Less Free, More Paid: How to Increase Your Speaker Fees with Carol Cox: Podcast Ep. 289

Less Free, More Paid: How to Increase Your Speaker Fees with Carol Cox: Podcast Ep. 289 | Speaking Your Brand

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If you’ve been getting speaking requests, but they’re free or low paid, or you’ve been charging the same amount for a while and aren’t sure if (and how) to raise your speaker fees, tune in to this episode.

I share 3 reasons you *should* increase your speaking fee and how to confidently do so.

I also go through specific dollar amounts of what you could be charging based on where you’re at in your speaking journey.

Finally, I talk about reasons why you may decide to speak for free and specific things you can do to make sure you’re getting maximum value from those speaking engagements.


About Us: The Speaking Your Brand podcast is hosted by Carol Cox. At Speaking Your Brand, we help women entrepreneurs and professionals clarify their brand message and story, create their signature talks, and develop their thought leadership platforms. Our mission is to get more women in positions of influence and power because it’s through women’s stories, voices, and visibility that we challenge the status quo and change existing systems. Check out our coaching programs at https://www.speakingyourbrand.com



Show notes at https://www.speakingyourbrand.com/289/

Find out your Speaker Archetype by taking our free quiz at https://www.speakingyourbrand.com/quiz/

Apply for our Thought Leader Academy: https://www.speakingyourbrand.com/academy/ 

Connect on LinkedIn = https://www.linkedin.com/in/carolcox


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289-SYB-Speaker-Fees.mp3: Audio automatically transcribed by Sonix

289-SYB-Speaker-Fees.mp3: this mp3 audio file was automatically transcribed by Sonix with the best speech-to-text algorithms. This transcript may contain errors.

Less free, more paid. I'm going to share with you three ways to increase your speaker fees on this episode of the Speaking Your Brand podcast. More and more. Women are making. An impact by. Starting businesses running for office and speaking up. For what matters. With my background as a TV political analyst. Entrepreneur. And speaker, I interview and coach purpose driven women to shape their brands, grow their companies and. Become recognized as. Influencers in their field. This is speaking your brand, your place to learn. How to. Persuasively communicate your message to your audience. Hi there and welcome to the Speaking Your Brand podcast. I'm your host, Carol Cox. If you've been getting speaking. Requests, but they're. Free or low paid or you've been charging the same. Amount for. A while and you aren't sure. If and how to. Raise. Your speaker fees, this episode is for you. I'm going to share with you three reasons you should increase your speaking fee and how to confidently do so. I'm also going to go through specific. Dollar amounts of what. You could be charging based on where you're at in your speaking journey. And finally, I am going to talk about reasons why you may decide to speak for free and specific things you can do to make sure you're getting. Maximum. Value from those speaking engagements. If you're new to. The podcast, welcome. As speaking your brand. We help women. Entrepreneurs and professionals clarify their brand message and story, create their signature. Talks and develop. Their thought leadership platforms. Our mission is to get more women. In. Positions of influence. And power because. We believe that it's through women's stories, voices and visibility. That we challenge the status quo and change existing systems to benefit. More people. And we certainly need that now more than ever. I've been speaking my entire. Professional career, really the past 20 years since I started my first. Two businesses. Which were in the. Technology. Space to my time and local politics, to what I've been doing with Speaking Your Brand. And I've spoken both for free and for pay. And there. Are definitely reasons to do. Both. And so. That's why I really want to share with you. In this episode how. You can think about your speaker fees, how to increase them and when you should say yes to doing free speaking engagements, but making. Sure that they're worthwhile. For you. So many times when. We work with our. Clients and we suggested them. Higher fees that they could be. Quoting. They're afraid that the person on the other. End will say no so that they'll. Lose out on that. Potential speaking engagement. By. Quoting a fee that maybe they perceive. As too high. Sometimes they lack confidence in quoting. A higher fee. Sometimes they. Just don't know. What is standard fees. And also, I think some of the times it's that. They're not sure if their content or their delivery is worthy. Of a higher fee. And I really want to dig into that with you today. The first thing to do is make sure that you're positioning. Yourself. As a premium paid speaker. Your brand reflects how others see you. If your. Linkedin profile isn't optimized. If your website doesn't. Look professional. If you don't have a speaker page on your website, if you don't. Have. Your speaker fees or even. A starting price for. Your speaker fees. On. Your speaking page, on. Your website, then so many. Event organizers are. Going to assume that. You speak for free because. Your brand is. Reflecting that to have a high value. Brand as a speaker, you. Really need. Consistent thought, leadership content. And a. Track record. Of successful. Speaking. This is why when women. Go through our Thought Leader. Academy, one of the things. That they work on is their container for their thought leadership. A container could be a podcast. If you already have. A podcast, you could do a solo. Series. On your existing podcast. As part of your thought.

