Today, while I did a speaker mentoring session with Khaleelulla Khan, I got a question into my head:
When you are trying to sell your speech, who are you selling it to?
There are two ways you can look at selling your message:
1) You are helping people get a better life/career
2) You are helping businesses improve – by helping their managers learn about some aspect of business or leadership.
You are either on the side of the employee – or the company.
But then there is the third way: This is when the company is helping its employees get a better life/career.
It’s the same when you are writing a book. (A book is more or less just research for a speech nowadays anyway.)
1) You are writing a book people buy with their own money – because they decided they want to become better at something in their life.
2) You writing a book that top managers buy because they want to know how to develop their people to improve business
3) You write a book that the top management buys and give as gifts to all their people because the managers want their people to become better at something.
In scenario 1 you sell a few books (people really do not like to part with their hard earned money)
In scenario 2 you sell a few more books as companies buy in small quantities to give to top managers
In scenario 3 you sell the most amount of books as you now get the company to buy books to all the employees.
Take a subject like “creativity”
In scenario 1 you write a book called something like “Live a creative life.” (good for the individual)
In scenario 2 you write a book called somethings like “How to develop a creative culture” (good for the company)
In scenario 3 you write a book called something like “Think in new ways” (good both for the individual and the company)
When the book is out you go on a speaking tour:
In scenario 1 you are speaking at public events
In scenario 2 you are speaking at small events for the top management
in scenario 3 you are speaking at the big corporate events where they have assembled all employees.
There is no “right or wrong” here of course. Do it right and you can sell million of books in category one, or get millions of people to sign up for your speeches at public events.
But for a speaker wanting to build a solid speaking career and have a solid market to sell books directly to his or her clients then category 3 is probably the strongest.
I have written books in all three categories and my most successful book, by far, has been The Idea Book which falls very well into category 3.
As a speaker you can choose to be in any of these categories, you can even choose to work with more than one.
The purpose with this post is to get you to think about what your strategy is.