Speaking Opportunities

Episode 91: Speaking Opportunities, with Katy and Gretchen

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Speaking Opportunities? Level up your communication skills by exploring our guide to discover and maximize valuable Speaking Opportunities.

On this episode of Sell With Authority, the topic is one that we’ve not yet addressed — how to share your expertise, insights, and wisdom from the stage as a speaker. We are talking about why speaking on stage can be a game-changer.

As Drew McLellan and I wrote about in our book, Sell With Authority, one of the most compelling reasons to consider speaking is the power of a third-party endorsement. When you’re invited to speak at a conference, there’s an implied stamp of approval that certifies you as an expert.

Speaking from the stage is not just about the content you deliver in that moment. It can be the cornerstone of your content strategy, taking your expertise to new heights. Speaking as cornerstone content creates an intimate connection with your audience that’s hard to replicate in any of the other forms of content you might produce.

Speaking opportunities will showcase your expertise confidently. The journey to becoming a sought-after speaker has its challenges. That’s why we are dedicating today’s episode to tackling the constraints. We explore how to get on stage and — more importantly — how to leverage the opportunities before and after your speech with a three-pronged strategy.

To help us do that — I invited Katy Boos and Gretchen Schaffer from Remix Communications to share their insights about speaking opportunities. Remix Communications specializes in positioning their clients on prestigious stages, helping them reach and influence their right-fit prospects.

We also have a special guest with us today, Hannah Roth — our mad scientist and strategist at Predictive. With her unique perspective from working in the trenches, day in and day out, alongside clients, Hannah provides additional insights into building authority positions through cornerstone and cobblestone content.

If you take and apply the gold nuggets in this episode, you will be ready to crush 2024 and make it your most successful and profitable year yet — because you thought strategically about how you can be helpful by sharing the right stories and in front of the right audiences.


What you will learn in this episode is about speaking opportunities:

  • How Remix Communications creates a marriage of thought leadership and speaking on stage
  • Why you need a three-pronged strategy to maximize your speaking opportunities
  • How Katy and Gretchen prepare the speakers they work with
  • Why keeping the audience in mind first and focusing on the right message is crucial
  • The Remix Communications methodology of going beyond the room
  • Strategies you can apply today to show up with excellence in speaking opportunities


Additional Resources:

Speaking Opportunities: Full Episode Transcript 


Welcome to the Sell with Authority podcast. I’m Stephen Woessner, CEO of Predictive ROI. And my team and I, we created this podcast specifically for you. So, if you’re an agency owner or a strategic consultant, and you’re looking to fill your sales pipeline with a steady stream of right-fit prospects and get the at-bats that you need in order to build and scale within, you’re in the right place. Do you want proven strategies for becoming the known expert in your niche and attracting all the clients that you need? Yep. We’re gonna cover that. You wanna learn how to step away from the sea of sameness so you actually stand out from your competitors and own the ground you’re standing on. Yep. We’re gonna cover that too. Do you want to future-proof your business so you can successfully navigate the next challenge that you know is going to come your way?


We will absolutely help you there as well. I promise you each episode of this podcast will contain valuable insights, tangible examples, and best practices, never theory, from thought leaders, experts, and owners who have done exactly what you’re working hard to do. So, I want you to think practical and tactical. Never any fluff. Each of our guests had built a position of authority and then monetized that position by growing their audience, nurturing leads, and, yes, converting sales. But all the while, they did it by being helpful. So every time someone from their audience turned around there, they were given a helpful answer to an important question. So the right fit prospects never ever were made to feel like a prospect. I also promise you every strategy that we discuss and every tool we recommend will be shared in complete transparency in each episode so that you can become a known expert in your niche.


So you can fill your sales pipeline with that steady stream of RightFit clients who, again, were never made to feel like one of your prospects. Okay, so before I introduce you to our three notable guest experts today, I want to take a moment to tee up today’s topic because, candidly, it’s a topic that we’ve not yet addressed in surprising, but we’ve not yet addressed this in a Sell with Authority episode, or even the 1000 plus, I think it was 1,031, to be exact episodes of Onward Nation never before this topic that we’re gonna cover today. That’s how to share your expertise, insights, and wisdom from stage a, and how to do it in such a way that the content you deliver and share with the live audience is only actually part of your overall content strategy. In fact, to do it with excellence and to maximize your opportunities, you’ll need a three-pronged strategy: something for pre-event, something for during the event, and something for post-event.


