Ryan Foland speaks with Teresa de Grosbois, co-founder of the Global Influence Summit and a bestselling author on how local word of mouth can suddenly turn into an epidemic. Teresa specializes on the topics of influence and success. As the Chair of the Evolutionary Business Council, Teresa leads an international, invitation-only council of speakers and influencers dedicated to teaching the principles of success.
In this podcast interview, Ryan and Teresa explore influence: what it means to be influential, what speakers at any level can do to build their influence, and why you need to share your influence when you’ve got it.
Listen to this podcast to find out:
- What creates mass influence, and how to translate it and leverage it.
- How to use the cycle of reciprocity to build your business
- Why it is essential give influence to the event host when you are on stage
- How to get your audience to remember 96% of what you say
- Why you need to get really good at the 20-person crowd if you want to get paid
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TG: Hi, this is Teresa de Grosbois.
I'm so excited to be coming to you in the World of Speakers podcast, where we're talking about everything from influence to happiness, to how to impactfully step into the life of your dreams.
RF: All right, we are here back with another episode of the World of Speakers, and true to its name, we are speaking with Teresa de Grosbois. Can you read your name for us?
TG: De Grosbois.
RF: There we go.
She is speaking to us from Costa Rica which is part of this world.
Teresa is not only the chair of the evolutionary business council, but she is a number one international bestseller of her book "Mass Influence."
Today, we're going to get to know her.
Teresa, we're going to pick your brain about how you can help people from a tactical speaking standpoint.
Then, we're going to learn about this "Mass Influence" and how you've used the stage to monetize your message and create these cool communities all over.
It sounds like you’re starting some cool stuff there in Costa Rica.
Let's dive into it, welcome to the show.
TG: Thank you, it's great to be here.
RF: I just love the fact that you are in Costa Rica because I've visited there a few times, that's how I hone in on my Espanol communication and what a great country with great people.
Now, do you live there all the time or is it part of the year?
TG: I am a nomad, I like to say enlightened nomad.
I live in Canada in the summer, I'm a Canadian, and then I come down here and commute from here in the winter.
But of course, like a lot of speakers, we're all always traveling. It's just home base, six months of the year.
RF: Very cool.
Well, let's get into this nomadness and find out where the nomadness started.
Were you a nomad as a kid?
How did you sort of find yourself to this nomad lifestyle of speaking?
TG: I love that, I always wanted to be a nomad as a kid.
Although, we were nomads a little bit. We used to live in northern Canada and we'd spend every summer in a cabin, in fact, a remote backwoods cabin, we'd go in by boat every year.
I was migratory since childhood.
It wasn't what most people normally think of, we went from a rural setting to beyond rural and ultimately backward.
RF: Were your parents hippies?
TG: They predated the hippie era, my folks.
I'm actually the youngest of a really big family, so even though I was born in the 60's, my parents were quite a bit older than me.
My eldest siblings were hippies, so they were 15 years older than me and so they really indoctrinated me in that whole hippie era.
RF: Now when you say big, are you talking like 12-15 or 10 and under?
TG: Big family means that I am the youngest of 9 kids.
RF: Okay, that's huge, that's a big family. Very cool.
Now, from out of those 9 kids, how many have taken and adopted this nomad lifestyle?
Are there other brothers and sisters that somewhat have similar paths?
Has everybody just gone different ways?
TG: It's a fascinating question, nobody's ever asked me that before.
A lot of my siblings do like to travel, actually, some of us have scattered to the winds.
I have a sister who lived in Germany for many years, she's just come back and is now on East Coast of Canada.
One of my sisters is married to an Air Canada pilot so they travel all over the world. I am quite jealous actually, every few months they're going somewhere different.
RF: Very cool.
TG: And yet, some of my siblings have just sort of stuck close to home, a lot of them are in the central Ontario area now, Toronto and north.
RF: You've got this sort of nomadic upbringing.
How did you get into this mass influence?
Can you maybe take a couple steps back and a couple steps forward?
To be a number one international bestseller— that's no joke.
This concept of mass influence— maybe you can share with our listeners what that means, what got you to that point and are you all about helping people to gain influence?
Shed some light on that for us.
TG: I'd love to tell you, "It was this beautiful linear path that all made sense."
In reality, nothing could be further from the truth.
I think it's kind of how they say, "Fish don't know what water is."
Often we don't know what we're good at until other people really start pointing it out to us.
RF: I like that.
TG: For me, the seeds of really having influence become a passion of mine, were probably sown in those early years out in the backwoods with my older siblings.
