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What exactly is a guest speaker?

Aditi Verma
• November 2, 2023

(12 min read)

A guest speaker is a person who event organizers invite because of their knowledge of or passion for a particular subject. They are not part of the event production team but participate as a featured guest.

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The main objectives of a guest speaker are to engage with other speakers, host the event, and bring a fresh perspective to the discussions.

So, a speaker is an expert on a specific subject and is very important for the success of the event, as attendees are going to listen to and interact with speakers only.

What characteristics distinguish an outstanding guest speaker?

There are some characteristics that a guest speaker should have, like:

Scheduling in advance:

Competent guest speakers should schedule their appearance well in advance.

Early scheduling allows for better event preparation and promotion.

Body Language Awareness:

Pay attention to body language during a webinar.

Posture is essential; sit or stand comfortably with good posture.

Eye contact illusion:

In webinars, direct eye contact with the camera is crucial.

It creates the illusion of making real eye contact with the audience.

Test Run Preparation:

Conduct a test run with the webinar crew before the event.

Familiarise the guest speaker with the webinar platform.

Use the test run to ease any nervousness and establish rapport.

Before a presentation, it can also be used to break the ice and ease any nervousness.

How should you choose a guest speaker?

A guest speaker should have some skills, e.g.,

Complementary Skills:

Guest speakers should bring value with skills that complement those of other speakers.

Avoid selecting multiple speakers with the same specific skill; diversify to provide a broader perspective.

Diverse Speaker Pool:

Guest speakers can come from various backgrounds, including team members, community organisers, influencers, or experts in specific fields.

Diverse speakers bring different viewpoints and expertise to the webinar.

Customer Involvement:

Consider using customers as guest speakers.

Customers can build trust among new prospects by sharing their experiences and insights about the company.

The following should be thought about when choosing a speaker for an event:

  1. Do they have any use?
  2. Do they agree with what has been said?
  3. How can they add value to the topic?
  4. Do they have any prior experience?
  5. What is their background, and do they have prior experience with such public presentation skills?
  6. Do they provide a fresh point of view?


Why is it important to have a high-quality speaker at your event?

The following are the advantages of having an excellent speaker as a guest:

  1. Increases the number of signups.
  2. Boosts Participation.
  3. Boosts credibility.
  4. Boosts trustworthiness.
  5. Offers fresh viewpoints.
  6. One can charge more for the tickets.
  7. It helps in brand building.

Apart from the above points, it also builds opportunity for the future, i.e., attendees get confidence that this event always invites good speakers and helps in marketing using word of mouth.

What is the value of having guest speakers?

Conferences, webinars, and educational institutions may all greatly benefit from inviting guest speakers to share their expertise with the audience.

Having an event speaker helps the whole event or programme by bringing new insights and expertise through various inspiring stories and segments. They have the capacity to impart information, wisdom, and perspective to the audience that they would not have received otherwise.

The success stories given by invited speakers serve as an excellent source of inspiration and motivation, particularly when used in educational settings. Furthermore, the presence of guest speakers creates the possibility for individuals to meet new people and make new connections, thus enriching both their professional and personal lives. Inviting speakers from other disciplines and cultural backgrounds also helps to promote tolerance and diversity.

How do I approach a guest speaker?

  1. Determine the requirements for your event. Determine the goal, date, and topic of the event. Determine the sort of speaker you need by considering their experience and relevance to your audience.
  2. Create a Speaker Profile: Write a clear and succinct speaker profile that includes event information, expectations, and any potential pay or incentives.
  3. Determine Potential Event Speakers: Conduct research and compile a list of potential speakers who fulfil the event’s objectives. Personal relationships, industry referrals, and online databases are all possibilities.
  4. Contact potential event speakers: Reach out to potential event speakers by email, phone, or professional social networks. Explain the purpose of your event, the date, the attendees, and the type of speaker you’re searching for.
  5. Provide specific information. Share event details such as venue, time, duration, audience number, and any technological needs. Outline your expectations for the speaker, including the format (keynote, workshop, panel), topic, and any materials they need to prepare.
  6. Discuss compensation and logistics. With the speaker, negotiate compensation, costs, and other agreements. Ascertain that you both have a shared knowledge of your travel, lodging, and audiovisual equipment requirements. If required, draft a contract.
  7. Promote the event: Once the speaker has been confirmed, use their name and reputation to draw a wider crowd.
  8. Follow-Up and Preparation: Communicate often with the speaker in the run-up to the event. Share any updates or changes, and make sure they have all they need for a successful presentation.
  9. Thank the speaker for their participation and, if required, provide comments or assessments following the session. Keep a good attitude in order to collaborate in the future.

Remember that an orderly and courteous invitation procedure boosts your chances of getting an interesting guest speaker for your event. We welcome you to contribute your important views, experiences, and knowledge to help us develop our online community.

How Do Guest Speakers Affect Corporate Events?

In a world where businesses are continuously striving for a competitive advantage, the job of a motivational speaker or an event speaker is critical. A true speaker can change the business landscape and make it more vibrant, optimistic, and productive. These speakers give the impetus for transformation, both at an individual and corporate level, as they navigate through motivating, inspiring, and personal narratives.

From the exuberant motivational speaker who brings a room to life to the virtual speaker who crosses borders, these specialists are more than just brilliant speakers. They are a transforming agent who may change the attitudes and perceptions of the audience and society by making one fantastic speech at a time.

So, before we conclude, consider this: When was the last time your business hired a motivational speaker? Isn’t it also past time for another transforming experience? Join us in sharing your valuable insights, experiences, and expertise with our online community.

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