And we’re gonna break down all three. But first, at a high level, there’s plenty to love about speaking as your cornerstone content. As Drew McClellan and I wrote about in our book, one of the most compelling reasons to consider speaking is the power of a third-party endorsement. When you’re invited to speak at a conference, there’s an implied stamp of approval that certifies you as an expert. Several agency owners in our community have made speaking their cornerstone, and they rarely leave a conference or an event without an invitation to further engage with a prospect to provide a proposal or to participate in an RFP that is right up their alley. It is not uncommon that they simply walk away with a new client because people come up to them after the stage or after they get off the stage. Part of why speaking as Cornerstone works so well is that there’s a level of intimacy to the content that is hard to replicate in any other form of content that you might produce.


You are a rock star of sorts, and your audience is responding to your music live and in person. If you haven’t done a lot of speaking, I think you’ll be surprised at how intimate of a connection it can be, even if you’re speaking to a couple thousand people at an event. So another big plus for speaking as your cornerstone is as high profile as it is easy to market and socially celebrate that you’re speaking at a significant event. I mean, that’s fun. It can become part of your bio, of course, and your agency’s credibility in a specific space and speaking instantly positions you as someone noteworthy. For example, Sarah’s been fortunate enough to speak it inbound South by Southwest in the Build a Better Agency Summit at many other conferences. I mean, that has a nice ring to it, don’t you think? But keep in mind that the only stage that should matter to you is the stage that puts you in front of your right-fit prospects.


Learn more about speaking opportunities by reading this blog from Remix Communications


Speaking Opportunities: Katy and Gretchen’s Introduction


However, there is a downside to speaking too well. And here’s what I mean by that. Positioning yourself as an authority in the speaking space and booking enough gigs so that it becomes your cornerstone is no easy task. So for today, we’re gonna focus our time and attention on the constraints, how to get on stage, and how to maximize the before and after opportunities with the three-pronged approach that I mentioned just a few minutes ago so that your content goes beyond the room. And to help us do that, we invited Katy Boos and Gretchen Schaffer from Remix Communications to share their insights on how to accomplish the goals with excellence. If you’re meeting Katy and Gretchen for the first time, remix Communications specializes in adequately positioning their clients like Adobe. I mean, their client list really reads like a who’s who here: Adobe Meta, stitch Fix, and others.


So they step onto prestigious stages or guest on notable podcasts to reach and influence their right-fit audiences from awareness to conversion. I also invited Hannah Roth, our mad scientists and strategists here at Predictive, because of Hannah’s unique perspective. I’m smiling and giggling at the ti because I’m seeing her out of the corner of my eyes, sort of waving to you from working in the trenches day in and day out alongside our clients, helping them build their authority positions through Cornerstone and cobblestone content. I promise you, everyone, if you take and apply the Golden Nuggets shared during this episode, you’ll be ready to crush 2024 and make it your most successful and profitable year yet because you thought strategically about how you can be helpful by sharing the right stories in front of the right audiences. So, without further ado, welcome to the Sell with Authority podcast, Katy, Gretchen, and Hannah.


Thank you, Stephen. Wow, that was such a great introduction. I feel like I need to can it, and we need to use it for all of our potential clients. It was perfect. You summed it up. Great.


That’s good. I’m glad. Thank you. Welcome, Gretchen, and thank you for taking the time to join us. And welcome, Hannah.


Thank you, Stephen, for having me back. As you know, I always love being the co-host and putting people in the hot seat, so it’s gonna be another great episode. And Katy and Gretchen, as Stephen mentioned, thank you so much for sharing your time and smarts with us and our audience. This episode is going to be wonderful.


You know, Hannah, I probably should have warned Katy and Gretchen that you’re kind of mean. You do like to put people in the hot seat. Yeah, yeah. She does it to me all the time. It’s very uncomfortable.


Learn more about speaking opportunities and gig tips by reading this blog from Remix Communications


Speaking Opportunities: Navigating the Path to Thought Leadership


Speaking opportunities? A warm seat. This is gonna be a great, great conversation. Thank you again for saying yes; we appreciate that. So Katy and Gretchen, perhaps you can start us off by, in case everyone is, or in case anyone is meeting you for the first time, take us behind the curtain and share maybe a couple of minutes about your path and journey. ’cause that’ll be great context. before we dive in with what, all joking aside, is probably gonna feel like we’re peppering you with a whole bunch of questions and excited about this topic. So, take us behind the curtain.


