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Getting Your First Speaking Gigs

  • Make sure you have a clear message. Then take every opportunity to share and spread your message. Blogging about your message is wonderful, but don't overlook the power of commenting on other blogs. That can reach your audience and their audience! Offer to write for smaller publications, including regional or state newsletters. As your message spreads, so too will demand for you as a speaker.
  • Start by offering to be on a panel or be a co-presenter for a session at a state association conference. This is a great way to get your feet wet without too much stress. Most conference sessions are 45-60 minutes in length, which can seem overwhelming if you have never presented for a large crowd before. Being on a panel or presenting with a more seasoned presenter will help you ease in to the speaker circuit and it is usually (but not always) easier to start at a local level conference.

Tips on Conferences to Speak At

  • Check out ALA & Chapter Conferences Calendar for a complete, up-to-date list of library conferences.
  • Information Today Conferencesoffer a variety of opportunities for brief presentations and longer sessions.

Public Speaking Tips and Links

  • Check out Informative Speech Topics for useful speech tips, informative speech topic ideas, and other helpful advice on delivering a great presentation.