3 Top Myths about Public Speaking by Christie Ruffino
I have worked with so many entrepreneurs over the years who believe that there is no reason for them to work on their public speaking skills. They have no intention of getting up on stage in front of a large audience, so they feel that it is okay for them to give a PowerPoint to their peers or a proposal to a new client without learning any presentation skills. ON THE FLIPSIDE, many entrepreneurs do make it a priority to master the art of public speaking because they want to build a speaking business, but they struggle to earn enough money to transition out of their current “JOB” into full-time speaking.
Even though the professionals in both of those scenarios have a different focus, they both are similar in that they need to be properly prepared to achieve their desired success. Over the past few years, I have studied under some of the leading experts in the industry and learned how to create multiple income streams from my mastery and my message. During that journey, I also learned a few things that aren’t true which I will share with you in this article.
MYTH #1 ~ “If I become a GREAT at public speaking, I will make lots of money.”
It takes more than mastering the art of public speaking to build a profitable speaking business. Most speakers have little experience running any type of business and think they can hang their speaking shingle and the path to instant success will follow. Unfortunately, being good does not translate into getting paid, unless that is of course you know what to do.
The key to making money as a speaker is to always remember that you are building a speaking business. If you are looking to become a keynote speaker, you earn your check up front so you need to follow brand building and marketing strategies designed for keynote speakers. If you are following the speak-to-sell model and want to have opportunities for multiple transactions and an ongoing relationship with your customers, you need to follow the strategies designed for that business model.
Either way, you will need to do more than build speaking skills to build a successful speaking business. You will need to build and manage the business side as well.
MYTH #2 ~ “I am not a GREAT at public speaking, so I will never be able to make lots of money speaking.”
Actually, most people who want to get paid to speak are really just looking to get paid to share their expertise to a bigger group of people. They have valuable knowledge in their head that, if shared, will provide a positive transformation for their audience.
According to most studies, 3 out of every 4 people claim that their number one fear is public speaking. If that fear can be overcome, these same brave people generally get stopped next by complete overwhelm from comparing themselves to the “GREAT” speakers out there. They don’t realize that those speakers were not born with a microphone in hand; they had to learn to be good. They had to create their speech in a way that will bring the crowd on a specific journey with them. Then they had to deliver it in a way that would create engagement and a personal connection with the audience. They had to eliminate those dreaded “ahs” and “ums” and master the art of humor, body language and vocal variety.
The bottom line is that if someone is able to learn enough to become an expert in their industry, they are smart enough to learn how to package their expertise in an easily consumable way, brand it as their distinct intellectual property and learn how to become a great speaker, so that they can sell their expertise for profit. These are things I teach with my MOJO Marketing System.
MYTH #3 ~ “I don’t need to be a GREAT at public speaking if I don’t plan to be a public speaker.”
All I can say to that is “Hogwash!” I have been a part of Toastmasters for quite a few years now and I am still amazed when I invite someone to join me and they decline because they don’t feel they need to improve their speaking skills for their job. Yes, they may never be on a stage speaking to a crowd of thousands, but they may need to give a PowerPoint presentation to a group of peers, deliver a business proposal to a very important client, or inspire a team of people to a desired outcome.
Either scenario, there are a lot of professionals out there who have invested in their personal and professional development and have learned what it takes to be a GREAT speaker. They may not continually practice and develop their skills, but they certainly recognize someone who has no knowledge in this area just like I do. I recognize the great speakers I cross paths with. I sometimes take notes on things they do well. But more importantly, (something I really want you to consider) when I see someone who is a terrible communicator and relies heavily on crutch words or filler words, I see that as a sign of their lack of development. It may not completely persuade me from working with them, but it will surely put them in a different light in my mind.
If you would like to learn more about how you can create multiple income streams from your mastery and your message, register now for my free upcoming MOJO Marketing System webinar.