Of course, when you're the youngest and your family is all you got, importance becomes a pretty important conversation to you, at least for me.
I had a lot of dialogues, self-sabotage, whatever you want to call it around, "I'm too small to play with the big kids."
I was often getting left behind or the older kids wouldn't want me tagging along.
That actually created in me a real drive to look at what makes somebody worthy of being in a group, in fact, not only being in a group, but of actually leading a group, because I never had the opportunity to lead as the youngest.
That had me fascinated with the whole topic and I became an overachiever which is pretty common for youngest kids of big families and continued to pursue opportunities.
I grew up in Canada's oil and gas sector, lived in Alberta for many years, led numerous major change initiatives without ever realizing that what I was doing was I was learning about influence.
Eventually, I decided to leave the whole oil and gas sector behind.
I did that for something completely different, I left, started a charity, wrote 3 books, very quickly put all 3 on the bestseller list, I was using them to raise money for the charity.
And then, 2 very remarkable things happened.
The first was I very quickly realized that I didn't enjoy running a charity and I didn't enjoy being a children's author.
The second was— people started coming at me in droves saying, "Teresa, 3 number one bestsellers in 8 months, how the heck did you do that, and would you show me how?"
I started mentoring and coaching all these people and really understanding what creates word of mouth epidemic, what creates influence and that actually evolved into a brand which really had me moving forward as someone who helps others understand how to lead their own movements.
RF: Wow, and it all started with a new word I'm going to make up, we'll see what you think about it— a siblinfluence. I'm not sure, a siblinfluence or a siblinginfluence?
TG: Yeah, there is a word there somewhere, it's pretty good.
RF: So let's just decide on this, sibling + influence, and it's probably subliminal.
You've got siblings, you have subliminal and you have influence.
It's interesting because for those people who do have brothers and sisters, there is this constant sort of fighting for attention, not only among the siblings, but among the parents.
And being the youngest child myself, having an older brother and older sister, I'm an overachiever, I'm also a ginger and those things combined make it very dangerous. It's a ginger-chiever.
TG: I love it.
It's not just a siblinfluence. One of the things we all know is the further you are from home, the smarter people think you are.
Literally, I have a brother who is so genius, he designs control systems for nuclear reactors, he's been on loan from the Canadian government to the government of Austria, he's that top of his field.
But my inner dialogue around him is always things like, "He used to stick forks in the toaster." Because he's my brother!
It's not just our siblings, but the people we're very familiar with, we tend to have an inner dialogue around,
"Could someone close to me, could someone like me really be important and influential?"
Because it's a reflection of our own belief that we're not that important or influential.
What it really comes down to is we start challenging our own beliefs about the impact we can have in the world and when we can see ourselves as important and influential, it's a lot easier to see others around us as the same.
RF: It's an interesting concept.
What makes me think about the distance from your family being smarter, you are also talking about the distance from yourself— if you really can stand outside of yourself and not think of the forks that you stuck in places that you shouldn't, then sort of this outside persona, other people have this vision, it's a reality of what you look like to them.
I'm assuming that this whole mass influence is realizing that and then translating it and leveraging it to basically create a whole new family, outside of your family, right?
Because the influence is really about building this community that people that drove to you in numbers sort of had this organic flow where you became a bigger family.
TG: Yeah, it's very true.
Influence really is all about relationships, and that's something a lot of people often don't think about.
When you think about what a word of mouth epidemic is, a word of mouth epidemic is just 200 influential people all talking about you or your book or your project all at the same time.
It starts with them liking you and admiring you and wanting to talk about your work, a.k.a. a relationship. And that's what a lot of people miss in the world of influence.
RF: Yeah influencenship. I am telling you, there's a lot of opportunity for words out there.
TG: You are like me, you love inventing new words, that's so fun.
RF: I had somebody on the show the other day and she tweeted me, she said, "You were the best interviewer and the worst word maker-upper." But I'm proud of that.
Talk to us about how speaking or sort of being in front of people has been a part of this.
It sounds like you wrote the books, people came to you, you helped them understand the word of mouth.
Did you start speaking more on it, and how did the stage helped to propel where you were to where you are now?
TG: The stage is an amazing place to propel anyone's influence, because it involves social proof.
A lot of us don't think about this, but we all have influence, any time someone likes and trusts you enough that they'll take action based on your word, then you have influence.
Mass influence then is when a lot of people like and trust you enough to take action on your word, and that requires social proof.
Any time people feel like, "Oh, other people trust them, so I should too," then that's where influence starts to grow, influence starts to magnify.
In fact, it can be quite exponential as the social proof gets bigger.
