The Best Website Contest is Back!

Well, it is time again for our best website contest for speaking experts. Boy, we’ve come a long way and seen many changes to web design since our contest last ran!

We’ve seen carousels (slide decks) come and go from homepages and I am glad for that as it often led to a lack of focus. We’ve also seen a bigger focus on blogs, social media buttons everywhere, and scrolling websites are now the norm. What hasn’t changed, and is now almost a standard in effective web design, is the use of video, which is why it will be one of our top criteria this year.

[Tweet “Does your #speaker #website (or a site you know) have the ‘stuff’ to win the Best Website #Contest?”]

Here are the criteria for this year’s best website contest:

►  Clear Promise Statement:  Can we tell within 15 seconds how you are going to help your prospects?

 Interesting Brand: Does your brand or language pull us in? Is it sticky (ie. memorable)?

►  Simplified: Is your website easy to navigate?

►  Expert Focus: Does your website say “here’s how we can help you” or is it old school and says “hire me, I am a speaker”.

►  Pazow: Does your website have a great vibe or feel that makes us want to do business with you?

►  Video:  Do you have a compelling video that shows people who you are and what you offer?

Think your website, or a website you know, hits the mark on all these points? If so, add the URL and what you like about the site in the comments below. We’ll be accepting nominations until Friday, September 25th.

Once all the nominations are received, we’ll pick the top six websites and open voting to everyone to find our winner.

See you soon, Wealthy Speakers!

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  • Pete Huttlinger is a long-time and well known guitarist and entertainer. But he’s relatively new to the speaking industry. He was pulled into it because of major health issues he has overcome, and continues to battle. As a virtuoso type player he has had to re-learn to play more than once and his story of resilience is what he shares. What he does is somewhat unique in that it is a combination of performance and speaking, and it blends well. As his manager, I purchased your book “The Wealthy Speaker.” It was incredibly enlightening even for someone that has been in the entertainment industry for over 30 years. This business is a different animal. So Pete and I (and a web designer) worked to create this site to hit all the marks you suggested. There are still some design tweaks I’d like to make, but overall I’m hopeful that we are in the ball park with this one. Thanks for the opportunity to submit

    • Jane

      Erin, thanks so much for submitting Pete’s website. On the plus side, he has a really strong and moving demo video right up front, I hope everyone will take a look. It pulls at the heart strings, well done. On the room for improvement side – I think maybe there are too many messages on the home page and that whatever “promise” the website claims (resilience, etc) the copy should focus a bit more on that. ps: the font on the home page feels a bit old school, that was distracting. Thank you for the submission.

  • Would love your comments!

    • Jane

      Roy you started off strong with the landing page. The quality is high, the photos are strong. You have good “curb appeal”. But what I didn’t see was that strong promise statement I was looking for. This is classic “speaker” positioning (hire me I’m a speaker) vs. expert positioning (I solve this problem). Your list of offerings is quite long and diverse, so it’s clear that you haven’t picked one lane. Check out The Wealthy Speaker 2.0 – I think with some tweaks in your positioning, you’d have a really cool site.

  • After spending the last several months creating a new brand and a new website, I’m curious to see how it measures up. Game on! 🙂

  • Jane – you were so helpful in creating this website , thank you!

    • Jane

      Holley, I think your site looks terrific. You’ve obviously put a lot of energy into it. It’s still in need of a strong demo with speaking footage and has potential to feel a little busy (more white space). Food for thought and congrats on putting out a very strong site.

  • I don’t consider this a winner, but would like some healthy feedback!

    • Jane

      Dave, your home page is really strong and very well done. Your messaging is clear. If I were booking you to speak, I would want to see a video of you speaking (on stage), and some outlines of some speeches. I’m thinking some of these things are in the works?

  • Overcoming the stereotypes about boring safety speakers or old-school, sad stories of being injured, this site offers a positive message of engagement and strong communication. When they land at our site, clients are looking for ways to reinvigorate their safety programs with fresh approaches and to solve the problem of employees not being fully vested in safety for themselves. We give them a new, exciting option using:
    -Clear Promise Statement
    -Language pulls the reader in
    -Easy to navigate
    -Takes a “here’s how we can help you” focus
    -Pazow – clean feel and offers benefits with expertise
    -Compelling video featuring clients and self and what we offer
    http://www.kevburns.com

    • Jane

      I agree with your assessment Kevin, the site does many of the right things. A couple of things I missed (or didn’t see) was a speaking demo – your video is very strong, and perhaps that is enough to get you booked in your industry? And also I didn’t see your About Kevin page. If people are coming to your site, they may already be sold that they need some help with safety – the next question would be is he the right guy. There are lots of things that would lead them to believe that. I was just looking for a straight bio. Kudos on making it so much about them!

