Do you want to start a motivational speaking company? If YES, here is a complete guide to starting a motivational speaking business with NO money and no experience.
One of the easiest routes to becoming an entrepreneur is to leverage on your inborn skills and talents to launch a business. One of the businesses that you can successfully start from your in-built skills and talents is a motivational speaking company.
A motivational speaking company is a company that provides training, coaching and of course motivation to corporate organizations, educational institutions/schools, youth organizations and individual clients. A motivational speaking company is a resource company that can be a one man show or an assemblage of motivational speakers, public speakers and trainers in different fields.
Motivational speaking company is classified under the business coaching industry, and the industry is indeed a big and thriving industry in the united states of America and of course in most countries of the world.
Just like most businesses, the motivational speaking company line of business is open to as many people that are interested in the industry as long as you have what it takes to run the business and provide the needed resources that your clients want.
Even if you don’t have the finance and other requirements to start a standard motivational speaking company with loads of professional and certified motivational speakers, public speakers and training specialists under your payroll, you can come into the industry by starting – out as a small motivational company especially if you are a born motivator.
So, if you have done the required feasibility studies and market research, then you might want to venture into this business. If you have been pondering on starting your own motivational speaking company but do not know how to go about it, then you should consider going through this article; it will give you the needed guide and direction.
Steps to Starting a Motivational Speaking Company
Table of Content
- 2. Conduct Market Research and Feasibility Studies
- 3. Decide Which Niche to Concentrate On
- 4. Know Your Major Competitors in the Industry
- 9. Discuss with an Agent to Know the Best Insurance Policies for You
- 10. Protect your Intellectual Property With Trademark, Copyrights, Patents
- 11. Get the Necessary Professional Certification
- 12. Get the Necessary Legal Documents You Need to Operate
- 13. Raise the Needed Startup Capital
- 14. Choose a Suitable Location for your Business
- 15. Hire Employees for your Technical and Manpower Needs
- 16. Write a Marketing Plan Packed with ideas & Strategies
- 17. Develop Strategies to Boost Brand Awareness and Create a Corporate Identity
1. Understand the Industry
A motivational speaking company is part of the business coaching industry and the industry includes companies that offer motivational speeches, pep – talk, public speaking, short duration courses and seminars for management and professional development and of course schools and individuals.
Training is provided through public courses or through employers’ training programs, and the courses can be customized or modified. Instruction may be provided at the company’s training facilities, client or educational institutions, the workplace or the home and via television or the internet et al.
The Business Coaching industry to a large extent relies on demand from its largest market, the middle and senior management of US corporations, which left it vulnerable to declining corporate profit. During the period where businesses cut back on nonessential expenses including employee business coaching programs, the industry flourished.
Unfortunately, for players in the industry, training budgets diminished as the economy faltered; causing revenue to decline.
Small operators which represent the majority of industry players were particularly hurt by falling demand, with some being forced to leave the industry in response to poor operating conditions. But improving corporate profit and employment rates are expected to increase the number of organizations in the industry.
The Business Coaching industry that motivational speaking industry is a part of is indeed a large industry and pretty much active in most countries of the world and countries such as United States of America, United Kingdom, Germany, France, Italy, Holland, Switzerland, Australia and Canada et al are highly profitable destinations.
Statistics has it that in the United States of America alone, there are about 51,094 registered and licensed business coaching companies (motivational speaking companies) scattered all across the United States responsible for employing about 91,971 and the industry rakes in a whooping sum of $11 billion annually.
The industry is projected to grow at a 2.6 percent annual growth rate within 2011 and 2016. It is important to state that there is no establishment in this industry that has a lion market share.
A recent report published by IBISWorld shows that in 2016, the two largest companies accounted for less than 5.0 percent of industry revenue. As a result, the Business Coaching industry is highly fragmented with a large number of small enterprises operating throughout the United States.
The vast majority of operators are non – employers that service only their local area. Non – employing businesses represent more than 85.0 percent of all companies operating in this industry.
