8 Keys to seeding in Speaker presentations
8 keys to seeding in your presentation
By Douglas Vermeeren
This article is an excerpt of one of the training documents in the High Profit Speakers Masterclass from the unit on selling from the stage.
What is seeding? Seeding is essentiality including references to your other products, workshops, seminars or offers in your presentation. It basically introduces the idea that beyond the current speech there are other possibilities to build a relationship with you beyond your current presentation. Seeding is a brilliant way to introduce elements of your speaker funnel and creating desire to participate without actually sharing the invite. I have found that by seeding early and regularly it encourages a strong desire from my participants to become involved with me and makes it easier to sell from the stage.
When it is done right another of the major clear benefits is that your credibility is instantly increased. When your students feel you have a plan to follow they follow you. It is that simple. I also like the idea of training your students immediately to look upon their success as a process rather than an event. Seeding does this.
Seeding can also help you gauge audience interest in a product or service in a specific room. And I have also used to seeding to gauge interest in products before I’ve even created them.
But seeding isn’t necessarily easy. In fact, when it is done incorrectly it can have the opposite effect of creating interest. It can immediately put up a barrier to sales and close doors to further relationships.
- Seeding is not selling
One of the keys that makes seeding work is that it cannot be turned into an invitation. If it becomes a sale within your sale both your sales and the your seed will lose power. This can be very tempting to do especially if you notice immediate interest from your audience in what you are achieving to present.
2. Seeding must be relevant
Seeding must not look obvious. In other words if it comes way out of left field it will be recognized for what it is . It must appear to be related directly to what you are talking about. If the seeding moment is relevant it will also have the power to drive desire towards attaining the item you’re seeding. If it’s random it sounds like a desperate pitch. If it doesn’t feel natural as a direct fit to the flow of your speech it is not time to pitch.
I’ve also seen speakers who have used this as an opportunity to give their ego a boost by using it as an opportunity to simply share what their up to or creating in the pipeline. If seeding has no purpose it should be left out.
3. Share results not opportunities
Too often when speakers seed they simply bring up that they have a product or workshop that addresses this topic and move on. This is not seeding. I have also seen speakers who simply throw in what their working on a “seed” because they hope that their audience will remember the product or training and make a determined mission to come back for it. That doesn’t work.
Just so avoid making this mistake let me share some of the bad examples I’ve seen lately from speakers that did not work. These are some of the phrases they used:
“I am going to come next month and teach more on this. You should come.”
“I have a workshop for that called 7 keys to blah, blah, blah.”
“I’m thinking of writing a book on that. You should get it.”
“I’ve got 8 more points like that one that can help you.”
Instead to be successful seeding should be directly tied to results and create interest in that future opportunity for them. Here’s an example of a seeding statement that works. Here’s the good example:
“I have a student in my masterclass program that actually tried this. One of the things they found was that it immediately helped them gain clarity on what they needed to create to make their business grow. And in their cases this lesson made them an extra $25,000 in three weeks. How many would like to get results like that?”
Let me break down this paragraph and describe why I think it works really well.
I love the idea of starting with the sentence, “I have a student,” or “One of my students.” The reason being it is that this in itself is a seed inviting others to become students and indicates that you have ways they can learn from you.
“In my masterclass program.” Obvious to you now is the program I am seeding. This mention you’ll notice does not talk about price or invite anyone to participate. It is simple clear and doesn’t have the emotion of asking for the sale. There is now decision just a passive introduction.
“Actually tried this.” This is what connects the seed to the current content and lets you share the seed without looking pitchy. It is relevant and has a purpose within the framework of the current discussion. I also like the word immediately. While not necessary I feel like it adds to the power of the principle you’ve just taught and the strength of your lessons in general. You get results.
Being specific and measurable results is the next thing that I think a good seed needs. I like that this seed clearly identifies the activity and what that activity affected. It helped the student gain clarity that specifically created business growth. I also like the idea that this seed clearly pinpoints a value that this activity created for the student. $25,000 in three weeks is a very specific number and a specific time frame.
