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How To Boost Your Credibility So Meeting Planners Can Book You To Speak

by | Book Writing Tips, Career in Public Speaking, public speaking jobs, Public Speaking Tips | 33 comments

How To Boost Your Credibility

Let me guess. You are either a paid motivational speaker, or you are starting your speaking journey. If you are just starting as a motivational speaker, welcome. Together, we’re making a difference. We are inspiring others to greatness. Simply put, we’re world transformers. Every time you and impact an individual, we impact the world in our own way.

You see, we are living in a time where so many people are defeated and discouraged. The news is so depressing. More and more, the world desperately needs inspiration and encouragement. It’s a privilege to be called upon to stand and deliver in these uncertain times. Right? Now, you may be thinking, “I’m not a motivational speaker”.

Okay, let’s look at it this way: If you are speaking for a living, you are a motivational speaker. Regardless of your chosen topic, you are motivating someone to do something. All speaking is motivational speaking. It doesn’t matter if you are speaking about email marketing, sales, or self-esteem. You still have to motivate your audience.

Yeah, I know you cannot motivate people. Motivation is intrinsic. They have to find the motivation within themselves. However, they still need something outside of themselves to trigger the motivation. The more motivating and influential that something is, the more they are motivated. That brings me to exactly what I want to share with you about speaking for a living.

Be The Solution To Their Problem

Yes, when it comes to speaking, credibility is everything. If you cannot establish that you are the solution to their problem, you will always struggle to get speaking engagements. Meeting planners will not put on their stages. Notice I didn’t say that your message has to be the solution to their problem. Why? It’s because you come before your message. They have to buy you first before they buy what you have to say.

If your audience doesn’t believe you are the right person with the right qualification to talk about your subject, you won’t make an impact. And, if you are not making an impact, you are not making money. As a motivational speaker, your job is to make sure your audience is sold on you before you even open your mouth to say the first word. Your reputation must precede you.

I’m sure you’ve heard that perception is reality, right? Well, it’s your job to create, mold, and shape that perception. When I started investigating the speaking business, I was a doorman at a hotel in Atlanta. I knew it was going to be really hard for me to convince meeting planners to put on their stages. I basically didn’t bring much to the table to position myself as the solution to their problem.

My background did not create the perception that I was the man for the hour. After all, life started for me in a poverty-stricken village in Haiti. I arrived in the United States with five dollars, two shirts, one pair of pants and unable to speak any English. I worked as a janitor in Miami and later became a doorman in Atlanta.

As you can tell, that kind of resume was not convincing enough to persuade a meeting planner to put on his or her stage. But, through trials and errors, I discovered how to boost my credibility. I found out how to create the perception that I was the right motivational speaker for the hour.

So, let me share with you how to position yourself as the solution to your prospective clients. For some of you, consider this as a reminder. I’m sure you’ll agree with me that we all need reminders. For most of you, this will be very valuable. Please pay very close attention.

5 Ways To Boost Your Credibility So You Can Become The Choice For Meeting Planners

1- Know What Problem You Are Solving

Another way to say this is, when you choose a topic, you must understand the problems that exist around your topic. When I’m coaching business owners, the first question I ask them is, “What problem are you solving?” As a speaker, you have to clearly know the problem you’re solving for your audience.

Now, you don’t necessarily need to know everything about your topic. However, you have to know enough to offer some solutions. Okay, how do you choose your topic? Well, start with what you know or what you are passionate about. Usually, it’s the thing that many of your friends come to you for advice on.

Please don’t think because you are a motivational speaker, you don’t need a topic. No. Motivational speaking is not a topic. Maybe you can speak on self-esteem, persistence, time management, bullying, leadership, change, etc. You need to focus on a topic. You will have more clarity and less confusion.

It makes it so much easier for you to create the right marketing materials.

2- Make A List Of Your Truism

Once you decide on the topic you are going to talk about, make a list of everything you believe that is true about your topic. For example, if you are going to talk about leadership, list what you believe leaders must do and not do so they can be a successful at leading people. Your list is your truism or leadership according to you. You can also call them your philosophies. Next…

3- Turn What’s In Your Head Into Physical Things

If you want to boost your credibility and get on meeting planners’ radars, you have to put what you know in a physical format. No matter how smart or knowledgeable you are about your topic, to the world you don’t know beans until they can touch your knowledge.

If I were having a conversation with, I would repeat that sentence again. It’s that important. You need to convert your truisms or philosophies into CDs, DVDs, special reports, and ultimately into books. That’s how you create, shape and mold the right perception.

