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Motivational Speakers Get Paid to Speak

Posted by Jody Urquhart on Mon, Feb 28, 2011 @ 02:17 PM

Motivational Speaker

I got a call from a medical center in Kentucky from a physician organizing a healthcare conference. He asked me if I am a motivational speaker and will I speak for free? 

I thought, Hmm would you do surgery for free? He explained that he had 'hired' a motivational speaker last year who agreed to speak for free. I inquired, "Well, was he any good?" He said, "No - but it was free so who cares?"

This would be a very easy audience, as the previous motivational speaker has set the bar low. The truth is, I have found it just as difficult, if not more so, to get 'hired' to speak for free than to land a paid engagement. I also do just as much work whether I talk for free or for a fee. Similarly, when a meeting planner organizes a conference, it is a similar amount of work if 50 people show up or 500.

As a self-employed female motivational speaker - like an entrepreneur - you have to set your worth.

When I shared my fee amount with the healthcare administrator in Kentucky, he nearly fell over backward.  He shouted into the phone, "You charge that for just one of your motivational speeches?"  Yes, I do.  

I asked him to seriously consider it, that if he thought the product was worth it, could he afford to pay the fee? In the end, he admitted that it fits into their budget. For a motivational speaker, getting paid is all about perceived value. How can we be professional speakers if we value our services at nothing?

90% of my motivational speeches are at a full fee. I have found that most people can afford to pay. If you are truly a motivational, inspirational speaker, charge people what you are worth. If not, stick to Toastmasters and speak for free.


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Tags: health care conference, motivational speaker, motivational speeches, inspirational speaker, professional speaker

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