How to stand up organizational thought leadership and who should own it. An interview with…
Innovation and technology in keynote speaking.
An interview with Waldo Waldman & Freddie Ravel that originally aired on November 3rd, 2021, as part of Leveraging Thought Leadership Live on LinkedIn.
In March of 2020, the keynote speaking business came to a grinding halt.
Before Covid-19, many speakers were predicting a record-breaking year for events and conventions. During the pandemic’s height, speakers and live workshops went on hiatus, hoping the shutdown wouldn’t last long. But a few visionaries forged new ways forward, using technology and innovation to help them deliver their message.
To discuss how keynote speaking changed during the pandemic and where keynote speaking is going in the future, I invited two of the best in the business to join me.
Waldo “The Wingman” Waldman is the bestselling author of Never Fly Solo: Lead with Courage, Build Trusting Partnerships, and Reach New Heights in Business, and a member of the Speaker Hall of Fame. He speaks around the world on the topics of trust and teamwork.
Freddie Ravel is a Grammy Award-winning musician who delivers dynamic multimedia “keynote concerts” on leadership, sales, and performance.
In this episode, we explore how each of our guests has pivoted their innovative style of keynote speaking to a virtual platform, using video and technology to connect with clients and audiences. Even with huge advancements in technology, speakers will still be faced with the difficulty of proving their value in a virtual setting, in order to maintain price integrity.
Waldo warns that speakers who are not adept with (or willing to learn) new technology are going to be shot down. Freddie explains how he created a custom home setup that allows him to bring messages and music to audiences in a dozen time zones — all at once. We further discuss the way additional products and solutions can give your virtual keynote an advantage, and create momentum that sustains change and creates actionable items for anyone who attends.
This is an insightful conversation into the ways that keynoters have sustained and grown their businesses using hybrid models, technology, and innovation. Come and listen — this information is sure to be useful to anyone operating in a speakers’ arena.
Three Key Takeaways:
- When speaking virtually, you need a clear picture of your audience’s needs and interests, and an understanding of their pain points, in order to connect with them emotionally.
- Regardless of how you deliver your thought leadership speaking, content is king.
- Be ready to offer follow-up products and solutions that will ensure your message goes further.
If you need a strategy to bring your thought leadership to market, Thought Leadership Leverage can assist you! Contact us for more information. In addition, we can help you implement marketing, research, and sales. Let us help you so you can devote yourself to what you do best.
Peter Winick And welcome. Diggin’ the music there. So, welcome to Leveraging Thought Leadership the livestream. So the concept here is we’ve been doing the podcast for four years, which has been myself and one guest typically. And then we decided that it would be more fun if there were two smart guests and a mediocre host. So that’s what we’ve been doing. And this is our second one of these. I’m really excited about these, this one today, and I’ll introduce my friends here.
Peter Winick So first I will introduce Waldo Waldman. Waldo is a New York Times and a Wall Street Journal bestselling author and a Hall of Fame speaker, he does keynotes live and virtually. He’s definitely known as the wingman, and he has been inducted into the National Speakers Association Hall of Fame, and he’s also a former F-16 fighter pilot. I always thank him for his service. So welcome, my friend. Waldo and I go back about 15 years, so we know each other.
Waldo Waldman I remember our first conversation was on the deck of my townhome talking about my book and we laughed. And we were instant brothers back then.
Peter Winick Exactly. And then my other brother is Freddie Ravel. So Freddie is amazing in his own right. He has a piece that he does called In Tune. But prior to that, and still concurrent to that, Freddie is a Grammy Award winning artist. He’s played with a couple of little bands you may have heard that have done okay called Santana, Earth, Wind and Fire or Madonna, Kanye West. What else do we got here? Prince, J.Lo. So, you know, so I think the trick is if Freddie’s playing for you, you’re going to do it right. So welcome aboard, my friend. Good. Good to have you both.
Freddie Ravel Good to be here.
Peter Winick So you see a few. Yeah. So let’s just dive in. So these are two of some of the best and most innovative and creative keynoters that I know and I know lots and lots of them. And what I thought I would do today is just sort of, you know, have a conversation of, well, what’s working right? Because two years ago, the conversation would have been, yeah, yeah, yeah, I was in Orlando this week and last week and how many gigs I’m doing, I mean, Waldo On my last trip before COVID was down to Atlanta, like literally ten days before the shutdown, and we were talking about, Oh, this is the best year ever. And then, lo and behold, life has changed. So what have each of you done the same and what have you to hear how each of you pivoted to provide value to your clients? Want to start with that one, Waldo. Although.