So, the idea is to take your list and write a piece of content or article about each one. Read the article in front of a video camera to create a DVD. Then, extract the audio from the DVD to create a CD. Hire someone to transcribe the audio for you and turn it into a special report.

4- Write A Book Now!

Yes, I know you have heard this over and over. Write a book. Have you written a book yet? It took me a long time before I forced myself to sit down and write my first book. I’m so glad I did. It was the best thing for my speaking career. I can tell from personal experience that writing your book will be the best move for you. Do it! I know.

Writing a book can be an overwhelming task. However, the problem is, most people try to cram too many books in one book. Look, you are not writing an encyclopedia. That’s a surefire way to confuse and turn off your readers. You need to share simple ideas with your readers. As I mentioned before, we all need reminders.

People need to be reminded of the basics. It’s kind of like you as a speaker. I bet there a lot of things you used to do that worked. Then, you stopped doing them. Now you need reminders. Just so you know, you can make a fortune reminding people of what they already know. Let me share with you a simple formula to write your book fast.

It’s the 10/10 formula. Write 10 chapters and 10 pages per chapter. That should give you a total of 100 pages. Now, it doesn’t have to be exactly 10 pages per chapter. Some chapters may more and others less. Guess what? Later on, you can use your more in-depth knowledge for your second and third book. Make sure that your first book is version 101.

5- Give Away Your Stuff Lavishly

The reason I’m encouraging to turn what you know into CDs, DVDs, books, etc. is not to have a garage full of them. Also, the trunk of your car is not a storage place for your stuff. In case you don’t know, your products are your marketing materials. They are your positioning tools.

The big difference between your one pager and your book is that one will go to the trash can while the other will be displayed permanently on a bookshelf. You should always give away your stuff to people who might open a door for you to speak.

When you are making a cold call to find who you can send your “7 Ways To Triple Your Sales In The Next 30 Days”, you are not making a cold call. You also are not calling as a needy person to beg. Do you see what I mean?

6- Don’t Give Up

Please don’t walk away too soon. Speaking is a business just like all other businesses. The main difference is, the barrier to entry into the speaking industry is very low. But, that doesn’t mean you should give up when you are not getting the speaking engagements. It means you have to be more persistent.

There are lots of awesome speakers who started when I did. Today, they are not around. They gave up. You see, it’s takes patience and dedication to run any business. The main reason I’m still speaking today is because of persistence.

All right, there you have it. I just shared with you some great ideas on how to speak for a living. If you’ve been looking for a magic formula, there’s none. Just build your credibility, create products, give them away lavishly, and don’t give up. I wish you incredible success!


  1. Jamaal

    Hello Rene,

    I wanted to know you create such an amazing website and videos?

    Stay Blessed!

  2. Timothy Neto

    I keep listening to you everyday. Have learned all that I needed to learn. There is no more excuses. My book is next.

  3. wycliff odhiambo oruko

    Thanks my great friend Rene; May you receive my endless appreciation.May God bless you for the great work, I love the article, “Success is 1% thinking and 99% doing. Keep more articles coming.

  4. hazel

    Hi Rene now I am happy that I know where to go from here, what I want to know which places can I go to make sure the book I’m writing is coming okay.

  5. john forbess

    Thank you Rene, this was the most useful information I’ve found since embarking on this journey. I’ve always been able to inspire others and realized how much i love the feeling of communicating my message. I’ve been a snowboard instructor for 12 years and have found that encouraging people through fearful uncertainty to a place of achievement and eventually confidence is my highest calling. I have been working on a lot of the points you cited. I cant help but feel I am on the right track after visiting your site.I live near Big Bear California and am looking for guidance and direction for someone trustworthy. I would appreciate any information on your appearances in my area or any other influences you think beneficial to my progress. thank you, John Forbess

  6. Cassie

    Just wanted to take this time to thank you once again.

  7. Tiffany Kraft

    Thank you Rene
    I am glad I read this article. It gave me insight and knowledge on my calling.

    Thanks again,

  8. Michael Regan

    Interesting article! How difficult do you believe it to be to get into “American Program Bureau” or other speaking bureaus of that nature? Are they looking for famous people or just people with a good story and speaking ability? And do you believe that connecting with a bureau such as that is the best way to make money for my speaking abilities? Thanks for your help

  9. Collin

    Thank you Rene for always providing relevant and timely information. A weekend in Atlanta with you sounds like a win-win!

    • Rene Godefroy

      Awesome Collin! Will let you know when we put an event in Atlanta.

