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Written by: Matt Lillywhite
Although some producers within the music industry may be extremely introverted, some are surprised to learn that they are actually very naturally talented at public speaking. Whether it’s in front of 50 people, 500, or 5000, it can be nerve-wracking for almost anybody unconfident with their ability to talk continuously. But despite any downsides that you can possibly think of, the upsides are absolutely incredible. During this article, we’re going to discuss how you can get public speaking gigs as a music artist, and how it can impact your brand for the better.
Firstly, you need to establish an exact audience that you want to speak in front of so that you can start finding appropriate venues to collaborate with. For example, if you are a record label owner wanting to speak in front of loads of producers, events such as ADE are great opportunities to talk directly to your target audience. Once you are able to establish yourself as a thought leader & influencer within your industry, it becomes much easier to get accepted for gigs, and potentially get paid thousands of dollars for each one. People such as Gary Vee & Tony Robbins reguarly charge fees upwards of $200k per speech simply because of their credibility, talent, and current thoughts on the world. You too can do the same. You too can become a prevalent thought leader within your niche. But you shall never know until you try.
Once you have an audience within your niche started, networking with like-minded people in your space is absolutely essential to success. A popular way to do this is by looking at who is speaking at events you want to attend, and generate strong relationships with them. In order to find potential speaking gigs, just search “music conferences” into Google so you’re able to identify the types of appropriate places that you could potentially collaborate with, and then get in contact with them. By deploying these tactics, it gets you directly in front of your target audience all around the world and opens up so many opportunities for new business partnerships & ventures.
Next, your marketing for your artist brand must be absolutely perfect if you wish to be speaking publicly about a certain topic. After all, you’d seem like a bit of a hypocrite if you were talking about great branding as a music producer – yet aren’t doing it yourself. Therefore, you should be reaching & talking to your audience on as many platforms as possible. This includes YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Podcasts, and many others. By creating a strong social presence for yourself as an artist, it will make you seem a lot more credible in the eyes of anyone potentially wishing to book you for a speaking gig.
Once you are able to effectively find speaking engagements within your target market, creating a strong presence for yourself on stage is what will ultimately allow you to unlock a lot of opportunities at once. For example, when you are giving a talk on marketing for music producers at a conference, several people could live what you had to say & hire you for future PR campaigns on their artist project. Essentially, you need to find your cadence. You need to find what makes you qualified, and an expert to talk about a certain subject. After all, you’re the one on stage talking to a lot of people.
If you have never spoken before publicly for a fee, then there is a strong probability that you’ll have to do it for free in order to gain some experience when first starting out. Many people absolutely hate this idea because they think that they should be paid for their time. However, the fact remains that if nobody is willing to pay you, you need to build up your credibility for free until your reputation is absolutely incredible. Essentially, if you are able to deliver a really good speech at a conference during 2019 for free, there’s a strong probability of getting invited back the following year (and getting paid for it).
With all that said, even if you are an expert on topics such as music production, if it can’t make the (potential) audience significant revenue, the chances of being paid high fees are very minimal for the first couple of years. There are lots of subjects within the music industry that will work well as an incredible workshop (such as ADE masterclasses). However, in the majority of cases, the minimal revenue streams for the producing you’d be teaching would lead to a minuscule payday. As a general rule of thumb, keynote speakers tend to be paid reasonable sums whilst masterclass tutors are not (unless you have a strong personal brand of course).
Public speaking is an absolutely incredible way to boost the credibility of your artist brand. With the chance to travel around the world, network with like-minded individuals, and the top tiers of the entertainment industry, it only makes sense that one would consider using the activity as a potential revenue stream in addition to their current income from music. You may be introverted. Or alternatively, you could be the most extroverted person in the country. Regardless, if you have a talent for something, use it to teach people. Use it to help people become specialists within their field, and to ultimately become the best they can be. You can be an integral part of that legacy if you choose to. Public speaking is simply the key to unlocking that potential.