Public Speaking For Coaches
When you first receive your coaching certification or license, you may be excited to sign your first (paid) client.
So, you turn to your connections on social media, and say “I’m open for business and accepting clients”.
Yet, what if that doesn’t result in a drove of new coaching clients?
Today, I’m going to share how public speaking landed me every single coaching client I’ve ever worked with, and the three benefits of public speaking for coaches.
Can I share a confession? Public speaking was my first love. Yes, even before coaching, I dreamed of rocking the big stages a la Mel or Tony Robbins.
The idea for coaching did not even cross my mind until I had audience members asking me how they could work with me. I started professionally speaking back in 2010. Since then, I have appeared on stages, podcasts, radio, TV, and major online publications. My first paid coaching client met me at an expo I was speaking at, and every single client who has signed on with me heard me present either in person or virtually.
Before we launch into the benefits of public speaking, here is some food for thought. The average median salary for a full-time coach is $61,000. The average median salary for a speaker is $100,000.
I’m not here to tell you that money is the only reason to show up and serve. Yet, if you left corporate to become a self-employed coach, and are looking to replace a specific income, don’t expect that coaching alone will replace that income.
The three main benefits of public speaking are found in the acronym A.I.R. A.I.R. stands for
Building an audience takes time. In the beginning of my business, I spent a lot of time attending business networking events, and engaging in online groups in order to get my message out. These events took approximately 10-15 hours of my time every week.
I personally knew other coaches who joined upwards of 10 networking meetings to promote their business, from BNI groups to women in business groups to masterminds and Meetups.
As an introvert, I did not care for the larger, more promotion-heavy groups. As a coach, I found myself listening to others pitch their business without being able to get a word in edgewise. One of the hardest things to determine as a new coach is HOW to reach your audience, or even determine where your audience is.
I was spending all this time in front of the wrong audience.
Now imagine, you attend a meeting full of your potential clients that is hosted by a colleague, and they are introducing you as the expert in your particular field. How do you think your audience will receive your message now?
As a public speaker, you are promoted as an expert by someone who already has an audience. Even if they are not your ideal audience, delivering a speech allows the audience to know who to refer you to.
In case you’re wondering how to be a speaker in a virtual world, here are potential speaking opportunities to start with:
- podcast interviews
- radio spots
- Facebook groups
- Women’s or special interest groups
- online summits
- local Chambers of Commerce
- Rotary clubs.
- Community education
The next benefit of public speaking is income.
If you’re nervous about asking to get paid to speak, don’t worry. You can speak for free (often it will be called “for opportunity” or “for platform building”) and still be paid after you speak.
Ways you can get paid after you speak include:
- Offering a table at the back of the room to sell books/course/products
- Sharing a gift (opt-in or free coaching call)
- Inviting the audience to a paid event you are hosting
- Promoting your coaching program
- Asking for speaking referrals
- Receiving professional video of the speaking event
Speaking is more than just a conversation in front of a room. If you craft your signature presentation in the right way, you will motivate your audience to take action without sounding like a used car salesman. If you would like support on crafting a signature presentation, download the free Signature Speech template (bit.ly/siganturespeak) or schedule a complimentary call with me at www.calendly.com/jennchat
Last, public speaking improves your reach.
The speaking opportunities that are available today go beyond traditional stages. Many speakers are now turning to courses, YouTube, Instagram and video-based presentations.
Even if you have no desire to speak on a TedX stage, you may be considering whether to create Facebook Lives, offer webinar events, or share how-to videos on YouTube.
This makes you a public speaker! This also increases your potential audience from 50 people to 500 or more.
Here are some statistics that share just how important video (and to some extent audio) content is to your potential reach. Video receives 3 times the engagement rate as written content on most social media platforms. Facebook and Instagram both prioritized video content through Reels and Stories over written posts. YouTube is the second largest search engine behind Google (https://sproutsocial.com/insights/social-media-video-statistics/)
That doesn’t mean you have to become an influencer or go viral to make an impact.
There are some specific considerations to be aware of when it comes to video, though. Your speaking on video is not a “live” presentation- instead, folks often watch after you have recorded and posted the video. Even if you deliver a webinar, only 40-50% of folks who register actually attend live (https://outgrow.co/blog/statistics-on-webinars#:~:text=The%20average%20webinar%20attendance%20rate,the%20people%20who%20have%20registered)
That means you can’t rely on live interaction for business success.
Instead, you have to identify ways the viewers can engage with you after you are done recording.
For ideas on this, download the Signature Speech template.
In the beginning of this article, I shared how public speaking was my first passion. Perhaps you feel a bit intimidated or nervous at the thought of putting yourself out there on camera or through speaking? The truth is: coaches are innately primed to become fabulous public speakers.
One of your coaching superpowers is active listening. The best public speakers are those who listen to their audience before delivering their signature speech.
I love being a coach, and I can honestly say that I would never have signed any coaching clients if they hadn’t first connected with my personal story through public speaking. If you struggle with signing coaching clients or growing your client base, get a breath of fresh A.I.R. through public speaking.
Professional Speaker and Holistic Public Speaking Coach
Jenn Espinosa-Goswami is a professional speaker and holistic public speaking coach at Weightless LLC. A former Toastmasters International officer and graduate of the Masters of Leadership program at Augsburg University, Jenn helps coaches grow their profit and platform through public speaking and short video content. Her transformational health story has been featured on Authority Magazine, Thrive Global, Women's Health, Reader's Digest, Prevention, Spry Living and numerous podcasts. Jenn loves exploring 1 of 10,000 lakes in her home state of Minnesota with her husband and two daughters.