Sure. I will kick us off. my background is traditional PR, so I kind of came up through the PR agency ranks and worked on a variety of primarily tech accounts. spun off and started working for Apple for about seven years, primarily in media and entertainment, and some of their mobile products, which was terrific. Such a great career highlight. after that, I decided to sort of start my own thing, I co-founded another agency and separated from that agency about seven years ago and founded Remix. interestingly, I think along the path of my PR career, it was probably about 15 years ago that I really honed in on the idea of focusing on speaking and thought leadership as a primary focus. And so when I started remixing seven years ago, that has been our sole focus. and we’ve never looked back. We love having a real niche. We’re kind of unique in that way. And, there are not a lot of speaking agencies out there or thought leadership agencies, so, we definitely put a stake in the ground and said, this is what we focus on. It’s our specialty.


Love that. Love that. Gretchen, do you wanna share about your background?


Yes. very similar to Katy. We have kind of parallel paths. I have a more traditional PR background, working in a lot of big agencies and getting a lot of experience with clients like Microsoft, SAP, and Adobe, as well as doing some really interesting PR-specific work. And then, Katy and I worked together, at another agency, and we sort of ended up kind of cultivating these, opportunities for speaking for our clients and really honed in on that niche and loved it and just felt like we really made, a difference and kind of figured out like a special sauce, so to speak, with, with everything. And so that’s kind of been our focus. and I moved with her to Remix seven years ago. And, yeah, she said, this has been our focus, and it’s just been, a fun, fun journey.


Improve your Speaking Opportunities by tuning in to our free tutorial: Get More At-Bats with Right-fit Prospects


Speaking Opportunities: The Power of Speaking Engagements


That’s awesome. And you guys obviously work incredibly well together and are friends as well as coworkers, so that’s always, always makes things great. so when you guys talk about thought leadership and speaking and kind of the marriage between those two things, how did you guys kind of fall into that or intentionally fall into that? Because I assume that you guys were probably seeing pain points from your clients over and over again. And I think the tendency especially with some of the names that you mentioned, Microsoft, Apple, Adobe, you think, oh my gosh, these companies are huge. They must have it all figured out, but obviously, there was something missing, and you guys found a way to step in and help solve a pain point. So can you speak a little bit more about that? What was the pain point and how did you guys kind of create this marriage of thought leadership and then speaking?


How to take speaking opportunities? Yeah, I’ll take that one. And I think as far as pain points, what we saw, was that speaking gives you an opportunity to have your own platform of like really cultivating that. What is the topic that you wanna speak about? What is the message you wanna get across? So it’s a lovely compliment to all the PR things you can do. This is one area that we developed that we feel really gives you an edge and gives you the opportunity to be a thought leader in your area, in your company, with a product, with an idea. You know, if you are not out there speaking about those things, your competitors are. So it’s really something that you shouldn’t take lightly. It’s like you don’t do that. You know that your competition is at those conferences in front of those audiences. So it’s really, really, could be a competitive edge. and just understanding what you’re trying to accomplish, what the audience that you’re trying to speak to, to make a change or get more sales influence people to buy your product speaking can really provide that platform, and it really gives you all, everything necessary to just, hone that skill. Katy, do you have anything you wanna add to that?


I think it’s not really a pain point from the company side necessarily, but I think something interesting about pursuing speaking opportunities is that it takes a lot of time and it takes focus. And I think for a lot of people, they’ll hire their PR agency, and it becomes sort of a checkoff item that maybe gets pushed down after Hey, we, we want this Wall Street Journal feature, can you go after that? Well, that will take precedence in most cases. And so speaking can be one of those things that get shoved down. and you know, this is not meant to be a sales pitch at all, but when you do have someone, whether it’s internal or an agency, that’s focused on that can be incredibly helpful. You kind of need to do a deep dive in order to have a successful program.


Improve your Speaking Opportunities by tuning in to our free tutorial: Get More At-Bats with Right-fit Prospects


Speaking Opportunities: The Role of Relationships in Securing Speaking Gigs


Well, would it be fair to say that some, and I don’t know what the percentage is, so I’m asking, both of you, like, I would imagine that some of the success that you have over and over and over again for clients and getting them on prestigious stages, as I mentioned in the introduction, has a lot to do with the fact that you’ve spent decades building relationships in the industry, whether those are conference organizers, people involved in the media planning or the event planning, excuse me. But you have a depth of relationships, so it’s not as easy as just saying. Well, and like I mentioned in the introduction, getting the gigs and getting enough of them is challenging because this is a very relationship-driven business. Have I understood that correctly in what we’ve talked about?


Yeah, definitely. It’s not solely relationships, but when you do have those relationships, that can be so incredibly helpful. we have some event organizers that we can call up and say, Hey, can we brainstorm with you? We have these ideas. We think this would be perfect. What are you looking for? And that’s an important point. What are they looking for? What do they want for their audiences versus us just filling out a form online that Sally can speak about AI, it’s just lost in translation. But if there’s an organizer that can say, gosh, we really need this twist on AI and healthcare, do you have anyone like that? That makes all the difference. And then when we can deliver that to them on a silver platter, it’s a win-win for everybody.


