What Can You Put On Your Conference Speaker Table To Win More Business? with Matthew Hill

From a bare table to client magnetic attraction in 7 items or less

There comes a moment in every speaker’s career when the event organiser in a bright and cheery voice says with a positive and upbeat tone, “And, we have given you a large table in the exhibitors area for your books and materials.” Gulp! – And, they expect you to be happy and excited by this prospect…

But.

You have nothing to put on it!

Capturing people with marketing

Bring your prospects nearer!

Here are 7 ideas to get that vast surface area covered with value allowing you to beam out a shining light to the room, attract the right sort of people to your table, engage with them and make your first “speech with table” moment a springboard that generates more speeches, further high paid engagements and acts as a effective opportunity to expand your contact list with high value targets and develop a new #BFF (Business Friend Forever.)

  1. Booklet – The single quickest way to cover a few square feet of blue velvet is to take one of your top tips posts (like this one), expand it and publish it in booklet form. Add in your credo and contact details and, suddenly, you will have moved up from the newbie slot to being a professionally prepared presenter with presence. Google “print on demand booklets” and you will get a vast choice – instantprint, printexpress, digitalprinting, tradeprint, blurb, cpi-print, printondemand-worldwide, bookbaby, bookprinting etc.

Most have options to upload your copy and artwork, edit on screen, play with size, paper quality etc. and then, just push the button and wait for your booklets by the front door.

Display multiple copies on your table and think about how you will use them to attract passing trade, engage with your target audience and make a meaningful connection.

  1. Logo Board – You have not been asked to set up a 5000 £,$ or € trade fair booth but this tip will make you feel as if you are moving into the 3D marketing collateral space like a pro. A couple of A4 boards with your logo on will really start to give your table height and make it visible from further away – Essential for catching the eye of serious decision makers.

First. Do you have a logo? If not or yours is a source of constant embarrassment, the quickest way to generate something of quality is to go out to a company such as logodesignguarantee, theprecisiondesign, designcrowd, londonlogodesigns, logosymmetry or, smashinglogo etc. The normal process involves providing a detailed brief of your company, offering and desired look, and, paying for the number of versions and revisions you require. Most agencies give this first bit away cheaply, hoping to get their money back with your first higher value, print order for writing paper, large trade stand banners etc. later.

Second. Now, when you have your desired design, you can get your simple A4 boards printed and delivered by vistaprint, supersizeprint, printroom-largeformat, onwarddisplay, jarbals etc.

I prefer a one at either end approach with the option of a logo board in the middle as well.

  1. Attraction Magnet – The days of outrageous giveaways are sadly gone (or happily gone if you were the one paying for them.) Now it is about simplicity. Long-range attractors aim to catch the eye of someone at a distance and bring them closer. Examples include a tall bunch of flowers in a vase, a glass bowl full of fruit, the obvious plate of sweets / cookies and the sure fire winner (but do watch out for stampedes) – A large round glass bowl of those red Lindt chocolate balls. Hint – don’t put all the goodies out at the same time or you will be stuck with an empty bowl for most of your time standing at your table.
  2. Voucher Offer – When your prey is a little nearer, they can be enticed to walk into your lair with a visible value voucher. I like to print an offer on top of an A4 picture of a green €100 note. It looks like oversized money, will raise a smile and can get people reading. Find a high quality digital image from fotolia, istock, shutterstock, depositphotos or, gettyimages, etc. Your prospects can take it away and show their colleagues too, thus increasing your range and eyeball hit rate.
red christmas coupon holded by hand over white

Nothing says, “I love you” like a voucher

The offer must be strong enough to generate action remotely, be deliverable by you, and, be relevant enough to your audience to attract the right quality of responder – Remember, ambulance chasers and idea magpies are not your target audience.

  1. The Wine Cooler Raffle – This is where you fire your big guns. You need your prey to come in close and hear your pitch. “Today we have a raffle prize – A no cost demonstration of our XXX. We will come to you and show you etc. etc.”

The offer should be of high perceived value to the RIGHT potential customer. It should be part of your sales and marketing funnel. And, it should be different from the table to the left and right of you.

Collect their business card and maybe note down their name on a sheet too. You might even be bold enough to grab a signature for GDPR purposes.

Blue satin, silk, texture background

Fill your Blue Velvet Table with Value

  1. Invitation to your Next Event – The king of sales funnels and successful promotion, Michael Port, asks his students to, “Always have something to invite potential customers to.” And he is right. What event can you create that will follow on shortly after your table and speech moment? The simplest to arrange at short notice is a fun and high-energy webinar tackling an irritating problem experienced by your audience. The invitation like, 5. can be printed on a photo of something appealing.
  2. Pens with your Number – Problems encountered here can be the number you have to order – no one wishes to have 479 pens left over after preparing for a one-time speech with table event. Or the quality of the pen – The £3 Vistaprint pens are horrible with splodgy ink messing up the customer’s writing experience – a definite brand diluter not a brand builder. You decide whether you want your number or E Mail on the pen. What will present the lowest barrier to taking action for your prospective customer?

Conclusion

I hope you have enjoyed reading this post and that we have inspired you to fill your table with visible value so that you can attract great decision makers to within talking distance and can convert strangers into repeating customers, raving fans and advocates of you and your offering.

Please like and share this post. And, pass it on to the nervous new speaker in your community who has just been told, “And, we have given you a large table in the exhibitors area for your books and materials.”

