Do’s and Don’ts of Booking a Last Minute Keynote Speaker

There are many reasons why you may need to book a keynote speaker at the last minute. A speaker may suddenly cancel due to illness, inclement weather or a family emergency. Whatever the reason may be, here are some things you should and shouldn’t do when booking a last minute keynote speaker:

Do have a backup plan.

Always, always, always be sure to have a Plan B in case your Plan A falls through. It’s like having an understudy for a play — you hope you won’t need to resort to the backup, but it is reassuring to know that it is there just in case. Plan for an alternate activity or a new speaker in case of an emergency.   

Don’t expect a high-profile or celebrity speaker.

Celebrity speakers are usually booked months in advance so there’s a big chance you will not be able to secure a celebrity speaker on such short notice. The same goes for other high-profile speakers, such as politicians and authors. Their schedules may be completely booked by the time of your event. It’s not impossible, just very unlikely that they will be available. However, it doesn’t hurt to inquire if you really want this speaker at your event.  

Do reach out to a speakers bureau.

If you secured your keynote speaker through a speakers bureau, it is a good idea to reach out to them and explain your situation. An event manager will be able to assist you and point you in the right direction.

Don’t panic.

Although it may be nerve wracking to go through the process of finding a new keynote speaker weeks (or even days) before your event, don’t panic. It has been done before and there is definitely hope of finding a speaker with availability on the day of your event. Just breathe, stay positive and take the necessary steps because the show must go on!

Book a Keynote Speaker Today!

Our team will work with you in securing a keynote speaker who will be perfect for your event. Browse our list of keynote speakers as well as our nine managed speakers to find an engaging and insightful keynote speaker who meets your event’s needs. For more information on speakers, fees and availability, please call 1.800.345.5607.  


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