Should I pay to speak at an event?

Would a professional doctor pay for the privilege of treating your illness?

Would a professional plumber pay to unclog your toilet?

Would a professional soccer player pay to be in the big game?

Would a professional chef pay you to eat at their restaurant?

Of course not!

Would you trust or respect any of these people if they offered?

All of these people derive deep personal gratification from producing positive results for the people they serve, and yet the word “professional” indicates that they perform their services for a living—as a .

Unless you'll be speaking to a room full of CEOs and are very sure you'll land some lucrative speaking engagements, pay-to-play is the opposite of “professional.”

As a , you'll be offered numerous opportunities to pay to speak.

These event organizers think they're offering you value by giving you a chance to market yourself to their event attendees—which tells you just how much they respect their own customers.

Ask the people offering these pay-to-speak “opportunities” if they'll have you for free. Their refusal will tell you just how much they value the you bring to your audiences.

Paying event organizers to be your customers is like paying someone to take a vacation for you so you can stay home and work!