Companies and organizations hire motivational speakers to educate and inform audiences about different methods for bolstering motivation. Motivational speakers use personal experience, anecdotes and proven techniques for motivation in their speeches to educate audiences. Successful motivational speakers might potentially make hundreds of thousands of dollars per year for their work.
Average Annual Salary
According to the National Speakers Association, the average pretax salary for its members in 2006 was approximately $125,000 per year for speaking engagements. The bottom 15 percent of motivational speakers for the NSA made less than $25,000 per year while the top 15 percent made approximately $200,000 or more for speaking engagements. Motivational speakers typically make a few thousand dollars per speech. The average annual salary of motivational speakers depends on the number of speaking engagements they book during the year.
Motivational speakers with more experience and larger followings tend to make more money per year than their less-experienced counterparts. For instance, a motivational speaker with 10 years' of experience speaking to companies or organizations might make $10,000 or more per speaking engagement depending on the size of the crowd. Additionally, motivational speakers who train company managers to motivate employees might charge additional fees for their expertise.
Motivational speakers earn additional income from the sale of personal motivational products to their clients. Products typically provide further information on the motivational speaker's method for motivating individuals that is not found in speeches. For instance, a motivational speaker might author a DVD or book that elaborates on her methods. The speaker then offers the products for sale at her speaking engagements. When the motivational speaker is not on tour, she can sell her products at bookstores and other retail outlets.
The average salary for motivational speakers starting out in the profession might be low for an extended period of time. To earn a living as a motivational speaker, the speaker must develop credibility among business organizations and the motivational speaking community. Additionally, motivational speaking requires extensive travel across the country to businesses and organizations that request the speaker's services. For instance, a motivational speaker might travel for two or three weeks at a time before returning home.