The report further stated that there are also a large number of operators that have a relatively small number of employees. 72.8 percent of employing companies have fewer than five employees, while companies with fewer than 10 employees represent 85.2 percent of employing enterprises.
The business coaching industry and motivational speaking business will continue to blossom because more and more organizations, businesses and individuals are beginning to realize that somehow, they would need the services of employment motivational speaking companies to help them stay motivated, achieve their goals and live a fulfilled life.
From all available statistics, it is safer to say that the business coaching industry is growing steadily despite the competitive nature of the industry.
One thing is certain, if you are well positioned, you have the required business skills, networks and you have a robust assemblage of motivational speakers, public speakers and professional trainers under your payroll or as partners, you are not going to struggle to compete favorably in the business coaching industry.
Another reason why people prefer to start a motivational speaking business is that a motivational speaker, public speaker or trainer has the monopoly to charge fees as it suits them especially if they have been able to pay their dues in the industry over the years.
Other factors that encourage entrepreneurs to start their own motivational speaking company could be that the business is easy to set up and the startup capital is indeed affordable. You can actually start your own motivational speaking company from the comfort of your house, all you need to do is create an office somewhere in your house.
2. Conduct Market Research and Feasibility Studies
- Demographics and Psychographics
The demographic and psychographic composition of those who hire the services of motivational speaking companies cut across all small businesses and corporate organizations both big and small, educational institutions and of course individuals that have the capacity to pay for their services hence the demographic composition of a motivational speaking company is all encompassing.
The truth is that when it comes to motivational speaking company services, there is indeed a wide range of available customers, so your target market can’t be restricted to just specific corporate organizations within your location, but to all the corporate organizations and businesses, educational institutions et al within and outside the city where you have your business presence and who can afford your services.
So, if you are thinking of opening your own motivational speaking company, then you should make your target demographics all encompassing.
It should include households, corporate organizations, medium scale organizations and small – scale organizations, educational institutions, sport clubs, military formations and youth organizations in and outside the city where your motivational speaking company is located.
3. Decide Which Niche to Concentrate On
Most motivational speaking companies tend to get involved in loads of services as it relates to motivational speaking for corporate organizations and businesses, but that does not mean that there are no niche areas in the industry.
As a matter of fact, some corporate organizations will only deal with a motivational speaking company that specializes in business coaching hence the need for motivational speaking companies to carve a niche for themselves. Aside from delivering motivational speeches/talks, public speaking and pep talks, most motivational speaking companies also specialize in one or more of the under listed;
- Providing management development training
- Providing marketing and sales training
- Providing professional development training
- Providing quality assurance training
- Providing business coaching
The Level of Competition in the Industry
The competition that exists in the motivational speaking company line of business goes beyond competition amongst motivational speaking companies in your location; you are expected to compete with other businesses in the business coaching industry and freelancers who have the capacity to train and also give motivational speeches. So, it will be right to say the competition in the motivational speaking line of business is tough.
The truth is that no matter the level of competition in an industry, if you have done your due diligence and you brand and promote your services or business properly, you will always make headway in the industry.
Just ensure you have a robust assemblage of certified and experienced motivational speakers, public speakers and trainers under your payroll or as partners that can do excellent jobs, you can deliver excellent customer care services and you know how to reach out to your target market.
But over and above, there are several motivational speaking companies and other related businesses in the business coaching industry and the training and consulting industry scattered all around the United States and even in the globe.
So, if you choose to start your own motivational speaking company in the United States of America, you will definitely meet stiff competition amongst motivational speaking companies and other businesses or individuals that can offer the services that you are offering.
4. Know Your Major Competitors in the Industry
In every industry, there are always brands that perform better or are better regarded by the customers and general public than others. Some of these brands are those that have been in the industry for a long time, while others are best known for how they conduct their businesses and the results they have achieved over the years.
These are some of the leading motivational speaking companies and other related business coaching brands in the United States of America and in the globe;
- Tony Robbins | Robbins Research International
- Ziglar Inc.
