What Planners & Execs Look For...
And How to put it in your video!
Having been on the corporate side of hiring speakers and trainers for many years, I’d like to share some of the things that attract meeting planners and executives. Then I’ll show you how you can use that info to put “sell power” into your demo.
As I always say, a great video demo can be your ticket into places you could have never reached without it. It can increase the number and the caliber of your bookings. It can be sent through the mail, used on your website, and even sent by e-mail. For most serious speakers and trainers, it is an absolute necessity for success.
Many meeting planners and executives will not even consider a speaker or trainer without seeing them in action. So your video demo can get you in the door, but then you have one chance to impress your prospect quickly. There is a lot of competition out there, and most professionals have a demo video. To stand out from the pack it’s essential for your video to be creatively and intelligently designed, with excellent quality. It can mean a significantly higher income.
It makes sense to invest in a demo, but to increase the return on your investment, you need to design your demo to target, reach and persuade those who have the power to say yes or no to you. With that type of planning, you're shooting at your target with laser-guided precision! Without great planning and execution, you are just shooting arrows with a blindfold on.
Of course, every speaker and trainer is unique, so each video should be unique. The tone, pace, and image of your video will differ from others because of who you are and what you do. However, there are some basic attributes that appeal to most decision-makers. It is up to you and your video production company to communicate that you have those qualities.
Here is a list of things planners and execs may look for in speaker demos:
- Are you easy to work with? The desirable speaker or trainer is organized, professional in all communications, and is flexible as opposed to “whiney” and demanding. Make their job easier and they will use you again and recommend you to others.
- Are you an expert in your topic? They look for a presenter who can communicate the message effectively with impact, drawing in and captivating the audience.
- Do you take the time to learn about their organization and customize your presentations for their people? They want someone who will take the time to research, and then adapt your presentation so that it is relevant and appropriate to the culture and climate of their organization.
- Do you engage the audience? Decision-makers want a presenter who will get the audience involved and invested. They look to see if your audience seems sincerely interested and responsive to you, as opposed to someone who is just tolerated.
- Will you help the company achieve its’ goals? If their goal is to create long term change, they need to be convinced that you can accomplish this before they invest in you. If they are looking for entertainment, they want to know that what you do will achieve this for the majority of their people.
The more of these qualities you can demonstrate with your video demo, the more you will motivate the execs to choose you. We do this through a number of techniques.
These include the following:
- Testimonials from enthusiastic attendees. Also, if possible, we include excerpts from those who have attended in the past and have experienced a positive change from your presentation. A knowledgeable director can effectively ask the right questions as he interviews the attendees, drawing great responses.
- Testimonials from those who have hired you. They can talk about how great you were to work with, how wonderful your presentations were, as well as the positive impact you had on the company.
- Show audience reaction shots during your presentations, and also during any breakout sessions. If possible, show interactions between you and your audience. For example, we shot a speaker who overcame cancer. We were able to capture close-ups of tear-filled eyes and heads nodding in approval. The shots were so moving that we cried while editing the tape!
- Show sections of your message that reveal your expertise and unique style. In addition to well-chosen portions of your message, we can show your slides and graphics. We can show unique aspects of your presentation. For example, we've had Mary-Lou Retton performing gymnastics on stage, Joe Theismann throwing footballs into the audience, and Magic Johnson giving an audience member a much-needed hug. We've used presenters modeling customer service "good" and "bad" behaviors. We even had a presenter ride in on horseback. Of course, we chose not to show the footage of the horse "spraying" the audience as people screamed and dove left and right, parting like the red sea! (It's also important to know what not to show!)
- If possible, use segments that will show your competence with varying corporate climates and diverse cultures. This may include showing clips from more than one engagement.
A good demo generates strong positive emotion and motivates the planner or exec to desire your services. It can sell you before you even speak with them.
The right production company for you will know how to set up and shoot correctly and then pick the most flattering shots and segments. They will know how to edit them together to create the most impact.
It is best to pick a production company that has experience and knowledge with planning, shooting, and editing video for speakers and trainers. A well-trained crew is in the right position at the right time. They know what to look for, and are ready to get that impact shot as it happens! Unlike a studio shoot where you have multiple takes, a live event is more like a rocket launch. You only get one chance. You can't call the rocket back for another take!
For example, we recently heard a story about a production company that had failed to get a shot of a key-note speaker performing push-ups at the end of his presentation. The audience had gone wild, yet there was no footage of the actual push-ups or of the audiences' faces. What a shame. That would have been great on a demo!
Be sure to choose a company that has a history of creating programs that utilize marketing techniques and sell effectively. This can make a significant difference to your outcome.
About the Author & His Company: Greg Ball, is President of Ball Media Innovations, Inc. Prior to starting the company, he ran the Burger King World Headquarters video operation.
Greg founded Ball Media as a Miami video production company in 2002. He eventually expanded services to also become an Orlando video production company. Greg directs shows in both locations, as well as nationally, with crews throughout the country.
Do you need a video production company to help you produce a demo?
Call or e-mail Ball Media Innovations today if you would like information on how we can create a great speaker demo for you! We have crews available throughout the USA.
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