New!Check out Board viewCheck out the new Board viewOrganize and track your social content ideas with the new Board view.Learn more

How I’ve Used Speaking to Develop a Sales Funnel With a 10-25% Conversion Rate

Learn the exact funnel Ziza Natur uses to turn speaking gigs and podcast opportunities into paying customers for her coaching business.

Feb 20, 2024 6 min readSmall Business
Photo of Ziza Natur
Ziza Natur

Public Speaking Coach, Personal Brand and PR Consultant at The Voice of Power Coaching.

Most marketing advice you hear today revolves around online media: how to make short, quippy social media posts or write great emails and blog posts that attract clients, for example.

Undoubtedly, these forms of marketing are valuable and have their place. But something also gets lost when you solely focus on those channels. In fact, I’ve found the most success in growing my PR and coaching business by focusing on marketing approaches that rely on verbal communication, direct contact with potential customers, and long-form content delivery—specifically, via strategic public speaking (at both in-person and online events), podcast guesting, and masterclass hosting. I believe in these strategies so much that I’ve focused my business on helping others implement them for their own companies as a public speaking coach.

I’ve found that these approaches enhance connection and trust, invite more people into my online spaces, and streamline the process of audience growth and lead generation. These strategies helped me land my first high-ticket client three weeks after starting my business and hit my first $10,000 month in sales just four months later. Now, I have a simple funnel that achieves a conversion rate between 10 to 25 percent, with most clients only requiring one to two touch points before deciding to work with me.

It’s so much faster to show people you know your stuff when you speak. You can engage them with your authentic story, take them on a journey where you create perspective shifts, and make them excited to stay in your orbit so they can learn even more from you. And this is true even for people who are not natural public speakers. (I had stage fright for much of my life and had to learn these skills through practice, so I know it’s possible!)

Below, I’ll outline exactly how I’ve built this funnel to bring the right clients to me.

I start with a compelling introduction

When I started my business, I knew nothing about how to structure funnels or create a marketing strategy. So, I just started talking to people about what I had to offer. 

My early clients all came from meeting people at events and networking, and this worked because I knew how to introduce myself well. I see so many entrepreneurs make the mistake of trying to use metaphors and words that sound fancy, like “I’m an empowerment public speaking guide who puts you on a journey of self-transformation toward your biggest dreams.”

I’ve found introductions like that can lose people instead of inspiring them. Too much jargon creates confusion or doesn’t make it obvious that they’re the target audience, so they stop listening to what you have to say. 

Instead, I’ve always taken the boring approach to introductions: being very clear and specific, quickly mentioning who I am, what I do, and who it’s for, and ending with the results of my work to really grab people: “I'm a public speaking coach. I help you get more visibility opportunities, such as speaking and podcast guesting, and I help you deliver talks that help you have a higher conversion rate.”

This simple intro is what led to that first high-ticket client that I signed in three weeks and that first $10,000 month of sales. These people were problem-aware—they knew they needed support with their public speaking—and my intro made it clear I was the solution, inspiring them to take quick action.

While I’ve since moved on from one-to-one networking as my primary marketing strategy, having a compelling introduction in my back pocket has been the foundation of the rest of my success.

I choose my speaking opportunities and topics strategically

Here’s the thing about speaking: It takes time to research potential speaking engagements at conferences and events, pitch yourself as a speaker, and then prepare, practice, and deliver a speech. And you don’t want to waste that time as a business owner on opportunities that won’t help you reach your goal. Specifically, more sales.

That’s why, before I pitch myself or say yes to a speaking engagement, I ask the question: What do I want to sell?

With the offer I’m driving toward in mind, I can make strategic decisions about the talks I spend my time on. I can consider whether potential speaking opportunities will attract my target clients. I can choose a topic that teases the results those clients will experience if they participate in that offer. I can make sure I have a lead magnet that relates to my offer so that I don’t lose people who are curious but not ready to buy yet. I can make sure everything I do allows the right customers to experience what working with me would offer—and want to pay me for more.

For instance, when working on selling my program that helps business owners generate leads outside of social media in just four hours a month, I created a summit talk about growing your audience beyond social media and drove toward a masterclass that dove deeper into the strategies that can help you achieve this in very little time. When giving talks, I looked for speaking opportunities that targeted audiences of online coaches, consultants, and service providers who were looking to scale. This approach helped me double my email list and sign multiple four-figure clients who came through that funnel.

More speaking opportunities don’t magically lead to more sales if you’re not finding ones that support what you’re selling. You can find summits and conferences online through Facebook groups in your industry, SpeakerHub, and Virtual Summit Search, but then be sure to do your due diligence to make sure your audience will be there, carefully reading the marketing copy to understand who they’re targeting and ensuring the topic is niche enough to attract a dedicated audience (e.g., “scaling to $10,000 through Facebook groups” is better than generic “business growth”).

I use a simple speaking structure that actually converts

When I get in front of an audience, I want to make the most of having their attention to bring them into my space quickly. So many entrepreneurs squander this opportunity: going on tangent after tangent and losing folks, being too afraid to actually sell, or telling stories that don’t relate to the offer at hand.

I’ve spent a lot of time developing a three-part structure I could use for all of my speaking gigs, and it’s something I swear by for converting audiences:

  1. First, I showcase my expertise, credentials, and client results to build trust (this goes back to that compelling introduction). 
  2. Next, I dive into tackling a challenge specific enough that I can easily cover it in the time allotted without overwhelming them. During this time, I focus on discussing the tactics they may have tried to solve this challenge, why those approaches haven’t worked, and how my approach is different.
  3. Finally, I transition into a clear call to action to join my masterclass or buy my program. I do this without it feeling like I’m selling by simply outlining the structure of the program and what clients can expect to get out of it. 

If you don't feel comfortable enough to show up at a big summit yet, you can start with podcast guesting, which is usually based on your story as a business owner. 

When researching podcasts to reach out to (using podcast apps or platforms like MatchMaker.fm or PodMatch), listen to some previous episodes to be sure they will allow you to talk about your services on the show. Then, make sure you’re telling your story in a way that helps your audience pre-qualify themselves for the offer you’re focusing on. For example, for my offer that helps people save time on pitching themselves for speaking engagements, I'm going to share my story of spending way too much time on that in the early days of my business. For another program that helps clients better convert people from their talks, I’ll dive into how my first masterclass flopped and what I learned from that.

That’s what it all comes down to: Your audience, and how your expertise and experiences can help them. Whether you’re introducing yourself to someone at a networking event, being interviewed on a podcast, or speaking onstage in front of thousands, start with your offer in mind and speak to where your audience is right now. I promise it will get you far in bringing more dream customers into your orbit.

Brought to you by

Try Buffer for free

140,000+ small businesses like yours use Buffer to build their brand on social media every month

Get started now

Related Articles

FlowApr 16, 2024
4 Social Media Strategies That Help Our Business Drive More Sales In-Store and Online

When these brand owners opened their first brick-and-mortar store, they learned lessons that helped improve their social media and grow their sales both on and offline.

Make Money on Pinterest in 2024
PinterestApr 15, 2024
5 Ways to Make Money on Pinterest in 2024: An In-depth Guide for Creators and Businesses

There are plenty of ways to monetize on Pinterest. Here's a guide to some tactics for both creators and small businesses.

X Twitter ads
TwitterApr 8, 2024
Ads on X (Formerly Twitter) Are an Untapped Opportunity. Here’s How to Make the Most of Them

Learn why this expert marketer thinks X is one of the best advertising platforms right now, and see how to get the most bang for your buck.

140,000+ people like you use Buffer to build their brand on social media every month