PSU Insight

Setting Your Fees and Prices

Production Costs of a Keynote or Seminar

Now that we know how much your time is worth, we simply need to figure out how much time the project requires. As you saw earlier, it’s all about running the numbers.

Let’s take a hypothetical example. Let’s assume that you’re preparing a keynote which you want to deliver to the upper management of large corporations. To get those speaking engagements, you’re going to market to the CEOs of the Fortune 1000, and you’ve located the names and addresses of those CEOs.

Now, first, let’s consider your one-time development costs. How much time will you need to research your keynote? How much time will you need to write it? How much time will you need to practice it?

These figures will obviously vary tremendously from one person to another, but let’s pick a rough figure of 40 total hours. Since you just calculated your time as being worth $50 / hour, you can see that it “costs” you $2,000 (40 x $50) to develop the keynote speech itself.

But you’re not done. Now you need to market your keynote to the Fortune 1000 CEOs. Depending on the marketing method(s) you plan to use, your costs will probably be some combination of money and time.

Let’s say you’re going to send the CEOs a packet of material, followed by one or more phone calls. Let’s further estimate that the marketing material will cost you $20 apiece in printing and postage, and the phone calls will average 30 minutes per company.

For 1000 companies, your marketing costs will be $20,000 in direct costs, and 500 hours of time. The 500 hours of time, at $50 / hour, translates into another $25,000… for a total cost of your anticipated marketing campaign of forty-five thousand dollars ($45,000).

Did that get your attention? Yes, that’s right. Your marketing campaign alone will cost you $45,000. But, of course, you need to add in the $2000 in development costs for your speech. That brings your total production costs to $47,000.

What do you do with that number? Check out the next session!