The Lucky Titan

Speaker Success With Mike Acker

July 26, 2021 Josh Tapp
The Lucky Titan
Speaker Success With Mike Acker
The Lucky Titan
Speaker Success With Mike Acker
Jul 26, 2021
Josh Tapp

Mike Acker is an executive and communication coach, a keynote speaker, and the author of four books including the bestselling Speak With No Fear, which has appeared on numerous booklists even getting designated as the #1 book on overcoming fear of speaking on You can find out more at

Show Notes Transcript

Mike Acker is an executive and communication coach, a keynote speaker, and the author of four books including the bestselling Speak With No Fear, which has appeared on numerous booklists even getting designated as the #1 book on overcoming fear of speaking on You can find out more at

Josh:  What is up everybody, Josh Tapp here again and welcome back to the lucky Titan and today we are here with an awesome, awesome guest, Mike Acker, he is one of the top writers Honestly, I was I was really intrigued by his bio and I have to, I have to kind of pause and go back to this because he was named the number one book for overcoming the fear of speaking and I had to write that down so I didn't miss it, Mike, but the fear of overcoming it's overcoming the fear of speaking the number one by Forbes so his he comes highly, highly recommended a as an author, b as a speaker and honestly just as a business leader in general. But his story was so awesome because he went from having a father who was a pharmaceutical entrepreneurs what he said, which I loved that to pastor to now I would consider one of the top thought leaders in his space so I'm excited to have Mike here today, Mike, you say what's up to everybody, and then we'll hop in. 

Mike: Hey, great to be here. Hello, everybody looking forward to giving you some great content today. 

Josh: Love it, me too. I'm excited people love coming here and hearing your story, but also your frameworks and everything and I just have to let everybody know, we did just get back from our trip from Cancun last night, like three in the morning so I'm exhausted, I'm gonna do my best to just hand the mic over to Mike here because this guy has some amazing stuff. So I want to ask you, Mike, to kind of kick this interview off, I do want to know your story about the pharmaceutical entrepreneur so fill us out on that

Mike: right? Often, if you're an entrepreneur, you were inspired by some entrepreneur for that. That was my dad and my mom, my mom's started a preschool my dad started the drug smuggling business so the pharmaceutical entrepreneur was marijuana and others when he was a hippie in the 70s and even before that, so he passed it on to me, not the drug smuggling, but the entrepreneurial spirit, he became a very dedicated Christian when I was about three, four years old and they switched over from a life that was far from what would be called Christian ethics and they became not the political Christians or just church attending Christians but they became the type of people that said, Wow, let's do something in the world so we bed poor, we went to Mexico, we built homes, we traveled to Haiti. We did stuff all around Asia, in the dumps of Philippines, we smuggle Bibles into China when I was about four years old, because my parents figured, hey, we slept with other stuff, let's smuggle something good nowadays, we could have been thrown in prison 

Josh: or get arrested for it, but at least you can feel good about yourself.

Mike: And then he became a lawyer because hey, why not and then, when I was 10 years old, we up and move from this small little Middle America type town and we moved to Mazatlan Mexico to serve to serve the poor and disenfranchised as my parents started yet another organization, and we took care of kids who were displaced from the school system so I saw my dad and my mom start things and run them, I saw their adventurous spirit, I saw their love their service, I saw some of the bad things that happen as well as humans, we're all we're all imperfect and so I saw that was able to give them grace along the way as they learned, and they changed so when I came back to United States, I had a chance to see what do I want to be and I had some influences in my life and just looking at some of the things that have impacted me, I said, I want to do that I want to help people and really now the way I phrase what I did, as a pastor, now as a coach, and a speaker and a writer is this, I want to help people realize their potential, I love to get paid for it as well, I love when people buy the book, and it's mutually beneficial. It helps them It helps me I love when I get to speak and I help a lot of people and it helps me so I'm looking for a win win situations but even then, and we talked about this beforehand, I start my day and say no matter what, whether you're paid, whether I don't if it develops business, I am in the business of helping people realize their potential and I truly believe that if I help enough people in the world, like the quote says that then in turn, I will get people to help me.

Josh: And I completely agree with that and I do want to ask you this, Mike, because you were in Mazatlan, did you ever go to a Oaxaca by chance? 

