Get more bookings by removing friction in your speaking business

If you want to get booked and paid to speak these days, you need to be ridiculously easy to do business with.  I’m all for setting boundaries but I am stunned to see how many speakers are making it very hard for clients to check their availability by email or phone.   

Clients have less patience than they used to and higher expectations. They expect to be able to reach you quickly and to get the information they need straight away. If they can’t, they’ll quickly move onto the next speaker, and you may never know that you lost out.

Remove as much friction as possible for prospects and clients. The more you make it easy to do business with you, the more clients will want to work with you.

If a client needs an additional briefing call, agree; if they want slides in advance, let them have them; if they want you to attend a tech-check - do.   Business is getting harder and harder to do; don't be a part of that.

Here are 5 ways you can remove friction from your speaking business.

  1. Be available by phone and email. Clients should be able to get in touch quickly and easily. If they can't, they'll take their business elsewhere. When I ran my speaker bureau, I had a human answering service (if you’d like an intro let me know), they were fabulous. They covered me when I was in meetings or travelling and would put a call through to me if it was an urgent request or enquiry.  When I was out, I had an automated email telling people to call my service who would help.  They became my extended team.
  2. Most people have a contact form on their website. Why not add an email address and a phone number for prospects? To avoid the dreaded bots spamming you write your email address in this format ‘maria at mariafranzoni dot com’.  The phone number we have on our site goes to a voicemail that then emails all the team with the message so that whoever is free can pick it up.  Again, if you want more details let me know.
  3. Make sure your website is easy for visitors to use - don't have too many clicks required just to get information about your services and what you do. Plus ensure that everything prospects and clients may need is on the site, cut down on the to and fro. 
  4. Offer pre-booking calls to clients and bureaus to help close the deal. When I ran my bureau only a handful of speakers were willing to do so, guess which speakers were the most booked – those that did.  However busy you may be that pre-booking call can make a big difference.
  5. Make your fees simple. When I ran my bureau I often got sent highly complicated rate cards, rates for 30 mins, 45 mins, an hour etc speech, then a different rate if there was an overnight required, and different rates for different numbers of people in the audience.  Please don’t do that, have a rate for virtual, one for local in person and then rates for travel.  Keep it simple.

Regularly check with prospects and clients how you can make it easier for them to do business with you.  And on that note, if you have any feedback for me on how I can be easier to do business with I would be delighted to hear it.

See you next week.

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