Have you ever walked into a grocery store to do the weekly food shopping and ended up buying items that were not on your list? Of course. Have you ever been approached by a person in your favorite food store offering you an opportunity to sample a new product? Of course to that too? And have you ever purchased that product for the first time as a result of that sampling? I have and on several occasions I have purchased the product again and again.
What in the world does food sampling have to do with public speaking you may be asking by now. Well, here is the answer. If you “sample” your products in front of people for free, they are probably more likely to purchase your services than if they never saw you. Remember the food sampling? Well, all you are doing is sampling your talents to the audience. For free! Yes, for free. Then, you ask, how can I generate some revenue?
Here is what you do next. At the conclusion of your presentation, which can be given to a group of peers at a professional conference or to a group of 15 people at a local Lion’s Club or other civic group meeting, offer a chance for them to learn more about you. Give them a free report. Offer to email the PowerPoint presentation to them. Whatever you do, you should do something that allows you to capture their name for future mailings of yours.
Merely by playing the numbers, you will get a percentage of people who see or hear you for the first time that can and will become paying clients. If you are a consultant, offer a free thirty minute consultation. Offer them two months free of your newsletter and give them an opportunity to get a discount toward future purchases of it.
The key to success with this method of generating new business is to give a great presentation, then follow it up with a free or low priced offer. Then after that, another discount for a long term offer. The way to reaching lots of people is by reaching just a few at a time. Offer referral bonuses. Keep the person engaged.
If you do this two times monthly to an audience of merely 20 people each, then the numbers are on your side. Just don’t look back for one year. After that time you have reached critical mass and will have the capability to work for several of the people who have already been given the opportunity to “sample” your talents.
So, next time you enter the food store and someone offers you a free sample think of yourself doing the same thing for your local civic group!