As a heart-centered entrepreneur, whether you are launching a new business, or trying to make the quantum leap you know you are capable of, you have an incredibly powerful tool at your disposal that costs you nothing and is uniquely yours: your voice.
By using your experience, your expertise, and your voice to speak to groups, either large or small, you can build a solid foundation and kick-start your growth.
Let’s get rid of a few misconceptions first.
First, we aren’t talking about The State of the Union or a Commencement Address here. Speaking does not have to be done in a formal or lavish setting for it to be effective. In fact, as an entrepreneur, expert, or business owner, you use your speaking skills in multiple contexts every day.
The same speaking skills you use to convey your message to a small group gathered in your living room are the same ones you use in a conference room, creating a webinar, participating in a conference call, or up on stage in front of hundreds of attendees who have paid to hear your message.
Second, contrary to what your fears are telling you, you don’t have to be an extrovert or love getting up in front of a crowd to speak. There are a lot of tools you can use to make you feel more comfortable. You can effectively deliver your message in a video, a webinar, or over the phone. (Ladies, you don’t even have to do your hair for these ones!)
Remember, whenever you are talking about your business or your passion to a group that wants to hear what you have to say, you are SPEAKING.
You have something to say that no one else can
The combination of your experience, knowledge, and perspective is unique to you and the world is clamoring for people who can speak authentically to those experiences.
By speaking you make yourself more visible to the world in a way that is more personal, accessible, and impactful than any writing or social media following you can create.
When you are just starting out, you have the expertise to help your clients, but you lack the track record of successes and overjoyed customer testimonials that help convince people that you are the solution to their problems. When they see you speak they see you for who you are, an expert.
Speaking is one of the cost-effective ways you can add new business. You already have your ideas, experience, and voice. And for those of us who sometimes struggle with the technology side of thing (guilty!), speaking is perfect. You just need you, them, and a room.
One of the quickest and best ways to grow your business quickly is to speak to as many potential customers as possible. By speaking you can turn audience members into customers and into referrals for other speaking engagements where you can turn more audience members into more customers and more referrals. Oh, Imagine the growth!
The one thing you never have enough of as an entrepreneur is time. Speaking allows you to tell your story once and have it heard by as many people as can fit in the room. And if you’ve recorded your message, that same message can be seen and heard by the whole world.
But the best part of speaking is that you don’t have to go out looking for prospective customers because they are already there.
In that 30 minutes or 1 hour, you have spoken directly to a group of people who wanted to hear what you have to say and are now ready to act. What’s a better use of your time than that?
What separates a conversation about your passion into an opportunity to sell your services to your engaged and interested audience is your offer. Your presentation should be a gateway to your offer. When people hear your message and the passion you have for what you are offering right from your mouth, you can make your offer irresistible.
How can you ensure that you’ve put together a great speech that is going to not only get people in the door, but have them leaving excited by your message?
1. Create a Great Talk Title
Your ability to deliver a great speech that turns into a sale starts with a Great Talk Title. Let your audience know not only what the talk is about, but how it will benefit them. The magic doesn’t happen at the end, but at the beginning and your Talk title begins to plant the seeds for your eventual success.
2. Create a Speaker Summary Sheet
Your summary sheet is a short biography of you, a summary of your talk (250 words, max! Keep it short), and your picture. This can be sent to organizations you want to speak to. You should also include a speaker introduction that the host can read when they are introducing you to the room.
3. Sizzle Reel
Your sizzle reel is a short video introducing yourself to your audience. It’s your trailer, press kit, speaker one-sheet, and bio … all wrapped into one powerful video. This is not something you need right away but keep your eye out for opportunities to catch this footage when you can.
Speaking from your heart always feels amazing. Speaking from your heart and actually turning that into sales feels even more amazing.
4. And finally, follow my Five-Step Formula SPEAK
-> S – stands for Speak. You must learn to speak in a clear and concise way to convey the unique value that only you provide. For example, I help entrepreneurs sell without being salesy. Pretty clear, right?
-> P – stands for Position yourself as the expert. You know more about your subject matter than anyone in the room. Own that! You are the expert in your category.
-> E- stands for Expect Resistance from the outside as well as the inside. When you’re moving forward, you are going to experience resistance. And that’s a good thing! Resist the urge to stop or slow down. Lean into the resistance!
-> A – stands for Authority. No one grants you the authority to be who you are! No one knocked on my door and said, “Hey, Lisa, here’s the crown. You’re the Queen of Sales Conversion.” That is who I am. I crowned myself!
-> K – stands for Knowing. Your intuition is strong and accurate. You already know. Stop second guessing yourself. You know what to do at any given moment.
If you enjoyed this content, Lisa Sasevich is releasing a complimentary online training series chocked full of resources like this designed to support you in your business building journey. Check it out here.
