Conference News April 2018 - Page 59

59 Speakers Six ways to get the most out of your keynote: 1. Match a speaker to the meeting Fully understand the objectives of the event and then match the speaker to these. Consider what delegates will want to gain from the content of your conference, so the speech must offer lasting value to the audience. 2. How long will your speaker be on stage? Even the most interesting of keynotes should stick to a time limit. The attention span of an audience will only last so long, so ensure the main speech lasts for no more than 45 minutes and build in a 15-minute Q&A session. 3. Can your speaker do more? Are you extracting maximum value from the speaker? Aside from the main speaking, could they join you for a lunch with key members of the company to explore ideas addressed in the keynote? Are they willing to do a book signing or tour the exhibition area, to leave a lasting memory? 4. Shout about your speaker in the lead up to the event The build-up to the event is a critical aspect in both driving expectations and attendance. Use the speaker’s expertise to tease out content and ensure the event goals are achieved. 5. Is everyone prepared? The conference organiser must make sure that the environment is right for the speaker to deliver the messages. Make sure that all logistics run as smooth as possible, that staging and technology are working and the speaker has been fully briefed. 6. After the event Make use of your keynote’s central messages in your follow up. Keep the content fresh in people’s minds and you will achieve a long-term impact that motivates and inspires your delegates well after the event. fter that first question of purpose is settled, we talk practicalities about the event itself, demographics of the audience, the full picture of what the client has planned for the speaker to do to extract maximum value. For example, one of our clients holds a series of events for students where the key messages they are trying to deliver is based on the national curriculum. They look for interesting suggestions: who can appeal to both students as well as teachers – two very diverse demographics, which have clear differences in agendas. Finally we talk money, the ideal budget for the client and whether there is any flexibility in this. Iterative process Six to eight speakers are suggested based on the brief and then it’s an iterative process, understanding which speakers the client likes or otherwise until we have reached a preferred option. We ensure we have full clarity of requirements with additional activities alongside the speech required, this is bought together to form the contract. About two weeks before the event, a briefing call is held with the speaker where the details both about the event and their session are thoroughly discussed and agreed. Finally, on the day itself the speaker should arrive early to get a feel for the atmosphere in the room. Then it is a matter of delivering an amazing experience that leaves the delegates with lasting memories and knowledge. Sourcing a speaker When sourcing an event speaker, the first question to ask clients is the purpose and goal of the event and then, honing in on the speaker, what does the client want their delegates to feel and to learn. Agency Speakers Corner takes us through the full process