Speaker Events: How To Host The Perfect Event With Celebrity Speakers
Hosting Successful Speaker Events Made Easy with Celebrity Speakers Bureau:
So you’ve heard all about how great celebrity speakers are for events. It’s true—when you hire a celebrity speaker, you make an investment that pays dividends in improving employee/attendee morale and provides lifelong memories for those in attendance. You cannot truly understand the impact of celebrity speaker events until you host your own!
It sounds great in theory, but if you’ve never hired a celebrity speaker or put on speaker events before, you probably aren’t sure exactly how to use the celebrity and, considering their stature, you want to do it right. We don’t blame you! When you make a commitment like this, you need to do it right. Part of our job is to guide you through the process of selecting the right speaker for the right event.
So, let’s break down the process and determine the best way for you to utilize a celebrity speaker:
Assess Your Event Needs:
Before we do anything, we need to establish some groundwork. First, let’s speaker budget. A budget is the single most important ingredient needed to create the framework of your event. After all, you need to be able to afford all the things you want. This is a hard number and it will determine many things, including selecting your celebrity speaker and what all they are willing to do on site for your speaker fee.
We also need to know what your outcome goals are. A political speaker is very different from a sports speaker, who is different from a celebrity chef. The possibilities are endless, but what we want to do is make them finite. The idea is to narrow down according to what best suits your needs in regards to speaker topics and messaging. It’s basic, but what we need to know is why you’re putting on a speaker event. What do you hope to achieve through booking a celebrity speaker?
Other details include the theme or style of the event. Is this an interactive experience, or a listening experience? What sort of location are you looking into? An arena, a convention center, a hotel, a sports field… this matters not just for your budget, but also as far as what kind of speaker does well in a particular environment. Even more, the venue may dictate the size of your event, and the size certainly changes the scope of your event, which matters when it comes to achieving your goals.
Different Event Styles:
All speaker events are unique in their own way. We want to make sure the style and the goals match up with both the choice of celebrity speaker and the budget. How you use your celebrity matters, of course, and here’s where we really get into the thick of good execution.
Do you want to have a traditional, standup keynote speaker? These are very popular and quite effective. Events of this kind reach a broad range of people and have a more general interest direction. Motivational events often go this route with great success.
Panel talks are great for bringing in lots of experts to address one broad topic. You can do this if you want to dissect a concept, and this is great not just for a specialized group for whom the topic might directly resonate, but also for a larger group who may have general interest.
One of the most popular event aspects is a Q&A session, because it’s at this point the audience gets their specific needs met. There are a few ways to handle Q&As. A smaller, more intimate event allows an audience Q&A at the end of a speaker’s keynote. If you choose to do this, it’s important to have several mics on hand and people to run them around to audience members. Some events are strictly sitdown Q&A style, and moderated by an expert. This tactic allows you and moderator to tailor the conversation so the talk is most useful to the audience.
For an event with large audiences of hundreds and thousands, an audience Q&A is most likely out of the question from a logistics standpoint. In lieu of audience members asking questions live, you can ask your attendees to submit their questions for the speaker beforehand. You can then pick the best ones to ask the celebrity speaker on event day! All this said, you don’t have to do a Q&A—TED Talks don’t use this platform and are massively successful, for example.
If you want to have more engagement with your celebrity speaker, a VIP meet and greet is an excellent way to integrate interaction with your audience. These meet and greets take full advantage of star power and are more about a personalized moment with the speaker. Cooking events, book signings, photo ops, or a mix and mingle cocktail event are tried and true fun ideas. Parties like fundraisers are excellent for musicians, comedians, or celebrity chef speakers.
So, the obvious question here is what, exactly, do you want your speaker to do? They can speak, engage in a panel, do a Q&A, or engage with your audience in a meet and greet format. It’s important to know exactly what you want from them, though, so this can be clearly articulated in the speaker contract.
Combining Event Elements For Success:
So you have your budget, your celebrity speaker, and the style of your event all mapped out. Great! Now, you have to put it together. Every production has an incredible quantity of details. You are responsible for them all. Don’t panic! We’ve done this for years, so check out this preview of some things you’ll need to be accountable for.
First, your celebrity speaker. They will need to travel to your event. Even if they’re local, you are likely responsible for getting them to the venue and then home again. You may need to travel some of their handlers to the event, too. That could mean airfare, train tickets, car rentals, or car services. Maybe it’s just reimbursement, it depends on the speaker. Don’t forget to feed and hydrate your speaker! They may also have some special requests, so be sure to inquire about their needs.
Also, more than likely, you’re going to rent out a venue. What will you require here? Does it have a speaker system? Mics? A projection system? What’s the electrical situation like? There will be a person on staff who knows all the answers to your questions, so this isn’t as dire as it may seem, but you do need to know the questions to ask in order to get the answers, and then, of course, plan accordingly. Venues tend to be great resources, don’t be afraid to ask them anything from where to rent a generator to a catering recommendation. You may even get a discount this way, too!
Make sure you account for any cross-promotions your celebrity may require and see if there are any promotional conflicts. Do not rent a Ford for a celebrity who has an endorsement deal with Mercedes, for example.
Are you catering? Are you hiring a celebrity to cook? You’re going to be the one who has to handle the ingredients, the platters, utensils, napkins, and glasses. Hopefully the venue has some of this, too. Tables, chairs, lighting, and the ability to pick up and drop off all these items are all part of your job. Some places will deliver for a fee, or you can hire an assistant and a truck to get it all on your own.
And, don’t forget, you have to undo your speaker events just like you need to put it together. Don’t leave your celebrity speaker stranded at an airport amid a swarm of paparazzi because you forget to book a return car service!
Ready to host your own speaker events? Give us a call! Let’s get you set up with an incredible celebrity speaker today.