25. Five Signs that you Need a High-Profit Presentation

Five Signs that you Need a High-Profit Presentation

In episode #24, I explained the female earnings plateau. Women’s earnings level off around age 41. Men’s earnings continue to climb until age 53.

As a result of this discrepancy, the gender earnings gap widens as we age. In our twenties, women earn about 12% less than men. In our fifties, women make 28% to 31% less than men.

How perverse is this result? As women gain industry acumen, experience, and expertise, the earnings gap widens???

This is obviously a problem. But fortunately, there’s an easy solution. The key to busting through any earnings plateau is what I call a High Profit Presentation. When you have a high profit presentation, you get recognized as the expert that you are. You get clients. And you get paid.

In this episode, I explain what a high profit presentation is. And how your high-profit presentation fits any opportunity or circumstance. We also discuss why a high profit presentation constantly fills your money bucket. And how to know if you need one.

To give you added framework, I even touch a bit on some high profit thinking that is integral to high profit presentations. 

A high profit presentation is like a faucet. When you turn it on, money flows out of it. Kelly Hollingsworth


  • Why a high-profit presentation is the solution to the gender earnings gap
  • How a high-profit presentation helps you bust through your earnings plateau
  • Why a high-profit presentation is like the perfect pencil skirt (hint: it goes anywhere, and it’s perfect everywhere)
  • What happens when you have a high-profit presentation
  • 5 signs that you need a high profit presentation:
    • You’re afraid to dip into your money bucket, because your business feels unreliable
    • You’re relying too heavily on referrals, and losing sight of being in service to your customers
    • You’re dumping a ton of money into advertising
    • You’re attracting bargain hunters who want discounts from you—but who are happy to pay full-price to your competitors
    • You’re making endless presentations but getting only “maybe.” Not money




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Welcome to Episode 25 of how to make more money, a podcast that helps you get seriously good at the game of making serious money. I’m your host, Kelly Hollingsworth, and I’m happy you’re here. If you were with us last time, we talked about how to destroy the female earnings plateau. The way you do it is you get recognized as an expert, you get clients, and you get paid.

Today, we’re getting into the nitty gritty on making this happen. How exactly do you experience these three thrilling benefits of getting recognized getting clients and getting paid? It all begins when you have your own high profit presentation. What is a high profit presentation?

It is a customized TED Talk quality presentation that highlights your expertise, and the benefits that come from your expertise in the most appealing way. Your high profit presentation may not always be presented in the exact format of a TED talk, it’s a little bit like a St. John suit that Santana knit, in a St. John suit is classy and polished. But it’s also stretchy and can feel very casual too.

This one black skirt, I’m going to link it to you in the show notes if you’re interested in Santana knit by St. John can be adjusted to fit any circumstance, it can go to any business meeting, you can dress it up and take it out on the town or you compare it with boots and take it on a jaunt across Central Park on a Saturday afternoon. Can you tell I’m missing New York lately? I miss it so much.

But in any case, your high profit presentation is versatile, just exactly like a St. John Santana knit skirt. It’s adjustable for different formats, depending on what works for you, your audience and your business in any given circumstance, it goes anywhere. It’s appropriate everywhere, you can deliver it in person in the form of a keynote online in the form of a webinar, in a podcast interview, when you get invited onto someone else’s podcast as an episode of your own podcast, you can condense it into a few paragraphs for your website, or you can expand it into a book. Just like a St John’s skirt, it expands or contracts to fit the circumstances.

However you present your high profit presentation, it is a TED talk level in terms of polish and quality and it conveys the benefits of working with you. When people see read or hear the presentation, they know that working with anyone else simply won’t do. They are keenly aware of why you are the person who will get them to their happily ever after. When people experience your high profit presentation, whether they see it, hear it or read it, they reach the inevitable conclusion that you are the expert; you are the person to do business with and they reach out to you to do exactly that.

In short, the high profit presentation is the resource that creates the three thrilling benefits of you getting recognized, you getting clients and you getting paid. This is critical. It’s what you need if you want to bust through a personal earnings plateau. It’s what you need to close your personal earnings gap and it’s critical if you’re in that danger zone of being a female human above the age of about 41, when your expertise is at its highest. But your income relative to men is at its lowest in all likelihood. We discussed that in the last episode; Episode 24.

