As my long-time readers know, I firmly believe in word of mouth to market your ministry. It is virtually impossible to build a ministry based on traditional marketing and advertising, because when people hire speakers, they want to hire those they have already heard of. They want to hire people either they have heard speak, or others that they know and trust have heard speak.
That’s why it’s so important that when you speak, you help people remember you. And the best way to do that is by publishing a newsletter.
It doesn’t have to cost very much money, either! E-mail based newsletters are virtually free to send out, although you may have to belong to a newsletter help website like Aweber to manage your subscribers and to help you format the newsletter, but the cost isn’t too much per month. You can also do it yourself, but I think it’s worth it to invest the money and avoid hassles.
In my e-course, How to Launch Your Speaking Ministry, I go into great detail about what such a newsletter should entail: it has to have stuff that is useful to people to read, or they won’t read it! It can’t just be news about you; it has to be something that adds value. I tell you exactly how to do that in the e-course, but just last week, when I arrived back from Africa, I had an email from one of my students proudly telling me that she had done her homework and had created a newsletter.
When I saw it I was blown away! It was so well-done, and so beautiful. You have to go look at it in its entirely here, but here’s a snapshot of it:
Isn’t that lovely? She goes on to list some thoughts, some links, and lots of great stuff!
Think about the person receiving this. She has heard Mari speak (because Mari just spoke at a whole bunch of Christian Women’s Clubs). She appreciated Mari’s message. And then she gets this very pretty newsletter, and she’s going to read it! Maybe she’ll keep it, maybe not. But the next time her church needs a speaker, or her sister’s church or friend’s church needs a speaker, she’ll remember Mari. And she’ll find her in her email book, or she’ll find a copy of the old newsletter, and she’ll forward it on.
That’s how I get the majority of my speaking engagements! They’re from people going to my main website from one of the newsletters that I send out.
So Mari must be a graphic designer, right? Or she must at least have tons of time on her hands, and be very artistic, and very creative, right?
Here’s what Mari said to me:
Sheila, the photo was a regular home photograph that I had taken in my dining room on a sunny afternoon (great natural lighting). I then used the “photoshop elements” on our computer to get rid of the background. It has a nifty little tool called the magnetic loop that helps you select the area you wan’t to keep. Then you hit crop and voila…a not so bad looking photo to use until you take it to the next level and get a professional one done.All the graphics (save the crocus in the snow) were pictures from my garden and text superimposed or images cropped to add that sparkle and color (and show you a little about who I am and what I love!)I just returned from speaking 3 days for Stonecroft and I loved it. Rather, LOVED it! It was absolutely delightful. I met so many great women. A few who were instantly friends, like we’d known each other for years.Thank you for your seminars. Crafting an Effective Signature Talk proved invaluable. The advice to open up with a little comment that tied to something that the group had already experienced or was familiar with. I felt like each time, God gave me a quick little idea that fit just right! Being a speaker is such a great gift. I have put in a lot of hours of hard work (alone–save for God and the cats–which is difficult for this woman who needs people-time). Yet, it wasn’t merely hard work that enable me to stand before those women in peace and freedom. It was like ballroom dancing–a man who knows how to lead well can make any partner look like a good dancer. God was leading me–well–all the way.
Take care!Mari Mayborn