I was talking to a speaker the other day and asked her what topic she spoke about and she answered “whatever they want”. That might have worked in the speaking industry 20 years ago, but today’s meeting planner is looking for an expert in a topic, a thought leader who knows more about that topic than anyone else, and has a solid background to back it up.

You might think that limits your opportunities as a speaker, but it’s actually the opposite. I’ve spent some time studying the top speakers, and work with some top speakers, and one thing they have in common is that they have narrowed down their niche. They dig deep within the one thing they know better than any other speaker and they stick with it.

I know so many speakers who have incredible hard skills knowledge they could be using, but say they would rather speak on topics that meeting planners simply aren’t looking for, the speaker isn’t really an expert in, or the market is saturated with.

Meeting planners talk amongst themselves, and when they are looking for a particular topic your name should come to the top of the list. If you want to speak on branding, have you ever actually created a brand yourself? You will be competing with people who have created world class brands that are household names. Why would they choose you over someone who started a Fortune 500 company with a brand that’s a household name?

I’ve seen speakers who say they speak on the topic of social media who only have 300 Twitter followers and a Klout score below 40. Why would a meeting planner hire them to teach their employees about social media?

The first thing I look at on a speaker’s website is the “about” page. What kind of background do you have that qualifies you as an expert in that topic? As an audience member, why would I listen to you? Just because you’re passionate about a topic doesn’t mean you’re the right person to deliver that message. Your credibility is something that has to be earned.

If you look at the backgrounds of some of the top speakers, they have extensive knowledge, hands-on experience in the real world, media attention in their area of expertise, industry awards and years of training. They’ve earned the right to stand on a stage and speak on that topic.

The good news is that most of us have all of those things. It’s a matter of doing what speaker Joe Calloway calls “picking a lane”. I know I’ve used this example before, but Brene’ Brown is a good example of a speaker who picks a lane. In fact, on the home page of her site it says she has “spent the past 13 years studying vulnerability…” When a meeting planner is looking for that topic, she’s at the top of the list. And she works… a lot.

Another part of a speaker’s brand is in their delivery. If you look at comedians, someone like Jim Carey has a very different style from Steven Wright, Mitch Hedberg’s style was very different from Melissa McCarthy’s style. They all found their own audience, as you should do as a speaker.

As far as style goes, there’s no right or wrong way when it comes to being a speaker, but it should always fit your comfort level. I would never feel comfortable lecturing from a podium with a lot of charts and grafts. But many meeting planners would rather have that style, and there are plenty of speakers who feel more comfortable giving them what they want. There’s no reason to fit a square peg in a round hole. Be who you are and the audience that’s right for you will find you, love you, and hire you over and over again.

 

According to the National Federation of Independent Business, a recent poll of over 600 small business owners determined that small business optimism has hit its highest level since 2004. These small business owners feel that business conditions will get better and that sales will increase by 20%. This is great news for speakers looking for sponsorship as businesses think that now is the time for them to expand. In fact, 36% expect to add jobs.

Community banks have seen more requests for business loans, and earlier in the year than normal. Banking regulation reform will bring relief to small community banks, who in turn will be lending more to main street.

Even though arts, education, entertainment, and cause sponsorship still only makes up around 25% of the sponsorship pie, it’s still good news for speakers seeking sponsorship. Unlike large corporations, small business owners spend less on sports and more on arts and education. In fact, the sponsorship pie is most likely flipped, where only 25% of small business sponsorship is in sports, mainly local community sports.

When small businesses are flush with cash, they need artists and other creatives even more. Whether it’s graphic artists to help with website design or advertising, or speakers who promote them to a targeted audience, this is good news for artists of all kinds.

One trend has been around lately and will continue into the future. Sponsors are asking for more customization from sponsees. It’s not a bad thing, it just means that you have to up your game if you want to attract a sponsor. Small business sponsorship is much less competitive than large corporate sponsorship, but sponsorship in general is still a competitive game.

Even with more cash to spend in an improving business environment, that doesn’t mean small businesses want to waste money. They still want to get the most bang for their buck, and sponsorship is a great way to do that. You are putting them in front of their target audience for less than it would cost for advertising in many cases.

Business optimism leads to more innovation, and business owners being open to new ideas. Now is the time to start adding sponsorship to your portfolio of ways to make money as a speaker.

