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Why Referring OTHER Speakers Can Help YOU Earn More

Start referring other speakers for every gig you win, it's the best way to earn more gigs.

5
minute read
Published on
January 23, 2024
Mallory Brown, the most recent addition to my little list of speakers I refer to event organizers.

I don't think I'm crazy…

But I sure get some wild looks when I share this advice…

I want you to start telling event organizers about other speakers they should book.

"But Andrew, shouldn't I try to get those gigs for myself?"

Well, yes… and no.

Chances are slim you'll speak at an event two years in a row. So, I want you to start referring other speakers for every gig you win.

Not only is it the best way to earn more gigs. But, it's also a brilliant way to start generating the holy grail of all revenue… passive income!

This all sounds easy, but – as they say – the devil is in the details.

So, let's dive right in!

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Don't
Do

You're Not Actually In the "Speaking" Business After All

You're not in the speaking business. No, you're in the "relationship" business. The "event organizer relationship" business, to be more precise.

Yes, those nonstop email exchanges, zoom meetings, and phone calls with event organizers are like the spinal cord of your living, breathing career.

Without those strong connections, everything would crumble.

So, the longer you can maintain relationships with event organizers, the more often you will get gigs. This holds true even if your contact switches organizations, moves to a new city, or starts hosting a different kind of event.

After you establish a relationship and deliver a stellar speech for one event organizer, they are more likely to book you again in the future.

There's just one catch…

Audiences like variety. So, your chances of speaking at the same event two years in a row are pretty slim. In fact, my chances are only about 1 in 22 that I'll grace a stage in back-to-back years.

(Those chances are low, but not zero. I have some specific tactics you can use if you want to win a gig two years in a row. But, I'll save those goodies for another week.)

So, if you book a gig in 2022, you most likely won't speak again in 2023. However, your chances of speaking at that same event in 2024 are actually pretty good!

For me, the chances increase to 1 in 9! That's why it pays to keep your relationship with the event organizer going strong for those 18 months after you speak.

By the way… this all works assuming three things.

  1. Your speech is referable.
  2. You always deliver.
  3. You're a transformational speaker.

(Learn more about what these mean in the book The Referable Speaker, which I co-authored with Michael Port.)

Don't
Do

Three is the Magic Number

Once you've finished speaking at an event, finding ways to maintain your relationship with an event organizer can be a little tricky. After all, we already established that they are rarely going to book you two years in a row.

So, what else can you do to keep the fires of professional love burning bright? Well, why not send them some excellent referrals?

The key here is in the timing.

For now, I just want you to focus on the number three. When you give your event organizer three carefully selected referrals for their specific event, you're giving them three essential reasons to keep in touch with you for the long term.

Why three?

Well… three referrals gives your event organizers some great variety without overwhelming them with options.

And these are unlike any other referrals they get from other sources. Here's why…

Don't
Do

Like a Robot… But Better Looking

Speakers are the absolute best people in the world to refer other speakers.

This holds true regardless of the event, the venue, or the industry.

The reasons make perfect sense…

  1. You've been at their event before, so you've met the audience, and you know what kinds of content they are most craving. You understand their industry and business concerns inside and out
  2. As a speaker, you watch a lot of other speakers.   Your network is HUGE! So, you know who's good and who might be perfect for a particular audience. Really, you're like a walking-talking-referral-robot… just better looking!
  3. The money… You understand their budget and have an intimate knowledge of their team. So, you already know that you shouldn't refer a speaker who's $45,000 when they only have a budget of $7,500.

You're saving the event organizer time and energy by hand selecting speakers for their event. That's why they love getting referrals from past speakers. Referrals from other speakers are more relevant than referrals they would get from any other source – even better than speaker's bureaus!

By now, you should understand how giving referrals can help you earn more gigs over time. Now, let's dive into the second main benefit…

Don't
Do

Earning the Holy Grail of All Revenue… Passive Income!

I don't know many people who would say no to easy money…

And passive income is especially sweet when it comes with the added benefit of helping a fellow speaker.

Typically, speakers create passive revenue streams through coaching, online courses, or by building online communities. But, this method is much easier.

Here's how this works…

In the year after you speak at a specific event, send along three carefully selected referrals for other speakers who would be a good fit for that event.

Know in advance which of those referrals offer commissions for referrals you make, and they win. Many speakers offer this, and it's an easy way to make some extra money.

For example, if you refer someone a gig that pays $10,000, they are often willing to give you between 5% and 30% of that fee. So, you'll earn somewhere between $500 and $3,000 just for giving the referral.

I actually have an entire system developed to help make it easy for me to gather and share referrals with my clients. In the last 30 days, I've generated about $9,000 in passive revenue. Add to that a lovely gift card I got from one speaker for my favorite restaurant.

So, hey… $9k in passive revenue and a date night with my wife? Not bad!

Don't
Do
Learn more about building a sustainable speaking career.

