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SSelling-1I joined Toastmasters in 2001 @ Dubai Toastmasters Club.  I was impressed with educational manual that has shaped many careers.  And am still impressed with the Communication and Leadership educational course content that has virtually remained unchanged.

During the period new waves have come and communication paradigm has changed such as 2004:  LinkedIn was launched,  2003:  Facebook was founded; 2004:  Twitter was found; 2005:  YouTube was founded; Google + and list is endless.

Nothing much changed in  Toastmasters Educational manuals, it  stood the test of time.  But I believe changing technology and shrinking world, demands introduction of new technology and new paradigm of conducting meetings.  Such changes would bring in the spirit of entrepreneurship and attract Millennials to the program.   If  I may say Toastmasters should introduce new educational manuals with 5 project speech to address the Digital world.

PROJECT # 1 : YouTube: The project objective would be

  • To record and edit 20 minutes of an educational session conducted in the club meeting.
  • Use necessary tools to edit and publish on YouTube
  • Use camera facing techniques
  • Current Smartphones are equipped with powerful camera and editing software to make the movie. Such as movie “Tangerine” was shot on iPhone 5S and done professionally.

PROJECT # 2: Hangout, WebEx, Skype: The project objective would be

  • Conduct a webinar for 20 minutes for the club members
  • Use the right technology (Hangout, WebEx, Skype) & techniques to invite and broadcast the webinar
  • Invite general public and other Toastmasters
  • Learn the proper webinar techniques

PROJECT # 3: Sound Cloud: the Project objective would be

  1. Record 7 minutes speech and make it available as a podcast
  2. Learn and use the current technologies for Podcast
  3. Learn to use the microphone for voice modulation.
  4. Play the Podcast in the club meeting and evaluate.

PROJECT # 4: WordPress; Tumblr; Blogspot: The Project Objective would be

  • Learn to Blog
  • Share  techniques and Experiences to write a Blog post.

PROJECT # 5: Upstream: The Project objective would be

  1. Live Stream the meeting proceeding to the external world
  2. Use Proper audio and video Techniques.

Above necessitates use of technology and address the Digital economy. The above project will also help people monetize their toastmasters skills from anywhere around the globe. And that could be the next manual – “Monetizing Toastmasters Skills

Brand_building

Idea of this blog post triggered in my mind after I requested a speaking slot  in DTAC 2015 “.  I began wondering what I can give back to Toastmasters in this blog Post.  And it boiled down to  “A Teaser on BRAND building.”

Brand has numerous scientific definitions but in simplistic terms it is what your audience speaks about you.  And what audiences speak about you is a direct reflection of

  •  Your EXTERNAL self-i.e. PHYSICAL; how you dress, behave and interact
  •  Your INTERNAL self – INTELLECT – What you write, share and Express

Once you have covered the above two points; 50% of the battle is won.  The other 50% is PRESENCE & VISIBILITY i.e. being seen, heard and felt among your audience.   Let’s step back and wonder how you can practice BRAND building sitting in the comfort of your home.  Remember we live in a collaborative economy and by 2025 – 75% of the workforce would be millennials who are digital natives consumed by Smartphone 24×7.  Hence subscribe to Facebook and LinkedIn and practice following steps online …..

  • EXTERNAL: 25%: Post a clear head shot and a profile that markets your credentials.
  • INTERNAL: 25%: Share content with insight. Your content could fall into three categories Entertainment, Education and Experience.
  • PRESENCE: 25%: Being where your audience is. Become a member of Facebook page “THE OFFICIAL TOASTMASTERS INTERNATIONAL” with over 11,706 members and other regional Toastmasters Groups on Facebook. Become the member  of LinkedIn Group “THE OFFICIAL TOASTMASTERS INTERNATIONAL GROUP”  with over  42,837 members
  • VISIBILITY: 25%: Post content with insight at least once a day and do it at an appropriate time I.e. early morning before people reach office or late in the evening after dinner time when your audience is most likely to surf the net.

Now is the time to MEASURE your BRAND.  You can subscribe to www.klout.com and link all your Social Media platforms to your Klout account.  And Klout will dynamically measure your brand value ranking.

