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Maximising Value From Your Keynote Speaker

By Suzie | 8 June 2015 |

Successful Speakers has been providing guest speakers for important events and conferences for almost a decade. We’ve seen hundreds of professional keynote speakers in person. All are great presenters who have exceptional experiences and successes in their chosen field and topic, but some have an amazing capacity to really connect with their audience.

This connection is made possible by the client taking the time to properly brief our bureau and in turn the speaker. This allows the the speaker to personalise and tailor their presentation to make the audience feel that it was specifically prepared just for them.

Here are a few tips we think you’ll find useful.

  1. Provide our bureau with sufficient background information so we can help you choose the right speaker in the first place. Apart from the mechanics of time, date, venue, audience etc., help us understand things like your theme. Most importantly, answer the question “What does your audience currently think and feel about this topic and what do you want them to walk away thinking and feeling?” In other words, what changes in attitudes and actions would you like to see emanating from this presentation?

This information is vital in allowing us to recommend the most appropriate and effective male or female guest speakers for the event.

  1. Help us and the chosen speaker to understand the context in which their presentation is being made. For example what are the strategic priorities of your organisation? This will allow the professional keynote speakers to frame their speech to make the chosen topic not only relevant to the audience but also convey it in a way that demonstrates the outcomes you require to impact the bigger picture.
  2. Be clear about the speaker’s purpose. Are they there to educate, inform, inspire or entertain? Then be mindful of when you slot them. For example, if it’s an after dinner speech, don’t expect your audience to react positively to motivational keynote speakers who are there to educate. Put the educators on early in the day and have entertaining speakers for after dinner.
  3. Provide the speaker with opportunities to personalise their speech. Give them some anecdotes about individuals in the audience, their passions, responsibilities and peculiarities. Great professional keynote speakers can deftly weave these insights into their presentations making the audience feel special, that this is not just some ‘off the shelf’ message, but one prepared just for them.
  4. Prepare and deliver a great introduction for the speaker. Don’t just read their bio. Most motivational keynote speakers find it hard to have to blow their own trumpet and audiences often dislike it when they ‘talk themselves up.’ Prepare a crafted introduction which positions the speaker’s expertise and highlights their experiences. Leave the audience salivating to hear what they have to say. Build the anticipation by laying the foundations of the speaker’s credibility and worth so the audience feels special at being able to hear their experiences and advice.
  5. Be thorough in your provision and pre checking of all the AV needs. Ensure all the technology works perfectly before the event starts and again immediately before their speech. Motivational keynote speakers or celebrity speakers may be the world’s best in their chosen topic, but when the equipment doesn’t work on cue the audience will reduce their respect for the speaker’s value and will not usually blame the technician. The best speakers in the world all like to rehearse in the room with all the technology. Make room for this on the agenda. Schedule it at the beginning of the day or immediately following a lunch or coffee break when they can have a quick dress rehearsal with all the technology but devoid of onlookers.


If you follow these guidelines, we guarantee you will significantly enhance the value you extract from your speakers and add to the success of your event.

Good Luck!

Suzie Isak
Managing Director
June 2015