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Speaker Tips

People Vote With Their Wallets. Period. (Platinum Sponsor Post)

In 1994 I wrote a script for a twenty eight minute video. To produce the video it cost me $10,000. The video generated over $120,000,000.00 in revenue. Yes, that’s millions. Approximately 20% of that went directly into my pocket.
If you are a writer, blogger, podcaster or producer you need to read this article.If you haven’t figured it out already, I wrote an infomercial. Before you scoff, before you dismiss me and skip this article let me ask you a question. If you knew that people would pay you based on their level of enjoyment of your content would you survive the cut? The more they liked you the more they paid. The less they liked you to less they paid. What if they hated you and you had to pay them? That is the cold, hard truth of how the world really functions.I must admit, I have a very unfair advantage. I am a hypnotist. Not just any hypnotist. The media calls me the greatest hypnotist of all time. I know how the mind operates and I know what causes a person to do what they do. I not only hypnotized my wife to fall in love with me I also hypnotized her to give drugless, painless birth to our two sons at home in the bath tub with no doctors present. When I write copy I hypnotize people to buy my products and when I speak I hypnotize people to run to the back of the room to invest in themselves and my programs.I am very up front and honest about it. My wife will tell you she knew I hypnotized her from the moment we met. She will tell you she’s glad I did. My fans and customers keep coming back for more because their lives have been made better by what I hypnotized them to buy. I hypnotize my son’s on a daily basis to adjust their behaviors so they can live a more full and joyful life. Everybody wins.

Media, whether terrestrial or digital is one of the most hypnotic forms of communication on the planet. With so many choices in media both online and off, it’s essential that you structure your content in a way that not only keeps your audience engaged it also must cause them to take a new action. Whether it’s buying your products or visiting your advertisers sites, or taking some new action.

When I created my infomercial “Passion, Profit and Power!” I knew that I wasn’t only competing with other infomercials. I knew I was competing with all other TV programming. I knew I was competing with print, radio, board games, and any other activity my consumer could choose. You see, the human condition is such that it will always choose the path of least resistance. That’s how people form habits that they know are horrible and still have such a hard time stopping.

All buying decisions are based first on emotion and then backed up with logic. A buying decision isn’t just the choice to make a purchase. A buying decision is any choice. Choosing to subscribe to your blog, choosing to recommend you to friends, choosing to come back again and again are all buying decisions.

If you adhere to a simple formula, you will dramatically increase both your audience and your revenue.

I described this formula during the NMX Hangout with CoachDeb. Watch this now:
I call the formula “E3”. Entertain, Educate, Empower.First Entertain. Funny means money. The highest paid television and movie actors are always comics. Laughter and the joy it brings are highly desirable experiences for most healthy people. When you can make someone laugh you will hold their attention. At the same time any emotional experience will engage people and keep them engaged since human beings are motion junkies. In my infomercial I showed clips of people walking on broken glass, breaking bricks with their bare hands, eating fire and getting hypnotized to do the most amazing things. I knew if I created a show that they would come back and watch again and again eventually they would buy from me.Second Educate. To be an authority you must establish competence. Give your audience useful knowledge that they can not only use, give them information that firmly positions you as an expert. If you don’t believe that your material is content rich enough, come see me, there’s a hypnotist for that.Thirdly Empower. If they are simply entertained and don’t take a new action then you are missing the mark. To create evangelical customers, fans and followers you must alter, add to and improve the quality of their lives. What’s the outcome? What’s the new habit or action? Did you empower them to change their lives, buy your product or spread your message to others? If so, grand slam, out of the park, home run.

I will be entertaining at NMX LIVE! on Saturday night at 8pm. My hypnotic show will have you laughing until you hurt and gasping in amazement. On Sunday at 4:30pm I will be keynoting and teaching you how to massively monetize your online content and more. Plus I am going to be giving away tens of thousands of dollars in cash and prizes. See you at NMX LIVE!


