Getting New Clients From Speaking is Not Easy, Here’s the Secret to Making it Work
Tales from the trenches of a business owner trying to get clients through speaking.
I was given an opportunity to speak to a group of women entrepreneurs. My first — ever — presentation. I spent most of my life avoiding public speaking. Avoiding it like the plague. It was my greatest fear.
The average person ranks the fear of public speaking above death.
Yet, I knew I needed to push myself out of my comfort zone if I was going to make it as a business owner.
I knew the statistics were not optimistic, 50% of women entrepreneurs don’t make it past the first five years — and this was year one.
From what I experienced growing up with both of my parents owning their own business, the entrepreneurial journey was hard. I had to work fast.
I had to work fast because I had a lot of issues and personal challenges getting in my way and sabotaging my ability to be successful. I had to get over my issues about networking, sales, and public speaking. I knew that if I didn’t figure all this stuff out, I’d be in big trouble. I was living on my own, recently divorced. My father had just died from a long battle with cancer. I was grieving. I was reinventing my life… again… with nobody to fall back on.
I had to make this work.
If I wanted to step into my greater purpose and share my story with the world (which I really wanted to do!), the time was now.
I ignorantly thought that all I had to do was show up, do my thing, and I would start getting clients.
At the time, I didn’t really understand the concept of inviting people to work with me.
I spent hours putting together that first ever presentation. It took me hours to write all of the content for my speech, which was some of my best stuff. Innovative concepts that weren’t yet being talked about in the mainstream: a new paradigm of marketing from the inside out.
I was so excited to share my story with the world and to begin making an impact on the women around, me while increasing my revenue.
In the days leading up to my presentation, I began to gather more and more courage and confidence about ‘coming out’ for the first time — the first time speaking publicly, out of choice. From a woman who had struggled with a speech impediment for decades, this was a momentous occasion for me.
The room was packed.
I delivered an inspiring, powerful presentation to a sold out room of women eager to hear my message. It felt good to finally step into this more authentic version of myself that was just waiting to be birthed.
I received some of the most heartfelt feedback and testimonials after my presentation was finished. Some of the attendees told me that they appreciated my courage in sharing my story. They learned new marketing perspectives and resonated with the message.
Yet, out of the sold out room, do you know how many clients I got?
None. Zilch. Nada.
I was heartbroken.
I didn’t get it.
Was my message not compelling enough? Did they not resonate with it? Am I not smart enough? They said it was helpful; the feedback was positive.
I got lots of hugs, but no credit cards.
So, what happened?
What happened was that I didn’t invite them to learn more about what I offer. I didn’t give them a reason to find out more about how I could help them. I didn’t ask them if they wanted my help.
I took them to the edge — and then I left them hanging.
The mistakes that I made early on in my own journey as an entrepreneur, are not uncommon. I see this all the time with the women that I coach.
I learned that it’s not enough to be brilliant at what you do. You also have to learn the tools, skills and best practices of how to convert your marketing activities into inquiries, consultations, and new clients. And getting help from somebody who has walked the path before you is a really smart and savvy thing to do.
Here are three critical ways to make sure that your visibility converts.
- Build a Bridge. Each marketing activity should have a call to action that invites your prospect into a next step with you, building a bridge into your sales process.
- Make It Compelling. The invitation needs to be compelling enough to take action from the standpoint of the person you are inviting. They need to be motivated to take the next step. They need to WANT it.
- Deliver Solutions. The offer needs to be of value to the person you are offering it to, based on what THEY deem to be important, not on what you think they need. This is typically a problem they admit to having and want to solve, or a desired result they wish to fulfill.
If I had known there were steps and proven strategies for converting my marketing into sales, I could have grown my business much faster, with much less pain and suffering along the way. I could have made more money, so that I could pay myself sooner. I could have avoided some very costly mistakes and the self-doubt and frustration that I felt each time I did something that didn’t quite work the way I had hoped. I could have served more people, inspired more lives, ignited more people into their own transformation.
What if you could achieve more with a lot less struggle?
I think you already know the answer to that question.
You’d get your big ideas off the ground. You’d feel inspired and energized. You’d expand your life and business exponentially. You’d experience a continuous flow of ideal opportunities and revenue growth.
And if you could get to those results more quickly? I know how transformational that could be, both personally and professionally.
It’s time to get out of your comfort zone.
Stop letting your fears make your decisions.
The only difference between where you are RIGHT NOW and where you want to be is one decision and a few new actions.