Any time you're doing something that is not in a one on one conversation but is a one to many conversation, social proof starts to become inferred and influence goes up exponentially.
So radio show, stage, writing a book, having a podcast, any of those things that are one to many conversation can really massively improve your influence and your ability to have an impact in the world.
RF: You are, I am assuming, a student of your own teaching, right?
Here's a question— is it the same influence with sort of the smaller numbers and it just actually is amplified and multiplied, but that's kind of an interesting concept to where we all have influence, and as the more people see and hear and follow and then other people see and hear that people are following you and it sort of becomes this massive influence— at the root is it still the same influence that you had with the small group just multiplied?
Or do things really change and become more dynamic as the social proof increases?
TG: Well...yes and no. Let me explain that a little bit.
Yes, it is that linear in some respects and it's also messy.
Life is messy and we can talk about it like it's this neat and tidy linear thing, and the reality is especially being on stage, as you give your message you get real-time feedback.
What happens for a lot of speakers is— the stage is such a beautiful place to hone your message, because as you see people's reactions, as you see whether things are landing, as you see whether they're shifting and moving, your message matures and your ability to communicate it matures.
So on the one hand, yes, it's social proof, on the other hand, your message is also evolving through the process of you becoming more influential.
As your message evolves, it actually becomes more impactful and more impactful gathers more social proof; and more social proof has you actually become more influential.
So it becomes this beautiful self-propelling, self-feeding cycle.
Although it sounds a little linear, it can be a bit messy, and the messiness of it is lovely because that brings in the whole humanity of it all.
RF: I love it.
You brought me back to college, studying economics and sort of economic theory, and I'm imagining these different graphs where we had these different inputs and these outputs and as either a business or something that you're tracking changes, there are these factors that multiply and the algorithms get more complex or messy.
And then it does create this sort of sometimes that hockey stick where it goes up.
You had mentioned exponential and I think that's an interesting concept, that influence is linear with exponential tendencies if social proof is in that algorithm.
TG: Yeah. There comes a point where you can't figure out how things happened anymore.
Like for example when I launched my book, what a beautiful miracle that was.
Truly I'm humbled by that was the gift the evolutionary business council gave me, because of course, I run this large organization of people really committed to creating change in the world.
We put the presale page up from my book, we didn't even finish testing and making sure everything was right, and word got out to some of the members and they started shouting it out and spreading the word.
That went with such a wildfire, like talk about feeling vulnerable because we're like, "Oh my gosh, are there even typos on the page, because we haven't even checked it yet."
And the book was hitting number one best seller within the hour.
By the next day, it was number one in seven countries.
Now, here's the interesting thing, one of those countries was Italy, we don't even have members in Italy, I have no idea how we hit number one on the bestseller list in Italy to this day, I have no idea how that happened.
RF: You had the network effect, but I love this concept.
At a certain point, you don't realize how things happened and that's because you're caught up in the moment as you're sort of in the middle of this algorithm, it's like a real-life algorithm that you can't figure out but that's what's exciting because if you keep the inputs, things start happening.
TG: Yeah. Really, at the most basic level, a word of mouth epidemic is a gift that the people you are in a relationship with, give back to you for all the times you've given to them.
That's really what it turns out to, right?
There's a term coined by Dr. Shawne Duperon who is one of our top communications experts in North America, and she talks about cycles of reciprocity and that's how people build relationships.
At a friend level, it might be, "I help you out when you're sick, you pick me up to give me a lift somewhere when my car is broken."
It's not based on scorekeeping, it's more based on this notion that we care about each other, we help each other.
Influential people do the same thing, they engage in the cycles of reciprocity, but they do it a little bit differently.
When you look at how highly influential people operate, their cycle of reciprocity is based on giving influence to each other.
They endorse each other, they shout each other's work out, they are often interviewing each other on their shows, thank you so much for doing this by the way.
They're praising each other from the rooftops, they're nominating each other for awards because influential people treat influence almost like it's a currency, except with influence the more you spend it the more you have.
RF: Bam, that's a subject for your next book.
RF: Influence as a currency.
TG: Yeah, the economy of influence, it was really the first economy, right?
Before we ever invented money on this planet, the influence was, in fact, the currency that was being traded.
That's why great houses were having their children marry each other, because they understood that relationships created influence, and the giving of influence and power to each other increases the influence and power of the person doing the giving.
RF: I love this concept, because it's there and it's trackable and it's visual and it's viral and it's simple, it's relationships at the end of the day, right?
RF: Let's dive into some tactics of influence when it comes to speaking.