- Stephen Covey Company
- The Jack Canfield Company
- The Rich Dad Company
- Premiere Speakers Bureau
- Action Coach Business Coaching
- Executive Coaching Group Inc.
- Rock Solid Business Coaching
- Richard Pentella Focal Point Business Coaching
- JJC Professional Business Coaching
- Boston Public Speaking
- Princeton Public Speaking
- The Speech Improvement Company
- Thrillspeakers Toastmasters Public Speaking Club
If you are planning towards successfully launching a business and maximizing profits, then you need to ensure that you get your economic and cost analysis right and try as much as possible to adopt best practices in the industry you choose to build a business in.
Motivational speaking business is not a Green business. As a matter of fact, you will come across several motivational speaking companies and other related businesses when you drive through town, search through directories and browse through the internet.
So, if you are mapping out your economic and cost analysis, you should carry out thorough market survey and costing of what is required to rent a space where you are expected to open your motivational speaking company and the amount required to purchase office gadgets and furniture and also the cost to successfully run the business.
Over and above, if you are considering starting a motivational speaking company, then your concern should not be limited to the cost of renting an office space and purchasing office gadgets and furniture but also on branding and on how to build a robust clientele base.
5. Decide Whether to Buy a Franchise or Start from Scratch
If you are looking towards starting a motivational speaking company, you would have to start from the very scratch because even if you get a franchise of a motivational speaking company, it would be very expensive.
Besides starting a motivational speaking company from the scratch is less stressful when compared to other small – scale businesses which usually requires detailed groundwork before launching the business.
With a motivational speaking company, you should just try as much as possible to get the right assemblage of motivational speakers, public speakers and trainers, office tools and equipment, build business relationship with key stakeholders and then leverage on every marketing tool within your disposal especially the internet to market your services.
Please note that most of the big and successful motivational speaking companies around started from the scratch and they were able to build a solid business brand. It takes dedication, hard work and determination to achieve business success.
6. Know the Possible Threats and Challenges You Will Face
If you decide to start your own motivational speaking company today, one of the major challenges you are likely going to face is the presence of well – established motivational speaking companies and other related training and business coaching companies that also offer similar services that you offer. The only way to avoid this challenge is to create your own market.
Some other challenges and threats that you are likely going to face is economic downturn; if the economy is in bad shape, businesses such as motivational speaking companies usually struggle to maintain their old customers or even welcome new customers.
unfavorable government policies can also hamper the growth of your motivational speaking company. There is nothing you can do as regards these threats and challenges other than to stay positive that things will work well for you.
7. Choose the Most Suitable Legal Entity (LLC, C Corp, S Corp)
When considering starting a motivational speaking company, the legal entity you choose will go a long way to determine how big the business can grow; some motivational speaking companies design their business for neighborhood market, some for city wide market, while others for national market and international market.
Generally, you have the option of either choosing a general partnership, limited liability company which is commonly called an LLC, or even a sole proprietorship for a motivational speaking company.
Ordinarily, sole proprietorship should have been the ideal business structure for a small – scale motivational speaking company especially if you are just starting out with a moderate start – up capital in a small neighborhood and as a one man show.
But if your intention is to grow the business and have offices and corporate clients all across key cities in the United States of America and other countries of the world with a robust assemblage of motivational speakers, public speakers and trainers under your payroll or as partners, then choosing sole proprietor is not an option for you. Limited Liability Company, LLC or even general partnership will cut it for you.
Setting up an LLC protects you from personal liability. If anything goes wrong in the business, it is only the money that you invested into the limited liability company that will be at risk. It is not so for sole proprietorships and general partnerships.
Limited liability companies are simpler and more flexible to operate and you don’t need a board of directors, shareholder meetings and other managerial formalities.
These are some of the factors you should consider before choosing a legal entity for your motivational speaking company; limitation of personal liability, ease of transferability, admission of new owners, investors’ expectation and of course taxes.
