Whether you are an author, a business owner. consultant, or other expert, take advantage of speaking opportunities to show who you are to an audience of potential readers and clients.
Here are five places to pursue speaking engagements, no matter what your current status as a writer.
1. At home. If you are nervous about speaking in public, start at home. Assemble a group of friends and do a practice workshop. Make it social (serve snack or have a meal first) and put yourself in a safe environment.
2. Local Groups. Check your local library, Chamber of Commerce, and other professional organizations to see their guidelines for guest speakers. Attend a few events ahead of time, and read their previous calendar of events. That way you have an idea of the kinds of experts they schedule to speak. Plus, you know what recent topics not to pitch.
3. Bookstores. If you are a published author, reach out to your local bookstore to see if they will have you in for a reading.
4. Podcasts. Do a search of podcasts that cover your topic. Listen to a few episodes, and find a few shows you want to be interviewed on. Research them vis their website, and pitch yourself as a guest,
5. Videos. Make a video of yourself speaking and put it online. Videos get much more reach on social media. Plus, it's a way to show your personality to friends, fans, and clients around the world.
Before you pitch yourself as a speaker, take some time to figure out what you want to talk about and to whom. That will help you narrow down the possibilities, and also to hone in on the focus of your speech or workshop,
In all of these cases, be sure to promote your appearance ahead of time. (Or in the case of podcasts and videos, share your posts when they go online.) The larger the audience, downloads, and views, the more likely you will be invited back.
What do you think? What tips do you have for speaking and finding speaking engagements? Please share your thoughts in the comments.
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She is the host of the Guided Goals Podcast and author of Purple Pencil Adventures: Writing Prompts for Kids of All Ages.
Debra is an editor at Social Media Examiner and a speaker/moderator on the subjects of writing, networking, goal-setting, and social media.