Waldo Waldman Yes, sure. And great to be here. By the way, Freddie and I are really good friends as well. I’ve been to one of his Santana concerts. He gave us a little backstage pass. He grew up, or lives, I guess, ten or 15 minutes from my wife in Woodland Hills, California. And we I’ve been to his house several times and we developed a great relationship and got him into the National Speakers Association, where he wow’ed us on the main stage and just another this is just another example of relationships and how things bubble up when you just are kind and connect and show value as people, not just as business people. So, look, I’m sitting in my car right now. I had 6 minutes to get in there to go to my hotel room. I had a last minute engagement. Oklahoma City, that’s my hotel up there in the distance, the illustrious Grand Casino, East Oklahoma. And then I’m driving down to.
Peter Winick Is that part of the Four Seasons? Because this is the glamorous place of the speakers.
Waldo Waldman I’m going to the Four Seasons tomorrow. I’m in Dallas, so a little bit different. But hey, I don’t care why I stay. As long as business is good and there’s running water and a bed, I’ll be fine. But. But so I’m sitting here pivoting on this in this car, right? I’m using this medium stream yard, LinkedIn live, having great assets and tools. I was telling you stuff before about, you know, leveraging some of my, my, my content from my, from my, some of the assets that I have available to me. How you interact with prospects and clients is absolutely different. We can be on a video call, we could be in a parking lot, slave to a cell phone and have a great conversation and provide value. And hopefully we’re going to provide value for the folks here. If you’re not adept at the technology, if you’re intimidated by what you’re looking to learn it, you will be shot down because many great speakers are phenomenal on the platform, but they don’t know how to sell. They don’t know how to leverage technology. This beautiful MacBook that I’m using or cell phone to connect, to be human with a client, and to demonstrate the value that elevates you above your competitors. And if it needs to make making a phone call and a parking lot of the hotel, so be it. Because these customers speed is life. You got to get back to them quickly and use whatever medium you can.
Peter Winick So let’s stay there for a second. So I’ve seen you both speaking before, multiple times. So, Freddie, I would have thought you and I talked about this at the beginning of the pandemic. Well, it might be harder for you, because Freddie’s whole piece is experiential and music and getting the crowd singing in and it’s all sort of this improv-y piece. I’m like, Wow, that’s going to be hard to do remotely yet you one right? Like, yet you’d figure out like the essence of what you were delivering wasn’t necessarily the stage. We’re all in the same ballroom. You know, Tuesday at 2:00. So, talk about what you’ve done, but I’ve seen some of it. It’s really, really creative and innovative and cool. And more importantly, the market’s diggin’ it.
Freddie Ravel Yeah. Thank you, Peter. And thank you, Waldo. And I think, you know, and I think we got to boil this down to like the core stuff in preparation for this interview, I was thinking a lot about the parallels that Waldo and I share. Right. And as even though we have we both have pivoted into the virtual world and we both are using this technology. In my case, I have a technology called E-cam, which I think is an amazing technology that allows them to pull up videos and screens and everything. And it’s very powerful. And I also have the ability to play the piano while we’re talking. Right. I literally had a desk constructed as when COVID kicked in and I said, I’m going to build a desk that I can stand in. So I’m in my studio in Los Angeles while those in Oklahoma. You’re in New York. I’m standing. I’m standing. I have a keyboard that I can pull out. What’s you don’t even see it because I think screen your cuts. You can hear this. I have a keyboard right here that I’m playing. Let me see if I can lower the camera so that the people can see it. Can you see this? Yeah.
Peter Winick There we go.
Freddie Ravel There’s a keyboard here, and I can I can see you. I can see Waldo and I can I can play. And that allows me to talk about Mozart. And relate it to teambuilding, leadership, time management and being able to do that. All across the world simultaneously. You know, I’ve done this now where I’ve had a thousand people on a call and I’m talking to 16 different time zones, and I play the piano. And the nanosecond that I hit the keys in Los Angeles, my guy in Cape Town, South Africa, is nodding his head. And I’ll be honest, I have no idea how that actually works. I really don’t.