 

 

It seems many people look at New Year’s resolutions as big changes, and either try to go full blast and fail, or don’t do anything at all for risk of total failure. I learned that putting too much pressure on myself to force big change never seems to work for me. So, instead, I just set small, attainable goals that I know can be kept. Here’s a way you can add small changes as a speaker in 2017:

  • Speak more – Yes, I know this sounds simple, but it’s something every speak can do. Some of the best speakers I know speak a lot. They don’t wait to get paid to speak, they just take every opportunity possible to do it, even if they aren’t getting paid. Whether it’s practicing in your own living room, volunteering to be on a panel, or giving a toast at a wedding. Don’t want to speak for free? Find a free speaking gig, get your expenses paid for, and get a sponsor to pay your fee. Speak locally so you don’t have to travel. Use these opportunities to test out new material and new power points.
  • Become more knowledgable about your topic – You can never know too much about your area of expertise. You should know your subject matter like the back of your hand and be able to get up on stage and speak about it for an hour. If it’s a topic you enjoy speaking on, this should be something you’re doing all the time anyway. Keep up with the latest information in your industry and incorporate it into your material.
  • Study other speakers – Watch speakers live whenever you can. Watch TED Talks and speaker videos. How can you differentiate yourself from speakers in your topic? Never copy, but be inspired by the good ones, and learn from the mistakes of bad speakers. What do you have to offer that other speakers don’t have? What topic can you speak on that no one else can speak on?
  • Learn a new skill – Take an improv class or a stand-up comedy class to add some humor into your presentations. Take an acting class to improve your stage presence. Or a dancing class. Singing lessons and breath technique will help you vocally. What skill are you weak in that you need to brush up on?

The new year is a time to start fresh and hit the ground running. What are some of your New Year’s resolutions as a speaker?

As a speaker, it’s helpful to know what the person hiring you to speak is most concerned about. You never know. You may have skills that can help them in problem solving, and that will go a long way when it comes to hiring and rehiring you. Always help make their job a little easier.

In a recent study conducted by Development Counsellors International, who polled over 200 North American meeting planners, over half of them are struggling with limited budgets and felt they were being overworked on top of it.

An article in Meetings and Conventions Magazine listed 25 ways meeting planners could cut their budgets. Two things on the list are of particular concern to speakers. The first one said to look within the organization for talent, offering them a free ticket to the conference in exchange.

This is something I’ve been hearing a lot lately from meeting planners, so it backs up what the article says. This is why it’s so important to have a portfolio of your own sponsors, so you can offer that to a meeting planner as an option when they don’t have the money in the budget. It’s possible they may find a good speaker from within to do it for free, but my guess is they would prefer to have a professional speaker with outside knowledge if they could.

The other thing on the list was to get more from your speakers by getting them to add a breakout session to their keynote fee. Another way speakers can add value is by helping to promote the event. This is something you should do anyway if you are working with a sponsor.

Here are other concerns from meeting planners:

“As an event and meeting planner with more than 25 years of professional experience, these are a few things that keep me up at night.

1) A speaker who manages to engage the attendees, but whose message provides no real teachable lessons — or the flip side — a speaker who  provides a plethora of good information, but goes too deep in the weeds and bores the attendees is a major consideration.

2) Attendees who pay a significant amount to attend a meeting or conference, but feel as though they didn’t get the value out of their investment is always a concern.

3) Equipment and tech failures with microphones, audio, etc., can keep one up at night. While you can test the equipment and conduct sound checks,it’s those phantom times when the PowerPoint and audio has a mind of its own and does not work properly.

4) Will the the meeting rooms be too cold or too hot? Will attendees be able to find their sessions? Will the meeting and seminars run on time? Will the speakers all show? There has been an occasion where there is a no-show.”

Greg Jenkins

PartnerBravo Productions

www.bravoevents-online.com

 

“My biggest concern: how to a leverage the event and how do I create an experience to get people excited to show up live.

 As far as an event, it’s never just the event. I have to consider if I live stream the live event, turn it into a podcast, transcribe it for blog post, turn into an article, pitch to media, create social media posts, and leverage every single second to justify the event cost. Some people just won’t attend a live event. I have many that will watch online so I have to make certain I’m on the platform and medium they desire and allow them to do so on their own time.

Experience. I definitely am more focused on creating unique events. How to I elevate the live event where people won’t want to miss it. Is it the mix of people in the room? Is it a special venue? Do attendees get something special? Is it going above and beyond to make people wowed?