As women’s expertise, industry acumen and experience rises, the earning gap increases between men and women. This is crazy, my friends, and to stop it you need a high profit presentation. So today now that we’ve discussed exactly what a high profit presentation is, let’s talk about five signs that you need one.

The first sign is that your business feels unreliable. For example, this happens with a lot of my clients before they have a high profit presentation. They find that they are carrying debt even as they are hoarding cash. This is one sign that your business feels unreliable and that you need a high profit presentation you’re carrying debt and hoarding cash.


This can happen even when you have a very high income, you know you have the high income to put a high ticket item on your credit card, maybe it’s a vacation, maybe it’s something for your business, maybe it’s something for your home and you may actually have the cash to cover the credit card bill in your business checking account.

But when it comes time to pay the credit card, you feel a little bit sick inside because you don’t want to see the cash disappear. Frequently, when I’m talking with business owners who are in this situation, they chalk it up to baggage about money. I had all these things happen to me when I was younger, and I didn’t have enough money and I was moving money frantically around from this account to another account and borrowing money to make sure I didn’t bounce checks. And now because of those experiences, I have to have a bunch of money in my account at all times and I hate to see it disappear.

This emotional baggage is why I pay 18% interest on my credit card even while I have cash sitting in my checking account and earning no interest. If you have a background like this, it can feel like those experiences are the reason that you are carrying debt at high interest rates, while you are hoarding cash at 0% interest. But that’s actually not what’s usually going on. Think of your business checking account as a bucket. It’s a nice stainless steel bucket and there’s a ladle in it and if you want a drink of water, you can dip your ladle in the bucket and grab a drink and take care of your thirst.

If there is constantly water flowing into your bucket, it’s very easy to dip the ladle in and take some water out. If there is not water constantly flowing into your bucket, you will start to hoard the water in the bucket, you will worry that if you take some out, it won’t replenish and you might need it for the future.

So the way I would like you to think about a high profit presentation is that its function is to serve as a faucet that is constantly filling that bucket that is your business checking account. It’s constantly filling your checking account with money. Whenever you need something for your business or for your personal expenses, you can just take some money out and you know the bucket is going to fill right back up again. So this is the first time that you need a high profit presentation. Your Business feels unreliable.

For example, you’re carrying a lot of credit card debt, but you’re afraid to pay off the credit card debt even if you have cash in your account to cover the debt. Obviously, if you have no cash to pay off the credit card debt, you definitely need a high profit presentation because you need more money coming in.

Okay, that’s sign number one, what sign number two, it is relying on referrals. Another sign that you need a high profit presentation is that you are relying on referrals to keep your business checking account full. When you have a high profit presentation, you never need referrals to keep your revenue going. This was kind of funny recently, inside the women making money Facebook group, I put up a quick post that said, never ask for referrals if you’re not getting them take a hard look at why and fix it. When I put up this post, I was intending to communicate two things.

One, if you have your marketing message dialed in, and two, you are treating your clients well and actually delivering on the promise transformation that your business offers, you will never need to ask for referrals. Every single person you work with becomes an ambassador for your business; you will get referrals without ever having to ask. I don’t think there’s anything controversial about this idea. But what happened inside the group is that several of the women in the group told me basically Kelly, this idea is bunk. I asked for referrals all the time and it totally works.

So the question is, should you ask for referrals or shouldn’t you? The answer is you should do whatever works for you. But here’s some food for thought. If you are asking for lots of referrals, that’s a sign that you can use a high profit presentation in your business, even if it feels like asking for referrals is working for you. And here’s why. When this controversy came up inside the women making money Facebook group, we saw that there were basically two camps on referrals, those in favor and those against. Who was in favor?

Women who I know have made a boatload of money in sales, multi-level marketing, outside sales, selling ads or a franchise. Every woman in sales who was in favor of asking for referrals is a woman I know personally who is making high income.


These ladies who were gung ho on asking for referrals wrote things such as I love asking for referrals. Another wrote, asking for referrals helps them think about who else may benefit from what I offer. A third wrote, it depends on how you ask you got to be smart about it. Who was against asking for referrals?

Women who saw that when they were asking for referrals, they were doing so because they knew there was a problem in their business that they weren’t taking the time to correct. One woman also in sales agreed that asking for referrals was a bad idea. If you’re not getting them, she wrote, you should take a look at why. She wrote that when her business wasn’t growing, meaning when she wasn’t getting word of mouth business, taking a hard look at why helped her. She evaluated how she was showing up for the clients, what her mindset was, how she was treating them, etc. And when she made changes, she started getting referrals.

Another woman wrote that happy clients will give you referrals, her sense of things was that if you have happy clients, you never have to ask, you will never have to ask for a referral if you’re just delivering on what you promise they’ll just come anyway.

So how do we reconcile these two seemingly opposing viewpoints? This is a nice time for a little lesson in high profit thinking. When you are doing anything in your business, take a look at the reason you are doing it. Are you doing it for yourself? Or are you doing it in service of other people, your customers and clients?

One time I spoke with a business owner who was struggling, it was a hedge fund manager, he had created an algorithm that he was using to trade certain financial instruments, and it was going pretty well. He was earning profits in his own account and he attracted a handful of clients who had given him money to trade doing the same strategy.

And the business was getting big enough that he was no longer able to operate in an exempt capacity any longer, he was going to have to register with the federal government to continue to trade for clients, because he had outgrown the confines of his exemption from registration. So he told all of his existing clients, “I’m going to go ahead and register. But you have to go out and find additional clients for me to cover the extra costs of registration.”

This is an example of a totally self-serving reason to ask for referrals, and guess what? I’m sure it won’t surprise you to hear that this did not work at all. His existing clients did not enlist themselves in the effort of going out and doing this hedge fund managers marketing and sales work for him. This may seem like a far-fetched example.

But if you look closely at other businesses that routinely ask for referrals, you will probably find that this is the operating model, many of them are operating in when they’re asking for referrals, especially when it’s not working terribly well. What’s going on beneath the surface in those situations is that the folks who are asking for referrals are on some level, taking the work of attracting clients and converting them into customers and foisting that work off onto their existing clients. And that may work for some businesses; but even when it’s working, people can feel it when you are doing it.

They also feel when you’re doing the opposite. It’s possible to use referrals effectively when you’re asking for referrals in a manner that serves the customer rather than yourself. For example, let’s say you run a bakery, if you have made an amazing wedding cake, and you got paid for making the cake, but the wedding is canceled the morning of the wedding, you could ask every customer who walks into the bakery, “Hey, do you know anyone who can use a wedding cake because this one’s available? And if somebody needs one at the last minute, here it is.”

This kind of request for referral is other serving. You’re not asking for people to help you do your work. You are asking for people to be a joyful ambassador for the creation of a wondrous event. We weren’t expecting to have this beautiful cake today at our ordinary family barbecue, or whatever it is we’re doing today but it was available because our friend told us about it. So we went down to the bakery and picked it up and here it is and it is amazing. That’s an example of asking for a referral when it would serve somebody else.

Another example of asking for a referral from a place of service is if you typically don’t have open capacity to accept new clients.


And suddenly a spot opens up, you might want to let your existing clients know that there’s unexpected space in my program and if you know anyone who would like to fill it, it’s available. This is a service to your existing clients, because they may have friends who want to work with you. But they were thinking that you didn’t have room for them to work with you.

So what I would like to you to glean from this little lesson in high profit thinking is that every action you take is flavored by the reason that motivates you to take the action. If the reason is purely self-serving, as in the example of that hedge fund manager I just told you about. People will feel that if you ask for referrals from a self-serving place, maybe people will comply with your request, and maybe they won’t, but either way, that doesn’t mean they will feel good about it. People tend to feel good about things that we do for their benefit; people tend not to feel good about things that we do for our own benefit.

So that’s my thought about referrals. If you are asking for them, check your motivation. Take a look at why you’re asking. If it’s because you want your client to do your work for you, they’re going to feel that and it’s not going to feel good, even if you are getting referrals as a result of asking.

But here’s the other thing. I’ve never known anyone who had a high profit presentation working in their business, who felt like asking for referrals was a good idea or a remotely necessary idea. Why? Because when you have a faucet that literally delivers money into your checking account, you wouldn’t even think to ask, you already have that part of your business taken care of you don’t need somebody else, particularly your clients to do it for you. And when you have this, then what happens?

When you show up as the business owner who has already taken care of that kind of thing, that attitude of taking care of everything tends to bleed across all areas of your business. If you don’t need for your clients to help you find more clients, if you have that covered on your own, you’re probably doing that in every other area of your business as well. You are doing the work to make sure your clients are having an amazing experience in every interaction they have with you and your business. And then guess what happens?

People just refer clients to you, they fall all over themselves to refer clients to you, and your existing clients become ambassadors to your business because you are taking such good care of them.

So another sign that you need a high profit presentation is that you find yourself relying on referrals. You’re asking for referrals, not to serve your clients and their friends and their acquaintances, but rather to serve yourself because you haven’t gotten your marketing figured out yet.

A third sign that you need a high profit presentation is that you’re giving a lot of money to Mark Zuckerberg in the form of Facebook ads. If that works for you, it’s just like referrals rock on. If it works for you, and you want to keep advertising go forth and prosper. God bless you. But here’s something to think about. Does Renee brown spend money on Facebook ads? I don’t think so. A single viral TED Talk she did insured, she would never have to spend a penny on advertising ever again for the rest of her life. That is another benefit of a high profit presentation. You never have to pay for advertising again, if you don’t want to.

A fourth sign that you need a high profit presentation is bargain shoppers, the folks who come to you are bulking about your prices, even though they are not as high as the prices your competitors charge. Why does this happen? If you have a low profit presentation, that doesn’t really convey the high value of working with you, when people hear the price it’s going to sound too high. They’re going to want a discount, and they’re going to ask for one.

The fifth sign that we’ll discuss today that you need a high profit presentation is that you are making a lot of presentations but you are getting maybe instead of money. I can’t tell you how many times I saw this in the hedge fund industry, you would see a struggling hedge fund manager on an endless roadshow around the world. Planes trains and automobiles meeting after meeting after meeting, during which he would trot out the same old tired slide deck and give the same old presentation thinking to himself, ‘Sales is a numbers game, sales is a numbers game.


I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again, sales is not a numbers game. If you offer a clear and compelling happily ever after to 100 people most or all of them are going to buy, that’s just the way it is. Humans want to happily ever after so much, that in the absence of a real one, they will by a poor approximation. So if you’re giving a presentation for a quality product or service over and over and over again, and you’re walking out of there with anything other than money, what is happening is you have a low profit presentation, it’s bad bait. And the most important thing you can do is stop fishing with bad bait, take a pause, create a high profit presentation, and then resume fishing with effective bait.

So those are the five signs for today any way that you need a high profit presentation, let’s recap. The first is that your business feels unreliable. For example, you’re carrying credit card debt that you’re not paying off, even when you have the cash to pay it off, because you’re not certain where your next customer is coming from.

The second sign is that you’re relying on referrals, if referrals work for you, and this isn’t a problem for you, terrific. But even if referrals are working for you what works so much better is a high profit presentation that encourages people to send you referrals without you having to ask.

The third sign is that you’re giving a lot of money to Mark Zuckerberg, and other advertising expenses that you would rather keep for yourself.

The fourth sign is that you’re getting a lot of bargain shoppers, people who want what you do, but who aren’t willing to pay what they would pay to one of your colleagues or competitors. They want to discount from you.


The fifth sign you need a high profit presentation is that your current presentation is not working. You leave your meetings and what you get over and over again is maybe instead of money. If this is you if you have any of these things going on in your business and you want to learn the difference between a low profit presentation and a high profit presentation, please join me for the next episode we’re going to discuss some of the key differences. So please stay tuned for that and thank you so much for being here today.