Mike: I never did. I went to a lot of different places. They FA and I went to one o'clock though and Chihuahua. I'm going to be actually in Cabo next week with a client and so a lot of travel but, but not to Oaxaca

Josh: I just got it. I lived in Oaxaca for global Oaxaca and Cuernavaca for two years so I yeah, service mission as well. So it's, it's kind of cool to see that you've done the same thing, see where our stories kind of line up but I do want to just point this out for our audience as well. You know, listen to this, and this is one of the main reasons why I love interviewing people like you, every successful person has such a fun backstory and if you really dive into I mean, who would have thought, right, Mike, very collected guy you're very well put together. But then you say, Hey, you know, I came from kind of a scary history, but then my parents changed their entire lives, it's changed my life and then you move on to become such a successful person, it's just so fun to see that transition from from you know, where you're at, to where you are now. So I love love to see that 

Mike: right and not only even a family, when I do speaking, and I write about speaking, I have several books coming out this year in all these different areas. If you go back into my own speaking career, in terms of life, I had a speech impediment as a kid can say, certain sounds, I overcame that I went to Mexico and I got terrorized by my inability to learn the language and just everybody making fun of me, ended up really loving the culture, really embracing it, but it took me a while and it really caused psychosomatic fear I talked about in my book, or really, I'd get sick just because of the fear of showing up the next day and having to talk in front of people, and interact with people and then moving back to United States, it was it was difficult to reactivate to another culture, once I had become really, functionally Mexican and so it was a lot of just not only the family stuff, and environmental, but this personal challenges that I had overcome and those things that we often think of as tragedies and difficulties, as you and I know and as everybody listening here, if you're in that middle of that moment, right now, we're just life is tough and difficult, that as you press through with the right help you can get through the other side, and see the success that those difficulties can bring about.

Josh: I love that. Yeah, it's just knowing that the success is always on the other side of the failure and the fear and everything and I completely agree with with what you're talking about there and this really does dovetail well into what you teach. I mean, your entire platform is around removing that fear so you can go out and speak and I did want to ask you this, because you mentioned this in the pre interview, and I thought it was so cool, it's really how you can can set yourself apart as a speaker, and who are the types of people that like one of the stories that they tell that helped them become a great speaker so can you speak to that? 

Mike: Yeah. So if you want to become a great speaker, a lot of people ask me, How do I become a speaker? So I work with some TEDx speakers that have spoken to large audiences and I have CEOs and I have celebrities and I have some other brands that I represent that would be well known right here and people will come to me and say, how do you do that? How do you get out there in front of people, I even represent seven different speakers and so how do you do that? How do I get to be one of your speakers? Mike I tell people again, again, there's five different ways that you can develop a speaking career so if you're here listening, going, Man, I'm, I'm this or that and I want to speak, I want to make money speaking, okay, this is what you can do, okay. First one is you can have an incredible, incredible story, like your story is so amazing, like Bethany Hamilton, she served as a teenager, a shark bites off her shoulder, and then she gets out and she still continues to surf, now, if you got an incredible story, and you can get that story out there, you can become a speaker, the problem is a lot of the stories are not something you want to try to manufacture, my dad part of the reason why he became a drug smugglers because he wanted to write a book so in eighth grade, he said, I'm going to live a crazy life so he cooked for the Hell's Kitchen gang when he was in, you know, 15 year old and did all kinds of crazy stuff so he wrote a book just came out recently, pirates, scoundrels and saints and he's promoting that right now, right now through me apparently, the second way that you can become a speaker is wild success with the Jeff Bezos, he doesn't need to get paid but if he wanted to get paid, he could get paid millions of dollars to speak to people, because of his wild success, now, you don't need to be a Jeff Bezos but what is your wild success story. Third, is you need some kind of product, what is your product that you can point to, it helps if it's also wildly successful, and it also helps you that has a great story, your product could be a book, and that becomes your platform, that's an easier one that a lot of people do from but it could be that you develop something or a TOMS shoes that became a product that he spoke from and product with a story and success, the fourth one is affiliation so you want to become a speaker, affiliate yourself to someone, there are some typical motivational speakers who have just affiliated themselves with somebody and hey, I, I come from this like, for example, I'm affiliated with John Maxwell so here's my, here's my affiliation. let it speak for itself, oh, John Maxwell, okay. Now, the more that you can pull these together with one another, the more of a chance you're going to be able to go out there and do it. The fifth chance that you can really get out there and be a speaker is a while crazy personality, there are some people that are just so weird, intriguing, crazy, that you're just like, I gotta have you, I don't, I don't even know what you could talk about to just come in here and talk about something, now there is a sixth one and these are the main ones over here, you didn't have those different aspects but there's six one is, and this often goes hand in hand with another one is crazy, crazy work ethic about a year ago, year and a half ago, I spoke on the same stage with Hal Elrod, and he has maybe the best-selling self-published book in the world on the Miracle Morning and when I first read the Miracle Morning, I thought, that's okay. It's good book. He recently redid it and really made it really good but I read it. I thought that's good principles, but actually not that well written and kind of weirdly formatted and not the greatest covered so how did he take this book, that had a great idea but how did he take this book that was okay and really, he worked it, he worked at heart before podcasts had places where you could meet someone easily, he reached out to people cold calls, and he went everywhere and he just worked that book, he believed in the idea and had a good idea, a solid idea, a great idea and he just believed in it and promoted it and promoted it and worked it and worked it and worked, I've heard him talk about that and that eventually grabbed ahold or the good idea actually replaced even some of the the poor sentences and overall look at the book, to the point where people just said, Yes, this is great and it just raised him up to that spot where he could command some great income from speaking on gigs, as well as his great income from his book but how did he become successful, he worked his butt off and that promotion for you, if you want to become a speaker, these are the five ways and I would just put as many of these as you can, together with that hard work ethic.

