We want to ensure that speakers both well known and unknown return time after time. In addition, in the social media world, we know impressions are extremely important. This is why we want to help you establish a great reputation as a top-notch organization with a top-notch event. After all, don’t you want the presenter to walk away wanting to tell the world how awesome your organization was—making your event the 'place to present' for years to come!
Whether you have hired an A-list celebrity to headline your conference or any industry speaker to do a breakout session for no fee, each is still your “guest” speaker and should be accorded the same courtesy and attention as you would towards an honored guest in your home.
|1. First Letter/Email|
Start the “star treatment” at the very outset. As soon as the contracts are signed, send “welcome-aboard” letters/email to all of the presenters who will be appearing at your conference. Thank them for accepting the assignment and don’t be afraid to be effusive about how excited you and your group are about the contribution they will be making to your meeting. Let them know that you look forward to making them as comfortable as possible.
Many speakers bureaus are reluctant to relinquish presenters’ phone numbers and addresses. Although we at Eagles Talent Speakers Bureau take seriously our responsibilities as liaisons between meeting planners and presenters, we encourage direct communication between them.
|2. Stay in Touch|
|Follow up your initial welcome letter/email with continuing correspondence. Convey to your presenters that they are important to you. You’ll want to assure them that their sleeping room reservations have been made, that ground transportation has been arranged, who their contact person is upon arrival and who has been assigned as their host while the convention site. You’ll want to extend invitations to social functions, request photos and program descriptions for your program guides and ask for a introduction for use by you MC. Finally, you’ll need to do a final check on the audio/visual requirements for the presenter to make sure you’ve got it straight.
When a presenter is booked though Eagles Talent Speakers Bureau, we make it our business to stay in constant touch with both you and the presenter until well after your conference is over.
|3. Contact/Mailing List|
|Include your presenters on your meeting and convention mailing list. This way you’ll be sure they receive all of the promotional materials which are sent out prior to the convention. Information about your organization such as annual reports, e-newsletters, digital messages, brochures, organizational magazines may prove helpful in assisting your speakers to tailor and personalize their presentation to your needs.|
|4. Pre-Program Questionnaire|
|When it’s appropriate, we at Eagles Talent Speakers Bureau ask that Pre-Program Questionnaire be filled out by the meeting planner or a knowledgeable member of the staff. These questionnaires are designed to give the speaker a feel for your audience and clear understanding of your objectives. They also are extremely useful in helping speakers tailor their presentations to your specific audience.|
|5. Conference Call|
|At Eagles Talent Speakers Bureau we encourage presenters and meeting planners to plan a conference call at least two weeks in advance of the engagement. Hearing the voices is reassuring to both parties. During the call, you can reiterate your excitement about the presenter appearing at your meeting. Take a few minutes to go over the questionnaire, answer any questions and reiterate what you expect from your presenter. Also, reconfirm arrival time and airport pickup arrangements and discuss audio/visual and technical requirements if you need to.|
|6. A/V and Technical Requirements|
|Hopefully, you’ve checked on your presenter’s technical needs prior to signing the contract, to make sure they were feasible. Upon signing the contract, we recommend that you order, verbally and in writing, the appropriate audio/visual and other technical equipment. Also, get a confirmation in writing. Be sure to recheck and reconfirm your order no later than one week prior to the engagement and again the day before.
Once the A/V and the tech is set up in the meeting room, don’t assume it works. Personally test it no later than one hour before the presentation.
|7. Presenter’s Sleeping Room|
|It is usually best to reserve the presenter’s sleeping room as soon as the contract is signed. The location of the room is important. Most presenters prefer their rooms to be located as close a possible to the meeting room, insuring easy access for props, forgotten items and attention to last minute details. If you can get them preregistered, so much the better, allowing you to simply hand the presenter their room key upon arrival. Guarantee the room for possible late arrival and request that the hotel forward a written confirmation to the presenter.
Should the presenter’s program be scheduled for late morning or afternoon, be sure to arrange for a late check-out. Most hotels are extremely accommodating. If you are paying for the presenter’s room and meals, be sure the hotel knows to automatically post those charges directly to your organization’s master account. This expedites check-out and avoids unnecessary hassle and billing.
|8. Gift Basket|
|Everybody loves a little something extra. Make your presenters feel special by having a small welcoming basket containing something like fruit waiting in each presenter’s room upon arrival. Any one of a dozen token gifts would do, such as a small box of chocolates, a locally printed T-shirt or even an ice-bucket with spring water. Add a personalized handwritten welcoming note. Small thoughtful gestures create warmer feelings than effusive welcomes.|
|9. Social Functions and Meals|
|Extend an invitation to all of your presenters to join you for social functions and meals. Be very specific about where and when these functions are taking place. Offer to personally meet them at a specific place and time, or arrange to have someone on your staff act as an escort. Even celebrities and seemingly extroverted keynote speakers and entertainers are sometimes uncomfortable walking into a social setting full of strangers. Although you’ll want to do all you can to host and entertain your presenters, be sure to do it in such a way that they can easily and politely refuse if they want to.|
|10. Invite the Partner|
|When your presenter is accompanied by a spouse or traveling companion, don’t forget to invite them both to your social functions.|
|11. Assign a Host|
|A presenter’s life on the road is not at all glamorous. It can be tough, tiring and lonely. A little TLC is always very much appreciated and goes a long way to endearing a presenter to you and your organization. It will make your presenters feel special and cared for if there is someone waiting to greet them when they arrive at the hotel. Since you probably won’t have the time, assign someone else to do it. The presenter’s host will represent you as their personal escort and attendant during the entire stay.
Arrange to have your presenters preregistered so they can be taken right up to their rooms without having to register. Have their convention packet and make tags ready to hand them. The host should be able to explain the meeting agenda, tell them about what’s already happened and what’s coming up and invite them to the social functions. Names, room numbers and cell phone numbers of people they can get in touch with if needed should be made available.
Your presenter’s host should be available to show your presenter around and introduce them to the leadership and other key people with whom they might be working. Have them check out the meeting room and test the A/V equipment.
|12. Pre-check Everything|
|Don’t take anything for granted. Never assume that because you ordered something, it’s automatically done. Always re-check and reconfirm everything. Personally check that the speaker’s reservation has been confirmed and that the hotel has a room waiting for your guest. Reconfirm all the little, but important details such as airport pick-up and A/V requirements.|