If you take your time to critically study the various legal entities to use for your motivational speaking company, you will agree that limited liability company; an LLC is most suitable. You can start this type of business as limited liability company (LLC) and in future convert it to a ‘C’ corporation or an ‘S’ corporation especially when you have the plans of going public.
8. Choose a Catchy Business Name
When it comes to choosing a name for your business, you should be creative because whatever name you choose for your business will go a long way to create a perception of what the business represents. Usually it is the norm for people to follow the trend in the industry they intend operating from when naming their business.
If you are considering starting your own motivational speaking company, here are some catchy names that you can choose from;
- John Johnsons® Motivational Speaking Company, LLC
- Taylor Whyte & Associates® Motivational Speaking Company, LLP
- Fired Up© Motivational Speaking Company, Inc.
- Speakers Arena® Motivational Speaking Company, Inc.
- Speakers Connect™ Motivations and Trainings, Inc.
- Theresa Greene® Motivational Speaking Company, Inc.
- Speakers Hub© Motivational Speaking Company, Inc.
- Bob Russel & Co® Motivational Speaking Company, LLP
- Douglas Claydon© Motivational Speaking Company, Inc.
- Motive Group© Motivational Speaking Company, Inc.
9. Discuss with an Agent to Know the Best Insurance Policies for You
In the United States and in most countries of the world, you can’t operate a business without having some of the basic insurance policy covers that are required by the industry you want to operate from. So, it is important to create a budget for insurance and perhaps consult an insurance broker to guide you in choosing the best and most appropriate insurance policies for your motivational speaking company.
Here are some of the basic insurance covers that you should consider purchasing if you want to start your own motivational speaking company in the United States of America;
- General insurance
- Health / Medical insurance
- Liability insurance
- Workers Compensation
- Overhead expense disability insurance
- Business owner’s policy group insurance
- Payment protection insurance
10. Protect your Intellectual Property With Trademark, Copyrights, Patents
If you are considering starting your own motivational speaking company, usually you may not have any need to file for intellectual property protection/trademark. This is so because the nature of the business makes it possible for you to successful run the business without having any cause to challenge anybody in court for illegally making use of your company’s intellectual properties.
But if you just want to protect your company’s logo and other training modules or documents or software that are unique to you or even jingles and media production concepts, then you can go ahead to file for intellectual property protection.
If you want to register your trademark, you are expected to begin the process by filing an application with the USPTO. The final approval of your trademark is subjected to the review of attorneys as required by USPTO.
11. Get the Necessary Professional Certification
Aside from the results you produce as it relates to providing the required motivation and training needed by your clients, professional certification is one of the main reasons why some motivational speakers and motivational speaking companies stand out.
If you want to make an impact in the business coaching industry, you should work towards acquiring all the needed certifications in your area of specialization. You are strongly encouraged to pursue professional certifications; it will go a long way to show your commitment towards the business.
Certification validates your competency and shows that you are highly skilled, committed to your career, and up-to-date in the competitive market. These are some of the certifications you can work towards achieving if you want to run your own motivational speaking company;
- Certified Speaking Professional (CSP™ Certification) | National Speakers Association (NSA)
- The Certified Public Speaker
- Business Coach Certification – World Coach Institute
- Life and Business Coach Training Certification Program approved by International Coach Federation ICF
Please note that you can successfully run a motivational speaking company in the United States and in most countries of the world without necessarily acquiring professional certifications and business license as long as you have adequate experience cum background as a motivational speaker and in the business coaching industry.
12. Get the Necessary Legal Documents You Need to Operate
The essence of having the necessary documentation in place before launching a business in the United States of America cannot be overemphasized. It is a fact that you cannot successfully run any business in the United States without the proper documentations. If you do, it won’t be too long before the long hand of the law catches up with you.