Josh: I love that and I want to highlight something here because this this is really the reason this spoke so much to me is I didn't have a really amazing story, it's just kind of an average guy came from a pretty poor family didn't have like any cool, like come to Jesus moments is what I call them, right? You didn't have an amazing moment that you could say, I got my arm cut off by a shark and continued surfing, I like Bethany Hamilton but I looked at people like Russell Brunson, who he was even more average than me and became wildly, wildly successful by speaking and everything but I want to point this out as a marketing tip, because you, you really hit on that so well, you know, there's five and then kind of a sixth different way to develop a speaking career but I would say that's the five different ways to become a thought leader, I mean, you've really hit that home where it's like, yeah, if you want to be recognized, and if your content isn't hitting, it's because you haven't chosen one of those and I know for me, I had to start with affiliation, because I had no name, right so that's why we started the podcast, and allowed me to affiliate myself with other really successful people and get into those inner circles and get to meet some amazing people but when anybody saw my name next to Grant Cardones name, or next to Mike Acker's name, right, I get people look at me and say, Okay, he's obviously more well-known than maybe I don't know him, but his name gets more recognized and eventually, we were able to build our own platform off of what was our differentiating factor site I love that you you hit those five points, I want to ask you this, Mike, because you are uniquely qualified to answer this question is, how do you then take that story, turn it into a speaking platform, a written platform or what have you and then monetize it? 

Mike: Yeah. So it depends on which approach you're gonna take, is your speaking going to be a promotion for a product that you have so I know that, for example, Chandler Bolt has been extremely successful in self-publishing school, and I had the chance to work with him. When I was posting my book, I signed up for several different courses, and that was one of them and I did some masterminds with him smart, sharp guy, when he was launching his business, he put himself out there for speaking, well, not a lot of people knew who he was so sometimes he got paid but his point was not to get paid, in fact, sometimes he paid to go speak on that stage or he sponsored the event so his whole point was, I'm not going to get paid from the speaking. I'm going to get paid from what people buy from us after the speaking so really depends on what type of monetization you're going for are you going for I want to be a speaker, that's how I'm getting paid, I'm going to get some of the people that I represent, make 10 $15,000 for a speaking gig, that is what they're selling, they're selling, they're selling their keynote and that's great do a couple of those a month you're you're doing pretty well right there, others are saying I'm going to sell something on the back end, I'm going to sell a course or I'm gonna sell a book. Now that strategy difference really makes it makes it change for you, if you don't need the money, like Chandler wasn't going for the money from the gig, he was going for the promotion, it was easier for him to get into some different environments, because they didn't have to pay him and every event loves a free speaker if the speaker is going to do well so if you have one of these five event, five aspects that really develops a speaking career, then you push yourself out there, and you say, and I'll do it for free, people are more likely to say yes to you, if you are going to get paid for it, then you what you need to do is you need to climb the ladder slowly. Well, of course, depending on how well and how high you are on your, on your five different areas, that's going to create a little bit different, if you have a level three story, if your level two here, level one here, zero here, on the different areas, then you're going probably start out with some free gigs do really well record it, create your speaker video, and then do some gigs for $1,000 and then do gigs for $2,000 and then 3,000 5,000 10,000 and as you do well, I say this again, and again, it's so true. If you do well, with less people will want more and you're able to build that more and more so first, determine what type of monetization you're going for and then to build it in the way that fits.