Interesting example:

In 2011, I live streamed a four hour event via a rigged Go-To-Webinar trick. We had 100 in the audience, and we had 80 people show up from all over the country the entire time. After the event, I produced the video on our YouTube channel (with permission of all speakers). This one speaker, really used the video. She’s had almost 55k views on the video in five years. She still gets people that call her because of this event.

Aaron Norris,MBA, APR,CSPG

The Norris Group

www.thenorrisgroup.com

If there is a speaking topic out there, it’s a pretty good bet that someone, somewhere is making money speaking about it. Some speakers have a unique background in the topic or work in a particular industry, and some choose the topic based on a burning passion to learn more about it and share that knowledge with others.

Here are three speakers with niche speaking topics who have made a career out of a passion:

Tom Ingrassia – Motown

Tom is an example of a speaker who took a passion and turned it into a book and speaking career. He’d had a long, successful career in education, but in 2001 he decided to act on a lifelong dream of working in the entertainment industry.

Tom is an accomplished music journalist, with more than 25 articles printed in publications ranging from Billboard, Record Auction Monthly, and San Francisco Hot Ticket. He collaborated with Barbara Alston (of The Crystals) on her autobiography, “There’s No Other,” and Carl Gardner’s (of The Coasters) autobiography, “Yakey Yak, I Fought Back” before writing his own book “Reflections of a Love Supreme: Motown Through The Eyes of Fans”. Tom is also the host of  “The Motown Jukebox” on WCUW 91.3FM, in Worcester, MA.

His pop culture programs, “Motown and The Civil Rights Movement” and “Girl Power: The Supremes As Cultural Icons” have been presented at the National Conference on Race & Ethnicity, on college campuses, for performing arts centers, museums, senior centers, libraries, and business groups.

http://www.ingrassiaproductions.com/

 

John Granger – Harry Potter

John Granger is another speaker who turned a passion into a writing and speaking career. According to John, he became a Potter Pundit in response to the ‘Potter Panic’ of 1999-2007, during which it was widely believed that the popular series was “the gateway to the occult” and poorly written. His books and talks have overturned this narrative — and have earned him the title “the Dean of Harry Potter Scholars” from TIME magazine.

John is the author of several books on the subject of Harry Potter including “How Harry Cast His Spell: The Meaning Behind the Mania for J. K. Rowling’s Bestselling Books” and “Harry Potter Smart Talk”.

His speech “Why we Love the Harry Potter  Stories — Exploration of the Artistry and Meaning of Joanne Rowling’s Hogwarts Saga” has been given at universities, academic and fan conferences, and churches.

http://www.hogwartsprofessor.com/johngranger/

 

Julianne Soviero – Sports Scholarships

If you read through Julianne’s website you will see that she is absolutely obsessed with pitching. In fact she says so on the first page! And she has the credentials to back it up. She was an All-County Athlete, the recipient of a Division I athletic scholarship, and an academic All-American.  She has over twenty years experience pitching and over fifteen years of experience teaching pitching.

She speaks on the topic of sports scholarships, which is a surprisingly complex topic and is usually hired by travel teams. She’s even written a book on the subject called “Empowered Recruiting”. She says she got started on this topic because of working with female pitchers, many of whom earned scholarships in an increasingly complex market.

http://www.flawlessfastpitch.com

 

These speakers have turned their passion into a lucrative speaking career in a specialized niche. Do you speak on a niche topic?

 

 

When I entered the speaking industry I thought it was simply about speaking to corporations on topics like leadership and communication. But the speaking industry is much more expansive than I imagined and covers many different markets. The conscious and transformational speaking industry is one I had never heard of. Here is an overview of what it is and how you can earn a living as a speaker in this lucrative business.

A transformational speaker’s mission involves impacting personal and professional evolution—whether that’s mindset, spirituality, empowerment, wellness, personal growth, parenting or purpose-driven business success—moving toward a happier, more high performance life.

Other speakers may focus more on business, leadership, sales and wealth building—missions that are more focused on business development growth, corporate topics or personal finance. Transformational speakers and conscious speakers can be very similar, but a conscious speaker comes from a perspective of global oneness and is very aware of the transmission of energy by people and the universe.

To become a transformational speaker you need to have a body of work and experience that empowers people to higher levels of achievement, clarity, business and life success, internal and external peace, relationship success, self-esteem and self-acceptance, pursuing work that fulfills a passion, and positive engagement in the world. You’ll need a program or methodology that teaches people your path to success as you define it. Your speech must enlighten, provide value, motivate and offer people ways to engage with you as a guide for further development. Ideally, you will have a story arc that powerfully tells your own transformation, how you learned this work and how you have arrived at your method of success.