Warning, I don’t want you to get caught up on creating tons of content before you launch a membership site.
You don’t need to make a year’s worth of content in advance before launching a site. You don’t need to make 6 months, 3 months or even really an entire month ahead of your subscribers before you launch. All you have to worry about is staying ahead of your very first subscriber. Think about that, if you have 6 months of content inside your membership site and no one joins, then what good is it, What is the difference between having a month of content and six months of content if no one is even inside to look at it. There is no difference. That’s why you should start off with just one week.
Can you make just one or two videos to keep people happy and give them something to watch or stay busy with after they join your site, If you can, then, that’s all you need to launch. And if no one buys, then the problem is not of the content, it’s with the promotion of that membership site. But if you get a handful of subscribers, now you know that you have to create another week of content.
And it is fun to stay about a week ahead of your earliest adaptor, because you can schedule yourself in advance, you can create two videos at a time and so on. But don’t use content as an excuse not to launch. It’s too tempting and you might not have any buyers. Worry about the buyers and then worry about getting far ahead in the scheduled content.
You want to have a membership site, but what should the price be, Should it be free, And how can you justify the price you charge,
These are all very good questions and the first thing I want to tell you is that a free membership site is something that should come later. For now, charge a fee for access of this site. Just to make it simple, for now charge a one-time fee, not a recurring fee, just charge a one-time fee, even if it’s $20, $50, whatever seems about right, charge now and worry about the free membership site later. The point of a free membership site is to get a lot of people in and to get a lot of participation, and I prefer to set-up the paid membership site first, so that when it’s time to make the free membership site I can push them all into buying the paid program. The free comes later, charge for now.
But what exactly should you charge, Does $50 sound right, or does $20 sound right,
The easy answer is to look at what your competitors charge. I will look at my top 5 competitors and average out that price they all charge and that will be around what I should ask for. Maybe you have some of thousand dollar people in there, some of hundred dollar people, and the average price point is $500, then look at how those competitors justify the price they should charge. And naturally the secret because whether you’re asking $10, $20, $50, if you can show a clear result, then you can justify that price. That’s why there were some weight loss products for hundreds or thousands of dollars because they explain to you, “if you pay this money, you can get these results.” That’s why real state courses start at $1000 on the low end, because, you take a training, you flip a house, you get thousands of dollars back.
Charge for your membership site, for now, make it a single-payment site, worry about the monthly site later, don’t make it free, but charge for your site. Look at what the competitors are charging and figure out what clear result you can promise or, at least explain so that any price you offer seems cheap.
Extremely common question I hear is when I make a membership site should I add a forum to get people posting there, to have a community, and to keep members paying and coming back all the time. And you should think for a long time before adding a forum. You should make sure your site is established first and has content of your own before you start asking for content from other people. The reason for this is because it’s too easy to have an empty forum.
If you set-up a forum or message board and no one is posting inside, then you have negative social proof. We’ve all seen on websites, on blogs especially, we can make posts, we can get people to visit, but it’s very hard to get people to participate especially that first time and leave a post or leave a comment. That means that if you have a forum, you can have a lot of lurkers reading posts but not a lot of people posting and everyone believes that the forum is empty.
And if you can get your membership site filled up enough, you have the worse case and the best case. The worse case is that, no one posts on your forum at all and you just have an empty message board. This really sucks because you end up having to put in a bunch of time making posts of your own, maybe using fake names just to get people to look at what you have but they still wont post. In other words, it’s a wasted area of your membership site. And the best case is that you have tons of activity on your forum which means you have to watch it everyday and moderate comments and delete troublemakers and basically make sure that everyone stays friendly towards one another.
I am not saying forums are all bad, I just highly recommend that you launch your membership site normally right now with posts and the ability to leave comments, and if the membership site becomes very popular, add a forum and you set as an excuse to launch again.
Question, when you set-up your membership site, do you take the time to think about what your visitors will be trying to get access to or do you simply pile in content with no thought towards usability,
If you haven’t yet thought about how your membership site should be organized, this will help. What you want to do is, keep in mind that one single post can belong to multiple categories, that you should type and module your post as well. In WordPress you have posts and you have categories. A category can be a group of posts but a post can have multiple categories. For example, let’s say you set-up categories like module 101 and module 102, and you also have categories, for example called video and called software. One single post in your WordPress membership site can belong to both the 101 module and to the video category. And that means when we look at the video category, we can list all posts that belong to the video category and we show the 101 category lists of posts laying to the 101 category. But it is very important to keep in mind that you are not limited to assigning one post to just one category, one post can have many categories.
