Speaking – Better advertising can’t be bought
I’m back after a very long June. Between vacation, the loss of my father-in-law and hurting my back (all in 10 days) and the subsequent recovery period I’m ready to go back to work.
Today I’d like to talk about my third tenet of branding – becoming top of mind. Up to now we’ve covered how you treat others and expertise. I consider public speaking the next step on the journey.
In my first post I gave you the benefits of public speaking; credibility, presence, and leadership (see earlier post).
Speaking is a form of advertising.
It’s advertising because you want to become top of mind when your prospects think of your product or service.
How important is that?
Last year advertisers spent a whopping 102 billion on advertising (emarketer.com, Jan 19, 2012) trying to get you to buy products and services and to keep their products and services in the your forefront.
While most of this is national advertising the key thing to remember is that it works. You, however, can achieve the same aim without spending a penny, and with only so much as the time it takes to develop your presentation and spend the time giving it.
You don’t need to be national. You need to become the big fish in a smaller pond. You get that when you speak.
Need an example?
You’re in life insurance. You decide to develop a small 15-30 minute presentation on the value of life insurance and the different types of policies people should be considering. Not every policy, but whole life, term, variable etc and their relative advantages and disadvantages.
You offer these free presentations to the Rotary, Kiwanis, and Lions clubs in the area. Questions: How many times do you think you’ll have to give these presentations before you become known as the life insurance expert? And do you think you’ll get to talk to the folks after the presentation to answer questions about their specific situation? Maybe get an appointment or two?
How about you real estate agents, bankers, stockbrokers, appraisers, engineers, etc? What news, advice or information can you offer to people that will benefit them and raise their awareness?
And let’s not forget about you guys and gals in the trades! If you’re an electrician, carpenter, plumber or contractors can you not find venues to speak or places to teach basic skills? Lowes, Home Depot, Ace Hardware? Not to mention the venues mentioned above.
Be creative and offer your audiences value and they’ll reward you by remembering who you are the next time they need your solution.
Everyone agrees that word of mouth advertising is the best and cheapest form of advertising. I consider public speaking to be the second best (and cheapest) form of advertising there is and the best and cheapest (the accountant in me just won’t let this go) form of direct marketing there is.
So stop putting it off – get out there and offer to speak. Create some buzz for yourself so the next time your customer needs you or your product they’ll remember who YOU are.
See you in the spotlight!