So, if you’re wondering whether you could make money as a speaker in this industry, here are some stats:

According to Brandongaille.com: “Up to $500 million is spent on personal development products every year. Including market segments from holistic approaches, motivational speakers, inspirational websites, personal coaching, and other forms of personal development, the net worth of this industry is estimated to be almost $11 billion. This market is also beating global economic trends as it is averaging over 5% growth each year.”

Just like the speaking industry in general, the “paid” speaking market for transformational and conscious speakers is diminishing, while the “speak to enroll” market continues to grow, meaning that a speaker doesn’t get paid to be on stage, but instead uses a non-paid speaking engagement to invite or enroll the attendees into their programs.

If the offer is right, and the target demographic in alignment, a speaker can make a lot more money “speaking to enroll” than at a fee-based speaking engagement. And if you don’t yet have your own programs you could also get sponsors for those free speaking engagements. There are plenty of sponsors who would want to get their brands in front of those types of audiences.

If you think you fit into this market, there are many places you could be speaking. A few of them include centers for spiritual living and Unity Churches, women’s organizations, fraternal organizations and service clubs, Chambers of Commerce, libraries, bookstores, wellness centers , yoga and retreat centers, mind-body spirit expos, health and wellness groups, vitamin stores and book festivals. If you don’t want to research and submit to all of these places individually, check out Jackie Lapin’s Speakertunity, Transformational Leads Tip Sheet.

In the past, many schools have had a chilly response to corporations inserting themselves into the school districts. But with budgets being cut, what’s a school to do if they want good, interesting programs for the kids, and no money to pay for them? Corporate school sponsorship!

I can understand why there would be some resistance to having corporate sponsorship in schools. After working in sponsorship for almost 20 years, one thing I know is that sponsorship is not charity. Any company that pays money to sponsor a school, athlete, speaker, artist, or anything else, wants a return on their investment. Wouldn’t you if you were putting up good money to get your brand in front of a target audience?

But good sponsorship is a win-win for both parties. The schools get money (or speakers) they need for specific programs, and the businesses get a targeted audience and new marketing avenues that build trust with the community. Businesses big and small are getting more involved in corporate social responsibility. It’s not just a buzz word. It makes good business sense.

And good sponsorship is non-intrusive. Think of it like NASCAR. NASCAR is one of the biggest sponsorship entities on the planet. Every inch of the cars, racetrack, uniforms and pit crew are covered in sponsors. But it doesn’t detract from your enjoyment of watching cars zoom around a racetrack at 200 miles an hour.

Big corporations have been sponsoring arts and education for a few decades now, but school sponsorship is brand new. You’re starting to see it more and more across the country since school budgets have been cut. And schools, who would never have considered corporate sponsorship before, are opening up to the idea of sponsoring everything from football stadiums and libraries to the high school prom. Many communities are taxed out, and sponsorship seems like a logical answer for schools who want better programs for the kids.

There has been a 248% increase in corporate school sponsorship since the early 1990’s, and that trend looks like it may be here to stay. Big corporations and small community businesses are all getting in on the action. Schools provide a captive audience of future customers with disposable income and future employees.

IBM and Microsoft are roping those future employees in early by sponsoring high schools of their own.

The City University of New York, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and IBM are sponsoring a school from grades 9 to 14, where kids will graduate with an associates degree and a guaranteed job at IBM. It focuses on computer science and molds students into the IBM culture. It’s basically a very long corporate training program.

Microsoft is doing the same thing in a sponsor partnership with the Philadelphia School District. They’ve created The School of the Future that combines a high school education with real world life skills.

Before, if schools wanted more money they would have to have fundraising events. But it would take an enormous amount of fundraising to come up with the million dollars three high schools in Texas have each raised just for the naming rights to their football stadiums.  The Brunswick High School football stadium in Ohio is bringing in $750,000 for the naming rights for 10 years. It’s been renamed the Brunswick Auto Mart Stadium.

And it’s not just football stadiums that are getting a boost from corporate sponsorship. Arts and education is also starting to recruit sponsorship for their programs. The San Diego County Office of Education has dipped their toe in the sponsorship water too. Kaiser Permanente is sponsoring a program to teach kids about food.

