We're talking about Ask Me a Speaking Business question. If you've ever thought about being a speaker, or if you are a speaker, there's two things you have to master in the business of speaking, which is what I'm going to talk about today.
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Screw The Commute Podcast Show Notes Episode 512
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See Tom's Stuff – https://linktr.ee/antionandassociates[00:23] Tom's introduction to Ask Me a Speaking Business Question [05:40] The best topic to speak on to get speaking business [08:10] Some things you need in a speaker contract [11:04] Needing a demo video for zoom presentations [13:17] Selling books at the back of the room [15:55] Best way to make more money speaking
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Episode 512 – Ask Me A Speaking Business Question
[00:00:09] Welcome to Screw the Commute. The entrepreneurial podcast dedicated to getting you out of the car and into the money, with your host, lifelong entrepreneur and multimillionaire, Tom Antion.
[00:00:23] Hey everybody, it's Tom here with episode five hundred and twelve of Screw the Commute podcast. Today we're talking about Ask Me a speaking business question, and Friday will be asked me an on stage performance question. If you've ever thought about being a speaker, if you are a speaker, there's two things you have to master the business of speaking, which is what I'm going to talk about today. And then on Friday, I'll talk about ways to be great on stage, because that actually helps the business of speaking because the word spreads about how great you are right now. If you're new to the podcast and wonder if I'm just another poser telling you how to make money speaking and and those people never made any money speaking, well, let me just give you a little background. I've done around three thousand paid presentations in 12 countries when I quit corporate speaking. Twenty one years ago, my fee was twenty thousand dollars for a speech, and since then I've only been doing my own seminars called Bootcamp. And that's that's a crazy name that we've done them in 11 countries because I it's all about internet stuff because I learned how to make money sitting on my rear end in front of my computer. So my My Internet seminar, which is the longest continuously running internet seminar ever, is called bootcamp.
[00:01:47] And they're relatively small, those ones, because I hate the logistics of of the big public seminars. And then other public seminars promoted by others, I've never done less than $100000 at the back of the room. And as much as two hundred and fifty thousand dollars with crowds up around three hundred people. These aren't thousands of people. I I could probably do a million if I had a thousand people anyway, I could go on. But I've got a webinar called How to Maximize the Value of any Speaking Engagement, where I tell you techniques to make money, speaking that only a tiny percentage of speakers on Earth know, and I think I invented some of the techniques. So the link will be to that in the show notes. But if you're interested in making a lot of money speaking, you got to listen to that webinar. All right. Hope you didn't miss episode five 11? That was Pinterest for beginners, so I've had a Pinterest account for many years and a bunch of Pinterest boards, but I never kind of fooled with them. I had a social media person doing and now because of a webinar I hosted with experts Daniel Hall and John Cramer. Wow. The first day I got four thousand views on a pin that I made because I did it the way they told me on this webinar.
[00:03:05] And then the next thing that I put up within an hour I got, Oh, what was it? I can't remember now. I think it was nineteen hundred views or something like that, so I'll have that link for that free webinar in the show notes also. And any time you want to get to a back episode, you go to screwthecommute.com and then slash the episode number. That was 511 Pinterest for beginners. Now, how would you like me to send you big checks? Well, if you're in our referral or affiliate program, just oh geez. I mean, a simple referral can make you hundreds or thousands of dollars. Some little referrals make you a little bit of money, but anyway, it's it's money just for telling people about my stuff. So if you're interested? Email me at Tom@ScrewtheCommute.com and we'll send you the details, and I'll even talk to you about it and see how best for you to make money referring our stuff. Now, pick up a copy of our automation e-book at screwthecommute.com/automatefree. This book has saved me millions of keystrokes and saved me tons of work and allows me to get back to people faster, which means that I'm more likely to get the business from competitors. So check it out, do what it says, and you will thank me. I'm telling you. screwthecommute.com/automatefree.