Leadership. You can do. A LinkedIn live show. You could do an event, an initiative, a video series on. Youtube or. Linkedin, some type. Of container where you're consistently putting out your ideas. So. That other people, like event organizers, can. Find you and can see this consistency. The track record of successful. Speaking is to show that you are on the speaking circuit. Think about it from. An event organizers point of. View. If they are bringing you in as a speaker, they want to make. Sure that you're going to deliver, that you're going to do a great job for their event and for their. Audience. So they need to see that you have. Done this before. If you are newer to speaking, keep listening. Because I'm going to talk. When we get towards the end of. This episode about how to. Do free speaking engagements so that you can build that. Track record. Of successful. Speaking. One of the things that. I encourage you. To do is take our speaker archetype quiz. It's entirely free to take. It only takes a few minutes. Because that's going to let you know what type. Of speaker. You are. So where are your natural. Strengths as a speaker so that you can leverage. Those in your brand as. A speaker and then of course add other elements. To your speaking from the other types of archetypes so that you can become a well rounded speaker. You can take our. Speaker archetype quiz. As speaking. Your brand. Dot com slash quiz. Again, that's speaking your brand. Dot com slash. Quiz is free and just takes a few minutes. To get your results. So here's the thing about positioning. Yourself. As a premium paid speaker. If you set your fee too. Low, that can actually backfire. You're on you. You can be hurting. Your brand. Because imagine that an. Event organizer who has their. Annual event coming up. And it's a big event for. Them. They're going to have.

Vips there. Maybe as their executive. Leadership team, certain people in the audience, and they want. To make sure that their speakers are really providing the. Quality that they want. So imagine that they're interviewing several speakers. One speaker charges $2,500, another speaker charges $4,500. And you come in. And say. I'll do it for free, or maybe you quote. $500. Which speaker. Is the event organizer going to. Select? Most likely, they're going. To select the one that courted the 2500. Or the $4,500. Not. The person. Who quoted. Nothing or $500 because. Of that perceived quality. Imagine that you're the event organizer and you're thinking, well, if this person is going to do it for free or for only $500, are they actually going to put the. Time. And effort into. It to. Make sure that they're prepared and that their. Presentation. Is as good as it could be? That's why. Position yourself as a premium pay speaker and making. Sure that your brand reflects. That. Can serve you more. You're quoting higher fees can. Actually serve you better. Than quoting too. Low. This is why we recommend on the speaking page on your website that you put your speaker fees. You can. Just say starting. At. Whatever. The fee. Is. So that way, event. Organizers know, number one, that there is going. To be some type of fee so that they don't go in. With the assumption. That you're going to speak for free. But number two, that they. Understand that the quality is there. So strategy number one. Is making. Sure that your brand reflects that. You are a premium paid. Speaker strategy. Number two, to increase your speaker fees. Is to. Ask other speakers what they charge when the women go through our Thought Leader Academy, we have very. Honest and. Open conversations. About. What we as speaking. Your brand charge for. Our speaking fees. We encourage the women to share what they're charging. So that we. Can get a better sense of what the going rates are.

And I'm going to share with. You also in this episode in just a little bit what kind. Of some standard speaker fees. Are. I was listening to. A Brené Brown. Podcast episode a few months ago. It was on I don't remember. If it on the Dare to Lead or Unlocking. Us podcast that she has, and she. Was having a conversation with her guest and she. Said that this was. Probably several. Years ago, maybe five or ten years ago. Now, that. Where she was speaking at an event and she was the. Most prominent. Keynote. Speaker there, I think she. Was doing the opening keynote. So the premium. Slot and. There were other keynote speakers. There, luncheon keynotes. Closing keynotes. And so on. And she said that when. She was backstage. I don't know if. It's before or after her talk, but she was. Backstage and there was. A speaker. Agent there backstage who was representing some of the other speakers at the event. And he says to Brené Brown. You know that. The speakers. I'm representing. Are getting paid. Double. What you're getting paid today. And she was. Floored. She had no idea because no. One had ever shared with her. With those speakers, they were probably. Men. Were getting paid. So Brené Brown said that. She went back to her, her speaker agent or whoever. Books her speaking engagements. And said, Double my fee starting now. And at that time, Brené. Brown was probably getting paid pretty well. Maybe she was getting paid. 25,000. For a speech, maybe 35. 40,000 for a. Speech she didn't say. But she had. No idea that. She could be charging so much more. And she should be charging so much more. To get to that pay equity that. There's that gender. Pay gap. That exist. In the workforce. Same thing happens with. Speakers as. Well. And so I would encourage you to. Talk to other speakers that, you know.

