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Caterina Rando

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Blog, Faith, prayer, Spiritual Gifts, Travel, Writing

Sought After Speaker Summit Part 9

Recently I attended Caterina Rando‘s Sought After Speaker Summit speakers’ training. This is part 9 of my Sought After Speaker Summit blog series. You can read part 1 here, part 2 here, part 3 here, part 4 here, part 5 here, part 6 here, part 7 here, and part 8 here.

Some of the things I learned from Caterina’s training were what NOT to do as a public speaker. These included:

    Beth Jones & gift winner Ana Muniz
    Beth Jones & gift winner Ana Muniz
    Show up! You don’t want to cancel at the last minute, unless it is a true emergency like sickness or death in the family, a cancelled flight, etc. If you call to say you can’t make it just because you have¬†a little cold or are PMSing and depressed today, this will quickly blacklist you as a professional speaker. (If you are really sick, though, please don’t go! You won’t deliver your presentation well, and this will be a disservice to the event planner and the audience who deserve the best! Recommend another speaker to replace you, if possible.)
  • Connect with¬†the audience before, during, and after your speaking time. Be available and approachable!¬†Don’t be a “grab and go” speaker – speaking, grabbing your stuff and going home right after you speak. Look into their eyes as you speak; walk out into the audience to be physically close to them. Don’t let the podium be your little safety net! Be with your peeps!¬†Talk with the attendees before and after you speak.. This builds the know, like and trust factor and is smart speaker etiquette. I love praying with women after I speak; it’s a wonderful opportunity to minister to the heart of the women personally.
  • Network at events where you’re speaking. If there are multiple speakers, don’t sit with only the speakers at breaks, lunch or dinner. Sit with the attendees so there is not a barrier between you and the audience of “us and them.”
  • Don’t be a high maintenance, diva¬†speaker. You don’t want to be kind of speaker who demands a Starbucks latte’ or 3 bottles of Fiji¬†water. If you try to act like a celebrity, you are less likely to be booked! Don’t have a long list of¬†“must have” demands¬†before your speaking time.
    Man yelling now

    Don’t be a high maintenance speaker

    Work with the AV equipment they have; if necessary, bring your own that you and your staff can operate. Be friendly and open to the planner, staff and attendees, not rude. Leave a thank you note for the event planner/staff, expressing your gratitude. Practice great follow up techniques after events; they may ask you to come back next year or another time!

  • No verbal agreements! You need a contract, Letter of Agreement or Letter of Understanding. This needs to be your own agreement, stating what is important to you; don’t wait for the planner to send you one. You need to have a speaker agreement even for marketing talks. This is a super tip that Caterina has learned. It doesn’t matter how well you know this person; get it in writing! Be sure that you and the event planner or contact person has signed and dated it before the day of event.¬†This includes your¬† speaker fee and the date you will receive it, such as on the day you speak. Clarify that you want a private hotel room if the planner is booking your room. One time when I flew out of state to speak somewhere, I discovered that I had a “surprise” room mate (another speaker)¬†at the hotel. Neither of us knew about this before we arrived!¬† If you’ve asked for a deposit prior to the event (I do this, to make sure they are committed), be sure you have received this first.
  • At the same time, honor yourself. Caterina has found that¬†a lot of events don’t hold their numbers. When an event planner contacts you, let her know that you’re happy to put it on your calendar now if what was promised is delivered, if the date is available, and if¬†the pay is right – but give yourself an out if you revisit it in 2 months and only 5 people have signed up for the event. This is a way to honor yourself. Put it all in writing.¬†However, by the 6 weeks mark, be firm about whether you are committed to speaking there. ¬†(My disclaimer: if God tells you to speak there anyway, obey Him!)
  • Don’t shout. Use the mic! Even if there’s only 20 people in the room, you want a mic. Using a mic will preserve your voice. I found by creating my own local event that having 2 mics was wisdom!You want everyone to be able to HEAR you, and to have a backup if necessary. AV equipment costs a ton of money, up to $175 for 2 days. Power point projector can cost $500. Be sure to ask about and then check the equipment before you speak somewhere.
  • Practice takes¬†away the anxiety and fear.¬†The more platform time you have, the less anxious you will be. When you go to a new level (such as speaking to 1000 people after only speaking to crowds of 50, 100, or a couple of hundred people), you will experience anxiety again.
    shy girl speaking

