7 Steps for Speaker Experience and Event Success
There are a tremendous number of moving targets when planning your event and hiring a professional speaker, so preparedness is key. Taking the event one step at a time, asking the key questions and creating a plan of action will help you to achieve an event that is organized and energized with a keynote speaker that will align with your organization’s goals and create a memorable affair.
Step 1: DEFINING KEY OBJECTIVES
Firstly, you must define your event’s key objectives. What do you want your audience to take away from the event and how can the speaker impact the overall experience of the event?
- What is the conference theme?
- Where is the location?
- What is the budget?
- Is this an annual event? If so, what has (and has not) worked in the past?
- What are your desired takeaways?
- Are you looking for a speaker to draw an audience or address specific content?
- Who were the previous speakers?
- Will there be entertainment?
Step 2: DEVELOPING YOUR TARGET AUDIENCE
Secondly, you will develop your target audience. Consider the demographic of the audience you are aiming to reach, the amount of people in attendance and how exactly you are able to identify a speaker who is able to maximize the experience for the specific audience you’ve identified.
- What is the audience demographic?
- How many attendees are expected?
- Will spouses be present?
- Will you be using visuals for the audience?
- What does the audience want?
Step 3: MANAGING THE BOOKING PROCESS
Thirdly, you need to ensure you are properly managing the booking process and keeping record of each step. You will need to complete and present a firm offer to the desired speaker and ensure that payments are set up correctly. After this, you will sign the contract and process your invoices.
- Complete, sign and present a firm offer to your desired speaker.
- Identify who will be the signatory of the contract and connect your speaker agency with your accounting department to set up payment.
- Finalize and sign the contract and process your invoices.
Step 4: MARKETING INITIATIVE
Fourthly, it is critical that you are taking a marketing initiative. You will need to ensure your photos are of high resolution, information is current, and you are utilizing social media platforms to promote your event and maximize your speaker’s experience.
- Provide high resolution photos for printing.
- Provide updated biography for content marketing.
- How can you engage your social media platforms? Develop hashtags, tagging names, and media user handles.
Step 5: PLANNING THE SPEAKER EXPERIENCE
Fifth, you must make sure that the comfortability and itinerary of your speaker is prioritized. You should plan a conference call between you and the speaker and ensure that the logistics of their travel to your event are confirmed with all parties involved.
- Plan a conference call between you and the speaker to define objectives and establish common goals
- Book and confirm all travel and hotel logistics using our internal database and resources
- Provide full itineraries to client and speaker that include event details and expectations, travel information, emergency contact numbers and POC
- Provide an audience survey to be completed about the speaker
Step 6: EXECUTING THE EVENT
Sixth, you will execute your event! We will make sure there are coordinators available for any last-minute questions or changes to the schedule. Following the event, you must ask your audience for feedback and reflect on the event.
- Your WWSG point of contact will always be on call in case of delays, emergencies, or last-minute questions.
- How did it go? Did it go smoothly? Ask your audience for their thoughts by using a speaker survey.
Step 7: THINKING FORWARD
Lastly, you should reflect on the event and discuss what you should plan next. What aspects of this event were successful and how can you build off of it?
- What can we do to make your event follow-up successful?
- When is your next company event?
What Happens After Identifying Your Budget?
When hiring a speaker remember to take into consideration any additional expenses that may be incurred such as flights, hotel, ground transportation, and miscellaneous expenses. Once your budget is determined, you can move forward with brainstorming speaker options with your professional speaker agency, since they are the experts who can identify speakers that align with your event’s parameters, budget, demographics, and target audience.
Once you’ve chosen a speaker and you would like to extend an invitation, the booking process begins. You will be sent a firm offer to complete and sign, which makes the offer binding. If the speaker declines, the bureau will either send another list of ideas or move on to speaker option number two until a speaker has been confirmed.
Once confirmed, formal agreements will be sent along with invoices to confirm the engagement details and the logistics (speaker fee, travel expenses, logistics, venue, date, speech topic, point of contact, etc.). After the agreement is signed and returned, you will be provided with the speaker’s approved high-resolution photo and biography for your marketing initiatives. If your event has any specific social media initiatives, sharing that with your speaker agency will help increase exposure. It is incredibly helpful and beneficial to schedule a pre-conference call with the speaker to define objectives and establish common goals. This call allows you to share with the speaker the key points and takeaways you would like them to include in the presentation. The speaker agency’s event coordinator in addition to coordinating this call, will confirm all travel logistics and create a full itinerary prior to the event. This itinerary is imperative to ensuring seamless travel for the speaker to your event.
Your speaker agency partner is available 24/7 throughout the day of the event in case of any last-minute problems or changes. Following the event, feedback is incredibly valuable; including the audience’s reaction, how the speaker was received and how the speaker agency impacted your overall event experience. Forging a long-term partnership built on trust and collaboration can be a beneficial asset for your future events.
At Worldwide Speakers Group (WWSG), we are dedicated to providing an unparalleled level of service in the global lecture industry and giving an intimate and consultative support service to organizations for booking speakers at their events. As a trusted partner to elite professional speakers, we deliver distinctive performance and innovative solutions in the global lecture and speaker industry by artfully connecting speakers to corporate, trade, education, and commercial customers worldwide. Take a look inside our process to learn how we can be your partner in planning and creating a successful event.