Especially men. Speakers and ask what they're. Charging. They don't have to give you specifics of. Which speaking engagement they got that fee for. We're speaking. Engagements. A different event organizer or a company paid them for, but just in general. Have. Them share with you like what are their speaking fee ranges? Are they starting at 2500 or are they starting at $7,500? When when for this particular. Type of event, what. Are they charging for? And then I would encourage you to share your. Speaking fees with speakers. You know, who are just coming up, who are just getting started. If you're if you've been speaking. For a while and you're. More advanced. And you've. Been charging for a. While, share. Your fees with those other speakers so that they have an idea of what. To charge. So that was strategy number two. Ask other speakers what they charge. Strategy number three. To increase your speaker fee is to understand the role you. Play and the. Value. You provide as a. Speaker. As a speaker, you are a leader. You're there to inspire. Motivate. To. Inform, to entertain. You can call it edutainment, to give the. Audience an experience that fits in. With that event. This is why I encourage so many of you, as you've been listening to the podcast, to shift. Your identity from being. An expert presenter or a commodity speaker. To. A thought leader. And a speaker who provides an experience. To the audience. Your content and delivery. Your focus should be around providing transformation rather than solely information. And when you start to make this shift. From expert presenter to thought leader to. Providing. Transformation rather than information. Then. You're going to be able to separate your speaker fee. From the time that you're. Spending. Preparing for and delivering your presentation. What I see happen a lot is with our clients is. That they'll get a request for a. Speaking. Engagement, whether it's a lunch and learn or a workshop or.

Even a keynote. And they'll think to themselves, Well, it's going to take me about 5. Hours to prepare the presentation. And then it's. An hour presentation and then maybe like an. Hour or so for travel. So maybe that will take me 8. To 10 hours. Total. And then they think. About what their hourly. Rate is, and then they. Charge that for their. Speaker fee. The problem with that is that as. A speaker. That time, even. The time it takes you to. Prepare the presentation and the slides and to practice and then to actually show up and deliver the presentation, there is so much more that went. Into you being able. To stand in front of that audience, whether virtually or in person, and deliver that. Content. In a transformational way. It took all of the years that you've been working in your industry. All of the. Time that you've spent. Working with your. Clients to develop. Your framework, to develop your process. All of the time. It has taken you to get. Better as a speaker. So your speaker fee. Should not be tied. To the amount. Of hours it takes for you to. Do this. And I always use this example of. Why you need to decouple your fee. From your time. On the sitcom Friends towards. The end of the series. So this would apply late nineties, early 2000s. Remember there were. Six of them. That were the main actors. And friends. And for the last few years, do you know how. Much each of. Them was. Paid. Per. Episode of Friends? $1 million. For a 22. Minute episode. Where they weren't even. On for the entire 22 minutes. Each of them got paid. $1,000,000 per. Episode. Maybe they were on for 8. Minutes of the episode, 10 minutes of the episode, and they got paid. $1,000,000. Now imagine if their mindset had been, I'm. Only going to charge based. On my time, the time that I.

Spend in rehearsal. And preparing for my lines and the actual time that I. Deliver. That I spend delivering. The lines that gets recorded. No, they charge. Based on the value they were providing to NBC. Now, obviously. They had a lot of value because of the. Advertising dollars, because Friends was. A top rated show. But as a speaker, it's the same thing. You're going to be a top rated speaker. Because of the. Content. And the delivery that you. Provide to. That audience. If you want. To learn more about. How. To create a. Transformational talk, go back to last week's episode where. I walk. You through our signature Talk canvas framework. So that. You can start using. That as a guide. For laying out. The flow of your. Content. And if you want to hear more about this idea of shifting from an. Expert presenter to a thought leader. Check out. Episode 241. From last year on The Expert. Trap and Episode. 271. From earlier this. Year. Providing transformation. Versus information. In your talks and those episode. Links are in the show notes. So that is the third. Way to increase your speaker fees is to understand the role you play and the value you. Provide as a speaker and. To. Decouple your. Fee from the. Time that you're spending. So now you. May be wondering. What to charge. And. Really it could be anywhere from. $500, $5,500, $2,500. 5070 $500, 10,000, 15,000 and so on. Just like in your business. Start somewhere and. Keep increasing. It. Whatever you do in. Your business today. The programs you run, the services. That you provide, most. Likely. You're charging more. Today than. You were charging two years ago or five years ago or ten years ago or whenever you started your. Business. The same thing with your speaking fee. Keep increasing it. If you're brand new and you've only done free. Charge of 500 or $1,000.