Like and share

About the Author – Matthew Hill is a keynote speaker, trainer and facilitator who started out with a one-product table and now has a carload of collateral to decorate his client magnet table with. Contact Matthew via E Mail; matthew.hill@hillnetworks.com

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Nervous Speakers – 5 Tips for Stage Fright and Presentation Nerves by Matthew Hill

Your nerves are a positive and essential part of presenting well and staying grounded.

presentation confidence matthew hill

“I feel so good speaking in public”

  1. Reframe Your Nerves as EXCITEMENT

When you think about it, our body does weird and amazing things and we can choose to be un-empowered by them or we can use them constructively. Let me tell you a story about pre-show jitters and dramatic stage fright.

There were two men asked to go up on stage as volunteers. The first, as he leaves the security of his theatre seat feels sweat, constricted breathing, rolling stomach, muscle tremors and a terrifying adrenaline rush that almost makes him loose balance and stumble. When he is up on stage he can hardly interact with the show master, mumbles his name and is a useless helper in the game he is being asked to contribute to. At the end, to add to his humiliation, he his handed a cheap tee shirt. As he walks back to his seat he makes a promise to himself, “I will never come to the theatre EVER again!”

After the interval another man is chosen to “volunteer”. He gets up and feels an exciting rush of adrenaline and thinks that this could be one of those defining moments in his life. He speeds up and rushes towards the stage with a glow of excitement, the panting breathe of anticipation and a feeling of butterflies that reminds him of his tenth birthday. Is this really happening? Has he won the lottery? He leaps on stage, smiles at the performer and adds a joke into his first reply. The crowd go wild with laughter and one or two even clap. He is enjoying himself. The trick runs smoothly and generates more applause. He has never felt so alive and connected to so many people. At the end he enjoys the thanks of the performer, the admiration of the crowd, AND is handed a tee shirt to remember this night for the rest of his life. As he returns to his seat there is a big smile on his face and he says to himself, “I am going to quit my job as an auditor and get BACK on that stage.”

BOTH men had the same physical reaction to the situation. They chose to frame their experiences in different ways. How will you label your body’s reactions when next called to the stage?

  1. The Audience Want You to Succeed

It is easy to think of yourself entering the lion’s den when speaking on stage. What you may not know is that gladiators were the TV celebrities of their time. The audience would come back week after week to see their favourite fighters… WIN. Your audience have paid money, given up their time and sacrificed the chance to do other, easier things. They are invested in you and want you to WIN. They would love you to be comfortable, to get your patter out and complete you mission without mishap. They are rooting for you. In there minds is something simple – If you WIN then they get a chance to benefit. If you perform well, they get the chance to use your wise words, your experience and your life learning. That is, in fact, why they are there. So, remember, the audience is, very much, on your side.

Verschiedene Portraits einer blonden Frau

They want me to WIN!

  1. Even the Greatest Speakers Experience Stage Fright

It is true. There are many live performers that vomit backstage, have moments of terror and have those self-challenging-thoughts, “What if they find out I am a sham?”, “What if I don’t know the answer to a question?”, “What if someone in the audience is clever and hostile and they want to humiliate me? My professional life will be over.”

This is referred to as Imposter Syndrome and EVERBODY gets it. The truth is that the public speaker possesses a co-constructed identity that is temporary and happens when you are on the stage, red mic light on, in front of a live audience. It is not ALL that you are and you probably don’t do this every day. It is a part of who you are. For the rest of the time you are a much more ordinary figure. And that is OK. Linked to the last point, no one actually expects you to be a superhero (except maybe yourself.) Having doubt keeps you at your best. Hearing those “What if” questions maintains your hunger for perfection and improvement. Doubt keeps you present and grounded. Do not wish away the fear – that is the path to complacency, drift and autopilot delivery.

  1. Build Your Expert Status From the Inside

The quickest way to get your personal power surging is to write down your “numbers.” By this I mean the figures for what you have achieved so far. Everybody has accomplished more than they are conscious of and this exercise really helps. How many years have you been doing the thing that you are speaking about? How many customers have you helped? Reports have you written? Deals have you negotiated? When you look at your track record and put down the numbers they will impress…you.

As great coaches say, you can achieve less in a day than you wish but more in a month than you expect. Over the years you have achieved an enormous amount in a wide number of areas. Take a moment to write down your life and career highlights and to really, deeply acknowledge just how far you have come, just how much experience you have accumulated and just how much you actually know.

  1. Affirmations Affirm Your Greatness.

A way of countering the self doubt and unhelpful chatter running through your mind is to build some self affirming mantras that help lay some new mental pathways that, with repetition, will magically turn into self-affirming beliefs. They will be your public speaker truths. The easiest is the ANV – Adjective Noun that Verbs. Take a moment to write down 10 to 30 describing words that are positive, bright and give energy (these are the adjectives). Next you may use positive words to describe your multiple life and professional roles (these are the nouns.) Then form sentences that include who you help, what they achieve and how you help them (this is the verb bit.) And put it all together – “ I, Name Name, am an Adjective, Adjective, Adjective Noun, Noun, Noun & Noun that Verbs, Verbs and Verbs! And I am… AAAWWWEEESSSOOOMMMEEE.

Super businessman flying over a city

AAWWEESSSOOMMEE

When you learn this formula, fill in the spaces, make it your mantra, and repeat it, you will release the helpful chemicals in your body that support you, the public and professional presenter, speaker and subject matter expert. This allows you to help many more people to overcome their pain and achieve so much more for themselves.

How does that feel?

I have good news for you – You are now Ready!

I hope that these 5 ideas have helped you to reverse your doubts, calm your jitters, and to reframe stage fright as a necessary and useful part of delivering a high impact presentation and an effective public speech.

About the Author – Matthew Hill is a Presentation Coach and Group Soft Skills Trainer – If you wish to contact and engage Matthew to improve your professional presentation performance, then do call him on 07540 65 9995 or send an E Mail to matthew.hill@hillnetworks.com .

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