These are some of the basic legal documents that you are expected to have in place if you want to legally run your own motivational speaking company in the United States of America;
- Certificate of Incorporation
- Business License
- Tax Payer’s ID / Tax Identification Number
- Health inspection Certificate
- Business Plan
- Contract Document
- Non – disclosure Agreement
- Employee Handbook
- Employment Agreement (offer letters)
- Operating Agreement for LLCs
- Insurance Policy
- Company Bylaws
- Memorandum of Understanding (MoU)
- Building License
- Franchise or Trademark License (optional)
13. Raise the Needed Startup Capital
Starting a motivational speaking company can be cost effective especially if you choose to start on a small scale by running the business from your home or sharing an office space.
Securing a standard office space in a business district and purchasing office gadgets and furniture et al are part of what will consume a large chunk of your start – up capital. If you choose to start the business on a large scale, you would need to source for fund to finance the business because it is expensive to start a standard large – scale motivational speaking company.
When it comes to financing a business, one of the first things and perhaps major factors that you should consider is to write a good business plan. If you have a good and workable business plan document in place, you may not have to labor yourself before convincing your bank, investors and your friends to invest in your business.
Here are some of the options you can explore when sourcing for start – up capital for your motivational speaking company;
- Raising money from personal savings and sale of personal stocks and properties
- Raising money from investors and business partners
- Sell of shares to interested investors
- Applying for Loan from your Bank
- Pitching your business idea and applying for business grants and seed funding from donor organizations and angel investors
- Source for soft loans from your family members and your friends
14. Choose a Suitable Location for your Business
Although when it comes to choosing a location for services such as motivational speaking company, you can choose to locate the business in any location of your choice especially if you are the only motivational speaker. Besides, the business that does not require your clients to come to you for services except for meetings can be located in any location.
But over and above, the location you chose to open your motivational speaking company is key to the success of the business; hence entrepreneurs are willing to rent or lease a facility in a visible location; a location where the demography consists of corporate organizations and businesses with the required purchasing power.
If you make the mistake of renting or leasing a facility for your motivational speaking company in a not too visible or hidden location simply because it is cheap, then you must be prepared to spend more in promoting the business and perhaps giving direction to potential customers.
Most importantly, before choosing a location for your motivational speaking company, ensure that you first conduct a thorough feasibility studies and market survey. The possibility of you coming across similar business that just closed shop in the location you want to open yours can’t be ruled out.
These are some of the key factors that you should consider before choosing a location for your motivational speaking company;
- The demography of the location
- The demand for the services of motivational speakers and trainers in the location
- The purchasing power of businesses in the location
- Accessibility of the location
- The number of motivational speaking companies and other players in the business coaching industry that also provide motivational speeches and trainings in the location
- The local laws and regulations in the community
- Traffic, parking and security
15. Hire Employees for your Technical and Manpower Needs
On the average, there are no special technology or equipment needed to run an average motivational speaking company except for the relevant software apps, computers, internet facility, telephone, fax machine and office furniture (chairs, tables, and shelves) amongst others and all these can be gotten as fairly used.
As regards leasing or outright purchase of an office facility, the choice is dependent on your financial standing, but the truth is that to be on the safe side, it is advisable to start off with a short – term rent/lease while test running the business in the location.
If things work out as planned, then you go on a long – term lease or outright purchase of the property but if not, then move on and source for other ideal location/facility for such business.
When it comes to hiring employees for a standard motivational speaking company with plans to have corporate clients all across major cities in the United States of America, you should make plans to hire a competent Chief Executive Officer (you can occupy this role), Admin and Human Resources Manager, Motivational Speakers, Public Speakers and Training Specialists, Sales and Marketing Officer, Accounting Clerk, and customer services executive.
On the average, you will need a minimum of 5 to 10 key staff members excluding freelance motivational speakers, public speakers and trainers to run a small – scale but standard motivational speaking company.
The Service Delivery Process of the Business
The business service process an average motivational speaking company adopts is dependent on the organization. It is the practice for motivational speaking companies to provide training, coaching and of course motivation to corporate organizations, educational institutions/schools, youth organizations and individual clients.
The sales and marketing team go out there to market the services offered by the company, and once the contract is won, the contract documents are signed, logistics sorted out and part payment made. After the training, coaching and of course motivation is done, the full payment is made.