Yeah. So, Gretchen, how do you see relationships playing in the mix?


Building relationships for speaking opportunities? Yeah, I mean, relationships are always important because you’re always gonna get more from that. You’re gonna get that insight. I mean, I know there’s been a couple of times recently where we’ve talked to somebody that we know, and they tell us what they’re looking for, and then we realize, well, we don’t really have a client for that, but we know some other people that would be great. and we ended up making some connections for them and they just appreciate that so much. So next time when we might have something that would be beneficial to a client we are working with, that always helps for sure.


I love that. I apologize for having so many questions, but I’m so excited to talk about this with you guys. So buckle up.


Improve your Speaking Opportunities by tuning in to our free tutorial: Get More At-Bats with Right-fit Prospects


Speaking Opportunities: Strategies for Overcoming Speaking Fears


And I love that you guys are touching on the difficulties. so okay, let me organize my thoughts because I’m overflowing with questions, but, you guys mentioned that sometimes speaking tends to fall kind of by the wayside, or it becomes a checkoff item or checkoff list for maybe PR agencies or things agencies that are focusing elsewhere. I personally think and wonder if you guys can affirm this, but speaking is scary. I mean, getting on stage sometimes is scary and intimidating both for the, and for the person organizing the event or hosting the event because when you have someone coming to your stage, you are transferring a piece of your credibility to them. So it’s kind of this fear on both sides. It’s the, can I deliver? And then it’s also the person organizing the event saying, can they deliver? And is this gonna blow up in my face? So, how do you guys prepare? And I know we’ve talked a little bit about three stages: the before, during, and after. So tell me about how you prepare the s that you work with, and you know, how you present them to the people that you’re pitching them to and what makes it different you and impactful.


Speaking opportunities? Sure. I can take this one. One thing that we love to do is story mind. And that’s really to get in the head of the potential and kind of play a little bit of investigative reporter, what’s this personal about? What angles are there, and what potential angles are there? And so it’s really a session where we’re asking them all kinds of questions, including what do you like to do in your spare time? There might be something that comes from that that adds some color to what we come up with based on that session. We go away and we develop a speaking abstract, or in some cases five speaking abstracts that we know we can go all different directions with this particular person. And the idea is, what do we think would be a compelling topic or topics for them to speak about at events?


And so that gives us that platform that we take out to the conference organizers that we’re pitching to them and saying, Hey, we’ve got this who can speak about this. And that’s the start of it. So in that process, it’s really important for us to think creatively. So that’s one piece of the puzzle. Another piece of the puzzle is that we’re looking at an event. We’ll be looking at what we think would be the most interesting session for everyone involved. Often, that might mean adding some other companies or some other people, experts, or that sort of thing to have this really well-rounded session. So one example that comes to mind is we work with a security company. So, by themselves, they may or may not be a really great candidate for speaking.


Improve your Speaking Opportunities by tuning in to our free tutorial: Get More At-Bats with Right-fit Prospects


Speaking Opportunities: Crafting Impactful Panel Sessions


It might come across as, too, oh, you’re trying to sell your products or services, right? We decided to look at a very timely topic, which is retail theft. We’re hearing about smash and grabs. We’re hearing about, shop shoplifting think products are being locked up in stores, that sort of thing. So we took the topic from security products, elevated it to retail theft, and now we’ve invited, the head of asset protection for the National Retail Federation who side note wants to be on stage, right? They’ve got a platform, too, that they wanna share. a top executive at Aloe Yoga wants to share their message and have visibility for Aloe yoga products and what they’re doing in their stores. And then, really fun, we invited a criminologist. So this is a man who’s studying like the mind of criminals. Why are people doing this?


How do you crack the code of making your store safe from criminals? That sort of thing. He is on Good Morning America and the Today Show. You know, he has this great media coverage. So we put together this session of these four people, and then guess what? It was like we were able to get some pretty incredible placements. so that’s, that’s just an example of, one of the things that we do is really look at how can we extend this session to make it more exciting and something that the organizer goes, yeah, I want that.


Thank you, Katy, for sharing that. I love it. And for our listeners, one of the insights that I really want you guys to take from what Katy and Gretchen have shared so far is that while they focus on getting their clients on the right stages, they also focus on the right message because they always keep the audience in mind first, okay? They are not getting people in the door saying, you know what? We have this and this and this to sell. And they’re not saying, okay, cool, we’re gonna sell it on these stages, and that’s what we’re gonna do. And it’s gonna feel like a timeshare a scam where you get in the meeting or the session, and you’re like, wow, this is terrible. Can I please play in the sand? No, that’s not what they’re doing. They are able to do this impactfully and establish credibility and thought leadership because they’re showing up with relevant topics at relevant times, and they’re keeping the lens of the audience in mind.