  10. Ana Micaela

    This is a good guide. This can also help in the process so one can be inspired to go on.

  11. Theophilus

    Thanks, Rene. It really shows that u truly have gone through the experiences of one in his formative days, like me. What’s more exciting about the whole issue is your commitment to navigating us through. Please, do not hesitate to send any other material that may be useful for my growth. Once again, accept my endless appreciation.

  12. Loice

    Thank you for the reminder…. i am inspired to stay in the game.

  13. Marcia Fisher

    Thank you Rene for these powerful reminders. They are exactly what I needed to hear right now. I will be persistent and never give up.
    May God keep blessing you to do what you do so well.

    • Rene Godefroy

      You are welcome Marcia. We all need reminders. I’m glad you you enjoyed the article.

  14. Nonso Chris

    Rene thank you for this article,i simply love it,it’s the best i’ve read for some time now. Keep it up.

  15. Abbey

    Rene, you made it again! I virtually gave up my plan of becoming a motivational speaker. Now, you’ve breathed a new spirit in me. After reading your post beginning to end, i’ve realized all i need is to stay my course! I can’t imagine how you’ve inspired me to reaching the pinnacle of my speaking career. With patience and pesistence, i would certainly reach the promised land. And as for the 10/10 formula you recommended, i’m going to use it as my guide to coming up with my first book by the close of 2012. Thanks once again, Rene, for your insight. Live long and groom us!

    • Rene Godefroy

      Yes, Abbey. I will not leave you alone. You heard the call. It’s a Divine call. Don’t let the dream die in you. Go at it with you’ve got and some more. Do whatever it takes. Keep trying!!

  16. Ernst Louis-Jacques

    I thank you very much for this article. This is a great boost to my speaking career. I will definitely use your 10/10 technique to start making money with a talent that God gave me and an activity I love: speaking. You are definitely a great asset to all of us that wa
    nt to make it big in the speaking business.

    You are a great contributor to the speaking profession!

  17. Stanley Ossai

    Thank you, Rene for the simplicity of your delivery. In one breath, you have inspired and guided me. I know I can write and speak well. The response I get when I write for people or speak tells me that.

    I have been grappling with which direction my life should take. I have been a teacher a long time and my first choice in a career change is to be a speaker. But the question has been “where and how do I start”?

    I believe you just answered the question for me. Write a book. I am going to start from there. Please, I welcome and appreciate all the knowledge you are willing to share.

    Thank you.

    • Rene Godefroy

      Sure thing Stanley. Choose a topic. Find out the problems around your topic. Then follow the other steps. You just have to be persistent. If I can do it, anyone can do it. I had no advantage when I started. It’s possible for you my friend.

  18. Monique Grant

    Wow, Rene it seems like you’re in my head right now…To have instruction from you that line-up with already in my heart is amazing. My main opposition at this time is funding the vision. In the future can you speak on how you obtain the funding for your vision. Yes, I will not give up!!!

    • Rene Godefroy

      That’s what good teachers do Monique. You simply enter into the existing conversation that is in your student’s head. It’s the same for your audiences. See what I mean?

  19. melanie cooper

    I am very enthusiastic about your last email. The fact that you are motivating me to move my business and I am listening makes your credibility stand high. In 1 month I will be finished with my book, I will be sure o acknowledge you in this book as you motivated me to this point. I as well will mention you to all of my speaking engagements again because of you I didnot drag my feet.
    May you prosper in everything you do. I will encourage others now as you have encouraged me.

    • Rene Godefroy

      Hi Melanie,

      Thanks for your feedback. I know you are a powerful woman. You can do anything or whatsoever you want. Thank you for mentioning me to your colleagues in the medical field.

  20. Joan

    I thank you very much for sharing your insight. It’s inspiring me a lot. Regards.

  21. joseph

    wow that was great i love what i just learned. God blessed you for that master piece. Thanks

  22. Giles

    Yes, Rene… the most important is #6- never give up. Without perseverance, no hard work will be rewarded.
    By the way, when are you setting off the project on changing the world- the one you asked us to sign up for?

    • Rene Godefroy

      Indeed Giles #6 the key to success. Don’t give up even when your labor is not producing fruits at first. It takes time. But, one day… Yes! One day…

      You have what it takes. You are doing great work. Just don’t be discouraged. Don’t measure your success with those who started the race way before you.

      I am still trying to figure out the best and time to start the project you are referring to. Maybe it’s a full weekend with me in Atlanta.


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