It is important to state that a motivational speaking company may decide to improvise or adopt any business process and structure that will guarantee them efficiency and flexibility; the above stated motivational speaking company business process is not cast on stone.
16. Write a Marketing Plan Packed with ideas & Strategies
Generally, running a business requires that you should be proactive when it comes to marketing your goods or services. If you choose to launch a motivational speaking company, then you must go all out to employ strategies that will help you attract customers or else you will likely struggle with the business because there are well – known brands that determine the market direction for the business coaching industry.
As a matter of fact, your marketing strategy will center on reliability, swiftness, pricing, thoroughness, and above all excellent customer service. You should ensure that whenever your customers hire your services, they will get excellent service.
The truth is that if you are able to put the above stated in place, you won’t struggle to retain your old customers and at the same time win over new customers.
Businesses these days are aware of the power of the internet and which is why they will do all they can to maximize the internet (LinkedIn, Facebook, Blogs, videos/YouTube) to market their services. In other words, a larger percentage of your marketing effort will be directed to internet users; your website will become your number one marketing tool
These are some of the marketing ideas and strategies that you can adopt for your motivational speaking company;
- Introduce your motivational speaking company by sending introductory letters alongside your brochure to corporate organizations, small scale businesses, medium scale businesses, educational institutions, military formations, youth organizations and other key stake holders throughout the city where your motivational speaking company is located
- Advertise on the internet on blogs and forums, and also on social media like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn to get your message across so that those on the social media or those who read blogs will know who to call when they need the services of a motivational speaking company within your location
- Create a basic website for your business so as to give your business an online presence
- Directly market your services
- Engage in road shows in targeted business communities from time to time to promote your motivational speaking company
- Join local motivational speaking business associations for industry trends and tips
- Join local chambers of commerce and industry with the aim of marketing your services
- Advertise our business in community based newspapers, local TV and radio stations
- List your business on yellow pages ads (local directories)
- Encourage the use of Word of mouth marketing (referrals)
17. Develop Strategies to Boost Brand Awareness and Create a Corporate Identity
If your intention of starting a motivational speaking company is to grow the business beyond the city where you are going to be operating from to become a national and international brand by opening offices all across key cities in the United States and franchising, then you must be ready to spend money on promotion and advertisement of your brand.
No matter the industry you belong to, the truth is that the market is dynamic and it requires consistent brand awareness and brand boosting cum promotion to continue to appeal to your target market. Here are the platforms you can leverage on to boost your brand awareness and create corporate identity for your motivational speaking company;
- Place adverts on both print (newspapers and magazines) and electronic media platforms
- Sponsor relevant community based events
- Leverage on the internet and social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Google + et al to promote your motivational speaking company
- Install your billboards on strategic locations all around your city or state
- Engage in roadshows from time to time in targeted business districts to create awareness of your motivational speaking company
- Distribute your fliers and handbills in target areas
- Contact corporate organizations, small scale businesses, medium scale businesses, educational institutions, military formations, sport clubs, youth organizations and other key stake holders throughout the city where your motivational speaking company is located informing them about your motivational speaking company and the services you offer
- List your motivational speaking company in local directories
- Advertise your motivational speaking company in your official website and employ strategies that will help you pull traffic to the site
- Position our Flexi Banners at strategic positions in the location where your motivational speaking company is located
- Ensure that all your staff members wear your branded shirts and all your vehicles are branded with your company logo et al.
18. Create a Suppliers/Distribution Network
In order to successfully run a motivational speaking company, you must establish good business relationship with corporate organizations and other organizations within and outside the city where your motivational speaking company is located.
Of course, you would need steady motivational speaking engagements from corporate organizations, small scale businesses, medium scale businesses and other key stake holders in order to remain in business.
So also, you are expected to enter into business networks with managers of freelance public speakers, motivational speakers and trainers. They are in a better position to give you corporate motivational speaking, public speaking and training contracts. Depending on your agreement with them, you might be compelled to pay certain fee or commission.