How Much Does a Presentation Coach Cost?

When I meet someone for the first time and say that I’m a presentation coach, usually their response is flattering, and they talk how needed a public speaking coach is for businesses because they’ve seen a lot of bad, boring presentations. Almost always, they then ask, “How much does a presentation coach cost?”

The answer really varies by market and based on the presentation coach’s experience; however, you’re usually looking at $2,000-10,000. I know that is a broad range and the price also varies depending on the scope of work. Some coaches charge per day, others by the presentation, and some charge a monthly rate.  It is not uncommon to see a public speaking consultant charge $2,500 for a half-day session, plus travel costs. Regions like the Northeast United States and in major metro areas like San Francisco and Chicago, things cost more for coaching. In those areas, you probably have a coach nearby that doesn’t require travel per diems.

I find the price varies wildly because a lack of standardization in the marketplace and because most public speaking coaches do not coach full time. Many coaches fall into one of three categories:

  • Keynote speaker that can’t pay the bills, so he/she does coaching on the side to keep busy
  • Marketing, sales, or management consultant that is a jack-of-all-trades or doesn’t know who to refer, so they coach the presentation to the best of their abilities
  • Former actors tired of working weekends and not having a steady job, and they treat every presentation as a Broadway performance (which it is not)

I don’t fit into any of these buckets, and I do this full time. My background is as unique as they come. I spent five years at my local zoo’s education department doing presentations about animal biology and ecosystems with live animals. During my tenure, I presented over 1,000 times (sometimes six times a day), and I coached dozens of volunteers. I learned the dos and don’ts of presenting through trial-and-error and fine tuned my repetitive presentations, so I didn’t go crazy with the monotony. My background is education and simplifying the message so my audience, which ranged from preschoolers to the elderly, could understand the content of the presentation. This education-first background is why I focus on learning styles, simplification, and understanding instead of just eye contact, hand movements, and vocal projection like most “presentation consultants” do.

web_offer_banner_3_contentmarketingGetting back to the workload, or scope, affecting the price. Many presentations coaches will charge by the half- or full-day sessions and pricing may range from $2,500-$5,000 (plus travel). For proactive, ongoing training, I prefer to do monthly 3-hour sessions. It is easier to block off 3 hours than a day, and it is hard to keep anyone’s attention for a half-day. Even a great coach can’t compete with a client call with an urgent request or a last minute proposal rush.

I also prefer to use technology instead of traveling to my clients. Most of my clients need help with their messaging and the order of their presentations, so I do not need to be in their conference room to assist with that. Even when my clients are practicing for a particular presentation, I can coach their delivery remotely (even if they are local). This technology allows my clients only to pay for my time when I’m working with them or preparing for their coaching session, instead of paying me to sit on an airplane or drive to their office.

I generally coach bid presentations, so instead of a monthly, more proactive approach, I work with my clients for each bid or proposal. Working via Skype or GoToMeeting gives them more flexibility than having a coach fly in on a specific day because bid presentations change times frequently (all the time). When life happens, many times this flexibility allows the coaching session still to occur at a different time instead of my clients canceling last minute.

For investment or angel pitches like seen on Shark Tank, some coaches (including myself) will occasionally charge a reduced fee with a larger bonus when the client gets an investment. This bonus incentivizes the presentation consultant to give it his or her all. However, I never recommend a presenter working with a consultant that offers their services for free because any professional that works for free is worth just that, nothing.

Obviously, with a $2,000-$10,000 price range for public speaking coaching, this is an investment and not for everyone. When you work with any presentation coach, you refine your skills, which stay with you for your career. Your ROI is built with each bid won and with each lead a presentation garners. I’ve helped my clients win millions of dollars in new work, so a $2,500 investment is worthwhile.

If that price tag is too steep, I have an alternative for you. I developed a self-guided presentation skills training course called SpeakU that covers two years of my training without the price of hands-on coaching. The curriculum encompasses all aspects of public speaking from the presentation strategy and message to the delivery and execution. This public speaking course is perfect for the self-motivated, up-and-coming expert that is willing to invest in his or her future. (Just another example of how I’m a different kind of presentation coach, I’m a presentation educator, as I like to say.)

You can learn more about SpeakU and even test drive it to see if it is right for you.

Additional Resources

How Speak Simple Can Help You

Speak Simple helps teams too! Whether it is coaching a team of technicals to win the big bid presentation or training professionals to share their expertise in educational, thought leadership presentations. Learn more about how Speak Simple can help your firm win more work and increase your billing rate.

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