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I have this saying...


I am willing to speak for free; but I never speak for free!


What I mean by this saying is that I'm willing to speak for free in exchange for something.  So, for instances, when I am new to a particular speaking market, I'll speak for free in exchange for the exposure, testimonies, a professional video of my talk, an opportunity to build my contact lists, an opportunity to sell books, etc.


When you first start out as a speaker, this Speak for Free, but Never Speak for Free approach is key to a successful launch.  However, once you're launched, more than likely, you won't be doing too many free presentations. 




This does NOT mean one should no longer practice the principle attached to this approach.  For instance, I spoke this past weekend for a fee.  However, the fee was lower than my usual rate.  Therefore, I asked for some things in exchange for lowering my fee.


Interested in finding out what I asked for? 


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Replies to This Discussion

Wow!  I can't believe no one jumped at this.  This is a great opportunity to learn something new here.


What did you ask for?



Thanks for asking Michelle :)


I asked for (and received) the following:


* Video testimonies from the event planners


* The opportunity to send emails to all the leaders of the groups at the event (there were 300+ students there representing about 30 different schools). 


* Jpegs of all the professional pictures that were taken of me while speaking.


* An opportunity to speak to all the leaders of the groups at the event (I shared 5 minutes about what I do and how I might be able to serve them).


Hope this helps you as you grow your speaking business.




:) wow our responses crossed paths. That is an excellent list of requests that is both easy to satisfy and excellent marketing/presentation.

Wow, Kent!  You really know how to leverage your time and opportunities.  I will definitely write these ideas down.


Thanks for sharing,

Michelle Rothwell


Great info, thanks so much Kent!

My pleasure, Michael!

Hey Kent,

This is something that I have thought of as well when I transition into speaking in other places aside from my home church. I've thought that a decent trade would be to have several computers set up for people to sign-up to my newsletter to get the free gift of Bible studies.  Since most of my talks will be religious in nature, the newsletter and the free studies gift are a perfect fit, and the convenience will make it easier to grow a list. The free study is a perfect opportunity to help build a better relationship with those who sign up and the newsletter helps keep Bible Study fresh in their minds.

I am curious what you specifically asked for as well. Thanks for all you do for all of us here @ 48days!


Reflective Bible Study



This is a great idea...BUT...


I wouldn't use computers.  Instead, pass around a sign up sheet or, better yet, have a simple form for each individual.  Be clear that if they sign up for your newsletter, they'll get the free gifts.  If you make it easy and quick (as in, they have to write their name and email address on a piece of paper), you'll get 80-90% to sign up.  I know, because I do this all the time.


If, however, they have to stand in line and click around on a computer, you'll likely get a lot fewer people to sign up.


Hope this helps!


Kent Julian


Hi Kent,

That makes sense--I was going for easy and quick with computers (easier and less hassle on the back end), however I also understand that paper and pen have the appearance of being the easiest to the attendees.


Thanks for the suggestion!




Excellent points. I have done this before in a previous business and found that it was important to remind the one who booked me or the leader of the engagement of the areas I was requesting: testimonials, etc. One leader "promised" to mail me the papers after the engagement and I never got them. Certain people had  taken a form to fill it out later.  What a shame. I learned a valuable lessons of immediately getting the information and taking it with me.

A simple reminder to her would have helped greatly.


Just my thoughts.


Chris Gallagher


Absolutely!  Building your list is one of the most important things you can do as a speaker.




What did You Asked for ?


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