When organizing a conference, seminar or other educational event there are two very important things to take into account. Those two things are the attendees and what they want to learn, and the speaker and whether they can deliver that information and knowledge to them. Ok, so it looks more like four things.
Picking a topic for your seminar or conference can be quite easy, especially if you’re guided by current trends and what interests a particular target group at this moment. The hard part is finding the speaker. You have to choose someone with a know-how and influence in that particular industry. Someone who inspires trust in attendees and who gives excellent presentations. In the end it’s the speaker who sells the event in many ocassions. Another factor that you might be guided by when inviting speakers or lecturers is, unsurprisingly, their fee. It’s somehow an unwritten rule not to discuss that, but let’s face it, it’s extremely important, especially if you’re working with tight budgets.
So, where do you start looking for the right speaker? Word of mouth? Yes, do that, consult with people. But you can also search online directories, agencies and companies to get a feel of what to expect.
The National Speakers Association
If you’re going to look for a speaker, go straight to the NSA’s website. This is the national community gathering professional speakers and providing resources for advancing in the profession. You can look for speakers according to state and regional chapters, which can ease the process of finding a speaker within a close proximity thus reducing some travel costs in your budget.
BrightSight Group is another place to find the right person for your attendees. Here the categories of choice include Design, Branding, Creativity, Innovation, Politics, Psychology, Religion and others.
Keynote Speakers have been in the industry for almost 30 years and have a rich selection available. Just name your field of interest and they’ll have a speaker for you. What their website also states is that if you’re looking for someone specific who accepts speaking engagements, you can give Keynote Speakers a ring and get their assistance in booking the speaker you want.
Speaker Match is another great place to look for the right person. They work with emerging professional speakers and other experts who are eager to share their thoughts and knowledge. Speaker Match can connect you to a person in about every industry there is out there. Best of all, they have extensive information about most of their speakers and the work that they do, so rest assured you can get a very good idea of the person.
One more place to find a successful individual with a lot to say and a way to inspire. Executive Speakers promise to work within your budget and find the right person for you. They will also take care of all the paperwork, contracts and other documentation.
Here you can look up speakers in the US and Canada, presenting lectures in a variety of topics including Economy, Sales, Motivational, Innovation and others. You can count on Speakers Platform to prepare a list of candidates matching your criteria.
Keppler is one of the best places to contact when looking for a high-end inspiring speaker. They support a variety of topics and industries and it’s an absolute must that you take a look at their website.
All American Speakers
All American Speakers is a fast growing network of popular faces. They have some great comedians, humorists, TV hosts and celebrities in their list. Alongside the entertainment industry professionals, you can find journalists, political speakers and others.
MCP Speakers will take care of you and your event by reviewing your ideas and presenting you with the most suitable options for the right speaker. They take a strategic approach in their work and will be there to support you the whole time, taking care of logistics and other issues.
Washington Speakers Bureau
Great resource on finding some of the most influential speakers in a variety of industries. Make sure to check out their Speeches previews to get a taste of each speaker’s individual style of work.
Lastly, don’t forget that there are keynote speakers that have personal websites rather than agency listings, so you might want to do your own research on that topic.
Where do you start looking for guest speakers and who are the ones that made an impression to your event’s attendees? Share your experience in the comments section below!
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