Josh: Love that because those are two really different structures and as you said, you know, it's you almost have to structure your entire business differently because I've seen people do where they still even pitch themselves, when they've been paid for the event, you know, they kind of do a mix of both, but it almost feels icky, you know, as a listener when you're sitting there and you're saying, Okay, we got paid to be here and now you're going to pitch me for 30 minutes about your program. Right and I know for me, it was actually really intriguing to you know, we love events love going and listening to speakers as well but I went to the Grant Cardone, that really cool event, but the entire event is sales pitches by different people and I personally enjoyed it, because I like seeing how they're pitching and everything but a lot of people were turned off by it, that was really intriguing because this entire event was built around that. 

Mike: Sorry, you knew what's happening on that event, and this is the the dirty secret behind that and I don't know about Grant Cardone but those type of events, here's what's happening and it's genius, but a little bit tricky at the same time, is the event person is getting money, and I've been to these two, and I won't name any of them but if you go to the event, and they're getting money from the people who are going, they're getting money from the sponsors, and then actually the speakers are paying them because if I can get in front of this, yeah, 10,000 people or 1000 people or 500 people, and I can pitch my product so sure, I might pay $3,000 $5,000 to speak but if I get a couple sales, I'm even and if I get a lot of sales so for example, at one event, there was a speaker who came, and he came, did a great job speaking, and then pitched his, his essential his product and out of that out of the hundreds of people there, he spoke and he had, I don't know, 20 30 40 50 people sign up for a multi $1,000 product, now he's making way more than he would ever be able to merit as a speaker because of the sales so it depends on what you're doing and there's a good way to do it and there's an honest way to do it and in dishonest way. Some of the people that I represent, they also have coaching programs as well but it's not the focus so they might say something like as I coach my clients, but it's weaved in and it's not like and afterwards I will be it's not anything like that, it's it's I'm here to help you and some people afterwards go well, because he helped me, I want to go ahead and do that, I mean, I've had people that I have no intention of trying to sell my my coaching services in a in a podcast, I usually am just pointing to my book, but I've had people reach out to me afterwards, they go, Wow, I felt like you were able to help me so much in just that podcast, can you do it? That's a little bit different than me spending 30 minutes talking about it and doing a sales pitch.

Josh: When you know this, this dovetails really well because on this show, we talk a lot about you need to be speaking, you've got to be out there you've got to be doing podcasts, you've got to be doing content, you've got to speak on stages. You should always be sharing your message, whether that's written audio, video, whatever you're doing. And so I heavily believe in what you're saying or you've been said 10,000 5,000 or 100 people you have that chance to promote your product to it's always always worth it but you know, Mike, I want you to touch on this because everybody who is suffering right now in the online space, it's it's, I would say it's about 99%, if not all of them, the reason why they're not succeeding is because they're not getting their message out in front of enough people and they're worried, oh, my messaging sucks all my product sucks, it has nothing to do with that just means you're not getting in front of enough people and so, I, to me, I think where your book really touches on this, you know, is overcoming that fear of speaking, what's the initial fear that people have to overcome and how are they overcoming it using your book to be able to actually go out speak and take that first leap because I know that that first leap, the first stage, is this the hardest and the scariest? 

