The ROI of Getting a TEDx Talk

The ROI of Getting a TEDx Talk

You have a message to convey. Check. You may even have a book that promotes that message. Check. Now you want to deliver that message to a captive audience, on stage, just you and a spotlight. You are ready for a TEDx Talk. But how do you get one?

Before we begin, it’s important to understand what a TEDx Talk is. TEDx differs from TED Talks in its approach to spreading ideas. According to the TEDx website:

In the spirit of TED’s mission, “ideas worth spreading,” the TEDx program helps communities, organizations and individuals produce TED-style events at the local level. TEDx events are planned and coordinated independently, on a community-by-community basis, under a free license from TED.

TEDx Talks don’t grow on trees but there are a few steps you can take to get your time in the spotlight. A mix of researching your options, organizing content and themes, and investigating the application process of a TEDx Talk are integral to booking a TEDx presentation of your very own.


Much like any conference or presentation event, TEDx Talks are scheduled in advance. Sometimes as little as a month or as long as a year. Researching upcoming talks that are still in the planning stages yet have a date set, is a golden opportunity for anyone seeking to gain a spot in the lineup. Visit the TEDx event page for information on scheduled talks all over the world. Start researching talks in your area or ones that address the topic you hope to cover.

Other research that would be helpful is to study other TEDx Talks, review past TEDx Talks sponsored by the TEDx community you are seeking to engage, and look for opportunities to include variety and diversity in your topic so that you have something that is exclusive to your talk.


Many TEDx Talks have a theme associated with them. Organize your content around the theme. Your content should make sense if you are customizing it to fit within a theme. Don’t try to be a square peg in a round hole if your topic doesn’t fit. The organizers will not appreciate a pitch that doesn’t adhere to or utilize the theme.


The TEDx application process is a process. Some communities request proposals and some offer an open call to fill presentation spots. Keep in mind that TEDx events are done at the local level. Do yourself a favor and investigate what makes the community unique or what is important to them. A half-page, thoughtful proposal that explains why you would be a good presenter, what makes your information valuable, and draw on any connection or affiliation you have to the community goes a long way to crafting a standout submission.

Start local with your pitches. It’s worth noting that you should clearly understand the TEDx mission of “ideas worth spreading.” Is your idea worth spreading? It should go without saying but let’s say it…if you have a proprietary idea, don’t share it at a TEDx. The goal is to distribute ideas so be aware of this before exploring a TEDx speaking engagement. It is not easy to get a spot but stay persistent and apply to a wide selection of talks. TEDx Talks are a powerful opportunity to shine.


Can Public Speaking Engagements Be Detrimental to Your Image?

Can Public Speaking Engagements Be Detrimental to Your Image?

If you are wondering if public speaking is a good idea to help promote your project or if it is a waste of time, then keep reading!

Public speaking can have its advantages and disadvantages. It depends on the person and what they are trying to accomplish. Experienced or a novice, the following are things to take under consideration in evaluating a speaking offer like:

  • The audience size

Most people are not invited to speak at massive stadiums. Usually, the crowd is under a few hundred so determine if the size of the audience will work to your advantage. Also, be aware of the audience demographics. Is it too young or too old for your message?

  • The possibility of tough questions or comments

If your speaking engagement includes a Q&A session, be prepared for tough questions or negative feedback from an audience member. If you are not spontaneous and ready with a quick rebuttal, think twice about taking the speaking engagement.

  • Speaking and presentation skills must be effective

If you have never done public speaking before, that doesn’t necessarily mean you should pass on an offer. But, you should be sure you can articulate and express your message without looking nervous or uncomfortable. You can be nervous, just don’t show it! Most speakers will tell you they get a little nervous before speaking to a group. If you look less than confident, the audience will perceive you as not well versed in the topic.

If you are hesitant about speaking to an audience, try doing a panel discussion where you are not the only person in the spotlight and the questions and discussion are distributed among the entire panel. Start out small and master that before moving to the big time.