An e-mail arrived in your inbox – “we would LOVE for you to speak on our webinar – let’s set up a time to talk.”  You are really excited.  You’ve sent out your speaker sheets and thing are beginning to pay off.

Then, you get on the phone, the conversation is going REALLY well.  Then, the question comes … “How big is your list?”.  When you answer something less than 5,000, you hear the person on the other side of the phone line sigh… “My coach told me I couldn’t have anyone less than 5,000… sorry.”

It’s disappointing – how can you grow your list if you can’t get any speaking gigs because your list is too small?

I can help.  I started my business in a very small town with some very limited opportunities.  Yet I managed to do over 250+ talks my first three years.  And, that was with a list that was most definitely less than 5,000 people.

Here is my 1-2-3 system for getting those speaking gigs.

1.  Create your own platform   Everybody loves getting interviewed.  You do too, or you wouldn’t be reading this blog post.  By hosting your own show (webinar, podcast, blab), you can trade with other people to interview you.  You both get the advantage of being in front of someone else’s audience.

2. Search for Interviews/Podcasts in your niche.

An easy way to do this is to search google.  here are some things you would type in if you are searching for podcast opportunities.  (Podcasts are a great place to start because many don’t have list or promo requirements).

  • [Your-Topic] inurl:/podcast/
  • [Your-Topic] inurl:category/podcast/
  • [Your-Topic] inurl:/podcasts/
  • [Your-Topic] inurl:category/podcasts/
  • [Your-Topic] intitle:podcast
  • [Your-Topic] intitle:podcasts

Once you’ve found some podcasts/interviews to explore, check them out.  Go to the itunes pages – make sure the podcast is still interviewing people and/or that it has an interview format.  With telesummits – see if you can sign up and go to the event Facebook page – was it active?

3.  Engage, then ask

People like to do business with those they know, like and trust.   You want to get on podcasts and be interviewed by people who are just a step or two past you.  The best way to get a gig with them is to get to know them.

If you are member of my community, you are probably engaging with prospective clients using the below methods… they also work for potential interviewers.

  • Blog commenting
  • Subscribing to the newsletter
  • Following them on social media
  • Sharing their blog posts
  • Buying their products (yes, I’ve been known to take classes from people I want to get to know better).

Another BIG way to get someone’s attention is to write a review.  Even big time podcasters have a small number of reviews.  Leave them a heart-felt 5 stars and you’ll get their attention.

You can also write a review of of their book on your blog – be sure to mention it when you are sharing it.  Finally, if you have actually done what they’ve taught you and gotten good results – write about that.

Making the Pitch

Finally, once you’ve gotten their attention – send them a pitch.  Note, this doesn’t have to be long or fancy.  Just a short note, telling them about yourself and that you would be interested in being in their show.

Here are some more hints for creating a pitch that makes sense.

  1. Personalize – no one likes to receive an obvious form e-mail.  Take the time to talk about what episodes you’ve listened to – and what you have gotten out of the content.
  2. Sell Yourself- Explain to your future host why you are a good fit for their audience. What value can you bring?
  3. Build Credibility –  Let them know where else you’ve been featured.  If you haven’t done any shows, you may have to start smaller, but letting people know what you’ve done will help you build.

What else do you need? A great online speaker document that outlines your talks. I have been using the same format for the last 6 years and it has gotten me 100’s of interviews. Click below to get a copy of it and then you can use the same format to create yours.