    shy girl speaking

    But the more you do it, the less fear you will have. In sales on calls, you can visualize the person on the other end waiting for your call. For speaking, you can imagine people sitting on the edge of their seats, waiting to hear your important message.

  • Get your speaker sheet done. This is a simple tool that gets you booked or you DON’T get booked if you don’t send it out.
  • Don’t have a pic with your dog or cat or family in it. Women love furry babies (and regular babies), but this is your professional photo to help you book speaking gigs. Make sure that people can really see your eyes in your picture, because the eyes are the window to the soul. You want a dynamic picture with a big smile, that is positive, uplifting, and makes you seem trustworthy (hopefully you are!). You can use a body shot if the brochure is two pages, but generally a good, quality headshot is best. A corporate photo looks dated. Be brand consistent.
  • Don’t use a bio like a resume’.¬† Remember personal branding words in your speaker sheet. “Dynamic and inspirational.” Make sure it describes you as an incredible speaker.
  • List 3 titles of talks, not 10 or 20,. You want your 3 talks that get the most pickup. If you have 15 or 20 talks listed, this will make decisions difficult for the event planner. Put your best stuff on there. What else do you do–coaching? She will look at it and think, ‘This speaker¬†is a perfect match for us!” You can have different speaker sheets, or tweak your bio/speaker sheet just for that conference.
  • Don’t accept no.¬† The answer is yes until they say no! The event planner and the attendees tell you they loved your presentation and they are leaving inspired. If you offer to speak again next year, and¬†they say they have a different speaker every year, offer to be a breakout session or workshop speaker.

You want to be not just a memorable speaker they enjoyed, but a sought after speaker who is booked solid throughout the year. Remember these do’s and don’t’s and you will be!

Beth Jonees, International Speaker/Author

Beth Jones, International Speaker/Author

*******Do you need a speaker for your late fall of Christmas event this year, spring 2014 or spring 2015? I’m now booking speaking engagements. If you’d like me to be a speaker at your event, or to talk with me more, email me at or contact me here.

Blog, Business, Coaching, Faith, Spiritual Gifts, Travel, Writing

Sought After Speaker Summit Part 8

Last weekend, I had the privilege of attending Caterina Rando‘s Sought After Speaker Summit in Los Angeles, CA. This is part 8 of my Sought After Speaker Summit blog series. You can read part 1 here, part 2 here, part 3 here, part 4 here, part 5 here, part 6 here, and part 7 here.

On Friday night, Caterina Rando offered an optional Q & A Session for anyone who was interested to ask her more questions. My friend Shelley calls me a question box. I always ask people questions because I am very curious and want to learn new things. The Friday night session was primarily dedicated to writing a book.

Here are more tips Caterina gave us for writing a book: Just choose the things from this list that apply to YOU.

    • When writing, you want to be educational, motivational, inspirational, and transformational. It’s tricky, but you must include all these. It must be reader-centric – not about you! Use exercises and stories to engage them.