  • Just revamped my website.

    Want to see how it measures up to the rest of these wealthy speakers.

    • speakerlauncher

      Well done Dee. The site looks terrific. Consider making it a bit more “them” focused then “you” focused. You’ve come a long way, and are doing terrific and work that’s much needed. Congrats.

  • My team worked really hard to merge my speaking brand with my company Engagement Unlimited’s focus on increasing engagement at meetings and conferences. We’re continually working to make this site the best it can be and would love your feedback and consideration!

    • Jane

      Roger, well done on the website sir. Looks terrific, clear promise. I was looking forward to seeing you on that stage. I didn’t see a video – is that coming?

      • I am moving video to the home page shortly (right now we have multiple videos on many pages but not one of me on the homepage!) I am also creating a video tab for the top menu so that it is extremely clear where to find more. Thanks for the feedback!!!

  • I’ll throw my hat in the ring…

    http://www.executivejoy.com

    • Jane

      Full disclosure, you are one of my clients. But I love this website, I think it’s got all of the right elements and I believe it will make the short list!

  • Always looking for some constructive feedback.

    http://www.BillHogg.ca

  • Just went through a complete renovation after a software client said, “Your website is looking a little stale.” Ouch!
    Here’s the results and I have not only gotten alot of positive comments and feedback (still tweaking), but I’ve gotten business from it too! (which is the reward!)
    http://www.ExtraordinaryTeam.com

    • Jane

      Several neat features on your site Kristin, well done on the video. Front and center and dives right into you on stage. Perfect. The “Chat with me now” feature is cool (let me know if people are using this?) The term “main stage conversationalist” – love that! If I was to give you any feedback it would be to streamline your messaging and think more in terms of outcomes (less about how they are delivered – that comes later). And that less is more – what could you live without – more white space. All in all, well done.

      • Thanks, Jane, for taking the time to look at my site! I couldn’t agree with you more….my challenge is to take out the scalpel and create a little white space. 🙂
        As far as the live chat feature, I’m using PureChat (it’s free for single users!) which allows the “chat” function to follow me on my phone – so as long as I am accessible, I can get the chat/text and respond. It’s neat feature that really impresses people, but most importantly, it provides instant access. Potential clients are looking at MANY websites and really don’t want to go searching for contact information….but they WILL enter a chat box! I’m not seeing a ton of usage, but I envision this will become even more popular as the millenials come in to position to “find me a professional facilitator!”

  • Would never have done this with the old website but feeling pretty good now. Had an excellent team to help us put this together – professional writing made all the difference in the world. We are proud of how it turned out. Interesting to see how it measures up.
    Thanks Jane.

    • Jane

      Great job guys – the site looks terrific. What’s really come forward is your message being about the audience. Start an Attitude Revolution is awesome (I might even put that right at the top of each page). Well done on the FAQ as well – when we meet any objections or concerns that they might have head on, that is brilliant.

  • I would love to be considered among all of these great sites, thank you Jane!
    – Lindsey

    • speakerlauncher

      Lindsey, I have been using your website for ages as an example of Zen. You get a feeling when you go there – calm, relaxed. I think it’s line with you and how you do business. We’ve talked about flipping the promise around to be them and not you, but again….”if it ain’t broke”. It’s simply stunning. Well done.

  • What a neat idea to do this all online. Transparency helps everyone learn from each other. Thanks so much Jane!

    • speakerlauncher

      Dave, you’ve hit on many of the right marks, I’m impressed. And I love that photo of you in that theatre. Live speaking shots say so much. Your video is strong as well. Congrats Dave.

  • Hi Jane,

    We spent a lot of time and put a lot of thought into our new website. We wanted to make sure we had concise information for all our audience. We wanted to make sure we provided our visitors with the “Ryan Estis Experience” when coming to the website so they could get a better understanding of what it is like to have Ryan at their event. Video and imagery are the centerpiece of this strategy.

    Would love your feedback!

    • speakerlauncher

      Well full disclosure again, with Ryan being one of my clients, I know this site is WORKING. Would I change a few things? Yes, probably. But there is this sayin “if it ain’t broke don’t fix it”. One minor piece of feedback is that before you used a more interesting magnet (name and email capture) where now it just has join our community). What’s most strong about this site is the video and look and feel of the brand. Well done Lynn and Ryan. Congrats.