Peter Winick But let me ask you this. So I guess I’ve seen you both live and you’re both performers in the good sense of the word. Like there’s something about like everything about Waldo’s event is enormously scripted, but there’s a music, right? There’s a theme, there’s a brand, there’s the visuals. And then you come out in the jumpsuit, and we’re already emotionally sort of there. And you feed off the audience, right? So that you can see who’s leaning in. And you. You lean towards those people, whatever. I think a lot of speakers that have had a tough time putting it out there in an environment that – this is an awkward environment. This is sort of like we’re all the, you know, green screen face on CNN. And you don’t get that instant real-time feedback of, oh, I’m losing and let me go pull another story. Or, you know, oh, I see all the blue screens because they’ve got their phones out. What can I do? So how do you how do you overcome that? Or how have you guys each developed new capabilities, new muscles to win in this in this market?
Freddie Ravel Waldo?
Waldo Waldman Yeah, you know, and that’s a great point. I use the E-cam as well. I would I would be linking it and if I was in my studio I would be pressing buttons. You’d see some stuff on the screen just like frantic, pressing buttons, videos play a video shows, I image shows, right. And I’m going to share a little bit more on the sell side, why that’s important. But you’ve got to be able to look at that screen, love that screen, that camera and be as present as possible. It’s extremely difficult because you don’t have that human interaction. Many cameras are off on these Zoom calls. You may not see their their emotion may not be laughing. So discipline and focus and ultimate presence and practice are absolutely critical. It is not easy to create an experiential, content packed program looking at a out of video screen. So really practicing a lot and making it very emotional. Now, if you’re a if you’re a tactical speaker, a sales process speaker, a more of a content speaker, and Freddie and I, for lack of a better word, are more experiential. We’re creating a theme work and emotions involved that’s hard to do on the screen process, pretty easy to do when you’re talking about sales steps and looking at slides. And so you’ve really got to put yourself back into that state of reengaging in that story, putting yourself in the proverbial cockpit on the stage with your keyboards, experiencing things and homeostatic, physiologically, mentally, spiritually. You’ve got to be really, really present knowing your customer inside and out, rehearsing, practicing, and ultimately making love to that camera and pretending that’s a human being in front of you that you’re trying to connect with. Extremely hard to do. And I guarantee Freddie and I have worked hard at it and we still have a ways to go, but it’s gotten a lot better over the over the last year and a half.
Peter Winick So, yeah, Freddie, I’d argue that you’ve literally gone from, you know, 70,000 person arenas to now performing live from my home. What’s that adjustment been like for you?
Freddie Ravel Yeah, you know, like, just like. Well, this is what I you have to make have to look at that camera and what I say, you know, you always sing your melody, listen for harmony, dance to your rhythm and celebrate the great score. Call you like just that. I’m making love to that camera and I feel thousands of people behind that camera. And I and I see them I see I see a woman in a kitchen in Mississippi looking at this. I see a guy sitting at a desk at IBM with headphones in a cubicle. Looking at this, I see a Japanese lady on the other side of the ocean with two kids, you know, looking at it on an iPhone. I mean, I’m imagining that’s very interesting, you know, so I think I think that has a lot to do with the two, is who, like Waldo says, know your audience, study them, work with them. I just all my life gigs are starting to come back now this sure that are coming back and it’s funny some of the things I’ve learned in the virtual world I’m now able to bring back to the life world. It’s an interesting way you would think, what am I going to learn in digital? That I can bring back live? And one of them is is the focus. Remember, when you’re speaking in front of thousands of people, you’re like this. So right. It’s a great privilege to be here to speak to you. You know, you’re looking around the whole room, but you’re not connecting. My thousand people are there.
Waldo Waldman Yeah, that’s great.
