Writing and Public Speaking
If you enjoy public speaking and have a strong desire to improve the lives of others, you may be right for a career as a motivational speaker and coach. Motivational speakers use their personal professional experiences to develop lectures, seminars, and workshops aimed at providing tools and motivation to move people forward in areas of their lives where they may feel stuck. The motivational speaking field is a very competitive field, but with passion, determination and persistence, you can create a successful career.
Determine a speaking and coaching niche.
To be successful as a motivational speaker and coach, you will need to convey passion and expertise about your subject to your audience. You may want to start your speaking and coaching business around a subject that has personal meaning to you (such as creating a successful career while parenting a special needs child), or you can choose to become an expert in an area you care passionately about. For example, you may care deeply about the environment and choose to become an expert on educating the public and coaching businesses on incorporating green practices into their business operations.
Develop a list of speaking and potential workshop topics based on your niche subject.
While some companies may approach you with a topic, most companies and organizations will want to choose from your list of available options. Creating this list will also help you refine your speaking and coaching niche and help you determine your target market for your services.
Determine your marketing message.
As a motivational speaker and coach, you will be in business and the product you are promoting will be yourself. As with any business, you will need to determine what is unique about your product and why people should buy your product. In other words, you need to be able to articulate why someone should want to hire you as a speaker, attend one of your workshops, or trust you to coach them. Focus on developing a list of benefits for your potential audience members and clients.
Develop your personal brand.
Your personal brand is the image that you want to present to potential clients. This brand should work hand and hand with your speaking and coaching niche and should be reflected in all of your promotional materials. If your niche, for example, is how to succeed in the business world, your personal brand might be sharp and sophisticated. All of your marketing materials (including business card, brochures, websites, etc.) should convey the image of sharp and sophisticated. You may want to work with a marketing consultant and/or graphic designer to develop the correct look for your brand.
Develop a marketing strategy.
Start by describing your target audience. How old are they? Is your message best suited for men or women, adults or children? Where would you find the perfect audience---in a school, in the business world, at church? Use the answers to these questions to help you develop a list of potential organizations and businesses to which you will promote your services.
Attend networking events that revolve around your niche subject or which contain people who fit your target market. Donate articles to trade journals, websites, and magazines to build your reputation as an expert in your subject matter. Donate your speaking and coaching services to charities or nonprofit groups in your local area. Create a website with a blog and update the blog several times a week with useful information; submit your website and blog to search directories like Google and Yahoo. Make a commitment to do at least three marketing activities each day.
Signing on with a speaker's bureau can be a way to acquire speaking engagements which can help you build your reputation as an expert in your niche. Make sure you discuss specifically how/if the bureau will promote you and what fees will be involved before signing a contract.