Marcus Sheridan talks about making speeches more social


When I went to BlogWorld Los Angeles, I had one overwhelming thought. I LOVE that Marcus Sheridan guy! I had never seen him speak before, nor even heard of him, yet after his session, I was an immediate fan. Seriously, I can’t gush enough about what an incredible speaker he is, how he engages the audience, and how many fantastic insights he has for the small business owner. (You can hear his session from the most recent conference in New York by purchasing the Virtual Ticket!)

Check out what Marcus has to say about presenting and what makes for a memorable session in this interview from Blogcast FM‘s Srinivas Rao. Also, think that you can just blog when you feel like it? Marcus has some thoughts on that, too.

What do you think? Should speakers interact with their audiences more? Do you like a monologue or would you rather interact with the speaker throughout the session?

Knowing Me, Knowing You


Extra points to those of you who recognized the title of the post as being an ABBA song from the 80’s! Music is a bit of a passion of mine. I have music playing all the time when I am writing. The other major passion in my life right now is Mobile; mobile technology and mobile platforms. That’s why I was incredibly excited to partner with Qualtrics, who provides survey tools and are enabling me to reach out to a huge slice of the U.S. population and ask them questions about how they use their mobile tech (you can take the survey here).

Mobile technology is moving at an amazing speed. As Apple CEO Tim Cook said recently, “Apple’s lifetime iPad sales across all generations have now topped 67 million. To put that into context, it took us 24 years to sell that many Macs, five years for that many iPods, and three years for iPhones.” The world is shifting its preference for consuming and producing content to mobile devices. What can you, as a content producer, do about it?

With the increasing use of mobile devices for the consumption of content, you, as content producers, have to understand the mobile consumer so that you can produce content that reaches and appeals to them. This is not just about having a mobile-optimized website, this is about having the type of content that actually captures attention through all the other distractions that surround a mobile user. Content producers have to understand the setting and context of the mobile user and how it differs from that of the non-mobile user (even though those two may, in fact, be the same person at different times in their day).

The experience of consuming content while sitting at a desk is vastly different from that of sitting on a train or in front of the TV. While you may well believe you have optimized your existing content for mobile, did you do it because your audience needed it or did you do it because you were told it was something that should be done? If nothing else I suggest checking out your Google analytics and seeing how many of your readers/content consumers are viewing your content from a mobile device, and seeing which areas they are consuming. Then, place your focus for optimization on that content.

Remember mobile optimization isn’t about your content as much as it is about the audience experience. In our efforts to be better at what we do as content producers one of the most valuable assets in our arsenal is knowledge. Aside from reconnecting with friends and making new contacts, attending a conference like Blogworld Expo is one of the easiest ways of gaining new knowledge.

If you come to my session in New York, “Smartphones, Smarter Users – The Who, When, What of the Mobile Consumer,” I am going to discuss the day in the life of the mobile user. The research I will be unveiling is brand new, never seen before, and the presentation is tailored specifically toward content producers. So if you want to know the when, how, why and what of the mobile content, consumer I’ll see you in my session.

BlogWorld Speaker Proposal Tips: Follow Directions


I receive at least five or six emails, tweets, or Facebook inquiries each day asking when BlogWorld will be accepting speaker proposals for our 2011 event. The truth is, we’re still firming up dates and the location and once we have that in place, we’ll be better equipped to open up for speaker proposals. That you’re already enthusiastic, makes us even more enthusiastic and inspires us to set the bar even higher for next year! However, just because we’re not ready for your proposal, doesn’t mean you can’t start working on it ahead of time. We get kind of bummed when we receive proposals on the last day before deadline and they were obviously written up in five minutes. When you take the time to send in a well-written, proofread, engaging and intriguing proposal,  it shows and puts you in our good graces. Hastily written proposals might end up in the denial pile.

Giving you what you want!

We’re often asked for tips for our potential speakers, especially those who are too shy to submit a proposal or from those whose proposals were denied in the past.  Thus, a new series is born. I’m going to come by here on a regular basis to offer our best tips for speakers – especially those of you wishing to submit a killer proposal,  or haven’t been successful before. You see, at BlogWorld it’s not necessarily about having the same big names speak each year. We especially enjoy featuring the space’s up and comers. There’s nothing we like more than introducing a new speaker and watching that person skyrocket to fame as a result of a super talk.