Improve your Speaking Opportunities by tuning in to our free tutorial: Get More At-Bats with Right-fit Prospects


Speaking Opportunities: Building Relationships and Adding Value


So if you guys are listening, if you have a speaking event coming up, or even it’s something smaller like a podcast episode or wherever you’re showing up, please remember to, just like Katy and Gretchen have said, keep your audience in mind and keep that as your lens and not focus on just trying to sell, sell, sell. Because you will come across inauthentically, it won’t be exciting, and you probably won’t get invited back. So I just wanted to share that insight because I thank you guys shared so many golden nuggets in that, and thank you, for sharing your smarts around that.




So what’s really quite remarkable here is how you gave us this really excellent example. You mentioned the security company, and then you turned that into a panel that was the exact right fit for the event. and then, so like if I happen to be the executive or whomever you’re placing from the security company, as part of that event, or representing, I should say, not placing, if I’m that person, I’m now thinking, okay, not only did I get on stage that event, but there are three potential, maybe strategic partners or advisors or mentors or influencers or, and the list goes on. That might be really helpful as we look to build the business further. These are three people who I wouldn’t have known otherwise, and that could be really helpful to the company. And then also, how can I be helpful to their company or their audiences and how can I share expertise? So what you’re adding to that is really quite phenomenal, especially the creativity that it takes for you to design that. Like I see how you’re architecting that now as you walk through that. That’s really smart, guys.


Improve your Speaking Opportunities by tuning in to our free tutorial: Get More At-Bats with Right-fit Prospects


Speaking Opportunities: Leveraging Speaking Engagements for Business Growth


Yeah, and I’ll just jump in too, just about those connections as we talked about earlier, it’s that that client of ours was, was obviously thrilled with that placement and that idea, and they got the introduction to those people that we kind of figured out how to connect them. They’ve been using them for their business for other things way outside of our scope and realm just, to help them with their business. So I mean, connections are so important, like you’ve all mentioned, and not only just for speaking but yeah, for your business and for making connections. ’cause those things come around again oh, I bet you at such and such event and tell me more about what you do. and you just end up developing those great connections that can be used to develop your business, too.


I love that. And I wanna touch on, Gretchen, ’cause this is an excellent segue into kind of my next question. I know that you guys talk about thought leadership and the connections made. So there’s a lot that goes into speaking and wanna make sure our audience doesn’t have a misconception. Like, oh, okay, we’re gonna go on stage, we’re gonna speak, and then that’s it, right? Like, that’s obviously not what you guys do. And to Stephen’s earlier point, he mentioned kind of this three-pronged approach. So, I believe you guys, talk about how you go beyond the room. So can you just touch on the go beyond the room methodology that remixes you implement for their client, for your clients, and just talk about how the different ways that you can leverage this being on stage because there are so many things that come off of that that it’s very important to know? It’s not just 30 minutes in a room; there are so many more opportunities and things. So can y’all speak to that a little bit?


Yeah, think that one of our cornerstones is going beyond the room, taking that wonderful presentation you’ve developed, and what do you do with that? And so there’s everything you can do to promote the event. Even, Katy and I were talking about something this morning where we have a client that’s speaking in March, and they’re already promoting that opportunity through LinkedIn, through some other, channels and just starting kind of build that buzz and it’s just doing that’s just that credibility and they’re starting to talk about the topic, and then throughout that buildup, they can add little tidbits of information about what they’re talking about. They can weave in other things, such as news announcements or whatever. So they’re kind of using that as a forcing function to talk about all sorts of other things. So, we definitely talk our clients through what can you do and what that timeline looks like.


Improve your Speaking Opportunities by tuning in to our free tutorial: Get More At-Bats with Right-fit Prospects


Speaking Opportunities: Maximizing Speaking Engagements


And then when you’re at the event obviously it’s that moment you’re on stage and all the things that culminate with that. But there’s also that what is that, piece of content that you can have that accompanies the person that’s speaking? Is that a post on their website? Is that a social media blast? Is there some type of offer that’s a giveaway, or could you really be creative with a lot of those things? So we encourage that. We also encourage just simple tactics, like having some great photos taken or having some video clips or things while you’re at the event to capture that so that when you’re off the stage, at least you have a shot of you on that stage that you’re proud of and that, or that your company can use.