[00:04:28] And also pick up a copy of our podcast app. It's screwthecommute.com/app, and you can put us on your cell phone and tablet and take us with you on the road. Now we're still in full swing on our pilot program to help persons with disabilities through my school. We're getting them educated, giving them scholarships, and then we're going to get them hired and or start their own business or both. And then I took a grant writing course, and I'm going to roll it out really big and bring in lots of money to help lots of people with disabilities. So this is a program you could be proud to support. We're doing a Go Fund Me campaign. And we're going to use some of the money to hire persons with disabilities to help run the program. So check that out at my school website. IMTCVA.org/disabilities. Click on the Go Fund Me campaign. Anything you can kick in as appreciated. And hey, if you're really flush with cash, you could sponsor a person yourself. How about that? So check it out and give us a hand, something you can really be proud of, and I'm so thrilled about it being able to help these people.
[00:05:41] All right, let's get to the main event question is, is Tom, what's the best topic to speak on to get speaking business? Well, I get that that question all the time and it just doesn't make sense to me is that you're trying to speak on a topic that happens to be hot, but the people that make the most money are the ones that are credible.
[00:06:05] Speaking on the topic, just because the topic is hot doesn't mean you're credible and have your own stories of working in that field for a long time or doing these things, or that the other. So I want you to to speak on something you're credible at. And then combine that with something that is saleable in the marketplace, for instance, I had this one guy a long time ago. He was a consultant for terrorism. And he made a lot of money. He was, I think, one of the major networks NBC, ABC, I can't remember. He made $30000 a year retainer and five hundred dollars. This is 20 years ago and five hundred dollars every time he made an appearance when there was some terrorism thing they wanted to talk about. He couldn't get a speaking engagement to save his life because nobody wanted a topic like that in front of their people. He could get consulting contracts and so forth to talk to the the the executives about how to keep their employees safe overseas. I mean, stuff like that. But nobody wanted that downer topic. So you have to have a topic that somebody wants to hear about and you must be credible about.
[00:07:23] He was certainly credible, but nobody wanted to hear the topic, so he was not successful in doing speaking on that topic. So that's what you got to soul search on. You say, Well, I'm not credible. Well, get credible on something or practice it and get busy doing something that is saleable in the marketplace and then your credibility will gain. Now, one thing you can do is is try to get a job at a training company where they just give you the topic. Now you don't make as much money than if you're credible, but they give you the topics they give you. Tell you what to say and you just go deliver and drive all over the country doing it for people like career, track that kind of stuff. So, so don't try to speak on something. You're not credible out and think you're going to make a lot of money. Ok, next question, what are some of the things I need in a speaker contract? Ok. I kind of call them agreements, so so it doesn't sound so ominous contracts, but they are contracts and the first thing I'm not qualified to give legal advice. I'll tell you that. But certainly I'll be glad to give you my opinion and in my very unique book, The Ultimate Guide to Professional Speaking, which is the number one thing in that industry. We have a sample agreement. And I'll tell you more about that later.
[00:08:44] But it said, screw the camuto ultimate guide. I think it's two hundred and some pages and it goes into everything you can think about for the business of speaking. Remember, this episode is about the business of speaking. Friday is going to be techniques to be great on stage. So, but some of the things you need in your agreement, you need the exact stuff that you need for the presentation and that could be like, Oh, just giving some of mine. I want to wireless handheld microphones one for me and one if one goes bad or if I have to get somebody on stage that I and usually I don't let them hold a microphone, but occasionally I do. Then I want a six foot skirted banquet table. I want an HDMI connection to my computer. I want to be able to. Control what's on the screen from my laptop, not from some sound booth back in the back. I want to control the audio, so all these things are in my agreement so that there's no question about it. And and. You know, you want to do that because if you if somebody just hires you to speak and you get there and none of this stuff is there, it's a nightmare. If it's a paid job, there's clauses about the deposits and when they're due and when the final payment is due and what happens if the event gets cancelled by them and what happens if the if you, the speaker, has to cancel either you're sick or you can't get there or what? Whatever might happen or if it's an act of God, if it's whether, you know, whatever what, you've got to spell it out in the agreement.