HEROIC

Speakers

Interested in the business side of speaking? Learn how to win gigs, more often, at higher fees in our 12-week program, GRAD | Speaking Business Mastery.
Learn More

Referrals are Recipricol

As you start to refer other speakers for speaking gigs, you’ll quickly realize that referrals are reciprocal. That means that you won’t just earn a sweet commission, you’ll also start receiving referrals!

 

When speakers you’ve referred for events need to suggest a speaker, you’ll be the first speaker that comes to mind.

 

That’s why referring other speakers for events is actually smart business. Not only does it help your event planners and the other speakers – it helps you.

Don't
Do

You're Not Actually In the "Speaking" Business After All

You're not in the speaking business. No, you're in the "relationship" business. The "event organizer relationship" business, to be more precise.

Yes, those nonstop email exchanges, zoom meetings, and phone calls with event organizers are like the spinal cord of your living, breathing career.

Without those strong connections, everything would crumble.

So, the longer you can maintain relationships with event organizers, the more often you will get gigs. This holds true even if your contact switches organizations, moves to a new city, or starts hosting a different kind of event.

After you establish a relationship and deliver a stellar speech for one event organizer, they are more likely to book you again in the future.

There's just one catch…

Audiences like variety. So, your chances of speaking at the same event two years in a row are pretty slim. In fact, my chances are only about 1 in 22 that I'll grace a stage in back-to-back years.

(Those chances are low, but not zero. I have some specific tactics you can use if you want to win a gig two years in a row. But, I'll save those goodies for another week.)

So, if you book a gig in 2022, you most likely won't speak again in 2023. However, your chances of speaking at that same event in 2024 are actually pretty good!

For me, the chances increase to 1 in 9! That's why it pays to keep your relationship with the event organizer going strong for those 18 months after you speak.

By the way… this all works assuming three things.

  1. Your speech is referable.
  2. You always deliver.
  3. You're a transformational speaker.

(Learn more about what these mean in the book The Referable Speaker, which I co-authored with Michael Port.)

Dont
Do

Three is the Magic Number

Once you've finished speaking at an event, finding ways to maintain your relationship with an event organizer can be a little tricky. After all, we already established that they are rarely going to book you two years in a row.

So, what else can you do to keep the fires of professional love burning bright? Well, why not send them some excellent referrals?

The key here is in the timing.

For now, I just want you to focus on the number three. When you give your event organizer three carefully selected referrals for their specific event, you're giving them three essential reasons to keep in touch with you for the long term.

Why three?

Well… three referrals gives your event organizers some great variety without overwhelming them with options.

And these are unlike any other referrals they get from other sources. Here's why…

Don't
Do
,

Like a Robot… But Better Looking

Speakers are the absolute best people in the world to refer other speakers.

This holds true regardless of the event, the venue, or the industry.

The reasons make perfect sense…

  1. You've been at their event before, so you've met the audience, and you know what kinds of content they are most craving. You understand their industry and business concerns inside and out
  2. As a speaker, you watch a lot of other speakers.   Your network is HUGE! So, you know who's good and who might be perfect for a particular audience. Really, you're like a walking-talking-referral-robot… just better looking!
  3. The money… You understand their budget and have an intimate knowledge of their team. So, you already know that you shouldn't refer a speaker who's $45,000 when they only have a budget of $7,500.

You're saving the event organizer time and energy by hand selecting speakers for their event. That's why they love getting referrals from past speakers. Referrals from other speakers are more relevant than referrals they would get from any other source – even better than speaker's bureaus!

By now, you should understand how giving referrals can help you earn more gigs over time. Now, let's dive into the second main benefit…

Don't
Do

Earning the Holy Grail of All Revenue… Passive Income!

I don't know many people who would say no to easy money…

And passive income is especially sweet when it comes with the added benefit of helping a fellow speaker.

Typically, speakers create passive revenue streams through coaching, online courses, or by building online communities. But, this method is much easier.

Here's how this works…

In the year after you speak at a specific event, send along three carefully selected referrals for other speakers who would be a good fit for that event.

Know in advance which of those referrals offer commissions for referrals you make, and they win. Many speakers offer this, and it's an easy way to make some extra money.

For example, if you refer someone a gig that pays $10,000, they are often willing to give you between 5% and 30% of that fee. So, you'll earn somewhere between $500 and $3,000 just for giving the referral.

I actually have an entire system developed to help make it easy for me to gather and share referrals with my clients. In the last 30 days, I've generated about $9,000 in passive revenue. Add to that a lovely gift card I got from one speaker for my favorite restaurant.

So, hey… $9k in passive revenue and a date night with my wife? Not bad!

Don't
Do
Learn from
Andrew

HEROIC

Speakers

Learn how to give speeches that transform how people think and perceive the world. We’ll teach you how to write, perform, and get booked.
Learn more

Referrals are Recipricol

As you start to refer other speakers for speaking gigs, you’ll quickly realize that referrals are reciprocal. That means that you won’t just earn a sweet commission, you’ll also start receiving referrals!

 

When speakers you’ve referred for events need to suggest a speaker, you’ll be the first speaker that comes to mind.

 

That’s why referring other speakers for events is actually smart business. Not only does it help your event planners and the other speakers – it helps you.

Dont
Do
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