So those, those are things that you, I guarantee you’ll regret after if you don’t do that and you’ll go, oh, I don’t have a picture of me speaking at that fortune event. It’s like that’s kind of a missed opportunity. Yeah. and the same thing with after there are so many things you can talk about the learnings of the event, or you know, people you networked connections you made, so many different opportunities. So we really help our clients kind of see that holistically and we can help them with that. And we can share examples of where we’ve seen that work really well and, what you might consider doing.


Yeah, that’s a really cool opportunity. I’m kinda getting ahead of myself too. ’cause like Hannah was talking about, now I’ve got six things going, I had it one time about the three-prong and you guys know me well enough to know that that’s not a good thing. ’cause my brain can process like one thing at a time. but, but immediately, like when you were talking about the post, like post event and you mentioned like the learnings from the event and not from a self-aggrandizing perspective, but like the audience interaction, maybe there’s a q and a or whatever, all of that could come, could be built out into like a, a downstream sort of nurture sequence if you will, or an email series, excuse me, not an email series, a video series, I guess it could be an email series too, but a series of, assuming that you had permission from the event organizer to record it and that kinda stuff.


Improve your Speaking Opportunities by tuning in to our free tutorial: Get More At-Bats with Right-fit Prospects


Speaking Opportunities: The Three-Pronged Strategy


But all of that stuff could be cut up into golden nuggets and really celebrate the event and all of the learnings. To your point, Gretchen, like what you said, and then when I think about the, the stuff in the, the pre and then the during, it’s like, oh my gosh, that is such an incredible opportunity to not only highlight the, the third-party endorsement that Hannah was talking about, right. The stamp of approval that I mentioned in the introduction is to be able to highlight that. Again, not from thumping your chest or self-aggrandizing, but it is a really cool stamp of approval. So what I’m curious about is, let’s say that one of your clients really, because you’ve given them the advice of the pre-the, during the post this three-pronged strategy, and they just nail it. They really do a great job on pre they really do a great job during obviously delivering.


And then the piece of content that’s sort of accompanies like Gretchen was saying, and then they really do a great job post, again, not self-aggrandizing, but sharing the golden nuggets that came outta the event. Say they do that really, really well, and they do it well over and over and over again. When you’re booking them time after time at the events, do they become more accessible to book then? Because other event organizers see how well they do the pre-during and the post. Does that raise their level of profile thought leadership? You know, does that raise? Does that make it easier for them to say yes to? Or, like, if I’m a conference organizer or event planner, am I more inclined to say yes to that person because I see how they behave before, during, and after?


I think it helps because people, event organizers, and podcast hosts, for that matter, want to know that you are going to promote that you were involved with that event or that podcast, right? It helps them. So I think that’s something they do look for. is it the only thing? No, but I will say too, if somebody is an event organizer looking at your LinkedIn if they see a steady drumbeat of great content that you’ve been out there speaking, that’s fantastic. we do also get asked for, videos, that kind of thing. So having that at the ready and being able to point people like, oh yeah, here’s John speaking at this event. all of that is very, very helpful. So yeah, definitely can only help you.


Improve your Speaking Opportunities by tuning in to our free tutorial: Get More At-Bats with Right-fit Prospects


Speaking Opportunities: The Power of Photos and Videos


Yeah. When Gretchen said a couple of minutes ago about the during, so the middle prong or the three-pronged strategy, like photos and video clips, I wrote it down in my notes, and it was painful for me to write it in my notes because I never think of it, right? When you’re doing a thing, and then you come back from the thing, your team says, oh, hey, did you get any photos? Or did anybody shoot any video? I’m like, no. and then it’s like, well, didn’t we talk about that? Yes. And then, and then we didn’t do it, right? And, so, it’s a huge missed opportunity. And so I’m glad to hear that that’s obviously something that you guys are suggesting because it’s so important, right? You need those assets if you’re going to build that as the cornerstone, right?


A lot of our clients, too, will actually use those photos for their LinkedIn photos. You’ll see their image, and you’ll see the event behind them, and they’re obviously on stage. It’s sort of like that snapshot of credibility.


I think that’s great. Stephen, you’re a typical agency owner for not doing the videos and the photos. 