[00:10:26] So anyway, grab a copy of that book. Screw the ultimate guide. We even have a deal where we'll pay you to use the stuff in the book. And by the way, if you hear anything in the background, we've got a rescue dog here that's a little nervous, so they're kind of scratching and beating against their crate a little bit. So that's what the noise is. But anyway, yeah, we got a deal where if you actually use something from the book and tell us your results in a video testimonial, we give you double your money back so we pay you back for the book and give you a double that give you another cost of the book for doing the video. Ok, next question Do I need a demo video for Zoom presentations? Well, I would say yes, you do, but you couldn't get an easier way to have a demo. I mean, you just record a Zoom presentation with some great material. Now what you need to do is forget about electronic backgrounds that rarely make you look anything but stupid. Learn to look into the camera. This is a real big one.
[00:11:33] Instead of looking at the people on the screen, because if you're not looking into the webcam and you're and it's hard, you have to really force yourself to do this because you really want to put it. Look at the people on the screen, but you look beady eye to the to them because you're not looking directly into the camera. So that's I'm emphasizing that like crazy. If you don't do that, you're going to look bad. So do that and then have really good audio and have good lighting and be careful with your glasses. So if something's on the screen, it or your computer screen is going to hit your glasses and the glare is going to bounce right back into the webcam, and I don't care how much you spent for your glasses, I don't care what kind of anti-glare coating you got on it. You can't overcome a bright computer screen with your face right in it, bouncing back into the camera. Then you look like a cyborg. So the trick is that I learned in media training 100 years ago is you tip up the temples of your glasses a little bit and that makes your glasses tilt down so the light from the screen hits them, but bounces down instead of bounces directly into the webcam. That's what I do all the time. You can also dim your screen a little bit too, but put it Learn how to light people.
[00:13:01] I have other episodes on video lighting and stuff. I think in some of the recent ask me a video question. I don't even know what number it was, but it was very recent that I talk about how to light a person, how to light yourself properly. So, yeah, I would do a a sample, but make it look good by doing it all these things correctly. All right. Tom, I heard you talk about how you used to sell books at the back of the room. What was that method? Well, you know, back when I only had a book to sell, which is many years ago. I would do like everybody else. Oops, there's the dog, sorry, I would do like everybody else did and do the presentation and try to sell you the book at the end. So I said, you know, this is terrible, I don't like I don't feel like this is a good thing. So what I did is I I sent a whole bunch of books to the presentation and I put one on each person's place setting along with the little piece of paper I had printed up that says, You don't have to buy this book. We're just going to use it during the presentation. And so when everybody got there, there's a book sitting at their place setting, and with this piece of paper sticking out, you don't have to buy this, but we're going to use it during the presentation.
[00:14:20] So then during the course of maybe a 90 minute speech, I would have them pick up the book and I would read a passage of a checklist or something that they needed. And then, I don't know, 10, 15 minutes later, I'd pick up this other I'd say, pick this up and turn to this page, and I want to teach you how to use emotional language to really move people to action. And I'd read this really compelling, you know, section of the book. And then. I did the rest of my speech and then I said, Hey, if you'd like to keep your copy of the book, then just drop 20 bucks in the bucket on the way out the door. I so so I didn't have an order for anything, nothing. And I sold three times as many books without even promoting, without even doing a sales pitch. So I was able to give better value and more time teaching. And I sold three times as many books now. Did some of them probably walk out the door? Yeah, but I still sold three times as many books. And were people happy? Yeah. Did some people accidentally sign the books? Yeah, that's why I put the paper in there, because before I did this, I didn't put the paper in there and people would pick the book up and assume that it was given to them by the meeting.
