Many local business owners feel that trade shows are the best opportunity to get out and showcase their expertise. This is likely why around 40 percent of business-to-business marketing budgets go directly to trade show exhibitions.
As it turns out, though, speaking engagements can also build you up as an expert in your field and generate leads. For those who have never done this before, here are a few ways to find speaking engagements to market yourself and your business.
Act as a Consultant
Promoting yourself as a consultant to a company is one of the few ways to snag a paid speaking engagement. You won’t get huge crowds, but you will begin building a reputation as an industry thought leader. Find a business that encounters problems you could help solve, and once you've done this, take the owner out to lunch to talk about an agreement.
Have a Dedicated Web page
Local business owners who want to market themselves and their company through speaking engagements must have a dedicated section of their website. This page could contain testimonials, areas of expertise and even videos of prior speaking engagements. Regardless of your overall goal in offering these on-site presentations, utilizing your website to look more professional is essential.
Utilize Conference Directories
While they may not be chock full of conferences within five miles of your business, online conference directories are still a powerful tool. You can peruse sites like Confevent or All Conferences to find nearby events that are related to your industry. You can then reach out to the individuals running the events to inquire about speaking.
Plenty of local business owners never even consider speaking engagements, but this is just a lost opportunity to build brand awareness and show off your expertise. Even if you aren't a great public speaker, sending a similarly-knowledgeable manager or partner can accomplish the same thing for your company.