But what kind of categories should you set-up,
I recommend two different kinds of categories. First set of categories for the different types of media in your site. One might be video, one might be audio, one might be reports, you might have assignments or check lists. These could be different categories. In that way someone can click on just the video category and list all the videos, just the check list category and see all the check lists. You should also type your categories according to module, in other words, what’s the simple stuff, what’s the hard stuff. What I like to do is name my modules 101, 102, 103 and so on and apply a post to one type category and one module category. That means if someone wants to just list the audios, they list the audio category, someone just wants to start out they list the 101 category and that makes sure that everything is organized and that your members can easily get to the information they need.
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When you have membership sites, sometimes it just doesn’t make sense for people to pay you on a recurring basis and be able to get all of the downloadable items all at once. I have been in a few membership sites where I pay a monthly fee but as soon as I joined I had access to the previous several years-worth of content, and what happened was I was overwhelmed, I was confused and I definitely did not consume everything inside of those membership sites.
But you can be different. You can structure your membership site with Drip Content and make it more like a course. Somebody pays you a monthly fee, they joined and they get access to the first week or two of content. If they stay in for another few weeks or another few months they get access to even more videos and downloadable items over time. In this way, when people join, they can see what’s coming up, what was just delivered, and it’s all hand-fed to them over a link of time so that it makes sense because the more they pay the more access they get to the information.
If you have a recurring payment plan kind of site where somebody might pay you once a month for five or six months and then stop, this makes sense as well because someone joins, they pay for just the first month, they get just the first month of content, when they pay for the second month, they also get the second month worth of content and so on all the way until they get to the end. And I have even used Drip Content on single payment membership sites. Someone can pay you one time, for example $50 and get access to a few videos but the longer they wait around the more videos they get at no extra charge. The bonuses are dripped out and they can make sense of the first few videos and when it’s time to move on to the next step they get access to the next few videos. And that’s all Drip Content really is. Someone joins your site now, they get some content, then after a few days or weeks they get more content whether they pay for it or don’t pay for it depending on how you set it up.
You might have become confused hearing different people’s explanations of what a membership site is. A membership site doesn’t necessarily mean a recurring or continuity income stream. It is just a protected download area.
A membership site is a more advanced version of a download page. Somebody sees your site, they choose to click on the payment button and pay you money, but after they check-out for their purchase, they are sent to a registration page where they can fill out their very own unique username and password. What this means is that every single person who buys from you has their own unique log-in details, their own unique username and password to get back to your membership site later. This means it is fully protected against people who try to find a download file. It means that if someone loses their details, they can use the lost, password functionality to get it back and best of all, if someone cancels or refunds from your membership site, then their account is locked and they can no longer get access to your site.
Another cool thing about membership sites is you can host different items for download in the same membership site. Somebody could purchase product number one, and log-in to your membership site, download it, then purchase product number two and log-in to the same site with the same details and now see both items they just paid for.
The thing to remember the most is that a membership site is not necessarily something where you collect a monthly fee. It can be a site where you take money one single time, or it can be a site that is completely free but it’s just a protected download area that is only open to people who are supposed to get access to that download.
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The best membership software runs on top of the WordPress, but the problem with the WordPress is, it has thousands and thousands of plug-ins and it’s difficult to choose which ones you should add to your site. That’s why the top three plug-ins I use in my membership sites are the Subscribe to Comment plug-in, the Category Post plug-in, and the WP Audio Player plug-in.
First of all, the Subscribe to Comments plug-in is very useful because you can have posts in your membership site and people can come and leave comments under those posts to add to the discussion or ask questions, but the problem is, many people will log-in, leave a comment, and leave never to return, and if they do return, they have come back too late and the discussion is over. But, Subscribe to Comments changes that. If you leave a comment under someone’s post, and another member comes back and replies to that comment, then you will receive an e-mail. Then if a third person comes in and leaves a comment, then both of you will receive e-mails, and so on. Basically, every person who has left a comment under a particular post gets updates anytime anyone leaves a comment under them. It’s great for keeping the discussion on the membership site going without you having to do any extra work.
The Category Post Widget plug-in allows you to add a listing of all of the posts in a specific category on your side bar. What I’d like to do is add a section on my side bar for every category of my site and what that means is that every single post is listed on my side bar but they are all grouped by category. And that means that someone can see a listing of all the video posts, all the audio posts, all the beginner posts, all the advanced posts, and jump to any particular piece of content within the membership site.
And finally, the WP Audio Player plug-in makes it very easy to add audio to your website. For many people, video is too complicated or too scary, but audio is a good first step because audio doesn’t require writing and doesn’t require a lot of preparations. You simply start talking and that is your recording. And many people can get the majority of what you get in a video or an article with an audio, and you can still get the audio transcribed later. That’s why I like the WP Audio Player plug-in, I’ll record mp3 files as content for a membership site, upload it, and the player makes the audio available right there on the page.
So, the top plug-ins you should use in a membership site that you can get for free are the Subscribe to Comments plug-in for discussion, the Category Post plug-in for navigation, and the WP Audio Player plug-in for multi-media.