Describing Yourself and Your Expertise


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Having booked speakers since 1982, I’ve read through thousands of short bios, presentation topics, websites and power squeeze pages for viral marketing campaigns. It’s the same for meeting planners that are reviewing your promotional materials.

If your phone’s not ringing, it may be your copy.

It’s a good idea to analyze the reasons you are rejected. It may be that among them, your copy does not adequately and accurately describe your uniqueness. You may be an excellent speaker with no paid speaking engagements solely because your short bio and presentation topics aren’t compelling.

What most meeting planners are looking for is the uniqueness of your expertise as it relates to their needs. Your story and your delivery are what make you unique. Does your copy reflect that?

Does your copy bring the reader closer to selecting you? When you re-read what you’ve written, would you hire you based on what you read? Have you given the meeting planners any compelling reason to call you?

One very good use of your money is to hire a copywriter who understands the speaking business. But if you’re just beginning and you insist on writing it yourself, here are six tips that you can do for FREE to write better copy:

1. Use facts and third party endorsements to add credibility to your copy.

The copy that distinguishes you may be your outstanding personal or professional achievements. For instance, if you’re a top producer in real estate, most will tolerate mediocre copy only because they know you’ve earned over $1 million in gross closed commissions in a geographical area where the average single family home price is $250,000. Furthermore, it wouldn’t bother me if your copy and your delivery were poor! I’d just want to hear how you achieved that production. You’re hired!

2. Study the biographical sketches, topic descriptions and long sales letters of other trainers, leaders and speakers.

Learn by observing others. Which elements of others’ copy appeal to you? Study how others distinguish themselves in every sentence. Admit it! Most of the time they’re all saying the same thing.

Did you know that before they removed the subject indexes from the National Speaker Association’s membership directory in 2005, there were approximately 887 speakers listed in the motivational category? Studying those websites would give you terrific ideas to build your brand.

3. After every sentence you write, ask yourself - So What?

Since most of us find it easier to criticize others, do this with other speakers’ bios and presentation topics! To energize your own copy, ask yourself the following question after every sentence - So what? It will get you in the habit of selecting uncommon words and phrases. It will encourage you to look deeper and come up with original phrases. It’s fun to reality-test what you’ve written with someone in the industry. Select someone who will tell you the truth, not a friend who wants to support you no matter what.

4. Identify and refer to the pain that you are qualified to alleviate.

Remind the reader of their challenges and weaknesses. Walk them through their challenges and back up to your solutions. Examples are: Are You Tired of Training for Free? Or… Are You Sick and Tired of Feeling Sick and Tired? Or… Are you Overwhelmed with the Colossal Technological Requirements and Wishing You Could Afford the Assistance You Deserve?

5. Be specific about the difference.

When your copy promises that your presentation is different from all the others, make sure that you have revealed at least a hint of how it is different. It’s not enough to claim that, There’s nothing like this MEGA Millionaire Boot Camp. As a seminar junkie, I know they’re a dime a dozen. I want to know how this one is interactive or has a faculty of twelve experts who will work with me, or has some type of dramatization that will make it more impactful. Every sentence should convince the reader that you have what it takes to deliver your claim.

6. Reveal that your expertise is based on your life experience.

The turning points in your life and your manner of handling them may be what distinguishes you from others. If so, make sure it’s at least partially revealed in your copy. Shocking facts – your life, your near death experience, your commitment to a cause, your rags to riches story, etc. , will create compelling copy.

Great copy will position you as an expert and attract the attention of meeting planners and that’s the first step to getting booked!

Mary McKay is a booking strategist for speakers, authors, leaders, experts, top producers and cultural heroes who want to secure paid speaking engagements. She systematizes the booking process to uniquely position the speaker, optimize the appearance, generate referrals and enable more revenue potential through product sales. Visit her at or call 949-429-6646.


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