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Speaking Opportunities: Maximizing Event Impact


They are such a great team. But seriously, so a lot of our listeners are obviously agency owners, that is the niche that we serve. And they’re so often where I talk with agency owners every single day, and you know, we’re talking about content strategy, we’re talking about thought leadership strategy, and they’re like, oh, I don’t, I don’t have anything. I don’t know, I don’t have time to write this and do this and all of these things. So I love what you guys are sharing because it does it not require extra input. What you’re doing is you guys take the input that your clients are already doing, and then you maximize it, and you amplify it. And that’s what we try to do for our agency owner clients, our coaching clients, and our consultants every day. Because the answer is not okay, if you just put in more effort, it’s all right, let’s take the effort that you’re putting in and amplify and maximize it across the different channels, the different platforms, and the different ways that people consume content. So I love that you guys have this kind of holistic strategy that really makes it easy for your clients to maximize their maximum effort. Like, I guess I’ll throw in a Deadpool quote there, but max effort, it’s actually less effort, but max output. So I love that you guys, touch on that. 


By the way, we placed a Deadpool panel, the National Association of Broadcasters. Yeah, it’s funny. I just had to add that because you said Deadpool, but yeah, they used Adobe Premier to edit Deadpool, so we had all the editors from Deadpool and Adobe on stage, so there you go.


Well, that’s just some casual connections there, Katy. Thanks. That is awesome.


So Gretchen, what would you say? and we’d love to get both of your perspectives on this, but what would you consider to be the biggest challenge? And because, again, I’m, suspect, our audience is thinking, yep, I’d like to do more of this speaking, but I don’t even know where to start. So, from your perspective of doing this for a long time and with great success, what do you, what do the two of you typically see as the biggest challenge to someone making or getting some momentum going in obviously, those first steps are the hardest. So what, what tend to be the most significant challenges, Gretchen?


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Speaking Opportunities: Navigating Audiences and Realistic Opportunities


No, I think it’s kind of honing and landing your topic, figuring out what that topic is, and that platform that you need to talk to people about and get in front of your audience. So you need to identify what that is because it can’t just be, oh, I just we wanna sell more X, so we wanna grow our business by X, but what is it that you are talking to people about that would make you want to be in front of audiences that would wanna listen to you? So I think there’s some work that has to go into landing your topic and trying to figure out how to communicate that. And then, then, starting to think about the audience, like who, who are the audiences you should be in front of? Is it retailers? Is it it, is it AI, developer all, all sorts of, it doesn’t matter.


You just need to understand who your audience is and then kind of go into understanding where those conferences are. I mean, there is a conference for everything out there anymore, so there’s a whole slew of vertical opportunities. And it’s just a matter of kind of honing in on what those look like and what’s realistic. Like, are there two speaking opportunities that are your goal for a certain amount of time? It it shouldn’t be just like 25 speaking up it really should be a well-thought-through process. So I, Katy, I’m sure I’m missing things that you would add. We,


I was gonna say the same thing about the topic. and Gretchen, I’ve worked together, as you said, for a long time. So we do kind of complete each other’s sentences. So the only thing I’m thinking of adding is that as you’re looking at events, be realistic and really get under the covers of that event. Look at last year’s agenda, who spoke there last year, what size companies, look at their titles. If a VP of marketing at Apple is speaking, and you own a very small agency, it’s gonna be hard. And it’s not to say it’s impossible, but you need to sort of be realistic about, am I fit for this? Maybe one approach is, yeah, I have, a friend or an acquaintance who’s a VP of marketing at Cisco. I’m gonna invite them to speak with me. We’ll do a fireside chat. There are workarounds, but you need to kind of be realistic about where do I fit in this whole, conference landscape and what is the best event for me


That is so smart. So, I know that Hannah needs to bring us in for a landing ’cause we’re quickly running outta time. But that is such a great example of, again, applying creativity, thinking about relationships, thinking about what the audience needs. And then specifically to Hannah’s earlier question about when a conference organizer says, yep, you can get on stage, Gretchen, that person’s giving Gretchen their stamp of approval. So if you’re thinking about all of those things, you’re like, Hey, wait a minute, I know Sarah Jones, and she’s the VP of whatever at Cisco, and we’d be a great compliment because that might be your niche and there’s a lot of things you could volley back and forth. That is a great way to serve the audience, serve the conference planner, and then get on stage and really deliver something awesome, right?


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Speaking Opportunities: Outside-the-Box Strategies for Speaker Success


Yeah, we get scrappy. We try, we have to every day, right? , it’s like we really wanna think outside the box because otherwise, it’s just too easy to get No, no, no, no. If you’re just filling out the forms online,


Yeah. Yeah. I think that’s why I loved when you guys talked about the relationships you build and the trust and kind of loyalty that has to come with that because by filling out a form, anybody can do that. There’s no one vouching for you. Like, it’s just not gonna get the results. And even if you are lucky and get a yes, who knows if it’s even the right audience or the right time or things like that. So there’s so much more that goes into it. So, as Stephen said, we do need to come in for a landing, and I have just enjoyed this conversation so much. So, for our listeners, this is my last question for our listeners, Katy and Gretchen: what are three actionable tips that you would share? , so for somebody that may be listening to this and maybe thinking, oh my gosh, I have an event next month, or I’m supposed to give a keynote soon, or I’m gonna be a guest on a podcast show that’s relevant to my audience. What are three just kinds of small tips that they can take and apply today that’s gonna make them show up better than they would have had they not listened to this?