  • Jane, with your help, I’ve worked hard on my rebranding. The Revitalized Business Woman feels aligned with who I am and what my mission is – to help busy professional women shift from tired to inspired! figured I should put my name in the hat! http://www.elizabethbarbour.com

    • speakerlauncher

      Elizabeth – you are a ray of sunshine and your website reflects it. If you don’t make it into the semi’s, it’s simply because there are SO MANY really good sites to choose from. Clear promise, strong brand. Well done, all the way around.

  • Please consider http://www.rsmlawpllc.com. I think we hit on the citeria!

    Shawn

    • speakerlauncher

      Hey Shawn. Lot’s of good things happening on your site. I think you might re-visit your promise and narrow it down to something like “Helping Business Owners Avoid Legal Hot Water” or something like that. It’s pretty broad right now. BTW, your URL would be really tricky to remember. Maybe ShawnMcBrideLaw is available?

  • I’ve been working on this site, and while I still have more to do, I thought I’d toss it into the mix to see what comments I could get to make it even better. Thanks!
    http://surviveanddefend.com/

    • speakerlauncher

      Alain, such an important topic helping people be safe. I can see that there is just a ton of great content on this site. Great idea moving into memberships. If you have live speaking footage (that would be what a planner or decision maker would want to see in order to book you) – I’d move it to the front page to make it easy for them to find. Congrats Alain, great job.

      • Alain Burrese

        Thank you! I will work at getting some live shots added more visible. I have different live clips on pages within the site.

  • Thank you for your help and suggestions through BOSS and our coaching calls. There still might be some tweaks necessary to my site, but it is much improved from my previous site! Take a look for yourself and see what you think!

  • paulkingsman.com
    I’ve recently updated my website to promote my speaking and coaching specifically for the financial services industry and would like to submit it for consideration in this year’s contest. The information you’ve shared over the years in your books and on your blog has been helpful as I have built my business and marketing materials. Thank you!

  • I’ve worked hard over the past three weeks since our initial coaching call to incorporate all of your recommendations and the elements of a strong website from your newsletter. What a difference! I love my logistics checklist on the speaker kit page. I got rid of all the drop downs. The only thing left to finish is the articles page, but other than that it’s good to go. I also really like my “no diva” policy and the little bits of humor scattered throughout the site. Hope you like it! Oh, and now that it’s off my plate I’ll be in a much better position to market my programs, which is where I think your coaching will be most valuable.
    I’m open to constructive feedback. I like the site a lot, but I’ve got a thick skin if there’s something wrong with it that I need to fix, please let me know!

  • Thanks for a very good presentation well done and one of the best and most engaging presentations.

  • Priscilla Dore

    Thanks for a very good presentation well done and one of the best and most engaging presentations.http://www.mike-walsh.com/about-mike-walsh

  • Priscilla Dore

    “AWESOME!!!!!Robyn engaging, on target, organized in presentation ttp://www.bigspeak.com/Robyn-Benincasa.html.

  • Priscilla Dore

    Keynote Speaker ,Entrepreneur and Magician ,Vinh really inspiring. http://www.vinhgiang.com/

  • I’m Frederique Murphy’s Speaking Manager and we both felt so lucky to have The Wealthy Speaker 2.0 book as our go-to guide when updating our site and producing our latest video. Here’s how we feel we hit the contest criteria:
    Clear Promise Statement – it’s clear from our promise statement how Frederique helps and we’ve made sure our PS is sprinkled everywhere.
    Interesting Brand – our Mountain Moving Mindset brand is memorable and the visual elements of the brand set the engaging tone we’re after (note – rainbow colouring is a key part of our brand so we purposely have less white space).
    Simplified – our site is easy to navigate and we keep our traffic in! We’ve been careful to avoid squirrels and website distractions. As approachability is a key part of our brand, we’ve included Social Media buttons but we’ve been strategic about where we’ve placed them and have ensured that our site window remains open.
    Expert focus – every part of our site showcases Frederique as a mindset expert – from our strong problem/solution paragraph on the homepage, to our new Speaking page, to our Blog area. With the guidance from your book, we crafted our ROI bullets so it’s clear to all how Frederique can help. There is value galore (distributed in various ways as our visitors can read, listen, watch) and we’ve created a strong sense of community by inviting them to join our very active and empowering M3 Power community (which enables us to data capture so that we can continue serving them as we build our platform).
    Pazow – the word I use to describe the web site is radiant – it radiates Frederique’s “practical magic” and truly captures her essence.
    Video – who Frederique is and what she offers shines through in our video. People are raving about how it succeeds in encapsulating her “practical magic”. We’ve made sure you can’t miss it on our Home page and Speaking page.

  • Breeda Miller

    Please consider my website:
    BreedaMiller.com I am a new speaker, so I am making the most of what I have and intend to add more content and video clips as I develop them. I think this is a good start, I hope you do too.

