How do I identify and recruit my speakers?

12 September 2018 | Temps de lecture : 6 min.
Un homme tient un micro et parle devant une assemblée

Organizing an event, whether a conference, a seminar manager or a team building, involves setting up a certain number of parameters. Some tasks are particularly enjoyable—we all love choosing the caterer for example—and others are a little more difficult. In particular, choosing the speakers who will talk during your event is not the easiest thing to do. At Eventdrive, we know that and that’s why we have decided to share our little secrets with you to identify and recruit the best speakers, who will make your conferences unforgettable.

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Why is it so important to have a good speaker?

When organizing an event, it is very likely that conferences will be the main element. But unfortunately, conferences often have a bad reputation, because they are thought to be boring and time-consuming. And yet, they are particularly useful, both for the company that organizes it and for the people who attend (yes, we promise you!). On the one hand, the organization of a conference allows the company to promote a new product or service recently developed or to train its employees on the use of a new tool. And on the other hand, as you have understood, the brave people who go there can learn new skills. You can tell me, so far, nothing new and it all seems very boring. This is where the need to choose a good speaker comes in! Indeed, the objective is to capture the audience’s attention, make them want to know more and teach them something new. All this is possible if the speaker knows what he is talking about and, above all, how to say it.

Choosing my speaker: how to choose the good one?

It is not always easy to determine which speaker will best suit your event. To support your approach, a few criteria should still be given priority. This may seem obvious, but first, you need to determine the purpose of your event. From there, you will be able to identify the most appropriate stakeholder more easily. In the same way, do not forget to qualify your audience, this will allow your speaker to adapt his or her speech. For example, it would be a shame to hire a math expert for a novice audience that does not know the scientific language. On a more practical level, also estimate the cost of your conference. While it is true that inviting Bill Gates to your event as a speaker will encourage your audience to come (perhaps a little too much), his hourly rate may be a little higher than the budget you have set for it. Finally, determine the format of your conference beforehand. Some speakers prefer to have presentations that last several hours—we are not necessarily very fond of them—, others prefer to follow the trend of the TED talks with shorter presentations. In short, it is essential that your choice is in agreement with the speaker you will select.

Once you have planned your conference, you can start looking for the speakers who could make your meeting a must-attend event. To achieve this, the person you choose must have some essential qualities. Here is a sample carefully selected by Eventdrive.

5 qualities that your speakers must absolutely have

The goal is not for your speaker to talk nonsense at his conference, but for him to be able to express himself in a fluid and clear way. There is nothing worse than hearing someone who stumbles on all the sentences or speaks too fast by eating half the words.

In addition to being able to talk in a clear way, your speaker must also be able to capture the attention of his audience. Goodbye monotonous monologues, hello rhythmic speeches! The audience should enjoy your speaker’s words and look forward to what happens next.

The speaker must be part of the image of the event, but he must not forget his personal touch! Choose a personality who will be able to shake up conventions, reconsider what has been achieved and spice up his speech. A good speaker will be able to communicate his ideas by creating emotion, but also in a diversified way of expressing himself.

What is required of a speaker is that he shares his knowledge in workshops or conferences. But he is also expected to have a good ability to debate. Interactivity is the key to engaging listeners, but you have to be able to keep calm in all circumstances. We’ve all already seen a spectator get angry because his opinion was not the one presented. A good speaker will be able to bounce back and accept everyone’s ideas.

Well, that quality may be a little secondary, but it’s always nice to listen to someone who takes responsibility for his ideas, both in his speech and his look!

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How to convince them?

That’s it, thanks to our little guide, you have finally chosen the perfect speakers who will make your event a unique moment. However, there is still one small step left before setting up your conference: convincing them to attend. To do it, it’s easy: present your assets! Are you organizing an event for a company that breathes vitality, is growing and makes its employees happy? Say it! Make a list of all the advantages associated with this intervention: new visibility, increased notoriety, meetings with other professionals… And detail it with your targets. Finally, be prepared to compromise. Offer them free access to the spa at the hotel where the event will take place in exchange for an extra half an hour of debate or keep a front row seat for them to settle their families. But be careful, if your speaker comes from the medical profession, compliance is much stricter: no benefits in kind allowed! But the transmission of knowledge to his peers and the enhancement of his expertise should be enough to convince him.

As you have understood, choosing a good speaker is essential to the success of your event. If we had to summarize the operation in a few words, here is what we should remember: determine the format of your conference, the ins and outs of it. Select your speaker by judging his skills, but also his style (all details are important). Finally, highlight your best assets and convince him that attending your conference will be the best decision of his life. Once everything is done, all you have to set up everything… Nothing very complicated for the excellent event planner you are… 😉

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