      Beth Jones, speaking at Women of Destiny conference

      Beth Jones, speaking at Women of Destiny conference

    • Use your story, but bring it back to them.
    • At the end of a chapter, always have a call to action.
    • You can write standing up, while working out, by buying the Treadmill Desk¬†or NextDeskFit.
    • The back matter of your book (marketing pages) is more important than the front matter (dedication, contents, acknowledgments). Plant seeds. Say something like, “For more information on Beth Jones’ speaking, visit Or, “Here’s a coupon code to get xyz on my website.” In the back of Caterina’s books, she has resources of her trusted alliance partners to get a special code.
    • Your book is like an expensive brochure. You need your bio, your picture in the back (back cover or inside sleeve), your speaking topics, the url for your speaking page, etc.
    • Books need to be evergreen, relevant in 5 to 10 years from now.
    • Use massive distribution. Hire people to help you with your book. Repurpose the content. Put your book on the Kindle/Nook. A book carries a lot more weight so use massive distribution. Amazon has a POD division. Give your book away on Amazon for 1 to 3 days. This will give you exposure and visibility, and you can truthfully say your book is an Amazon best-seller!

      Walking with God ebook by Beth Jones

      Walking With God ebook

    • If you have your book available on audio, never read your book. It takes practice for those to sound good. Use professional editing. Caterina advises not to do your own editing; hire a VA. Use good headphones. A good mic is the Bluebird.
    • Survey your clients to find out what they want in your new book or your new program. Give them options for helping you choose the book’s cover or title or chapter topics. Say, “I’m creating my 90-day Catch a Star and Make Your Dreams Come True program. What do you want me to include in this program?” Facebook is a great place to survey: “Here’s my 10 titles. Which one do you like best or what other title would you use?”
    • Your one title may not resonate with your niche! Be benefit focused.
    • Be brand consistent with your book.
    • Just do it. Stop getting ready to get ready to get going to start. One client told Caterina that she was “in beta.” She had one year of her coaching, a year in her mastermind group, and her revenue was growing but she was running her business like a corporation. It was taking her 2 years to get out there. The longer you do that, the longer you are pushing off your revenue!
    • Send your book to the Library of Congress to copyright it.
    • Buy an ISBN so it can be tracked on Amazon. You can buy one for $125 or a block of 10 for $250 (or more).
    • On vacation, be on vacation. Caterina said it’s hard to shift to business space when she’s on vacation somewhere. It just doesn’t work.

      Beth Jones on Jacksonville, FL beach

      Beth Jones on Jacksonville, FL, beach

    • Create events talking about your book. Be loud and proud about being a speaker. Tell family, friends, or clients: “I want to go to Houston. Do you know of any massage therapists I could speak to while there?” This may not be an event, but you can create an event ahead of time! “If you put 25 people in a room, I’ll come and speak to them.” Learn to power think. Do workshops to promote your book!
    • Be open to travel anywhere in the world. If you are thinking you’d love to speak at that event to promote your book or programs, you might be able to speak next year at it! Sometimes Caterina pays for her traveling on her dime. It’s worth it. She took her dad to Venice, Italy and he cried. Traveling is a great opportunity of life.

      Me on the beach at Half Moon Cay, Bahamas

      Me on the beach at Half Moon Cay, Bahamas

Have you read my book Bahama Mama: When God Uses Ordinary Women For His Extraordinary Purposes? Check it out by clicking here. Just $5!

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Blog, Business, Ebooks, Faith, Spiritual Gifts, Writing

Sought After Speaker Summit Part 7



Last weekend, I had the privilege of attending Caterina Rando‘s Sought After Speaker Summit in Los Angeles, CA. This is part 7 of my Sought After Speaker Summit blog series. You can read part 1 here, part 2 here, part 3 here, part 4 here, part 5 here, and part 6 here.

I loved attending Caterina Rando’s¬†Sought After Speaker Summit in Los Angeles, and learned many things.

On Friday night, Caterina offered an optional Q & A session for anyone who wanted to stay longer to ask her more questions about any subject. Naturally, I stayed to take advantage of learning from her expertise! She dedicated this session primarily to writing your book.

Having a book gives you more credibility as a speaker. It establishes you as an expert in your given topic. A book is a confidence builder for you and the event planner. It is an additional revenue stream for your business, allowing you to sell products from the back table.

stack of books

stack of books

You can repurpose a book’s content into a keynote speaking presentation, workshop, webinar, telecall, telesummit, ecourse, and a new coaching program. Info products are good, but will not give you as much credibility as authoring a book.