Mike: Yeah, I think there's three real reasons why people are afraid to put themselves out there, fear of failure, like what if I fail? What if I, what if I do it? And what if I write the book? What if I start the podcast, what if I start the business? What if I leave my corporate job? And I don't have that safety net? And it goes wrong? So fear of failure, fear of rejection? What if I put myself out there? Nobody likes me? What if no one listens to that episode of Josh Tapp’s, Lucky Titan, because nobody likes me or I try to sell my product or I write a book and I get that review that, like I've had reviews that say, this book was absolutely garbage did nothing for me. Thank you, very constructive criticism about other of my 500 reviews are really good, but there's a few that are not and that fear of rejection, I actually tell people embrace rejection, you'll become better around all around, I teach my son to embrace rejection, he's six years old, like they don't want to play with you soak in it, move on. The third reason that a lot of people just won't put themselves out there and beyond just that rejection beyond just that fear is is the lost my train of thought, My story of my son right there, the last one is just even that simple, I just won't do it. Like I don't believe in myself enough to do it, I just the unknown and so it's either the failure or rejection, it's just the fear of moving, it's the paralysis of analysis so those are the fears often people are coming with and there's some other ones as well and some more are actually on the anxiety side of things and they actually have a chemical imbalance going on as well and others are just the fear and often it's the fear of rejection, because they've been rejected so in my book, the first thing we talked about is uncovering and cleaning the wound and when I wrote that, I didn't know what what power I was actually writing about, I was just like, no, this is good, you got it, you got to clean up your junk before you move on to the future but I've had people call me from United Arab Emirates, from all over United States, from the other place in the Middle East, from Zambia, from Peru, and literally on a phone call with me break down and cry and talk about when I read this, I didn't realize I was carrying these words that was said to me, and just this pain that was manifesting it, now I won't go into any other details, because it can get quite private but sometimes people are afraid because of these different reasons and they're holding it on so my first strategy is look, you got to you got to let go and sometimes people don't but two thirds of the people I work with end up having a fear that is associated with some traumatic things that happen but about 1/3 Stone, I even tell people in my workbook, just skip to the next session then and and then the other ones really are different strategies to say, here's how you can do it, I was working with a client just even for this call and I said as you go into this, I want you to take little pieces of paper and I want you to write the names of different people who are going to be in the room with you and so she wrote down four different people's names, I said, Okay, put that around your laptop as you're looking at your your camera for your zoom remember, you're not talking to a room of people you don't know, you're talking to people, in the book I write this crowds are scary people are not. Friends are not people are friends and often we take oh my gosh, I gotta give a presentation. Oh my gosh, I gotta launch out. I'm going out to them, Instead of going out to Mike or Josh and as you start launching out and think about your product, your business, your speech and you start thinking about how can I make this relevant to John and Samantha and Prabhu and Arturo, and all the different people I'm thinking about? How can I do that? All send some of that face that fear of the unknown becomes known so I walked through these strategies, but I'll say this before all seven strategies, even the uncovering the wound, I have this chapter not chapter and it's called before you begin believe, if there's a chair in your room, if you're driving in a car listening to this, you would not sit down in the chair, if you didn't believe that would, that would hold your weight, you wouldn't get into the car and tried to drive somewhere if you didn't believe it would get you there and a lot of people don't believe that they can and I love what Henry Ford said, whether you can or you can't, or whether you think you can, or you can't, you're right and the first step to launching out into entrepreneurship, the first step to speaking, the first step is belief, now it should be based belief based in something so I'm going to be the next LeBron James, because I believe it, you're looking at me going, like six foot one, and your middle age, now you're never going to do that now but if you have the talent, if you have the background, if you have the support, if you have the drive, if you have the resources, if you have just the gumption, if you have the ideas, if you have something and you believe for me, I provide coaching, right? If you have coaching and support and all these resources, and you believe you can, then you can.

Josh: I love that and we usually like to end on a mic drop, but I'm going to give you another opportunity to drop the second mic, Mike. So I want to ask you this, because obviously people at this point are probably saying, where do I get access to the book? How do I get access to Mike so give us one link, Where should people go if they want to find you? 

Mike: ackers like tracker. So ACKER,, you can find me there. It'll link over to my keynote is a link over to my programs, you can find me all over the internet by googling me as well. 

Josh: Love that. So make sure you go check out and then Mike, before we sign off here today, I want to ask you this so if you could give one final parting piece of guidance to our audience, what would that be? 

Mike: It's not about you. The reason why we get so caught up and this is actually one of the strategies in the book, it's not about you that we think will will people want what I do well, people like me, will anybody want to listen to my speech, read my book, see how focused on me and my diet is, versus I wrote this to help people and I thought, if I could just help some people with this book, that would be a benefit, when I do a podcast, I'm not thinking about I hope these people like me, I hope Josh thinks my hair looks cool. Instead, I'm thinking, I want to bring some value to Josh and I said at the very beginning of this in a pre-recording, I said, my way that I start my day is helped me, help people, my prayer helped me help people and now that takes a lot of the fear takes a lot of the potential rejection away because my aim at the end of the day is help people and I believe in for reason that it will come back to me but ultimately, if I can help people, even if it doesn't turn into monetization, then I have made the world one person better.