I think number one is what is the main thing you wanna communicate? So, what is your one big thing? That’s a, that’s a very Ted thing. They want you to have that one big thing that goes through that applies to anything speaking-related. and then think about where you wanna show up. Sort of where does your topic fit? And then three, understand your audience and think about where do they go and what do they already know already? Mm. What can you share that will take them to the next level?


I love that question. Oh, doubt it. What do they already know? Because I think sometimes we tend to get consumed with our own kind of expertise, or we get comfortable in our own expertise, and we assume that our audience kind of knows all the things that we know or they we take for granted the expertise and the experience that we sometimes have. So I love that question of asking yourself, truly, what does your audience know? What do they not know? And how can you share and be helpful in ways that they may not have thought about before? But Gretchen, do you have anything to add to those three steps?


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Speaking Opportunities: Finding Success in Small Rooms


Just to yeah, echo all of that, but sometimes when you’re thinking about your audience, just encourage you to be realistic about, sometimes the audience might be 20 people in a room, and those might be the exact right. 20 people that should be there. So that’s a great win. Even though it’s not 2000, it could be 2000 people, and none of them really are the right fit, but you might want those smaller opportunities, those workshops or track sessions, or different types of speaking opportunities that get you in front of your audience. So just speaking always isn’t about, I’m doing a CES keynote, and it’s gonna be multicast, it’s, it can be a conference room workshop setting and can be perfect for you. So I would encourage everybody to think, think about it that way too.


That is the power of being in the fitting room with the right message, which goes back to some of your earlier advice in this conversation that started with the story mining and, not aimlessly, wandering through the wilderness. and then specifically how you can be helpful. I so love this question. I know that Hannah’s already edified it, but what do they already know? It’s such a better question than what do you think your audience wants to learn? I really love the, what do they already know? And then being able to build from that. I love that question. It is brilliant. It is so brilliant. so know that we, as Hannah said, need to come in for a landing, and we also covered a lot. But before we go, before we close out and say goodbye, is there anything you think we might have missed, any final advice, or recommendations that you’d like to share? And then please share with our audience the best way to connect with you.


I mean, I think have fun with it. Dream big, but also be realistic. Have good topics and get out there. Go for it. It’s a fun thing to do, and it can make such a difference in your business.


Improve your Speaking Opportunities by tuning in to our free tutorial: Get More At-Bats with Right-fit Prospects


Speaking Opportunities: Embracing Speaking Opportunities


I totally agree. It’s okay to take a little bit of a risk and put yourself out there, and there are lots of things you can do to help yourself feel more confident in speaking, whether it’s to 10 people or to a thousand people. Hmm.


Awesome. What is the best way to connect with both of you? I don’t know why I got stuck in my words there.


Our website is remix communications.com and feel free to connect with me on LinkedIn. I’m Katy with the Y BOOS on LinkedIn. Okay.


In here, Stephen, before, we leave, Katy and Gretchen have a wonderful, helpful guide. It’s seven tips for Landing your Dream Speaking gig, and they do have that in the resources section on their webpage. So it’s remix communications.com/resources. So if you have, if you are listening and you have an event coming up or a speaking opportunity, that is going to be an excellent asset for you to download, with some actionable tips and tricks and just again, extending the conversation and the insights that we’ve had here today. So remix communications.com/resources and that will get you fed up for your speaking engagement.


That was awesome. Thank you both for sharing your smarts with that resource. We will be sure to put the link in today’s show notes or the show notes for this episode. And everyone, no matter how many notes you took or how often you go back and re-listen to the insights and wisdom that Gretchen and Katy so generously shared with you. The key is you have to take it, apply it, and get on stage as a result of everything that they just shared. Because when you do, you will accelerate your results. And Katy and Gretchen, we all have the same 86,400 seconds in a day, and we are grateful that you said yes to our invitation to join us on the show, to come onto the show and share your smarts so generously so that we could raise our businesses to that next level. Thank you so much, our friends.


Thank you for having us. This was fun. I am taking you, Stephen, on the road to do our intros. Thank you so much. It was a pleasure.


Thank you guys.

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