Peter Winick That’s very cool. So I want to I want to shift to sort of. Sort of the value prop. So the old school value prop of live keynote speaking was, you both had stellar reputations, right? So the client’s going to bring you in. You’re going to do your 40 minutes or whatever it’s going to be, and you’re going to rock it and you’re going to customize. And you’re both really, really good at the customization of, well, what is this client bringing me into Amplify when it’s not about me? Right. So is it. We’re having a great year. Is it overcoming resilience? Is it teamwork? Is it working in harmony, whatever it is? Right. And then you’re going to do that. And assuming there’s not a technical problem or whatever, whatever, whatever, 99.99% chance you’re going to kill it. Right. And it’s going to work. And you’ve done it before and you’ve got the jobs. Now, in this forget Non-Live event world, how does the client how are you seeing the clients justify the investment in you? And I’ll tell you, I’ll plant it with what I’m seeing is it’s less about the experiential, the entertainment and more about the capabilities. What will my people take away that will they’ll be thinking about that might get them to do something differently, to interface with each other with a client in the market. So what do you what are you hearing from your clients about sort of the value prop in a nonphysical world?
Waldo Waldman While the content is always king. Yeah, I work with KPMG, Lockheed Martin, Honeywell, the biggest companies in the last six, 12 months. They don’t ask me, well, when you do the virtual program, can you share what kind of camera you have and what kind of lighting and what’s your microphone? I’ve never had one. I will I will maneuver my camera and I’ll show them. And by the way, I’m into your life. Bring it. And then I had my dog jump into the camera. I got a Great Dane puppy able to use props a little differently. These are things also that you can use a virtual setting to build that connection, both onscreen when you’re doing a virtual you and connecting with a prospect. Humanizing yourself. Reducing the barriers of fear and doubt that many prospects have when they’re deciding, Am I going to invest in you for a thousand or $30,000 to do a virtual keynote? So content is always king. You’ve got to understand your value proposition extremely, extremely well. It’s typical, you know, finding out what their needs are, the challenges are making sure that there’s a right fit. But then what I find also, when it comes to value and taking action is it’s always about what happens after that.
Peter Winick Right.
Waldo Waldman That counts is how you would products. Which solutions do you have to deliver post virtual keynote that will create that red thread of content, that will sustain the momentum, that will help create actionable items for those men and women who invested their time in that our keynote and maybe the two or three days that they’re on that virtual program. So I developed what’s called an Ace Academy, 50 plus videos, plus worksheets that dig into collaboration and trust and courage and all the content that I discuss. And folks and companies are more are more palatable to digital solutions as they have remote workforces that need solutions. So if you can provide that, if you can bolt on to your proverbial F-16 or extra weapons systems, they’ll be like me worth the investment. So you can’t be.
Peter Winick So, so a little bit of that is sort of like in, in the real world presentation. Everybody always used to say, oh, if we could bottle all the energy at the end of that keynote when they’re all up in their feet and they’re feeling it and essence in your what you’ve done is come up with the ACE program, which is a little taste of it, you know, once a week for a year thereafter, gets the brain back there and gives them a capability to work on. And you’re using language and you’re using definitions and you’re pushing that out at scale really cost effectively. So one, for you, it’s a good thing it’s an upsell, right? It’s a differentiator. And for the client, it’s a great thing because it keeps that momentum in that rhythm going, What are you doing? I’ve never done.
Freddie Ravel Yeah, no, I think the my main, my main thing is, of course, music. Music is the stickiest thing on the planet. There isn’t a human being alive that doesn’t love good rhythm, a good melody, a good harmony. And I, when I know exactly who the client is, I use specific music to that culture. Right? So I just presented on the floor of a big factory in downtown L.A. for garment workers, for a company called the Reformation, fantastic company that’s making sustainable clothing. And they’re very popular. They’re a rising star in the clothing industry. And they wanted me to speak bilingual. I speak in Spanish and English, right? So I delivered this in Spanish and I used La Bamba and Besame Mucho. Now, I’ve never used those songs before, ever, but I knew that if I talked about rhythm by using da da da da da da da da da da da. I knew that if I use that, it would connect. So I’m using customized music. And by the way, I made the decision 5 minutes before I played it. Sometimes it’s sometimes it’s very planned. And I have video footage with Santana and Earth, Wind and Fire planning with me that I do to talk about collaboration. But many times it’s in the moment.
Peter Winick That you’re just going there. Very cool.