Lastly, and we will talk about this in greater detail later so I won’t go into that detail here. The seed ended with a with a tie down question allowing the speaker to gauge interest and keep everyone involved.
4. Just in passing
Seeding needs to be done in such a way that it does not seem deliberate or obvious. It must be slightly concealed and feel naturally to both you and your audience. If it seems calculated it will created the opposite effect.
Recently I heard a speaker who would pause and kind of set up his seeding each time he did it. That creates a massive problem because now it gets seen as a pitch. Seeding should almost feel like you really had no intention to mention this but since we’re friends let me tell you about one of my students or what I did with this information. It needs to feel much like an ‘and by the way’ type of statement.
In other words it should not draw attention to itself.
5. Seed Sparingly
Once some speakers learn how to seed they often try to put it everywhere in their presentation.This is also a mistake. Seeding must be done sparingly. Just like my rules of one having one offer in your intro session I make it a rule for my students to only seed a maximum of three things in their intro session. People can often remember three, they can remember much more than that. Also if you try to seed too much your presentation stars coming off as a commercial for what’s coming rather than a sample of your content and the power you can provide. And if you have only three things that you are seeding be sure to that sparingly too. I recently had one of my students who was unsuccessful because they seeded and seeded and seeded and it got old quick. When we talked about it afterwards he argued his cases by point out that he had only seeding three things. And its true he had. The problem was that the frequency of which it was done left people feeling like he was desperate to get people to those parts of the funnel.
One mistake I have seen with over seeding is actually the same principle that makes seeding work. While seeding is a subtle way of saying you need to continue the relationship. Too much seeding says that the future relationships will be a series of pitches and if you chose to learn from you as a speaker you will continue to get more and more pitches.
Find the right kind of balance and if in doubt that you are seeding too much pull it back. It is better to seed less than be too much. Certainly less is more in this case.
Now I should mention that I certainly encourage more seeding during a weekend workshop or a seminar that could be done in a 45 minute intro session. When you have more time and the students are already committed to being in a classroom with you they have in essence given you permission to increase the depth of how you can seed. What I mean by that is often they are now interested to go into more detail on your future opportunities and discuss elements of your products in detail. But many of these rules still apply. In more in depth sessions you can seed more deeply but don’t over do it – make your seeding valuable and relevant.
6. Plan Seeding
Although seeding appears to kind of throw away statement or off the cuff it really works best when it is planned and practiced. Know what you are going to say and when you are going to say it. Then when its time,because its planned say no more and say no less. One of the beginning mistakes I see speakers make is that they wing it (not just with seeding, but with lots of things) and as a result they don’t get results.
Good seeding like anything else in this business requires planning and practice.
7. Not necessary to seed everything
Similar to the idea of using the seeding sparingly is the importance of selecting carefully what you will seed. I have a lot of different opportunities and products within my funnels. There is absolutely no way I could possibly seed everything in a one hour presentation. You most likely have a similar situation. It is important to determine what is best to seed and I look at a few things when considering what should be included and what should be left out. We’ve talked about being relevant above so I won’t address that one again but here are a few other thoughts:
– Who is my current audience
– What are they most likely to be drawn to within my funnel
-What price points seem reasonable and what price points seem beyond them. (And by the way I rarely share the price. But I almost always seed my most expense program from the intro session.) I avoid smaller products like books or dvds.
– What product or services add to my credibility (either they gotten excellent results, are publicly known, attached to people they would know or demonstrate that I have an depth knowledge far deeper than the current discussion could go.)
Once you have a selection of maximum three things to seed I look for how I can work them into the presentation using many of the tools we’ve already discussed.
8. Conclude with a tie down
A good tie down question like “How many would like those kind of results?” or “Who wants to be able to do that?” are brilliant ways to gauge interest on a seed you’ve just planted. I also like tie downs because it is another opportunity for the audience to participate according to the persuasion principle of commitment and consistency.
Douglas Vermeeren is the CEO of High Profit Speaker. He is also the producer and director of the films The Opus, The Gratitude Experiment and The Treasure Map.