I know there is a problem with schools being able to get good speakers because I hear from speakers every week saying that they would love to present great programs to the kids, but they simply aren’t able to work for free. Sponsorship for school speakers is an innovative way for them to get great speakers for free, while the speakers get paid from the sponsors. As long as the school agrees that the sponsors’ brand isn’t harmful to the kids, like alcohol or cigarettes, it’s a win-win situation for everyone.

There is a great deal of debate on both sides of the issue from parents and educators. Here are some responses:

“As an educator, corporate sponsorships can be great if their missions align with that of the schools. It becomes a problem if a school is funding deprived and may have to kowtow to certain companies who may have a harmful effect if their brand might be affiliated with certain questionable behavior or endorsers.”
Remi Alli
Educator

“In Texas, we already have corporate sponsors for many of our events and facilities. Football stadiums are an obvious location where a sponsorship would be highly visible and potentially profitable. Recently, my family and I attended a playoff game at a large stadium and there were multiple corporate (some local and some national) sponsorships that were recognized by constant being played over the video screens as well as through other marketing avenues. Signage and other ads.

Some school districts may be reluctant(due to lack of understanding/familiarity) to work with and secure corporate sponsorships for fear of loosing local control of funding, access, or governance of facilities that have “naming rights” to their facilities. I, however, am fascinated by the idea of school districts and corporate entities working together to develop & foster that win-win.

Tony Hancock

School administrator/former teacher

www.tonyhancockspeaks.com

www.drtonyhancock.com

What do you think about corporations and small businesses sponsoring schools?

I just got back from a great week at the International Meeting Planners World Education Congress in Atlantic City where I spoke on the topic of innovation. The Speaker Sponsor concept was presented to over 2000 meeting planners as an alternative way to hire good speakers when they have a low budget or no budget.

The theme of the conference was reinvention and was held in Atlantic City, a town that has been going through a reinvention of its own. The planners of the event did a great job putting it together and sticking with the theme.

Keynote speaker Sekou Andrews reinvented the concept of a typical speaker by marrying corporate inspirational speaking with spoken word poetry. His Shakespearian/hip hop style wowed the crowd. It stood out to me because it was so unique and different from a typical speech. In a world full of speakers who all have the same style and topics, Sekou taught me that there is more than one way to present as a speaker. He literally created his own niche.

Speaker Sponsor presented the last day in the thought leaders theater. My topic was “Speaker Sponsorship: How to Get a Top Speaker on a Low Budget”. A problem I heard from many meeting planners during the week was about budget cuts and trying to find a good speaker when they really don’t have the money in the budget to pay a top speaker’s fees.

Sponsorship is a great way to get that speaker without having to break the bank. Sponsorship of a speaker means the sponsor pays the difference between the low fee and the speaker’s actual fee, or helps the speaker get paid when there isn’t a budget at all. Then meeting planners were given several ways to work with the speakers and their sponsors to make it a win-win for everyone.

But the most unique speaker sponsorship I’ve seen came from the event MC, Dena Blizzard, who did a fantastic job of keeping the show moving and interesting. During her lunch presentation, she literally had 2 sponsor’s signs taped to her butt. This was brilliant as it was broadcast on 4 giant screens across the ballroom.

One of the tricks to sponsorship is to get the audience to remember the brand that is sponsoring. Typical signage in the room is still a good way to promote a sponsor, but it’s not as memorable as Dena’s butt sponsorship. I still vividly remember both sponsors, and think positively about them because I am sure they both have a good sense of humor. Since there was nowhere on the stage to put a sign, she used her imagination and her “assets” to create memorable branding.

Speaker Sponsor is working hard to provide more of these opportunities for members in the future.

As a speaker, there are numerous ways to get paid to speak, and sponsorship is one that is clearly in your hands.

Thanks to our own sponsors, Tropicana and McCormick & Schmick’s for their sponsorship of Speaker Sponsor at the MPI World Education Congress!

 

 

As an inventor who has been through the entire process of inventing a product and getting it on the market, I think the best education for future inventors and entrepreneurs is watching Shark Tank. I love the fact that the sharks are all bootstrapping entrepreneurs, so they have already been through the learning curve.

I’ve put together 5 pieces of valuable business advice from Mark Cuban that could also help you as a speaker. Because these days, if you’re not an entrepreneur as a speaker, making a living at it will be tough.

