Got dream? You have milk, thank you very much, but there’s nothing like an excellent conference to kick you into gear for not settling into mediocrity. National Speakers Association’s Winter Conference was just such a butt kickin’.
Here are a few points to ponder…
Face-to-face and virtual are better together than ever before
I teach people to engage in virtual presentations, but I oft quip that webinars aren’t the answer to world hunger. The converse problem, however, is getting hung up on what you can do face-to-face that isn’t as effective virtually (there are many). They work together. Search out the #NSA12 hashtag on Twitter…these folks get it.
Social media, without effort and focus, is just media
Randy Gage (@Randy_Gage) noted that he spends two hours a day with social media, and at least one Twitter protest asked, “Who’s got two hours?” (Love you, Gina :)).
Interpretation: If you’re looking to build your business, two hours a day of focused sales/marketing/relationship time is reasonable. The question is, “Where are you going to spend it?” If you’re already busy enough, good for you.
Learn how the brain serves to help – or hurt – your selling
Colleen Stanley (@EISelling) delivered an insightful session and made the point well that the amygdala-driven emotional side of the prospect is the gatekeeper in the conversation. Grow your emotional intelligence skills to avoid triggering fight-flight-freeze.
Follow a repeatable process in book-writing and publishing
Publishing wizard Dianna Booher (@DiannaBooher) outlined a systematic approach to nailing the process of getting your book off to a good start. Of note, care to guess how books (in mainstream publishing) are pre-sold? 59%. You can do it yourself, but she makes a convincing argument for why working through a traditional publisher still has merit. My paraphrase of her steps:
Know your market
Study the problems, trends, issues, gaps, questions and research what’s been done.
Find your pitch
Find a unique angle, new market, perspective, or format. Develop a brief pitch as your roadmap, and get feedback from trusted colleagues.
Create your pitch
Write your proposal, a query from that proposal, and select agents appropriate to your topic/market.
Create your content in advance of the sale
Begin writing your book while the agent sells it; self-publish if you don’t get a good offer.
Serialize with an expanded outline
Stan Walters (@TheLieGuy) notes that media forms aside, the foundation of monetizing your message with serial seminars is to expand your content outline.
My interpretation on that thought…your schema or schemata is critical to knowing how “high or low” to hit your audience. In other words, you don’t want to talk over their heads or at a level of detail beyond where they’re at, and you won’t get there if you don’t understand which details go where.
BTW, this is critical to executing the product- or line-extension strategies Dianna Booher talked about.
Get (freakin’) uncomfortable
Lisa Sasevich (@InvisibleClose) had many nuggets of wisdom, but I needed to hear it (again…and the “freakin'” is my emphasis). As a professional speaker, I’ve been blessed to have achieved a level of “made it” that many aspire to (do it full time, small staff). Lisa was a shot in the arm to speakers or corporate workers alike…the least safe place to be is “safe.” Get freakin’ uncomfortable.
You? What were your takeaways?