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If you want to be a public speaker, know that community speakers are more in demand than most people realize. You can obtain speaking engagements for, motivating employees and students, generating excitement for causes and campaigns, or educating members of clubs on topics that they may not be familiar with. If done correctly, you can have a profitable business.


  • Select a list of topics that you consider yourself to be an expert on. Maybe you have traveled extensively and want to share your slide and your insider knowledge about other cultures and customs. Perhaps you enjoy being around young people and would like to offer tips on how to make smart choices regarding their education, their careers or their social relationships. Find something you’re passionate about and go with that.
  • If you think it’s something you’d like to do, but haven’t had enough experience in front of groups, you might want to seek training of some kind in order to be sure you can do the job effectively.
  • Determine why you want to speak. Perhaps public speaking engagements will go along with consulting services that you offer or to help promote a book you have written. Maybe it’s to bring in some extra money.
  • Determine the amount of time you can realistically devote to being a public speaker. It’s more than just speeches; you’ll also need to factor in the amount of research and preparation time you’ll need as well as the time and expense of your transportation. You’ll need to decide whether you only want to give talks in your own area or would be available to travel.
  • Seek out advice from people who are already doing what you’d like to do as a community speaker. Ask them how they got started, what their fees are, and if there are certain situations you should try to avoid.
  • Identify prospective audiences who would be interested in what you have to say. Talking about career development topics will be of more interest to businesses than to women in garden clubs who are either retired or don’t have jobs. Just determine who would like to listen and go find them.
  • Establish yourself as an expert by writing articles, doing interviews and reviewing books in your area of expertise.
  • Speak with individuals who belong to local clubs. Find out what kind of speakers they typically have for their luncheons and conferences. Ask how to get your name into their speakers’ list.
  • Acquire a business license. If your speaking company is going to have a unique name, you’ll need to register it with your secretary of state. Information about starting a new business can be found on the website of the Small Business Administration. At this time, you will also need to establish your corporate identity for your website, your business cards and any other promotional materials.
  • Set up a checking account for your new business. Keep excellent records of your income, your expenses and also the topics that you have talked about to each group.

Once you’ve done these things, it will be important to stay up on current affairs so that you can talk intelligently about what’s going on in the world. This will help when doing your presentations. If you follow these tips, you can begin your success as a public speaker.


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