How to Qualify a Keynote Speaker


Choosing and hiring keynote speakers is a task cloaked in mystery. As a result, most managers draw back from it or worse consider it as insignificant. In both corporate and social world, we have seen the intense impact of keynote speeches as many have teamed up with an array of speakers over the years. To choose one correctly, it is essential to gain adequate understanding on the role of the keynote, the skills he offers and how to use them to accomplish your objectives.

An effective keynote speech should motivate and unite an audience with a common rationale. He or she should also provide track for the goals and purposes of the conference. This establishes the tone for the event; which can launch a conference with transparency, or at its worst, shift it forward with unreal or cluttered ideas.

Here are salient points on how to judge keynote speakers:

They grasp the general objective of the conference. This seems require a little of your brain, but we’ve observed many keynote speakers who basically use a speech at a conference just to trade themselves, instead of elucidating the theme of the event. If you have been taken as a keynote speaker, the sale has been done already and there’s no need to advertise who you are. What you should do is to sell the subject of the event. A desirable keynote speaker should have a global perspective and a sense of innovation. He is inspiring, sensible, and memorable. If you possess these qualities, who you are personally and professionally will be clear.

They possess a singular concentration on the target audience. Focus is so important when it comes to keynote speeches. A good keynote speaker knows well at which point to approach the viewers. If you evaluate an audience correctly, you’ll hit that “delightful spot” where you build connection, credibility, and interest to the message you’re trying to convey. If you underrate your audience, you’ll produce boredom; if you overrate, confusion will take place. A successful keynote speaker will work closely with the event organizer, to ensure that he or she knows the entire psychographics of the listeners they’ll be addressing.

They utilize the value of entertainment. Humor can be the “emollient” of good speeches. Having said that; be sure to hit the well the second tip above. Misplaced wittiness can be deadly. When correctly presented, anecdotes and humor will result to greater approval of your message.

They value the importance of pacing in a message. It has been said that a normal keynote speech can be as short as 20 minutes and as long as 45 minutes. Remember, pacing is more important than the length. A hyperactive pace will tire out the listeners and a sluggish, laborious pace will put them to sleep. The common adage “variety is the spice of life” is applicable in here. When it comes to keynote messages, variety of pacing is fundamental. An effective speaker knows when to pump up the intensity, and when to soften the presentation to sustain the interest. If you’re planning to insert a Q and A portion within the speech, never conclude with that part. Always wrap up the entire session and direct the message with your final words.

They customize the theme of the event with true-to-life stories. In order to create an atmosphere of trust within the duration of the speech, a good keynote speaker has to share personal observations. This helps your listeners to see that you’re a real person with emotions, lessons and life experiences learned. When you personalize parts of a speech and manifest passion for your theme, you have a greater chance of selling the ideas you’re trying to share. For instance, you’re addressing a crowd of mobile marketers. The whole sense of your speech should at least tackle real stories that relate to the emergence of mobile products and smartphones. Some of the most successful speakers will honestly admit they don’t know everything, but what they understand has worked.

They simplify the message into a call to action. Whether you’re a futurist, a guru or a motivational speaker, the most important thing at the end of the keynote speech is the response of your audience. Did something transpire from your speech? A good speaker should launch a set of ideas and flesh them out all through the speech with the necessary facts. This strategy will help your audience remember at least one or three actionable concepts as they leave the venue.

There’s a traditional format for public speaking that can enhance a speaker’s style. First, tell your audience the things you’re going to share to them. Second, tell them those things. And lastly, remind them what you told them.

They reduce the use of props. This last point is just a little concern but will have a great effect for the keynote speech. Be wise to evaluate hired speakers because there are many who suffer from a syndrome called TMI or Too Much Information. We commonly agree that visuals, images and factual statements help to drive a point home, but complicated spreadsheets and congested text pieces can make your messages boring. Effective keynote speakers use minimal props and allow their words do the profound lifting.

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