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How to Introduce a Virtual Keynote Speaker

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Congratulation on planning a virtual event when people are craving inspiration, connection and good feelings more than ever​ before​!

Your virtual keynote speaker can make a huge difference in shaping this inspirational event. An important thing to consider to project an inspiring session is how you introduce your​ virtual​ keynote speaker.

Overall, people need to anticipate great things from their keynote speech. A great keynote speaker introduction will plant the audience into a conversation that helps them move forward. 

Virtual events are so much fun. It’s so exciting to inspire people virtually.​ ​Especially now, we need that inspiration and passion flowing to us over the internet more than ever. 

How you introduce your virtual event keynote speaker can really set your event up for success. Most people know the keynote speaker is hired to engage and uplift them. Yet many people are experiencing Zoom Overload. They are exhausted by the information dump most online presentation are geared towards. 

A great virtual keynote speaker isn't there to overload them with information but to uplift and inspire an audience. We want to pump people up to feel good in uncertain times. We want your people to laugh, learn but mostly be inspired. 

Most virtual events have an MC who introduces a keynote speaker (or introduces a person who introduces a keynote speaker).

The following is how to to set up a virtual keynote speaker with a successful introduction.

​1)​Let the audience know this is the keynote that will set the tone for the entire event.  The keynote speaker is meant to be a draw to attract more people to the event.  Thus you want to pump the audience up, get them excited and anticipating a great ​message​

 

People at home listening virtually are distracted. Their dog is whining to go for a walk, their kids are using up their bandwidth, and their spouse is wondering what's for dinner. We don't have people in an auditorium in front of us, so we can't tell them to turn off their cell phones and limit distractions. 

 

We can't control the audiences home environment aside from reminding people to limit distractions. Inspiration is better. Don't try to force people to comply with your rules; instead, inspire them to want to pay attention. 

When you introduce a keynote speaker, pump them up so much that people don't want to miss out.  You want them to anticipate great things from the ​virtual ​​keynote ​speech. 

Virtually you ​rev the crowd up ​with your authentic good intentions. ​ ​Don't hold back- show excitement with ​your ​voice and put energy into your delivery.  

Use uplifting words like,  we are so excited to introduce you to this next speaker, or we are so fortunate to have you with us today​.

Your goal is to make the audience feel good about the speaker and anticipate great things from the talk. 

​2)​Talk about why you hired this speaker.  As a keynote speaker, I wouldn't say I like to spend a lot of time reminding people of current problems or​ reinforce​ their worries or doubts. They already know this; they live it. ​That's why I leave this dirty work to my introduction. ​It may help in the introduction to quickly skim through current challenges because mentioning them can provide people with a bit of relief​ and context for the keynote​. Usually, you hire a speaker because they can provide inspiration or information that can help us get through these challenges.

I believe any​ good​ keynote speaker's message ​ will​ help people move forward and not get stuck complaining about problems. Thus make sure your introduction is very forward moving and optimistic. Tell them why you hired this virtual keynote speaker; make it personal if you can, and discuss why this audience will value this message. 

 

​3)​Next, use the keynote speakers bio or introduction to craft your own personalized version. Highlight the speaker's experience without reading off their resume. Your goal is more like building credibility for the speaker, so touch on important accomplishments. 

Most audiences are wondering why did you choose this speaker for us today? So tell them.  ​And make it personal- why do you relate to this keynote speakers message?​

 

​4) ​It's great to help the audience imagine how this experience or speaker will help them in the future. You could do this by going over the goals or outcomes of the speech. It would be better to paint a visual and impactful picture or vision of what they will get out of the session. For instance, from this inspiring keynote, you will be invigorated to move forward despite uncertainty. Suggest they will have more spring in their step, more energy and more vitality.  Or maybe they can imagine themselves learning to laugh at stress and take themselves lightly.

Use lots of words that provoke optimism, hope and inspiration. Your pumping people up before your keynote speaker pumps them up. You're making our job so much easier. 

I​nspiration is ​important because people are used to a zoom content dump​-​ ​you want them to know​ this inspiring keynote is different. I also can't underestimate the importance of a groups leader saying a few words before a speech. It really sets the stage. People need to hear from their leaders in times of uncertainty​. Just before ​a keynote speaker​ pump​s​ ​an audience​ up with a great feeling​- this​ is a perfect time​ for a leader to set the stage​. It helps them feel better about themselves, their organization and their leadership. 

​5) ​You may tie in your theme or any other important information you want people to focus on. If you have seen the keynote speaker before, then mention that​.​

That's it, the simple, easy steps to introduce a virtual event keynote speaker.

​When you introduce a virtual keynote speaker- ​Get ​the audience​ pumped up with anticipation and good juicy emotions and their attention; retention drastically improves.

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