    • speakerlauncher

      Well done Breeda on making the most of it. This is a good starting point. You might consider moving your “promise” “Helping overwhelmed, exhausted and stressed out caregivers” to the banner so that it’s on every page. This way no matter how someone finds you (potential through a page other than the home page) they will know what you are an expert in. Good start!

  • Jane, I would like to (humbly?) nominate my web site for this contest, http://billzipponbusiness.com/ . What I’ve sought to do is unite the site under my brand, Bill Zipp: Culture Drives Numbers, and offer the promise of building a high performance culture.

    Also, I’m seeking to position myself as a thought leader who speaks, as opposed to “Hire me, please, I’m a speaker!” Hence the blog, the content-driven videos, and the consulting options. Thank you for your consideration!

    • speakerlauncher

      Bill, your website is one of my favorites! Brand: Culture Drives Numbers. Promise: Helping Leaders Build High Performance Cultures. Very strong. I know you are just waiting for some live speaking footage – sometimes it’s so elusive! I think that will put this one over the top. Congrats on a job well done.

  • Merit Gest

    Ok… I didn’t add the url in my last post… http://www.MeritGest.com
    Hope you like it!

    • Jane Atkinson

      Got it, thanks Merit!

    • speakerlauncher

      Merit, your website is gorgeous, really good looking. The promise is clear “deliberate strategies for increasing sales, productivity and retention.” You get points for clarity, but I think you’re still spread a bit thin. Sales, retention, leadership (which you promote) and productivity are all lanes unto themselves. Hard to be all things to all people, I suspect. Great work, but keep narrowing!

  • Jayne Morgan

    Hi Jane, please enter my site workplaceoasis.com. I have narrowed my branding to focus on employee engagement. I like the upbeat look and feel of the new site, based on making work feel more like vacation.

    • speakerlauncher

      Thanks Jayne. There are some very positive things – fun site, nice colors. I think I’m just struggling with the brand – is it really possible to have a workplace Oasis and have a ball at work – I’m such a skeptic. Perhaps you could convince me. It looks like fun though!

      • Jayne Morgan

        You have a ball doing your work, right Jane? Case closed, ha ha! My entry point is that if people aren’t enjoying themselves at work then it’s time for some analysis. My model of engagement helps people get to the root of the issue and offers steps to take action on making the workplace better. I feel people are too complacent about their work situation when they should be taking the culture into their own hands. Thank you so much for the feedback!! You are an asset to the profession.

  • Mark_Morin

    I wish it was more finished that it is – websites are a never-ending project, or so it seems. but please consider markmorin.ca

    • speakerlauncher

      Full disclosure, as one of my clients I am a wee bit biased. Your site hits all the right marks Mark (pun intended). I really love the photo of you speaking in that large room – that’s taken from the balcony. Well done sir!

      • Mark_Morin

        Thanks Jane,
        When you learn from the best, getting it right is so much easier.

  • Paul Kingsman

    paulkingsman.com

    I’ve recently updated my website to promote my speaking and coaching specifically for the financial services industry and would like to submit it for consideration in this year’s contest. Jane, the information you’ve shared over the years in your books and on your blog has been helpful as I have built my business and marketing materials. Thank you!

    • speakerlauncher

      Paul, well done especially on the video front and center on the home page. It’s strong footage from a large venue really separates you from the pack.

  • Helene Segura, CPO®

    Thanks, everyone, for entering and posting your websites! You’re giving me great ideas and high standards to live up to for my website’s next iteration.

  • Helene Segura, CPO®

    Hi, Jane! My home page has a combo of retro and new, so hopefully that will help it stand out. I’d like to enter my website: http://www.HeleneSegura.com

    • speakerlauncher

      Thanks Helene, your website hits many of the right notes. I especially like how organized your Meeting Planner page is and I use it as an example all of the time. Great job.

  • speakerlauncher

    Gabriel, you get high marks for originality here. I’ve not seen a hypnotist positioning in this way before – really well done. The site is clean and I get it. When you get more speaking footage (better venue) I think you’ll really have all of your ducks in a row. Kudos!

    • Gabriel Dye

      Thank you for checking out my site and for your comments! I wanted to avoid having a site focused on “Hire me, I’m a hypnotist” but wondered if the hypnosis bit was TOO hidden. Better video coming soon! Thanks again~

  • speakerlauncher

    Aoibhe – thanks for submitting! Full disclosure, I know this site well (since Frederique is a client) and love it! It hits on all of the right marks. Clear promise and what really shines through is Frederique’s energy. Well done on all fronts. We have a tough job ahead of us to narrow the finalists so many great sites to choose from!