  • Don’t be afraid of failure – Speaking is a performing art. It’s not something you can learn by reading a book. You simply have to get out there and do it. To become good at it you need to constantly be doing it. And in the beginning you probably won’t be very good at it. But by taping every performance and getting feedback you learn how to improve. If you’re afraid of failing you’ll never even take that first step.
  • Work harder than everyone else – This is one of Cuban’s biggest tips for entrepreneurs who want to become successful. As a speaker no one is going to do it for you. Not an agent, not a speaker bureau, not a manager, no one. Being on the other side and working with speakers and artists, this is the one thing I see all the time. Most speakers and artists want someone to get them the paid jobs so that they can focus on the creative side. If you happen to be lucky enough to have someone to do that for you, great! But that’s not the way it works for most speakers and artists. Which brings me to my next point.
  • Learn how to sell – Cuban first learned to sell as a 12 year old when he asked his dad for money to buy new shoes. His dad said if he wanted them he would have to work for them. So at 12 he got his first job selling garbage bags door to door. He learned how to connect with people and solve their problems, so it would be a win-win for everyone. If you know how to sell, you can do anything. As Cuban says “every no gets you closer to a yes”. That’s the way it is with speaking and also with sponsorship. It’s simply a numbers game, so get used to selling and learn to love it.
  • Love what you do – If you love what you do, selling should be easy. I’ve never been able to sell anything I didn’t like or believe in. I know what you’re thinking. “I love speaking, but I hate selling”. Well, if you really believe you have a message that needs to be heard and you have proven that it’s valuable to other people, then just think of it as communicating your passion to someone else. Which leads me to my last point.
  • Put yourself in the customer’s shoes – A meeting planner’s job can be stressful, and they are usually having to please everyone, sometimes on a limited budget. Put yourself in that person’s shoes and think about how you could help them. Find out what they need and offer to lend your support in the best way possible.

Today, being an entrepreneurial speaker is a necessity. But if you follow Mark Cuban’s advice, you’ll see that opportunities to make money as a speaker are everywhere.

 

 

Stephanie Chandler is the founder and CEO of the Nonfiction Authors Association and the Nonfiction Writers Conference (a 3 day virtual annual event). She is also the founder of BusinessInfoGuide.com, an educational blog for entrepreneurs. Stephanie is a frequent speaker at business events and has been featured in Entrepreneur, BusinessWeek, Inc., and Wired magazine.

If you’re a speaker or an up and coming speaker who is thinking about writing a nonfiction book to promote yourself as an expert in your field, I would highly recommend contacting Stephanie. A prolific writer herself, she is dedicated to mentoring nonfiction writers who want to benefit from her years of knowledge in the industry.

Do all speakers need to write a book?

Absolutely! I’ve never met a speaker who regretted publishing a book.

What are the advantages of having a nonfiction book as a speaker?

A book adds instant credibility and is a powerful tool for getting you in the door. Imagine sending a copy of your book out to prospects along with your marketing package? A book is powerful!

How do you establish yourself as an expert in your field?

A book is a quick way to claim your AUTHORity. There are many additional ways to establish yourself as an expert include blogging, hosting a podcast, producing videos, getting active with social media and writing for industry news sites and publications.

What is the biggest hurdle for beginning writers?

Some people struggle with the writing process or get overwhelmed by the idea of writing an entire book. But it doesn’t have to be as difficult as you think. Start with a solid outline. I use the storyboard method where I take a stack of index cards and write out every single topic I want to cover in my book, and then I start to organize those cards into a logical flow. That’s how I form chapters and the outline for the book.

Next, set a goal of writing 1,000 words per day—that’s just three typed pages. In 60 days you’ll have a 60,000-word manuscript!

Which comes first, the book or the speaking career?

For me the book came first, and then I started getting invited to speak (and consult!). But there are no hard rules. If you’re already speaking, then get to work on the book. If you’re working on a book, there’s no reason you can’t also begin speaking. Ideally, all of us should be doing both: writing and speaking. They just go hand-in-hand.

What is the biggest lesson you’ve learned from putting on the Non Fiction Writers Conference?

Oh boy, lots of lessons! It’s a lot more work than people think. I suppose my biggest lesson, which applies to business in general, is to have a great team to help. There is no way I could do all of this on my own. I have great support from the people I’ve hired. Every speaker and author should have an experienced assistant!

Thanks, Stephanie, for taking time out of your busy schedule to speak to Speaker Sponsor. 

Stephanie can be reached at:

Home

NFWC 2016