By Elaine Quinn
For a solopreneur looking for new clients, speaking to a group about what you offer is hard to beat. And if you’re scared to death of “Public Speaking” before you click off this post …there is an easier way.
Of course, you need to be speaking to an audience who is interested in what you have to say. And you need to motivate them so they want the benefits you offer. And, they need to be ready, willing and able to take action while they’re still in the mood. All that is a pretty tall order, so you’ll want to ask yourself One…Big…Question.
One type of speaking opportunity is at a regularly scheduled meeting of professional or community organizations, usually held monthly. They come with a built-in audience, it’s true; but is the audience there specifically to hear YOU and what YOU have to say? Or are you simply one of many speakers they hear throughout the year?
The cold truth is, you’re not likely to find clients at someone else’s event, with their audience, on their timetable.
The best way to reach prospects who specifically want to hear YOU, and are interested in what YOU have to offer, is to create your own event with your own audience. That way, you can invite the prospects most likely to be interested, and host it in the best place, at the best time.
Fortunately, there’s a tried and true format that lets you do exactly that. You invite a small group to a fun event where they meet you in a comfortable setting, experience a little of what you do, and see the benefits of your product or service for themselves. I’m talking about home parties!
There’s a reason why Avon and Tupperware were so successful when they pioneered this model. And it’s why every direct sales company uses the same format today. It works!
- Attendees are among a small group of friends; it’s comfortable
- People feel sociable; it’s fun
- They see and hear about the product or service up close and in detail
- They get value just from coming; they learn something
- They can make a decision to buy or not; but once the first person starts the ball rolling, there’s social reassurance for the rest of them. It works like social media. Only in person!
When they get invited, people will know the topic of the party. So they’ll only come if they’re interested; they self-select. It’s a relaxed atmosphere, so you have plenty of time to explain and, even better, SHOW what you do.
It’s a low-cost, low-pressure way of reaching people who are interested enough to come and listen! And buy or not, every one of them will go away with your business card AND a better understanding of what you do!
If it’s not something you’re doing already, I encourage you to think about home parties. You’ll be speaking to prospects at the best possible place and time–when they’re comfortable and with friends. And if your product or service isn’t right for them, it may be right for someone they know!
Elaine Quinn, The Solopreneur Specialist. Elaine is a coach and consultant who helps solo professionals repackage and market the skills they have from previous work experience into a successful service business they can run by themselves. She specializes in areas that are trouble spots for most solopreneurs: defining what makes them unique, creating pricing that truly reflects the value they bring clients, and bringing structure to their workdays. She applies her 25 years experience with Fortune 100 companies to today’s single-person businesses and is the author of the popular book, There’s No Place Like Working from Home.