Freddie Ravel And I think an important thing to also say that, you know, both Waldo and I, you know, while those work is so incredible because it basically is centered on trust, right? Trust your wingman, you know that you can have courage and make tough decisions with it. Got your back right. And I love that Waldo emphasized that level of integrity. This is what so much of his message. And in my case, I’m teaching trust through listening skills, as if you had to boil down everything that I’m doing. I’m using music and on the lessons of harmony and lack of harmony, rhythm and lack of rhythm to establish a high level of listening, trust and integrity. So the flagpole that Waldo and I both share is teaching an evergreen principle of integrity and trust.
Peter Winick I love it.
Peter Winick If you’re enjoying this episode of Leveraging Thought Leadership, please make sure to subscribe. If you’d like to help spread the word about our podcast, please leave us a review and share it with your friends were available on Apple Podcasts and on all major listening apps as well as at ThoughtLeadershipLeverage.com/podcasts
Peter Winick So I want to chat for a little bit, because everybody, or at least everybody in my world and probably your world as well, are making predictions, you know, and speaking. It’s coming back. It’s not coming back. And then we had Delta and then we had all that sort of stuff. So, you know, we had this great rush for Q4 of this year, Q3 and Q4 that got pulled back largely. Talk about what you’re seeing and if you want to be bold enough to make a predictions on where things might be in a year or two, in a world that has been unsteady for a year or two, that have the courage to do that as well. But what are you seeing and where do you think it’s going to go? What will be the same and what would be different?
Waldo Waldman So yeah, great question. Because you’ve got to prepare for the future but still remain ultimately relevant in the present. Right. I mean, I’m on the road and then I’m going back. I’m going to do some virtual programs as well. Bridgestone tires this time they they’ve got 3000 of their general managers just don’t manage it normally get together they are going to do it virtually. However, we’re going to be onsite at a studio in Nashville, Tennessee, where we’re having a professional set up. They’re bringing in high end equipment, etc. And we’re going to create this environment so that when people are looking at that screen, it’s going to be much more experiential. It’s going to be much more. Well, there’ll be people in that studio. Life can be some people. They’ll be some people. That may be several dozen, but most of them will be listening outside of it. Same thing with Husqvarna. We had a gig in Vegas a couple weeks ago. They changed it with it with the Delta variant now meeting in North Carolina in Charlotte in December. Same thing we’re going to be doing these hybrid events, either hybrid where it’s totally hybrid, where we’re totally, you know, maybe several dozen in one room. And most of them are going to be listening virtually. But then the other, for example, I did want in Dallas last month, actually in the beginning of end of August, where we had footage of people in a in a nice venue and 2000 were watching. So I think that’s going to stay stay present because there may be some folks who just are reluctant to travel. There may be some issue out there. But that being said,.
Peter Winick Or they can invite others that they wouldn’t have invited before. Right. To be folks in Vegas and say, you know what, let’s open it up to the field office because what the heck? It doesn’t really cost us anything.
Waldo Waldman Yeah.
Peter Winick So it’s more democratizing, the work.
Waldo Waldman The content you can connect and impact a lot more people. So there’s more value with that. And I think people still want to get together. I’ve never seen the level of excitement in connection with these live events that I’m doing. People need to get together. They want to get together. Hotels are doing a fantastic job on venues, on maintaining the social hygiene, and it’s really impressive. And, you know, they have different codes on how much you want to be approach or not. I do think hybrid will be around, but live events are not going away. They will stay present, but maybe they’re going to do more that hybrid event or more they’re going to be able to do live and then and then stream it out to a lot more folks. And I assume Freddie is seeing the same thing.
Freddie Ravel I’ve seen this. Exactly. I’m going to parrot Waldo exactly. But I’m also going to say something that people don’t talk about a lot. And that is the chat. A Zoom call with the chat. Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah. And what a revolutionary tool that most of us sort of take for granted. It’s like, what is this thing? But when I’m doing virtual. Remember the old days before Zoom? Right before when people would go to a library? Most people tend to sit in the back. A lot of people who want to sit in the front, you know, in the nature, people are shy. They kind of sit towards the back. And, you know, public speaking is one of the greatest fears in the world for many people, right? It’s one of the top fears. So people a lot of introverted people and many people are introverted will sit in the back and not really participate. Well, zoom and the chat.
Waldo Waldman Yeah.