I’m also going to do my best to get other members of the BlogWorld team to come by here with their best tips for speakers and speaker proposals. They’ve been doing this longer than me and have plenty of insight. Also, if you’re someone who speaks at events and would like to write a guest post featuring tips for writing speaker proposals or tips for new speakers, feel free to contact Nikki Katz, our Managing Editor at Nikki@blogworldexpo.com

Today’s Tip: Follow Directions

The simplest things are the ones that trip us up every time. In 2010, many speakers weren’t selected because they didn’t complete the online form. It wasn’t that we were being nitpicky, either. When we don’t have all the details, we simply can’t make a decision. Some folks didn’t even put in contact details.  Some folks, only submitted a proposal without anything else filled out.  You might think that some of the items we requested weren’t necessary as long as we have your proposal and contact details, but maybe if I explain why it’s ALL necessary, you’ll be more likely to take the time to check every box and type in all information.


Speaker Agreement

Everything on the speaker proposal form is there for a reason. For example, your first step is in checking off the boxes in the speaker agreement. Without the speaker agreement, you can’t speak. Period. In addition to agreeing to our terms, it also means you’re granting us permission to use your image, video and audio in our content including blog posts and the virtual conference.

Contact Information

It seems pretty basic, but we need your contact details to, well, contact you. Without your email address we have no way of knowing how to tell you your proposal was approved or denied. Also, we ask for your phone number and email in case we require more information. Plus, having your cell phone number is handy in case we can’t find you at BlogWorld and we need to get in touch.

Bio and Social Media

There are several criteria for accepting speakers. Not only do you have to be able to speak well, teach and engage. But we also want to be sure you’re going to fill a room. Your bio and social media accounts tell us what we need to know about you. Sometimes, if we don’t know a potential speaker, we’ll give him a Google to see what kind of following he has, or if he has any videos out. We comb through a lot of YouTubes to see what kind of speakers you are. We want to see your blogs and websites to be sure you know what you’re talking about and also want to know if you’ve done this before. Not having experience isn’t a deal breaker at all, but it does help to know you’ve done this before.

Proposal and Takeaways

Filling out your speaker proposal requires brevity. We ask for a certain amount of characters, enough for a quick paragraph or two. This proposal has to cover what you’ll be talking about while allowing your personality to shine through. You see, if you offer a boring, no nonsense, no personality proposal, we’ll assume you’re a no personality speaker.Try not to submit a topic 100 other people are going to submit. Be unique enough that we’ll be intrigued, but not so nichey that only a few people will show up. Think about the topics you would like to see and propose them. Also, please don’t submit more than two or three proposals, too many make us feel as if you’re unfocused.  Stick to one to three topics within your realm of expertise. Keep in mind that we’re looking for topics for all levels, but we would absolutely love to see some advanced topics for the social media professionals who are at the top of their field and still looking to learn.

Don’t overlook your takeaways, either. We ask for takeaways because we want to be sure you know that your attendees are to walk away with something tangible. They’re to leave your sessions armed to take action. By listing two or three solid takeaways, you’re upping your own ante and catching our attention.

It’s all there for a reason

I know there’s a lot of information to fill out, but it’s all there for a reason. For example, in the month before BlogWorld, it’s difficult to put together a speaker roster without all your information. If we don’t have the information it means we’re spending our time hunting you down asking for your bio or Twitter handle. This took us weeks to complete last time around. Plus, if you’re chosen, we want to be able to help promote your sessions. If you don’t give us your Twitter handle, we can’t Tweet. If you don’t give us your blog address, we can’t link to you.

In the upcoming weeks well get into more detail about what we look for specifically in speakers or panelists. For now, I can tell you that my biggest tip is to take your speaker proposal form seriously, fill out all the information and don’t rush through it.

Trust me, we notice.

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