I am sure you are full of all kinds of tactics, but what would be the highest value, most specific items or elements, or tips or tricks that you could share with our listeners of when you're on the stage?
You now have the ability to communicate your influence— what are some of the things that you really wish people would do more to up their influence game?
TG: Well, we've all seen the basic level happening.
You get on a stage in someone else's room, of course, the first thing the speaker needs to do is give influence to the event host.
You always shout out and edify the event host, you see speakers doing this all the time.
The advanced level of that is to really be aware of who in the room also deserves your praise from the stage.
How do you work them into the content of what you are talking, about how do you “big them up”, how to use examples that have them be raised up in the eyes of the other people in the audience.
That's actually the black belt level of influence when you're speaking on stage.
RF: I love that, praise from the stage, “big them up”, I like that, those are good. There's your next book after that, “Praise from the stage: black belt level influence edification”.
TG: I love it.
RF: Okay, I think that's great and I know a lot of people might get the microphone and say, "Okay great, it's great to be here, thank you."
This is very tactical, sharing your influence for the person of influence who got you to be able to share your influence, and then going inception influence into the audience and being relevant for those people to big them up. I dig that.
TG: Yeah and it's authentic, in other words, there are people out there listening who are saying right now,
"Oh, that's so smarmy that you would just big people up for the sake of bigging them up. "
And I want you to cancel clear that, because you only do it for people you authentically, deeply respect and admire.
In other words, there's enough influential people out there that you can praise, you never have to praise or endorse someone that you don't authentically like.
The reason for that is pretty evident— we all have inner dialogues, inner thoughts, authenticity, there's a lot of different definitions out there, but mine is, “Authenticity is simply your inside voice saying the same thing as your outside voice”.
RF: I like that.
TG: We've always run into those scenarios where we know somebody's thinking something different than what they're saying— we can tell.
People can tell the same with you. If you're saying, "Oh my god, this guy is awesome," and what you're really thinking is, "Get me out of here, this guy is such a jerk."
RF: It's going to come across.
TG: It comes across, right.
So you're not doing that person any favors by falsely praising them.
I often get asked to do 30, 40 interviews a month. I turn about a quarter of them down because I don't feel like I could authentically shout that show out or praise that show host.
I would come on your show any day of the week, Ryan, because I love what you teach and I love what you stand for.
RF: Thank you.
TG: You are so welcome.
RF: Look at you, bigging me up!
TG: It's the truth so it's easy to say, and people can tell I'm authentic, right.
I would never put myself in a position of having to edify a host if I didn't honestly believe what was coming out of my mouth because your listeners would spot it a mile away as would anyone listening.
RF: Yeah, as classically said by someone very smart, "How do I tell them this, I have no inner-monologue."
An Austin Powers reference for you, I always go back to Austin in times of need.
Okay, so the inside-voice matches the outside-voice.
Nick Morgan's been on the show and I've done some coaching with him.
He talks a lot about the non-verbal communication, so even if you are edifying the words and you think that you are fooling people,
"Oh, I'm so happy to be here," you've got 4,000 microcosms happening on your face that are communicating otherwise if that's really what your inside voice is.
TG: Yeah, absolutely.
And even beyond non-verbal communication that's physical, there's now research that shows that there is energy that people can feel, deaf people or blind people can pick it up, without visual cues or without auditory cues.
People can pick up when there's a disconnect in your energy.
We are actually having a growing body of research that shows that there is a sixth sense there that is energetic and people do tune into it.
We've tried to explain it as visual or auditory, but in fact, it is really there and people can sense it.
RF: Wow, that's interesting.
Alright, so you've edified them on the stage.
One of the things I like to pull out of people is what you do for an intro?
Or if there are any tricks for the intro, some people engage the audience, some people use humor.
I'm a big believer that people will remember the beginning of your speech and the end of your speech, not so much in the middle.
Do you have any advice for people on how to start or things that really work for you that energize the crowd right out of the gates?
TG: Well I'm a huge fan of accelerated learning.
For those who don't know what accelerated learning is, it's just a body of science that was developed by a Bulgarian scientist in the 1960's, Georgi Lozanov, if you want to Google his work.
It basically says that energy equals learning, so the more you get your audience to engage to raise their hands, to call and repeat, to share with a neighbor, the more they're going to retain what you say.
In fact, if you just get up there and do a keynote, they will only walk away with 12% of what you say.
If you get them engaged, laughing, raising their hands, whatever it is, they'll walk out of the room retaining 96% of what you've said. It's a huge difference.
