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How to Find and Attract the Perfect Key Speaker

Having a dynamic keynote speaker can add value and breathe life into your event. These speakers can promote engagement, education, understanding, team building, and much more. While the benefits of hiring a key speaker at your event are very straightforward, the process of finding these speakers can be challenging, especially if you don’t know where to start.

Luckily, this post serves to assist you not only in finding the perfect speaker for your event but in attracting them to you as well!

Know Your Needs

The first step to finding the right key speaker is to first identify what you need from them. When you begin planning your conference, the initial step is determining what the event’s goals are. The process for finding a key speaker is no different. Determine if your event serves to drive sales, promote a product or service, or boost morale and build company relationships. Then, you’re ready to move onto the next step.

Search for Speakers In-line With Your Industry or Goal

Once you’ve determined your needs, you’ll simply need to use a quick keyword search to find correlating speakers. For example, if your company needs a speaker to provide team-building and morale enhancement, by utilizing the keywords “team-building” and “keynote speaker” on search-dominate sites like Google or Slideshare, you’re sure to find several applicable results. Alternatively, if your company is in the healthcare field, utilizing the tools above with keywords such as “healthcare” “keynote speaker” will also return several results.

Consider Lesser-known Speakers

Does someone at your company know a burgeoning public speaker? Do you? If you analyze their work and find they’d be a good fit for your event, the results can still be successful even if the speaker is new to your audience. Many lesser-known public speakers list their services and expertise on networking sites like LinkedIn, making it exceptionally easy to review their shared presentations, read testimonials, and connect with them yourself.

Consider a Celebrity

There are also several agencies that connect events and conferences with high-profile or celebrity speakers. These agencies include the American Program Bureau, Keppler Speakers, and the Celebrity Speakers Bureau. Not only are these agencies the gatekeepers to many high-profile speakers, but they can also help to match you with the person who best suits the needs of your event. If your event needs a well-known speaker or celebrity to really draw in a crowd, consider working with one of these agencies in order to achieve that goal.


So, now that we know where and how to find speakers, how do we attract and entice them to accept an invitation to speak at our event? A major key to surmounting this challenge is flexibility.

If your event is still in its planning stages and your preferred speaker has expressed the desire to work with you—great! The key to moving forward is flexibility in the event date and times the speaker needs to appear. If you would rather the main speaker hold their event in the evening, but the speaker is only available in the early afternoon, it may be best to work the schedule around them or else find another keynote speaker.  

Being flexible when working with speakers, whether high-profile or debut, can leave a lasting impression and open new opportunities in the future due to your flexible and easy-to-work-with reputation.

Be a Fierce Competitor

In addition to flexibility, it is important to be a strong competitor. Many key speakers stay booked for months at a time, so their time is limited and valuable. Many companies outside of yours have likely also requested to work with this person, so, how do you stand out as a competitor to attract them to speak at your event?

Having a set location, flexible date, foolproof conference plan, and passion for your industry will demonstrate that your company is organized, flexible, full of passion, and sharp. Offering great audience engagement tools can be enticing, too. If the speaker knows that the audience will be attentive and interested in interacting with them, that’s sure to sharpen their interest.

A positive impression will speak for you, and work to set you apart from other companies in your industry. Additionally, a reputation as a fierce competitor will help to achieve your goal in landing the perfect keynote speaker who equally mirrors these traits and can add real value to your event.

Finding and attracting the perfect keynote speaker can be a challenge but with the above tips, your company and event is sure to find, connect with, and entice many prospective speakers to accept your invitation.

For more information and conference planning tips, consult one of our meeting specialists. We’re ready to help you plan a dynamic and successful event!

Audience Response for Conferences

Posted by Mark Fite

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