Here were some of Caterina’s tips for writing a book:

1. What do you want the book to do for you? She discovered she has brilliant idea syndrome (hearing others’ brilliant ideas and immediately wanting to implement them) and brilliant book syndrome – i.e., you have 25 books inside of you (but not one done!).

2. Make sure the book matches your upsell. If you have no upsell, all you did was just speak to an audience. You can’t run a business on good will! A business makes money (a profit)!

3. Don’t be a “grab and go” speaker (grabbing your stuff and then going right after you speak). If someone is writing you a check, make sure it’s a great presentation and you engage with the audience before, during, and after you speak. One way to do this is interacting with the audience selling your book: autographing her book, taking pictures with her, talking and praying with her.

Karen Wells, Shannon, and me

Karen Wells, Shannon, and me
Doreen Penner’s Women’s Retreat, Canada

4. Be strategic about the talks you give and use your book’s content. When someone wants to pay you to speak, take it – but make sure it’s under the umbrella of what your purpose is!¬† Mention the book while you speak, quoting from it or using examples from it. This helps to sell your book!

5. Define your audience for your book. It may change. Who is your ideal client? You can’t market to the entire planet! Caterina “helps service-based entrepreneurs to be loud and proud about their business, and to thrive.” Who do you want to serve with all your heart, where it doesn’t feel like work? Who you served before may not be your audience now. If it feels like work you may not have found the right audience yet.

Women laughing

Women laughing

6. Be discerning of your time. Caterina is launching her new¬†book, On Wings of Faith. She has warm leads for this book and is out giving marketing speeches, not just chatting small talk to people. You have so many things that could be revenue-producing. You must be discerning of your time. Don’t go speak somewhere if your message is different than what they want and it’s not the right audience for you. This leads to…

7. Say no! You say no by saying, “Thank you so much. That really doesn’t work for me. Let me refer to another great speaker.” Turning people down is a skill. Do it with the 3 G’s ~ generosity, grace and gratitude. The audience at this event came up with the 3 G’s. Caterina says this is the topic of writing her next article. ūüôā

8.¬†BUT, be open to ideas coming in that have nothing to do with the topic, that are focused on uplifting your business. Discover possibilities! Sometimes you will recognize ideas that appeal to you, such as tips for traveling for business women, but you won’t act on it. A wonderful¬†website for women in business who travel is the Stiletto Dash, such as staying hydrated and not having desserts. Have a place to capture your ideas. You have enough projects now, but you may do this later.

Strawberry cheesecake

Strawberry cheesecake
Dining car on train, Canada trip

9. Know what your limits are and prioritize. Caterina was planning a social media marketing summit for October, but realized she already has 9 programs she is working on! The beautiful thing about being an entrepreneur is that you can run with an idea.


Woman pressing social media Like button

10. Not everyone will love you, your book, your speaking! It’s hard to be a prophet in your own land. (Luke 4:24) But in San Francisco, Caterina does lots of programs. They are always full, so that’s not always true. Test everything. Test things 3 times before quitting or moving on to something else!

11. Use your book to get booked. ūüôā Generate revenue with your book through speaking gigs, and then selling your book at the back table. Who needs your important message? There are women in this world who need to hear your important story.

The Hands of a Woman

The Hands of a Woman,


12. Think about the framework of your book. How many words do you want? What’s happening in each chapter? Some ideas are stories, exercises, and questions. Pull books off shelves. Look at the format. Do a checklist at the chapter’s end for all chapters. Use boxes. Design your chapters attractively with bold headers and sub-heads, bullet points, visually appealing graphics.

woman scuba diving

woman scuba diving

In the next post, we’ll discuss books more. Do you want to write, are you writing, or have you written a book? Share in the comments below.

Be sure to check out my ebooks and other info products at my estore here.