Marketing yourself as a speaker or author requires committing to an intentional and systematic marketing plan strategy. Here are twenty-one different steps you can take to become more visible within your industry to get more speaking gigs and market your book.
1 - Get a professional headshot
Invest in a well-respected professional photographer who knows how to bring out the real you, while making you look great. Use these headshots on your website, in media kits, and everywhere else you need to include your photo.
You may also want to consider having multiple headshots taken, in different styles or outfits, so you have options to choose from, depending on the situation.
2 - Create a professional website
Potential clients need to be able to find you easily online. Create a website that provides information about your work, speaking engagements, and published writing.
This can help you establish yourself as an expert in your field, showcase your experience and expertise, and connect with potential clients or fans.
Your website should have a clear and inviting homepage, about page that tells your story, testimonials, video snippets of you speaking, and a contact form for visitors to connect with you.
Optimize your website or blog for search engines (using relevant keywords and regularly updated content), so people are more likely to find your site when searching for related topics. Create a valuable give-away (also called a lead magnet) so you can add interested people to your email list.
3 - Start a blog on your website and update it regularly with fresh content
Most of your website will stay relatively static, but your speaking engagements page (include one only if you have enough speaking engagements to look busy) and your blog need to be updated regularly. Weekly would be best, but at least once every two to four weeks.
Write about topics of interest to your audience, answering questions they ask frequently and sharing your thought leadership on important issues. You become an expert by demonstrating your expertise, so use your website and blog to showcase your knowledge.
You can include articles, videos, links to podcasts, and any other content that would be helpful for your content marketing strategy. Include a call-to-action at the end of every blog post.
4 - Build relationships with other influencers in your field
Begin reaching out by commenting on their social media and blog posts. Without stealing their light, contribute your thoughts in a respectful way. They'll begin to notice you, so that when you do finally reach out, they will recognize your name and have respect for you as well.
These sorts of connections help you gain exposure to new audiences.
5 - Create and maintain an active social media presence
In today's digital age, it's essential to have an active social media presence if you want to market yourself effectively as a speaker or author. Platforms like Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook can help you reach a wider audience and build your brand.
Make sure you post regularly on your networks and engage with others in a thoughtful, authentic way.
6 - Engage with online groups and communities
Online conversations are one of the best ways to make connections within your industry and establish yourself as an expert. Join active online groups or communities related to your field, such as marketing industry subreddits, LinkedIn groups, and other groups related to your area of expertise.
7 - Publish articles in industry-related publications
Identify the top publications - both in print and online - that are the go-to resources for your industry. Reach out to editors and pitch article ideas on topics of interest to their readers.
With a library of well-written, authoritative articles, you'll be able to establish yourself as an authority while increasing your exposure and gaining new leads or clients.
8 - Give presentations at local or regional events
If you're looking to increase your visibility within a specific area or region, consider giving presentations at local or regional events as part of your marketing efforts. Bestselling authors and motivational speakers are often in high demand.
Some effective ways to find local or regional events include:
- Search online for relevant conferences, trade shows, and networking events in your area.
- Check with your local Chamber of Commerce, business associations, or economic development organizations for upcoming events.
- Ask your network of contacts if they know of any upcoming events for which you might be a good fit.
- Use social media to search for relevant hashtags and keywords related to events in your industry.
9 - Sponsor or exhibit with related organizations or businesses
You may be able to find opportunities by searching online for conferences, trade shows, and other events that are sponsored by industry associations, chambers of commerce, economic development groups, etc.
10 - Join and participate in a professional association or organization
Getting involved with a professional association or organization is an excellent way to network, develop new business relationships, and increase your visibility within your industry.
Actively seek to get to know other members and develop relationships with them. Consider joining the board of directors or other leadership team. Offer to mentor one or two more junior members.
11 - Collaborate with other speakers or authors on joint projects
Increase your visibility and build your reputation as a speaker or author by collaborating with other influencers on joint projects.
For example, you could co-author an eBook or blog series, give a joint presentation at an industry event, or launch a podcast together.
This is an excellent way to get your name and work in front of a new audience while also developing a closer relationship with another influencer in your field.
12 - Host webinars, podcasts, or online seminars
In addition to giving in-person talks and presentations, consider hosting webinars, podcasts, or online seminars. This can help you reach a wider audience, as well as establish yourself as an expert in your field.
