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AP 0923: Do I Need to Pay Experts to Speak in My Virtual Summit?

AP 0923: Do I Need to Pay Experts to Speak in My Virtual Summit?

By Pat Flynn on

AskPat 923 Episode Transcript

Pat Flynn: Yo, what’s up everybody? Pat Flynn here and welcome to Episode 923 of AskPat. Thank you so much for joining me today. As always, I’m here to help you by answering your online business questions five days a week.

We have a great question coming in today from Alexa, but before we get to that, I do want to thank today’s sponsor, which is DesignCrowd. If you’re stuck for ideas on how to develop your logo or website or business cards or whatever creative thing you need, you can actually connect with creative minds from around the world with DesignCrowd. It’s a website that helps businesses crowdsource custom graphics from over a half million designers worldwide. It doesn’t matter if you’re a dentist, an accountant, a photographer or DJ—doesn’t matter, you can get the perfect custom design every time or you get your money back. Check out to learn more and download your free guide to crowdsourcing great logos, graphics, and websites for your business and get $100 off your next design when you enter the promo code “AskPat”. All right, now here’s today’s question from Alexa.

Alexa: Hey Pat, my name’s Alexa, and I blog at I was wondering about having online summits or conferences. If I were to charge people to be able to view videos where I would facilitate conversations between experts in my field, would I need to pay those experts for being on, or how would I go about that? Do you have any advice for how much to charge people and if I should sell the replay of it on my blog afterwards? Thanks so much.

Pat Flynn: Hey Alexa, Pat here. Thank you so much for calling in today. I really appreciate it. Do you need to pay experts to be a part of your online summit or conference? You don’t need to. You can. I’ve been on summits before where I wasn’t paid because I knew that in exchange, I was going to be put in front of a large audience, and then I could utilize that time to grow my email list or just at least gain exposure. Other times, I have been paid. Now I’ve made sure as a person coming on as an expert for these summits that I knew what I was allowed to do, and I definitely read the terms to decide whether or not it was worth it based on okay, well how else was this person going to be using this? Were they going to sell the replay? Were they going to promote it? What else were they going to do with it? I’ve actually said no a couple times because in reading the fine print, I’ve learned that they were going to repurpose that content in ways that I wasn’t really okay with.

Alexa, it’s going to be up to you to determine how you would like to use this stuff, and it’s your job and your responsibility to make sure that the people, the experts who are going to spend time with you to actually be here to help provide value to your audience or the audience that you’re going to build—it’s your responsibility to let them know exactly how you’re going to be using this and to hopefully get it in a contract form so that both parties can sign it and have an understanding of what’s going on. In addition, you can sell the replay afterwards too. That would be also something that I would recommend sharing. Actually, I would recommend it if possible: I know a lot of conferences who have taken their live events and have turned them into videos that they can send out and sell to people who weren’t able to attend. I’ve seen it done for virtual summits as well, so you can do that definitely.

One strategy that you could use to help experts to be more likely to say yes to working with you, besides having them receive money from you, which isn’t always possible, is that you can offer an affiliate deal for them. You are able to then help people who are now coming on as experts to even earn more money by having people purchase either the live conference or the replay, and earning a commission as a result of that. Now I will say that virtual summits in some niches, especially in the online business space, are getting a little bit more difficult to do, just because they’ve been overdone. But with your website in particular, it could still definitely work.

I’ve done episodes . . . Actually, let me go find an episode right now—so if you go to, there’s this little trick for those of you who might not know this secret trick already—anyway, if you go to and you click on the magnifying glass, you can type in anything, and it’ll search it for you. This isn’t just your normal WordPress search. It’s a high-end search tool, so I’m just going to put Lain Ehmann in there, and it tells me right away, Episode 151 of the SPI podcast. That’s the one that I would recommend listening to, because it tells you exactly how to put on a successful and profitable virtual conference. This is with Lain Ehmann who was a guest on a previous show, and I think that was Episode 37 where it was called “How to Monetize a Hobby.” In that episode, she talked about how she was able to monetize in the scrapbooking industry, literally making six figures in the scrapbooking industry. She’s now since been putting on conferences, virtual conferences, and very profitable ones in the same space. Episode 151,, would be the one that I recommend you listen to. She talks a lot about pricing structure, getting gurus to come on or experts to come on and how to work out those deals, so it’s definitely going to be great for you to listen to, and hopefully this reaches you in time.

Alexa, thank you so much for the question. I appreciate it. I hope it was able to help you out and has given you some ideas. I also want to send you an AskPat teeshirt for having your question featured here on the show. For those of you listening, if you have a question that you’d like potentially featured here on the show as well, just head on over to, and you can ask right there on that page.

Thank you so much. I appreciate you, and I look forward to serving you in the next episode of AskPat. Until then, here is a quote from Napoleon Bonaparte. “Nothing is more difficult, and therefore more precious, than to be able to decide.” I want you to just think about it really quick. What’s that thing you’ve been trying to decide about and you keep going back and forth on? You’re just wasting time doing that; make a decision and move forward. All right guys, take care, and I’ll see you in the next episode of AskPat. Bye.

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