Good luck and look forward to sharing more on “BUILDING YOUR SOCIAL BRAND IN 90 DAYS” @ DTAC 2015 in Dubai.

 

DTACRaising funds for an event shares many similarities to raising equity for an enterprise wherein you are expected to persuade the financier to bet on the future of the company.  And am sharing my lessons on raising funds for DTAC 2015 that will guide prospective fund raisers.

  1. REVENUE TARGET: Foremost identify what is your target to raise funds. Identify the upper and lower limit.
  2. EXPENSE HEADS: Broadly identify the expense heads such as meals, entertainment, printing, Newsletter for the event. And explore if any of the expense head can be directly sponsored by a corporate.  Few corporates may like to pay for expenses rather than write out a cash cheque.
  3. TEAM: Get a team on the SPONSORSHIP BUS. Choose members who are passionate for the cause and philosophy of the event.  They may not necessarily come from the sales or marketing background but are self-motivated.
  4. PLAN: Sit down with the Team Members 
    1. SPONSORSHIP PACK: Create a sponsorship pack wherein various sponsorship value brackets and benefits will be scripted reflecting total amount to be raised.
    2. LIST One: Create a list of 100 potential corporate.  Prioritize them and distribute among the team members with measurable target (Time and value).
    3. LIST Two: Create a list of 20 high value potential leads for Title sponsorship.
    4. SALES CYCLE: Identify the sales cycle time right from first contact to money in the bank. This is important to mitigate the risk.  Normally for such projects sales cycle is 3 months and more.
    5. TRAINING: Conduct a training for the team members; share your sales pitch and likely target title within the corporate. Explain sponsorship pack with benefits, mode of payment, terms & conditions and what is expected from the corporate, post receiving the sponsorship amount such as logo, advertising message and other guidelines.  Train your team members to handle OBJECTIONS – we don’t have budget; VP is out; we  sponsored an event last month or a similar event;  We don’t benefit from such event; This event has no value for us;  We can sponsors X amount (Peanuts ) for Title sponsorship,; the benefits are not enough, my boss is not convinced and so on.
    6. BACK PLAN: Think and document a backup plan. Secondly when, how and who to raise the red flag when anything goes wrong.
    7. BANK ACCOUNT: Open a bank account and document the process to remit sponsorship amount.
    8. REVIEW MEET: Arrange a periodic meet with your team. The meet motivates team members and you will observe the most vital results come immediately after the  review meet.
    9. NEGOTIATION: People will negotiate hence Create your negotiation bucket list
  5. CORE TEAM: Other than sponsorship team ensure everyone in the Core Team is acquainted with and contributes towards raising funds. They are your strongest allies to raise funds.
  6. VOLUNTEERS: Spread the word among volunteers for potential leads.
  7. CORPORATE TOASTMASTER CLUB: Go back to Presidents of Corporates Club and request funds.  They are the soft target or let’s call it low hanging fruits.
  8. DISTRICT OFFICERS: Speak to and share sponsorship document with District officers such as Area and Division Governors.
  9. CLUB, AREA AND DIVISION: Take a speaking slot at Club level, Area level and Division level and appeal for funds and leads. Go back and remind them again.  Show them how they can raise funds or identify leads. Do the thinking on others behalf.
  10. DIGITAL WORLD: Get your web site and Facebook page up. Use them to increase awareness and request for sponsorship.  This is your 24×7 marketing engine.
  11. THANK YOU: Acknowledge in writing people who influence indirectly or directly to raise funds.

 

KEY LESSONS:

  1. Have a plan, a backup plan and time to raise red alert.
  2. Begin prospecting early.
  3. Request help, leads and ideas for raising funds from your toastmaster’s community and friendly corporate.
  4. Learn from the lessons of the past events. Speak to the last team who raised funds.
  5. IDENTIFY WHAT’S NOT WORKING: Go back review and revise DELETE what’s not working and focus on what’s working.
  6. Remember sponsors may commit and back out. Deal is not done until money is in your account.  And when money is in the bank give your sponsors exceptional service and assure them of the value out of the event.
  7. Don’t be disheartened if nothing seems working. Adjust your SAIL because SUCCESS is round the bend.

 Please feel free to add comment to improve fund raising.

 

 

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