Essential Networking: Don’t Be Shy — Become a Speaker

By Bella Rareworld
Bella Rareworld
Bella Rareworld
August 7, 2013 Updated: August 7, 2013

Think about the last networking event or seminar you attended where you heard a talk from a speaker? Did you have any passing thoughts that you could be the next speaker? Take a moment to imagine delegates attending an event to hear you talk on a business topic of your choice. Becoming a speaker may not be so far out of reach as you think.
 
Networking events, conferences, and seminars are becoming more and more popular so the need to book speakers is on the increase. Event organisers need a competitive advantage to drive delegate bookings. They know that delegates are motivated to attend events with a speaker because nine times out of ten they find speakers inspiring. Delegates will also potentially gain valuable insights to feed into their businesses or personal lives.
 
You will be amazed by the number of benefits when you take up the role of speaker. Regardless of industry or expertise you will instantly raise your profile to another level because you will be viewed as an expert in your field. Delegates will be motivated to book their event ticket just to hear your talk and this is an honour. An event organiser will have a listing of speakers therefore, if you have been selected it demonstrates that you have the required business experience and knowledge. This is an achievement.
 
Every networking event, conference or seminar will have an associated event website detailing date, time, and ticket booking. Getting your business profile and bio included on this website as the event speaker will mean delegates will have access to your business profile before the event date.
 
A core benefit when you are a speaker is that advertising is attracted to your personal brand and your organisation. When the event website goes live, this marks the start of a raising of awareness of your business profile and organisation. Ensure that your website address is contained in your bio as this will increase website traffic. You too can help advertise the event by sharing the event website with friends and colleagues by email.

To make a bigger impact use other forms of on-line communications such as sending an e-marketing message to friends and colleagues. The more people you can reach to promote the news that you will be a speaker, the more exposure you generate. Also you can advertise the event via social media, that great free online marketing tool so remember to post the event website in a message on Linkedin, Twitter and Facebook.
 
Brand awareness is boosted when you are a speaker. You will have a strong positive influence promoting your brand values because you can create a personable environment in which to showcase it. Compared to above the line advertising, you will be able to attract and build trust with delegates when you deliver your presentation as you will then have the power to create a positive impression about your brand identity. We often forget that the fundamental purpose of networking is to build connections. You can maximise this as a speaker as it gives you more control over the level of engagement with delegates for the encouragement of quality networking and the building of fruitful relationships.
 
Before the event date prepare a short introduction about yourself, including details of your current job role and business expertise followed by a brief outline about what your presentation will cover.
 
Speak to the event organisers, ask for a delegate list, and get a feel of the business industries and demographics of attendees. You are then equipped to think about your audience and make the contents of your talk relevant. 
A week after the event date, having collected contact details, be sure to send an email to every delegate as follow-up, thanking them for their attendance. In your email be sure to mention that you welcome any questions about your presentation. Conclude your email by indicating that you are available for referrals and that you are looking for other future speaking engagement opportunities. Don’t be shy because if you don’t ask you won’t get.

Written by Bella Rareworld, Corporate Networking Strategist,
BellaNetworking Events.  We help international clients by sourcing lists
of UK networking events to attend whilst on business in the UK. We
specialise in helping clients network with their target market or
industry. Bella Rareworld has 60+ testimonials on Linkedin
at http://www.linkedin.com/in/rareworld – For more info visit
email info@bellanetworking.com or call +44 (0) 845 269 8036. You can also
follow us on Twitter & Facebook http://www.twitter.com/BellaNetworking –
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Bella Rareworld
Bella Rareworld