Freddie Ravel Open entirely new dialog to the folks that would not normally communicate with the speaker. And so I’m getting the intimacy of someone’s thought in the moment that I never had or Waldo never had when we spoke purely live. And so I think that is a huge game changer, that interaction. And so touching the heart and then everything and then everything, Wallace said. A hybrid. I’m doing events now. I just in an event a month ago where the emcee of the event was in Buenos Aires, Argentina, the CEO was on a big screen behind him, like a 20-foot-tall screen with the CEO from Columbia. And I’m on the other’s opposite screen in Los Angeles. And there’s 450 people from all of Latin America listening.
Peter Winick Yep. So I want to go back to something Waldo said about, you know, this excitement when you’re seeing people. It’s the first-time colleagues have gotten together in two years or whatever. There’s a human need, right, so, content, we know we can get anywhere we want. I can go on YouTube; I can go whatever. But that connection in that community, I think the smart speakers like you all have figured out when we take advantage of the physicality of being together to use that connection. But I want to go just a little bit further. Do you think we’re getting back to, let’s say, another 2019 or 2018 where the default is, you know, company X does X number of events a year in wherever, Orlando, Chicago or we’re going to do less in-person and say, you know, sort of the bar is raised or what do you what did your general sense of the market?
Freddie Ravel Waldo?
Waldo Waldman I think I think they’re going to be more. They’re going to do more due diligence and a needs requirement on whether or not it’s going to be these folks together. I talk with the major motorcycle manufacturer specifically, and a lot of that used to have a lot of their dealer meetings, but they don’t have their dealer meetings anymore because they’ve they weren’t able to get them together. But now they’re going to more regional events, smaller regional events.
Peter Winick And that’s a cost factor, too, right? Because we’ve been on the map on travel.
Waldo Waldman Yes. And I think a lot of quote unquote, sales meetings where not necessarily sales meeting where you bring in an outside speaker. It may be ten people getting together or five people getting together. It can be done virtually. We can impact this same thing. I’ll have a cup of coffee here and you’ll be across the way. We’re looking. We’re getting the same stuff done. There’s nothing better than the, you know, live, interact, interaction in person. But this the virtual medium isn’t bad as well. I do think that there’s going to be a greater emphasis, in my opinion, on making sure the people have an option to get together because they are disconnected. I talk about collaboration and trust, you know, like Freddie. And so part of it is that that human interaction, that the solution that can be found through a conversation in at a breakout session or over dinner, at a live event, that connection with your prospects, your vendor partners, your channel partners, getting their input private in person and getting that feedback where the shield is down. You may not be able to get that through a virtual call, but you sure can get it over a steak or, you know.
Peter Winick Sure.
Waldo Waldman Or having a glass of wine. So there will be an increased emphasis on getting them together and making sure that that is an option. Because if we stick with this virtual medium, if that’s all we’re doing, I think we’re going to lose the heart and soul of business. People are going to become disgruntled. They’re going to lose that connectivity. And this is a problem. I think you’re seeing it all over the Internet. I mean, look at what’s going on with Facebook. And now they’re creating this virtual world that that can work for some, but for others, we need to get together. And I think that will never go away. Yeah, I’m going to have to connect live.
Peter Winick Freddie, what are you what are you thinking?
Freddie Ravel Well, at the end of the day, as human beings are we love tribes. We we’re part of trust. We are wired to be together. We are wired to to share. And at the end of the day, a live experience is the ultimate expression of a tribe. And every company and every organization I speak to is their own collective tribe of people with a certain cultural philosophy. And if they can be together physically, it’s it’s almost always better. At the same time, digital opens up. You know, I’m doing events now where I’ll see, but maybe 10 minutes before I enter the room. You’re having a coffee break, you’re having a chat, they’re having a cocktail hour, if you know what I mean. Before you can come up on stage. They’re having a social time and humans are very innovative. We find ways to to stay connected. But I do think that the answer to your very first question is hybrid will continue. It works. And I think a lot of people are not as free to travel as we are sure to jump on a plane. They’re not able to do it. And they’ve changed their life and they’ve modified their life where they’re not going to travel as much as they used to. At the same time, people are so chomping at the bit that they cannot they’re going to go stir crazy if they don’t get out of the house.