[00:15:38] And then they put right in it and then ruin it and then feel like they were forced to buy it later. So that's when I got the idea to put the paper, and you don't have to buy this book. We're just going to use it during the presentation. In other words, it doesn't belong to you. We're going to use it. You have. You can use it, but sold three times as many books that way. Ok, let's see, Tom, what is the best way to make more money speaking like this one all the time? And my simple answer, and I'm not trying to be funny. Raise your fee, raise your fee, that's how you make more money speaking, all right. Then there's so many legitimate deals you can make if you raise your fee. I just talked about books, right? All right, so let me tell you about a deal that you can do so. I was $3500 a speech in the early 90s, and the moment my book came out, I raised my fee to forty thousand five hundred dollars and included a hundred books in the deal for the meeting planner to give to the attendees. Now, here's the thing the book was a twenty four point ninety five book, but it only costs me two dollars each to print, but it had the twenty four point ninety five cover price on it.
[00:17:02] And even at wholesale of about twelve dollars to the meeting planner, it looked like a twelve hundred dollars bonus they got if they hired me over somebody else and that twelve hundred dollars, what it looked like bonus to them only cost me two hundred dollars. Remember a hundred books at two dollars a book so. Remember, I raised my fee to four thousand five hundred dollars, so I was a thousand more dollars, but I only gave them two hundred dollars in Cost C one hundred books A to two dollars apiece, two hundred dollars, so I cleared an additional eight hundred dollars. Per speaking engagement, by doing that, I raised my fee and included stuff in there now. Once in a while, they didn't have the forty five, so I said, Well, I can take the books out of the deal and just make it thirty five. And they said, OK, all right. So it gives you a possibility to do that and you still get the thirty five that you were charging before. All right, but here's where did you hear this? This is the cool part. Frequently, the meeting planner would say something like, well, Tom, we have five hundred people attending. Would you be willing to sell us 400 more books? Let me let me think about that for a millisecond, right? So if I charge them wholesale for the books at, let's say, $12 each and they cost me $2 each.
[00:18:33] I cleared an extra 10 dollars per book. Times four hundred books. That was an additional $4000 profit for the deal, which took the engagement from forty five to nine thousand five hundred. Excuse me. Forty five plus four is eight thousand five hundred sorry. So there's tons of tips and tricks and techniques like this are in my wake them up video professional speaking system. We'll put the link to that in the show notes too. It's it's been around forever and people say, Oh, it's a little bit dated, isn't it? No, it's not. I use the same techniques now that I use 20 years ago and still make a fortune doing them. They so really watch the webinar and how to maximize the value of any speaking engagement and then consider on it at the end of that webinar gives you a three hundred dollar discount on the speaking system. So. So we'll have that all in the show notes. And then also, please, when you get a chance, check out the Go Fund Me campaign to help out those persons with disabilities really excited about it. It's something you can really be proud to to participate in, and it's IMTCVA.org/disabilities. All this stuff will be in the show notes and come back on Friday to hear about all the ways to be great on stage, and it ties in directly to making more money because if you suck on stage and also I got to tell you, there's been so many hundreds of people come to me and say, Well, I just want the business Tom.
[00:20:07] I'm already good on stage and I look at their video and I'm like, You're good on stage compared to what? Like a lame donkey? Why me? You suck when it comes to professional level, OK, I'm talking professional level. I'm not talking getting patted on the back at church because they, you know, they're not going to eat their young, like some of the sales groups I've spoke to. So, so I'm talking to make your professional level good. And what that does is that makes your fee skyrocket and the jobs come easier because people rave about you. They just don't say, Oh, that was nice. No, we want them to rave about you. So that's what you learn when you learn all these professional speaking techniques. So. So anyway, there's a little spattering of the businesses speaking like the book has. Like I said, two hundred plus pages, I don't know. Two fifty, I don't remember exactly. Sample stuff what to put in your demo videos contract all the clauses that you can put in and how to market all the different places. You can make money speaking so. So check that out in the book at ScrewtheCommute.com/ultimateguide. All right, we'll catch all in the next episode. See you later.