For an event that. Maybe you normally would have only done for free. If you're getting. A request for some type of workshop or. Training. Charge $2,500 instead of charging 500 or 1000, if you're getting requests for a keynote. And perhaps in. The past. You've quoted. $1,500, try quoting $3,500. This is why I want you to. Talk to other speakers, especially other speakers who are in your industry. Or say in your local. Community to get a sense of. What they're charging and make sure. To talk to both women and men when you're getting this. Idea of. What they're charging for their speaking. Our clients have charged $3,500 for a virtual keynote. So during the pandemic, 3500 for. A Zoom keynote, $10,000. For an in-person. Keynote, 15,000. For a virtual corporate training. So it is possible. For you to get paid well. For your. Speaking. Now, there. Are good reasons to speak for free, especially if you're. Just starting out or if. You're coming out of the pandemic like so many of us are. And you kind of need to get. Yourself back. On the speaking circuit. So speaking for free is great. For brand awareness. More people will know what you do, what you do in your business, that you are a speaker on the particular topic that you speak about. The other great reason to speak for free is building relationships. Back in 2010. So over 12 years ago. Now, I spoke at an Internet conference. This is when I had the technology business and I. Met their two women who. Were also speaking. So we were at the speakers table together. So we got to know each other that. Day at the conference. And now we have been friends since then. I just saw them a few weeks ago when I was on vacation. But because of that one conference that I spoke at in 2010. And meeting those two other. Women who also ran. Events, I was invited to. Probably speak at least a. Dozen other events and the two years after.

That, by them, because. Of those relationships that I built, because I was there speaking. And here's the thing, you will get more speaking invitations, the more speaking you do. That's just the way it happens, because event. Organizers. Go. To events, they go to conferences and they see. Speakers there, and then they'll. Invite you to speak. So brand awareness building relationships. Lead generation is another reason to speak for free. And actually, I have an episode coming up next week. As an on air coaching call with one of our thought Leader Academy. Clients, and we talk about how. She. Can use. The presentations that she's doing to get more leads for. Her business. So make sure. To listen to that episode next. Week to learn more about how to do lead generation in your. Presentations. Other reasons to speak for free is because it's a nice venue for videography, so maybe you want to get some new speaking. Clips for your. Speaking page for your speaker reel, and you need some new videography. And that. That particular event has a really. Nice. Venue, really nice stage, and so. It may make sense to speak for free or to speak for a low fee in exchange for getting videography. You can also speak. For free to test out new material. To build your confidence. And this can be the case even if you've been speaking for a while, even if you've been speaking for good money for. A while. You may be working on a new keynote and you just need to. Test it out. So go to a small local group. Relationships that you have in your local community. Speak to those audiences. To test. Out that material. Ultimately, what I want you to keep in. Mind about speaking for free is that. It's your decision. So make sure you're making an. Intentional decision about. Accepting free speaking. Engagements. For example, you. Could have a set. Number of free speaking engagements that you do each year. Maybe you'll do one a quarter, or maybe you'll do two per year.

And then once you've hit that. Number. Then you can reply back. To that event organizer and say. Thank you so. Much. I, I set aside to. Do a certain number of. Free speaking engagements each year. I've already reached that amount. Would you like to have a. Conversation. About. What it would look like for me to come speak at your organization for my fee and then you just leave it to them? So let me do a quick recap. Here as far as. How to increase your speaker fees. Number one. Position yourself as a premium paid speaker. Number two. Ask. Other speakers what they charge. Number three, understand the role you play and the value you. Provide as. A speaker. If you would like to work with us to create. A your signature talk and your thought leadership platform so. You can get those higher speaker fees. I encourage you to apply for our Thought Leader Academy. Program. Our next enrollment start date is. Coming up soon. August 30th, 2022. So you want to get your application in today. After you submit your application, we then schedule. A 30. Minute Zoom call so we can talk. About your. Goals and then you answer your questions about the Academy. You can get all the details and submit your application as speaking your brand academy. Again, that's speaking your. Brand dotcom slash academy. Until next time. Thanks for listening.

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