My biggest piece of advice would be to learn the premises of accelerated learning and bring them into your speaking, whether you're keynoting or whether you're training, you can still use accelerated learning.
On that note, I always open with a question and I always make it a relevant question to what we're talking about or what's here in the room right now.
So if what's here in the room right now is a big upset because there's a snowstorm outside and everybody's late, I just ask the audience, "How many of you had trouble getting here?”
”How many of you found that you were amazed at how easily you got here in spite of what's going on outside?"
Whatever you ask, you always ask the opposite too, so that everybody in the room gets to raise their hand.
You always ask two polar opposite questions, but they all get to raise their hand.
And if possible, the question should show empathy or engagement with what is about to happen.
I always find that if you can have them at that point then they stay with you, because now they're like, "Oh, wow, she gets us,".
And some people would have speakers start with some personal story that shows that you can really empathize with your audience and that you have the right to be up there with them.
It's not so much about credentials, it's more about what you've lived through.
I have generally found that if you can simply walk out on stage and be who they need you to be, someone who deeply gets them and who is there to be deeply of service and every pore in your being exudes that energy that says,
“I am here all for you and anything going on with me doesn't matter right now, I'm all about you.”
”I'm not nervous because nervous is all about me, I'm simply here of service,” then it doesn't matter what's coming out of your mouth, you will have them from the very first word.
RF: Okay, this is some good stuff here, I am taking some notes. Are you a fan of Snoop Dogg?
TG: I am.
RF: Okay, so John Bates, a good friend of mine, amazing speaker, he talks with everybody from Johnson & Johnson to NASA, and helps with their executive communication.
He refers to Snoop Dogg and he says something that Snoop Dog wraps in one of his raps, "Don't be nervous, be at their service."
TG: Yeah that's a beautiful quote.
RF: And that's it.
He talks about how a lot of people are nervous because there's selfishness, because they don't want to get sweaty armpits, they don't want to sound nervous when if you flip it, you're like,
"I don't care what I look like, every single pore on the inside is every single pore on the outside.”
Maybe that's why I sweat so much on stage, because I'm authentic enough to do the inside voice which you said, “Every pore inside of you to pour out.”
TG: That deserves some clarification, because it's not selfish from the standpoint that you're a bad person.
It's selfish from the standpoint that you're really focusing on you and your fear of not looking bad.
And the reality is no matter what you do on stage, there may be moments you look bad.
There's going to be somebody in the audience who judges you because that's their inner-dialogue and if you make that important, as opposed to really being of service to that audience, if you make 100% of your energy around,
"How can I help you even though I'm imperfect, even though I'm not worthy to be up here, even though I'm too small to play with the big kids."
Whatever your inner dialogue is that's taking you out at that moment, even though all those things may be true, and I'm not saying they are true, but surrender to the possibility and then don't sweat them.
You simply say, "How can I be one 100% of service to this audience, how can I really help you at this moment?"
Then nothing will be off in your energy and you will have them with every word you say.
RF: Yeah, what is so cool about that kind of advice is that it is a non-technical technical right, so many people are looking for these, "What exactly do I say," or, "What can I exactly do?"
This is just like an aura of service that if you bring, you bring the energy and people will not only learn more, but listen intently and sort of feel that energy that you're giving off.
TG: Yeah, so many of us worry so much about being perfect and the reality is when you worry so much about being perfect on stage, you don't give your audience the permission to be human either.
Whereas if you role-model that, “Maybe imperfect is okay, maybe life is messy and maybe I can be a little messy up here”,
“Maybe it doesn't matter because maybe we're all just doing the best we can and messy is okay,” when you role-model that instead, your audience just falls in love with you.
RF: Yeah and then it's really just more about your energy than it is your exact words and people leave with this experience that they then want to continue to talk about it spread around.
One thing I want to share with everybody about this looking good on stage, if you have ever been on stage and asked people to take pictures of you or have had professional photographers, it is nearly impossible to get a good picture.
Because if you think about it, every single moment you're like making faces, so if you just admit the fact that you're not going to necessarily look good, but your energy can sort of shine through that, then that's what I think is amazing about speaking.
It doesn't matter who you are what you look like, what color, what anything— it's really about that message that you're transferring, that the power lies within.
TG: Yeah, I couldn't agree more, it's very much about who you're being far more than what you are saying.
Alright, so let's talk about how you take this energy and how in the real world do you translate that to monetizing your message or capitalizing on your influence to either create a lifestyle or to help give back or to create change and make people all onto one mission.
How do you, from a tactical standpoint, get started in this industry?
