings will be applied.

Now I make my living through affiliate marketing online so I have the tools to go out and find these eBay discount codes. I know by the time you get home at the end of the day the last thing you want to do is sit down and search for these codes. I do know that you want to use them. I have had codes with savings as high as 250 dollars and actually heard of some in the 1000s. However I haven’t found any of those yet so don’t really know if they exist.

Its time you took action and got your cheap Christmas presents using eBay discount codes. What more could you ask for. The hard work is already done. Now all you have to do is go out and save the money.

A Quick Guide for the First Time Business Presenter

The first time is always the hardest. Most especially for business presenters, you could get stuck up, or stutter or worse forget all the words you were supposed to say and bore the whole crowd. Most especially when you’re on the wrong place as well without any air conditioning or comfortable seats. So for all the first time business presenters here’s a quick read for you before you go up that stage;

Know your Topics. Backwards and Forwards

· Your audience will smell fear one you feel it. But the more you know your topic the more comfortable you’ll become. Remember that the audience are there to be informed and to learn from you and so you must be completely familiar with what you’re going to talk about. Preparation is the most important key here and the most initial point you must consider.

Be Clear and Concise

· When you begin, you share with your audience a short version of the topics you’ll cover, cover the topic in depth, then by the end of it, and do a summarization in a few short sentences.

Use Photos

· You’ll probably use slides. One thing you will have to avoid is stuff the slides of your presentations with blocks of texts. If for example you have a really long topic to cover, this will tire the people and you’d lose their attention. One of the best things to avoid this is place pictures and photos on certain parts of your presentations.

Pick a good place where you can conduct your Presentation

· A good place where there will be no interruption and will be comfortable for your audience is what you’ll need. Places like serviced offices or conference rooms. It’ll be beneficial for your presentation as well and will keep your audience attentive.

Practice on the Battle Ground

· Before your presentation, it wouldn’t hurt to practice a little bit on the same place you’ll be conducting your presentation. Like in bands where they rehearse on the same stage a night before they play. It will help you get familiar with the place and be comfortable in it so that when the time comes for you to do your presentation, the conference room will be on your side and you’ll be able to use the room to your advantage.

Try Not to Stay on Podiums

· Yes it’s a professional presentation. But if you stay stationary the whole time the audience will become inevitably bored with you. Walk around the stage while talking, own the stage, interact with the people to whom you’re talking to.

TALK to your Audience

· Remember that your “Slide-presentation” only serves as your visual aid. DO NOT read the texts in it all the time. You should know what you are presenting and therefore you shouldn’t have to read all of it. The audience are there to listen to what you’re going to say. And so speak to them, not to the projected slides.

Don’t take too long

· Alas, regardless if you’re covering a short topic or a long one, you should never take forever to finish with your presentation. And also, it shouldn’t be too short as well. If it is, it’ll be like leaving them in the air with the topic. A good presenter will always know how to pace his or her presentation. The flow should be natural and smooth.

In closing, always be ready as well for questions. No matter how clear your topic is, the audience will always have questions for you. And welcome these questions. This will give you a better chance to engage with your audience.