Do you love speaking in front of a crowd, inspiring people and have a likeable personality? Then you should consider starting a business as a motivational speaker. Everyone likes a passionate speaker who motivates them to accomplish what seems impossible and fuels them with hope. Motivational speaking is also a business which once you get right, you’ll reap a lot of rewards while leaving an impact on people’s lives.
Big names like Robin Sharma and Zig Ziglar have all built a strong brand in this industry and so can you. Here are the basics of starting out a motivational speaker business;
One advantage of being a motivational speaker is you do not need hundreds of thousands to start. The major capital you need to invest in is yourself. Start by identifying your area of expertise depending on your back ground, interest and expertise. Some places that are most receptive to motivational speakers are;
- Schools (primary, high school and university)
- Churches, etc
You also need to fully invest in yourself and your skills by;
- Developing public speaking skills: strong public speaking skills are a must have for any motivational speaker. You can invest in some lessons and tutorials on public speaking and even though you won’t be perfect overnight, practice makes perfect.
- Gain experience: become an expert in your field by going to school, gaining work experience and trying out new opportunities. Successful speakers have gone through success and failures then talk about what they’ve learnt during their speaking engagements.
- Maximize on your life story: life stories draw people in and make you more relatable.
Build your Networks
Networks and recommendations are what will take you far in this business. Build your networks by joining professional speaking organizations, reaching out to various trade groups, schools and corporates and joining reputable clubs and societies like Rotary.
Market yourself to your networks by creating and sharing business cards, brochures and having a website which should include testimonials and short clips from your presentations.
Build your Brand
Every professional needs to intentionally build a reputable personal brand. However, motivational speakers should take their brand seriously since that is what will sell you. Before you start building your personal brand, take time to think about who you are, what you have achieved and how you want others to see you.
To get your brand out there, have professional headshot images of yourself taken, build your online presence through branded social media pages and a personal website.
With time you can also venture into other fields. Most successful speakers are also authors, T.V show hosts, etc.
Set a speaking fee rate
Determining what your speaking fee should be can be so stressful especially because when starting out, you may have to do some speaking engagements for free. Here are some important questions to ask yourself before choosing a speaking fee rate;
- Will travel expenses be included? What will be the mode of transport?
- What audience am I speaking to? Speaking to experienced professionals for example will definitely cost more than a speaking engagement with high school students.
- Is accommodation covered? As a motivational speaker, you have to travel a lot. Set your accommodation standards from the beginning and don’t accept anything that is not decent.
- What’s the audience size?
Whatever you do, make sure you do not work for free for too long and don’t underprice yourself. However, the more times you speak, the better you get, the more you should charge.
If you are an author or have DVD’s of your talks, you can sell them during the events.
After you have everything ready, register your company and get the relevant licenses. You also need to get certified by the National Industrial Training Authority (NITA) to have an edge in the industry.
Would you venture into motivational speaking as a business?