Or if you're in the industry, how do you move from 1000 person crowd to 5000 person crowd, it doesn't even matter.
What are your thoughts on using the stage to essentially make a career out of it?
Or increase your influence to where you have control over what it is that you're doing when you're doing it and how you're doing it?
TG: You start with getting really good at a 20 person crowd.
RF: Okay, good.
TG: The reality is, this is an art form, it's almost like learning a new sport and within the realm that we might call being a professional speaker, there are several different sports within that realm, it's almost like the difference between soccer and football or basketball, right.
They are all professional sports you have to be an amazing athlete for all of them, but the rules are a little bit different, and how the game is played is a little bit different.
So the first thing you've got to recognize is you've got to figure out
a) what your message is
b) who your audience is.
And then figure out the model that works for that.
For example, if your audience are entrepreneurs, you're not a paid speaker. There are very few entrepreneurial stages that will pay you to come in and speak.
But far more lucrative in that realm is what we would call selling from the stage.
So you come in, you wave your fee, you don't speak your free but you wave your fee, and then they give you the right to sell training programs in the room.
And if you've got high-quality programs that you can demonstrate achieve good results then you can make actually a lot more money than you would have made having charged a fee.
It all comes down to designing a model that works for where in the speaking industry you belong.
RF: Tim Ferris always talks about lifestyle design, so I'm liking this concept of speaker lifestyle design and that it's not as straightforward as putting a square peg into a square hole, there's different sized pegs and different sized holes and they all have sort of money coming out of different places.
I think that that's an interesting concept.
If you had to sort of segment them into 2 or 3 different areas, what would that look like and maybe what is a good training path for that?
Because you just first said,
“It's about your message and is about your audience, that's really what determines it all. It doesn't matter what the size is of the audience.”
TG: Really it doesn't, it starts with knowing what problem do you solve and for who.
RF: I love that.
I tell people all the time that I don't care what they do, I only care about the problem that they solve and I'm going to be interested if it's a problem that I have.
I love that you're echoing that.
Really, when you think about what motivates people to buy, it's usually one of two things: they're either trying to solve a problem in their life or there is something they just really, really want.
So in the speaking world, we're most often trying to solve a problem for someone and so that business model looks like one thing, where actually there's a number of different business models in that realm.
There is also a realm of speaking where we are just offering something people really, really want, like chocolate would be an example of that.
If you are doing for example getaway retreats that are like pamper yourself retreats, you might not be solving any problem in someone's life, you might just be marketing to something people really, really want.
I affectionately call that realm "marketing to tourists."
If for example, what you do would live on Tripadvisor, then you might be in that realm, you might not be solving any problem for anyone, you're just in the way of stuff people really, really desire, like a great experience, a great vacation.
That's one realm of speaking.
The bigger realm of speaking tends to be solving a problem for a specific group of people.
And I would say 80%, 90% of the speaking industry lives in that realm.
And if so, then the first thing that will dictate what your models should be is who is your audience.
Because if the problem you're selling is for corporate America for example, do they know they have the problem?
If they don't know they have that problem, they're never going to hire you unless you can demonstrate that there's a real problem that's costing them money and you can save them money by doing this.
And so that is the realm of paid speaking like big corporations will bring you in and pay a fee, sometimes big events like big association events will hire feed speakers that actually only represents about 20% of the industry though.
So if you're not in the realm of, "A corporation would hire me", you're more likely going to be setting up a business model that looks like, "I sell stuff when I speak."
And in that case, you're probably offering some kind of advanced retreat, advanced online program, advanced content where you are going out and you're speaking at events that will allow you to sell from the stage in exchange for you waving your speaker fee.
And then you enroll 10-20% of the room and coming in and doing the more advanced content.
So that might be something like, "I'm teaching entrepreneurs how to market," or, "I'm teaching people how to live a healthier lifestyle."
Or, "I'm working with cancer survivors to help them get their life back."
If you have a definable group and you're addressing a definable problem, especially one that you can save them money by defining the problem, because if they can have a direct correlation in their mind to, "If I buy this thing I will save money or make money," then it's not going to be difficult for you to sell your programs when you're speaking.
RF: I would assume that you kind of have to know what those programs are, the technology has to be set up, they have to be vetted, it has to be easily accessible.
There's a lot of background work to do to sell from the stage.
TG: Not really.
RF: No? Okay.
TG: You would think that, most people think that and that's actually what stops them from starting.
RF: Well, let's solve this problem right now, let's shake the globe a little bit.
TG: The thing I love about the speaking industry is you can sell stuff before you ever build it.