13 - Attend networking events or other industry-related events
At networking events you will meet new people, make valuable connections, and learn about new opportunities. Make sure you attend industry-related events, as well.
14 - Give interviews to podcasts or other media outlets that focus on your industry
More and more people listen to podcasts throughout the day, while walking from one place to another and while commuting. Being a guest on other people's shows - as well as starting your own show - can help increase your visibility and establish you as an expert in your field.
Some tips for making the most of these opportunities include being prepared with compelling talking points, promoting the interview on social media, and positioning yourself as an authority on the topic.
As a guest, you may also want to collaborate with the hosts of shows where you are a guest, and with other media outlets that are a good fit for your message and audience. Work together to promote the shows where you are a guest. Engaging with the media is always a powerful way to build your brand and grow your audience.
15 - Create social media accounts dedicated to promoting your work and sharing your ideas
You should have your own social media accounts, but you should also begin to create social media accounts specifically for your work, so you can share specific ideas more easily.
Just as with your personal social media accounts, you'll want to post high-quality content regularly, engage with other users, and use hashtags and other strategies to promote your content.
It is also helpful to link back to your website or blog from your social media accounts, and to cross-promote your content across multiple platforms. By following these tips, you can maximize your reach and impact online.
16 - Develop an elevator pitch that accurately and concisely summarizes who you are and what you do
This is actually one of the very first things you should do. A relevant, clear elevator pitch is focused on your listener and how what you offer can help them (it's not about you). The elevator pitch is often used as a way to introduce yourself effectively to potential clients and fans, and make a strong first impression.
Some tips for crafting a great elevator pitch include: being clear and concise, focusing on your unique strengths and/or experiences, and practicing in front of others to fine-tune your message.
Additionally, it can be helpful to tailor your pitch for different audiences or situations, and to have a few variations ready if needed. With these tips, you can craft an engaging elevator pitch so you can effectively promote yourself as a speaker or author.
17 - Collaborate with other professional and organizations in your industry to share ideas and build connections
To market yourself effectively as a speaker or author, it is also important to collaborate with other professionals and organizations in your industry. This can help you build partnerships, share ideas and resources, and expand your reach online.
Some tips for doing this include attending conferences or events that are relevant to your work, connecting with other authors or speakers online, and leveraging existing networks to identify potential collaborators.
Additionally, it can be helpful to maintain an active presence on social media or other online platforms to share relevant news and information with others in your field. With these tips, you can effectively collaborate with other professionals and organizations in your industry, helping you stand out as a speaker or author.
18 - Attend networking events or join online groups where you can connect with other people in your field
Networking is a marketing strategy you should be thinking about every time you step outside or pick up your phone. Networking in person is best, so try to attend networking events or other in-person events related to your profession. If you can't attend these types of events, there are also many online networking groups where you can connect with others interested in similar work.
Some tips for effective networking include: being authentic and genuine when making connections, focusing on adding value to the other person, and following up after meeting someone new.
It is also helpful to have a clear understanding of your goals for networking, so you can more effectively target the right people and opportunities.
19 - Get involved with charities or other causes
You can make a difference by getting involved with charities or other causes - whether through volunteering your time, making donations, or both.
Not only will you be giving back to the community, but you'll also have the opportunity to meet new people and develop new business relationships.
20 - Give back to your community
One of the best ways to increase your visibility is to give back to your community - whether through volunteering your time, making donations, or both.
Not only will you be making a difference, you'll also have the opportunity to meet new people and develop new business relationships.
Some tips for giving back to your community include: choosing a cause that is important to you, finding ways to use your unique skills or talents to help, and being generous with your time and resources.
When you give back, you'll not only be helping others, but you'll also be helping yourself by increasing your visibility and reputation as a valuable member of your community.
21 - Host your own events, workshops, or webinars to share your knowledge and build your brand
Hosting your own events, workshops, or webinars is another great way to market yourself effectively as a speaker or author.
Some tips for doing this include: identifying topics that are relevant to your work or audience, promoting the event online using social media and other channels, and offering useful content during the event that attendees can take away with them.
It is important to follow up with attendees after the event to build relationships, expand your network, and stay top-of-mind. With these tips, you can effectively host your own events, workshops, or webinars to market yourself as a speaker or author.
If you’re looking to market yourself as a speaker, author or thought leader, start by trying some of the tactics outlined here. Not all of them will work for you but experimenting with a few should give you a good starting point.