When you are in a missionary mode and trying to land speaking gigs, it’s easy to lose track of all the little shards of paper with contact info. From the git-go, use an organized method. ACT is one that many use. It’s a robust Customer Relations Management (CRM) package. I did not learn about it until I was well into the speaking world. I had kept all my contacts in a WORD document. Funky, but it works for me. The task of transferring all the contact data overwhelmed me, so I didn’t. Kinda dumb, but the rainy day never came to do this.
When I bought ACT ($269 for basic package) I saw that it was a great organization tools. it would allow you to pinpoint every contact you make with a prospect. You can get reminders to follow up with courtesy emails. This is invaluable to keep you on their radar. Current customers are also able to be followed.
Whatever you chose, do it early in your quest for speaking assignments. I have to use the WORD “find” tool to get to mine.
Comedian Jerry Seinfeld once said the Speaking is man’s worst fear – #2 is dying. ..so if you are giving a funeral eulogy, you are safer to be in the casket.
Humorous, but not too far off the mark. In my family growing up, with 5 kids, if you didn’t jump into a conversation and LOUDLY, you got passed over. Now all of my siblings can command an audience in public. Our sense of humor is another asset. Keep your talks light and fun for the audience.
If you are a newbie to the circuit – take classes in public speaking. ANYTHING can be learned. Besides formal classes, I endorse Toastmasters as a great way to get over your fears. another service that I can personally recommend is the Dale Carnegie Program. Both are super.
The other way to build skill is to rehearse your talk. Time it. Video yourself and have a honest third party give you comments. Relatives and close friends may be too “nice” to you and not give you what you need. Audio record you talk and listen to it in the car while driving. The idea here is to know your material and not have to stop and think what comes next.
The last MeetUp for Cruise Ship Lovers featured Madlen Saddik. She is a travel consultant who provided a lot of information on Cruises sailing out of San Francisco.
She explained that Princess is basing a ship at Pier 35 on the Embarcadero. Either the Star Princess or the Grand Princess will originate trips from there. These include Alaska, Mexico, Hawaii, Panama Canal and California Coastal runs. It is VERY convenient to just drive to San Francisco to depart then pick up your car at the end and head home. Just think – no jet lag as before when you had to fly to far away ports.
Last year, I did a ship speaking gig out of SF. My wife drove me up and picked me up at the end. If you are further away, you can make a long weekend of it and stay in the City before you get on board.
Madlen also told us that the Grand Princess has a neat offering. You can visit the ship while in dock and take a tour before it heads out. No obligation. This is for those who want to “see what’s it’s like,” before committing to a cruise. For $39 each you get a nice lunch and access to roam around the major areas of the Grand PLUS get an included high rez photo of you on the ship. Those alone usually sell for $30 and up on cruises. The point being that if you like the digs, you can apply that money to a future booking. Neat.
If you missed the meeting – you really missed out. Madlen is at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information. See you in October.