November 23, 2016

How to leverage public speaking events

Public speaking gigs are a great way to quickly increase your authority with a focused target market. You quickly become the “go-to” person in your area of expertise with a (potentially large) room full of people.

Unfortunately, the reality of in-person interaction brings with it certain limiting factors. Namely that after you present a killer talk, you can’t connect with everyone who wants to connect with you.

Here’s how it typically plays out:

In other words:

Speaking at an event is great for building trust and authority, but it kinda stinks for collecting contact info.

And if you’re not collecting contact info (i.e., email addresses), then the people you are in the room with may as well be anonymous visitors on your website.

There is virtually nothing you can do to reach out to attendees after an event if you didn’t get their email addresses.

I’ve tried a few things to capture email addresses at live events, and the most reliable one is this:

People who saw your presentation almost always want the slides. So, I make it abundantly clear during my talk that my slides will be available after the talk and that folks can download them by visiting some online location. The location depends on the conference:

When folks visit the link, they’ll discover a dedicated landing page for the conference that is crawling with useful and relevant information, including a link to download the slides.

Here’s an example from my keynote presentation at Web Unleashed last month:

One of the resources on that page is a mailing list sign up. If you have done a good job educating people, they’ll most likely trust you enough to sign up for your list.