Is speaking part of your business plan? Or are you one of the many people who put “fear of speaking” ahead of dying as your most terrifying fear?

If you have read any of my previous entries, you’ll know that I recommend getting out to events so that you get a chance to meet people and get involved in your community (whatever that is). I’ve also talked in the past about going to Mark’s events and recommended them as a way to get some great training while you meet others.

This particular event is even closer to my heart, as I used to be a corporate speaker in my previous IT life and I’ve discovered, (to my cost), just how much I loved that part of my old career. I’ve looked at ways to get back on stage a few times, but this is the first time I’ve attended a “soup to nuts” course on the subject. The weirdest thing about this one is that I am sat in the audience learning how to sell from stage at a venue that I have spoken at myself in that last career. Moments of deja vu keep jumping out at me!

Mark spent some time up front, going into the reasons to be in the speaking business and how it adds immeasurably to any other part of a business. He gave a lot of examples both famous and less-so, of people who have gone on to be very successful speakers on the conference circuit and he also talked briefly about how a speaking career can lead into things like book publishing very easily.

I’m a big fan of Mark’s speaking style and he comes across as a very relaxed presenter – he made the clear point that being a sole presenters (for a weekend, say) is more profitable than sharing the stage with others – but this weekend is all about sharing with a group of great presenters to get the audience presenting effectively as fast as possible. Mark’s plans are ambitious, he wants to grow his seminar business dramatically this year and is looking for presenters to help run sessions for him…..join the queue, I’m looking for it already 🙂

John Lee and his Ultimate Conference Speaker Training.

John Lee took over the podium for most of the rest of the day, giving a series of fantastic talks on the mechanics of preparing and giving a sales oriented talk. John flew in from Kuala Lumpur where he is currently running his own seminar and timed the overnight flights to and from London to fit into gaps in his speaking over there!

It would be unfair on John to give away too many of the nuggets he shared, but he worked through 7 stages of a successful sales talk and then went into 31 different kinds of closing techniques as well as covering many small tricks and tips of actually delivering your talk.

John is a genuine, inspiring and extremely knowledgeable speaker and it’s been a pleasure listening to him today. Finding out that he puts aside a chunk of cash just to give away each month just boosted my already high opinion of him.

I didn’t sign up to his final training offer, but it was nothing short of stunning and I may yet crack and get involved. If you want to  get into professional speaking, you should definitely check him out. A first port of call would be his YouTube Channel and search from there. I can’t recommend him enough.

I’m afraid that I missed the final speaker of the day – Mindy Gibbins-Klein – who spoke about building a personal brand. Her expertise lies in publishing and I was disappointed to miss her talk, but I will see if I can get some feedback to put in tomorrow’s report.

In the meantime, if you are UK based and can make this event (even for just the weekend), I’d really recommend getting here as the quality of the speaker line-up is great and they seem to be really delivering good content. You can find the details at (and no, that’s not an affiliate link).


It’s very easy when you start out in Internet Marketing to think that this is a career that won’t require you to interact – with your customers, with your competitors and with other marketers. Everything is so neatly handled by being online.

Well, in practice, that’s probably the most damaging idea you could have. Removing personal interaction from your business (no matter how shy you are) can only end up hurting your prospects, no matter what personal comfort you gain from it.

I try to make a habit of going to at least 3 or 4 big events every year and if I get the chance, I’ll also attend a lot of smaller get togethers. Both have their place in my business.

The big events often turn into pitch-fests, where every hour you get a new call to action along with a price tag to make your wallet bleed. If you can find ones where this is not the case, then the opportunity to meet a lot of new people in one place is a huge benefit. Take lots of business cards and a notebook for names and numbers where others have no card of their own.

As an example of the latter, I just spent a weekend at Mark Anastasi’s Financial Freedom bash in London this weekend. Mark has arranged many conferences over the last few years (often multi-speaker wallet-bleeders!) but has moved more recently to running the show himself. The new format gets a huge thumbs-up from me, I always liked Mark’s speaking style and getting more of that and less of some other unpredictable speaker is a real plus. If he runs more shows like this, I’d recommend you check them out.

The smaller events work on a different level for me. It’s much easier to grab more time with one or maybe two people and really get to know them…this is where the real joint ventures are made. You’ll often hear more about what is really working (along with some smal but tasty tips) at this kind of meeting and you will also get a chance to be an answer to someone else’s questions. Don;t underestimate what you’ve already picked up…everyone starts somewhere.

One of the things that makes it harder to do this regularly is actually finding out what is going on. There doesn’t seem to be anywhere that regularly announces events, so watch out for an announcements about a new site that I’m going to set up just for this purpose.

So what did I learn over the weekend? Well, apart from being hammered by the “build a product” message, the big wake-up call for me was to build my list properly. If you’ve just started reading this blog, you’ll have seen my pop-up by now – did you grab it? 🙂  It was there because I think I’ve always known that a list of folk I can help is actually the same as a list of people who can help me, but when it comes down to it, I’ve never pushed that side of my business.

So, my commitment for the next 30 days (let’s see, that takes me up to something like the 11th of November) is that I will post my list-building efforts and results on here daily for all to read. As is always the case, I will probably end up doing too many other things as well, but that is the target.

In that capacity, I am going to set aside 2 sums of cash; the first will be just $100 to see what is possible with a small investment. The second will be more, I haven’t decided how much more yet, definitely less than $1000 but maybe not much less. This will be the real all out effort to build a substantial seed list.

As you can guess, I intend to buy traffic, but I’m also hoping to use other techniques like giveaways to boost my efforts. I will be tracking how successful everything is. Not only that, but I will probably also be following along with Valerie Duvall’s List Ignition WSO which you can guess is also about list-building!

Consider this Day Zero, I’ll update later in the day about the progress so far but just so we are all on the same wavelength, here is my rather small list on Aweber for reference: