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An event is nothing without speakers that can draw more attendees in and deliver valuable and engaging content to your audience. A motivational speaker is always a great choice, as they are professionals that make a living from walking into a room and inspiring action. Someone likeable, personable and confident is automatically engaging and can lead to a successful event that people will want to return to should you decide to host another one.

With social media’s rise, there is an abundance of motivational speakers to choose from, so how do you navigate this landscape to find the best fit for your event? After all, anyone can sell themselves well online, but you need to be sure that they can engage your specific audience and bring something different to the rest of your schedule. This is our guide on how to book a motivational speaker for your event.

Booking Through a Speakers Bureau

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A bureau is great if you are looking to streamline the process of recruiting a speaker for your event. You can tell your agent the topic you would like spoken about, your ideal budget and when the event is and they will come back to you with a selection of options that could be a good match. This can save you hours of trawling through Google or social media to find someone. If your agent does a good job, not only will you have a speaker you can book, but you can use that agent again for the next events you are planning.

Despite this, you should still do your own research. If an agent presents you with 3 options for example, visit their personal websites and try to find clips of them giving a longer talk. Quotes are easy to use to make yourself look good, but you will know if they are engaging by watching them for a longer time. This is the best way to judge if they will keep your audience interested.

Organise a meeting or call with your speaker

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Research will help you narrow down your options, but it is always best to personally meet or speak to the person you are considering before you book them. Sometimes someone can give off a very different energy in person to the persona they have crafted online. It gives you the opportunity to ask more about their background and why they would be a good fit for your event. This can also give you a better idea of whether they feel connected to your event or if they are just looking for their next paid gig.

Discuss event details

Professional speakers do this for a living. You cannot automatically assume they are free for your event, especially if you are only giving them a short amount of notice. It is best to discuss the details in advance to make sure they can fulfil their responsibilities, but also so they have a better idea of the event’s programme.

Giving them information about speakers you already have booked can help them to tailor their content so that it is relevant to other events as well. They may also be able to offer additional services such as meet and greets or workshops at other times during the event. This can help broaden your schedule and offer your audience multiple ways to connect with the speaker.

Researching Potential Speakers

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Booking him for your event can be a powerful and rewarding experience. It is important to do your research to make sure the speaker will be a fit for your aims and goals. Considerations such as the size of your audience, the duration of their presentation and how much time they will need for preparation are all important points to consider when researching potential speakers.

Reading reviews from past seminars or talks can also provide insight into other people’s experiences and can help you determine a potential speaker’s expertise in their chosen topic. Many of them have name recognition, so ask yourself if you would feel comfortable having that particular person represent your organization or event.

When researching them, try to find topics they frequently speak on so you have an idea of what they may be able to bring to the table on a given subject matter. You may also want to take into consideration their educational background, awards or accomplishments that make them an ideal candidate for the event.

It is also wise to speak with industry colleagues about their experiences with various experts for additional suggestions and advice before booking one for your event.

Key considerations

Budget

First and foremost, you need to hire someone that you can afford. While we would all love a celebrity billing to increase ticket sales, these come with a hefty price tag. Most professional speakers charge a premium, so you will have to consider where you can afford their fee. For example, you may have spent more on a speaker that has top billing and have a smaller budget left for the rest of the event.

Theme of event

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Picking a theme helps audiences to understand the advantages of attending better. Hosting 7 different talks on widely different topics is going to leave potential attendees confused about what they can expect to learn and gain from your event. Once you have a theme, ensure all of your talks and activities are relevant to this.

Audience size & demographics

Physical venues have limitations on capacity and you need to know this in advance to know how many tickets you can sell. Equally, you need to decide who you want to come to your event. A younger demographic may not respond well to more traditional speakers.

Length of talk

Each speaker will want to know how long they have to deliver their message. But you also need to bear in mind the attention span of your audience and how long you can reasonably expect people to remain engaged with a single speaker.

Identify technical requirements

Always know what is available at your venue before you book speakers. They will need to know what technology they have available to them to help illustrate their points and make their talk more engaging.