Peter Winick Exactly. So the last, that’s the last thing I’ll throw out there, before we run out of time here, is just any general thoughts on. Sort of the business side here, meaning, you know, the bureaus more important, less important pricing. Right. So initially, I think when this happened, you had a bunch of speakers at $50,000 going, oh, I guess I’ll do it for two grand. Right? So there goes your brand out the window. So where does pricing fit in? How do you maintain pricing integrity? Are the viewers more important, less important or the same? Any reactions to that?
Waldo Waldman I had an interesting discussion with the Bureau. Two interesting discussions with two different bureaus last couple of days, one who had a client cancel, and then another that was that was canceled in the beginning of COVID. And they’ve been kicking the can down the road and then the company was acquired and blah, blah, blah. And then now the meeting is canceled. The viewers are having a hard time. You know, I think they’re realizing that it relationships are more critical than ever. You’ve got to really dig in and add value. It’s not just, you know, they have to ask the questions, what are the challenges? What are the the issues that you’re facing and come up with a customized solution via two or three speakers, not go in and speak as Adam and say and choose whichever one it is and whatever sticks they’re going to do. You’re always going to get a commission. And there are some wonderful viewers out there who understand that relationship, others that are more. You know, undertakers. And so the relationship is really, really important. And they need to understand and speakers need to understand once again, what are the value adds? What are the extra things you can bolt on to create the sustainable chain>.
Peter Winick And justify the pricing.
Waldo Waldman And justify the prices. I may get my standard keynote fee, but in addition to the one hour speech, they’re getting all these extra addons at maybe a small premium, a small margin war, but it’s more of a package than just doing it like, okay, you’re fee was kind of pricey for just the but with all these other things I could see the value and you as a speaker must understand how to deliver that value proposition and create a solution for them. And then you as a if you’re a channel leader or a sales manager executive, maybe watching this, you need to be commanding in some way through your questions and having that speaker demonstrate beyond that one hour or 30 minutes or whatever, what value they can bring and do your due diligence and choose the one who’s going to create the better solution, not just fill the slot. Impact Change because change for the better is so important now and people need to need solutions because there’s so much that’s a very precarious business while out there. And companies need to be more value driven.
Peter Winick Anything to add to that, Freddie?
Freddie Ravel Yeah, well, first of all, exactly what Walter said that I totally agree. And at the same time, when people are having fun, they learn five times faster. Mm hmm. Right. Right. So remember, there’s, you know, it is very precarious. We live in a very precarious time. The anxiety is very high. High in the world. Right. So when you can come in with a fresh way of looking, fresh perspective that has a little bit of electricity and joy in it. That’s going to that’s going to put you to the front of the front of the line in terms of speakers. And that’s what I think really works. So I think advice to people out there who are thinking about speaking or presenting. Try to have that spark. Try to find that distinctive spark that sets you apart. So true that that seasoning or you need that seasoning or the item that sticks out.
Peter Winick Yeah. Yeah.
Waldo Waldman You know, Freddie, you’re so spot on. People want to have that heart, that hearts massage. Sometimes it’s not as much about the content. It is about that experience,.
Peter Winick The humanity of it.
Waldo Waldman And that is so critical, I think. And Freddie is so good at it. And I created a lot. And they want to have that experience, that heart, because they’re missing that emotional context. And that’s a huge value as well. It’s not just about the numbers. It’s about the heart.
Peter Winick So, love it. So we’re coming up to that end of time spot. So I want to thank you, Freddie, in tune and Waldo, pushing it up. So these are two of the best guys in the business that I’m proud to call my friends and have known for a long time. I appreciate everything you’ve done. So thanks, guys.
Freddie Ravel Thank you so much, Peter. Thank you, Waldo.
Waldo Waldman You got it. So great to see you guys. Stay safe and healthy and enjoy. And they could find us all. Google our names and you’ll find us and connect with us on LinkedIn. If you are if you like this program and if you have any questions for us as well.
Peter Winick You got it.
Freddie Ravel Thank you.
Peter Winick To learn more about Thought Leadership Leverage, please visit our website at ThoughtLeadershipLeverage.com to reach me directly. Feel free to email me at Peter at ThoughtLeadershipLeverage.com and please subscribe to Leveraging Thought Leadership on iTunes or your favorite podcast app to get your weekly episode automatically.