All it requires is honesty and transparency that that's what you're doing.
And so what that looks like is you give a killer speech— let's not use the word killer, that's negative.
You give an enlivening speech, an enlightening speech, and the audience is in love with you and they want more.
In any given audience it's a pretty good bet that at least 10% of them want to go further with you, that's pretty normal, if you're a good speaker.
And you stand up there and say, "I've had a lot of requests and I've been thinking about creating some advanced content on blah, blah, blah."
Maybe it's an advanced retreat, maybe it's a mentorship program, maybe it's an online content delivery program, but you say it's blah, blah, blah, whatever, you define what it is.
Then you say, "This is going to retail for," I'm going to make numbers up, "It's going to retail for $3000. I am however looking for a test group of students, if you are willing to be part of the test group, you can buy it now for only a $1000 and I will design the program around your specific needs.”
“What that looks like is I'm going to survey you about specific elements of this particular challenge you're facing, I'm going to see what support you need and I'm going to provide it or acquire it to ensure you get it."
RF: I love that!
TG: Now, you define roughly what this is going to look like, like you might say,
"This involves a group mentorship call once a month, you'll also get the X amount of one on one coaching from me. You'll also have access to online content that will be building as we go."
So you can define what all the pieces are that make it worth that much value, but it is possible as long as you don't lie, like you've got to be open and transparent about it, but it is very possible.
In fact, I recommend to speakers, if you're designing a new program, do it that way, go out and sell it and then build it.
Because first of all, if you don't sell it first you don't even know if anybody wants it. If nobody wants it, it's a waste of time to build it, you've wasted a lot of effort.
But secondly, doing it that way, you want to build up a test group of 20 or 30 students so that as you're designing it, you're designing it for real people it's going to be a lot more solid a lot more powerful content.
RF: Yeah, then those 20 people are going to be your biggest fans to create a word of mouth epidemic about how you helped them with a course to directly solve the problem that they had.
TG: Yeah, exactly, not to mention awesome video testimonials to put up on your website when you're selling the course in the future.
RF: Yeah, that's a very unlike field of dreams concept, don't build it, and soon that they're going to come, get them in the audience and then get them to come and then build it.
TG: Yeah, get the people, then build it.
And I believe anytime you could do a business model where you sell something and then build it, it's way less risk as a business owner which is why I love this whole world of infopreneur.
Even with the intentional community that we're building down in Costa Rica, we were talking about me being nomadic, a number of members of the evolutionary business counselor building a community down here, we came up with a paradigm of,
"Let's sell and then build."
So we're actually selling fractional ownership and people can own a week of the retreat center for example, as well as the week of the guest houses, we're doing all that beforehand and then we're building it.
And we're just being transparent and honest with people about that, that's why it's a rocking deal because it's like,
"No, there's nothing physically you can see right now. First we sell it, then we build it."
RF: Right, what a great concept.
What is empowering about that for people who are wanting to monetize their message is that it takes the pressure off of creating the whole product before you get up there on stage.
And like you alluded to before, speaking is really that real-time feedback and if people are audibly going, "Uuu" and, "Aah" and they're laughing and they're engaged and they stick around afterwards and they're asking particular questions, that's really just crowdsourcing what they want to then deliver it to them.
TG: Perfect, yeah, absolutely.
RF: It reminds me, I've heard of a new restaurant chain, which I won't name because I don't remember, but I'm not going to tell you that even though I just did.
The idea is that you pre-register with them whether it's with your DNA or some sort of chemical biomarkers.
Then you go to the restaurant and based on your genes, based on their guess of your taste buds you don't have to order they're going to deliver what your body type says you might like.
It's crazy, but it's the same kind of concept to really get into this customized, tailored world where people do want to feel that individual touch.
I love that concept of “sell it, then build it”.
TG: Yeah, it's a lot lower risk and it's actually a far more powerful place for speakers and trainers to be.
At the very basic level of this model though, at the very least if you're speaking, if you've got a book, you can be selling your book on stage.
Now, books are more of a marketing piece than they are money makers, because you only make $20 every time you sell a book, but that having said, getting more of your books out there can be a real support to having more people hire you and bring you into speak down the road.
RF: So for somebody who wrote 3 books that were bestsellers within 8 months and then went on to another international bestseller crushing it, you have 2 minutes to give people the best advice about writing a book, what would you tell them?
TG: Well, I actually teach a program on this called, "How to become a bestselling author," because I find a lot of people get stopped before they even start.
The first thing you want to do and I talk to a lot of experts in the industry, I talk about this, I would recommend blogging your book.
Do 7 minutes a day, write one short bit a day.
I always start with students doing an exercise and getting a really good book outline, because each chapter has different elements that it'd be really good to have in it.
But each one of those elements, if you take a chapter and it's got 4 elements, each one of those could just be a blog post or 7 minutes of writing every day and then you're done that piece, right?
If you can chunk it down into little pieces, it's a lot quicker and a lot easier to get your book written.
And then similarly, a launch is just a do list of about 100 things and that might sound overwhelming when you first approach it, but if you can chunk it down into step by step— here's how I do each piece, I've got to make sure my listings are right, I've got to make sure my categories are right.
A lot of people are talking about the book all at the same time so that's different relationships I've got to build or capitalize on.
When you chunk it down into that, it's not nearly as hard as you might think it is.
RF: So one thing that I heard you say which actually might change the trajectory of a phrase that I will say for the rest of my life .
And I don't know if you omitted a word on purpose or it's because your Canadian or because you're in Costa Rica, maybe we just missed it, but you referred to what people know of as the "To-do list," you removed a word you called it the "Do list."
Did you realize that? Is that on purpose, is that what you said?
TG: It was on purpose, I really think action is the thing that makes the difference between someone who is highly successful and action happens in the present.
RF: So take the "To" out of it, it's just the "Do List", I love that.
TG: Yeah, let's go do it.
RF: Yeah, the Do List.
I'm a big To Do List kind of guy but I think for the rest of my life, the long-lasting impact among other things that have happened at this moment in time is that I will forever make a commitment to not refer to the To Do List as a To Do List, the To Do List is the Do List.
TG: It makes a huge difference, because ultimately, having a powerful life is about stepping into your dreams.
When you find that thing that really lights you up, that thing to be of service to others, I don't mean your dream to own a nice sports car, I mean your dream of how do you really have an impact on the world.
Believe it or not, Aristotle was the first person who ever spoke about this, he talked about the different types of happiness in the world and he talked about hedonistic happiness, that's like the happiness that comes at the moment from pursuits of the flesh, and it's an appropriate form of happiness, like,
"Give me a good piece of pumpkin pie and I am hedonistically happy."
And yet, he also talked about Eudaimonia and Eudaimonia is the ongoing state of happiness that comes when we know we are a deep contribution to our families, to our community, to the world at large.
And unlike hedonia, or hedonistic happiness, eudaimonia is very heart-centered, permanent and lasting.
When we can step into that realm of Eudaimonia, we're really stepping into the realm of what are our dreams to be a contribution to the world.
One of the most selfish things you can ever do is find that thing that really lights you up, where you are a deep, deep contribution to others, because the research is now showing you will not only be happier when you find it, you'll actually live longer and you'll be a lot healthier too.
RF: Wow. That is the way to end an amazing episode here on the World of Speakers.
I'm inspired, I forever now have a new term of the— I almost said it, I almost messed up the Do List.
TG: And let's not forget sibinfluence.
RF: Oh sublinfluence, yes.
We'll figure this out and we'll tweet out, I will get that out there into the world.
Think about the influence that you have to attain as a child, as a sibling, or if you have kids, think about that and know that that can leverage you to end up creating an amazing person like you, Teresa, and all these other amazing change makers that you're associating yourself with.
I'm excited to be in the company and I'm going to come visit you in Costa Rica that's going to be on my Do List here, I'm interested in this mindful community that is really just focused on creating a positive environment.
I just want to thank you again for being on and we'll definitely stay in touch. For all of you listeners, I want you to check out what Teresa has going on, sounds like she's got amazing programs.
Teresa, where would you send them if you were going to send them somewhere online?
TG: Come check out our council, Evolutionary Business Council.
RF: Excellent, so check that out and if your inside voice is saying, "I love the show," then your outside voice needs to go leave a review on iTunes, that would be great.
Thanks to our sponsors, SpeakerHub for helping us to get this and get all these amazing people together.
We will see you again on these other shows and check out past shows all this good stuff, siblinfluence, and don't forget to big people up and sell it before you buy it. There you go everybody.
Teresa thanks so much and enjoy, tell the monkeys in the trees I say, "Hi."
TG: This was a total pleasure, Ryan, thank you so much for having me on.
RF: All right, you have a great day and Adios, Hasta Luego, bye bye.
A bit about World of Speakers
World of Speakers is a bi-monthly podcast that helps people find their own voice, and teaches them how to use their voice to develop a speaking business.
We cover topics like: what works versus what doesn't, ideas on how to give memorable presentations, speaking tips, and ideas on how to build a speaking business.
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