It can be a challenge to find the right person to lead part of your conference in a way that brings value to your audience, keeps them engaged, and doesn’t break your budget. The search for the right person starts by finding out the best places to look for speakers.  

Vasil Azarov, a partner with Startup Socials and the creative founder behind Growth Marketing Conference believes there are three things that determine the success of a conference: agenda, curation, and experience.  

“It’s about speakers and content overall, and getting someone who is a subject matter expert,” Azarov told 

Ignoring the celebrity aspect of your speaker that you think will draw in attendees can be most beneficial when deciding who you want to speak at your conference. When you choose a speaker, you ultimately place the trust of your audience on the speaker, which falls back to you. Keeping that trust is key to successful conferences.

To find someone who will kill their presentation and keep your audience engaged and happy, check out these following ideas that will surely land the speaker of your audiences’ dreams.  

1. TED’s List of Speakers 

TED, an annual conference, brings out speakers of all different expertise to talk on their work, experiences, and research. TEDx Talks are popular around the country, growing the list of TED experienced speakers for you to choose from.  TED offers a combined list of all speakers, as well as their information, that give you a list countless people from around the globe, in a variety of fields, making it impossible to not find one fitting for your event.

 2. Ask attendees input – Surveys/Social Media 

A great way to find a speaker your audience will love is to ask the audience themselves. Send out surveys (or ask via social media) to your attendees to find out who they would be interested in hearing from or the topics they are interested in.

3. Upcoming book releases via Amazon 

Check out recent books published in the field of your conference. Recently published authors or authors waiting for publication do not hesitate at opportunities to promote their book. Searching Amazon’s new releases will lead you to countless new and veteran authors that could possibly be your next guest speaker.  

4. Attend other conferences 

This may seem obvious or even counterproductive but attending other conferences is a great way to connect with possible speakers. Seeing who they have brought in to speak may spark some inspiration or even create a connection that will lead them to your conference.

5. YouTube 

It may be difficult to find time to attend other conferences while planning your own, so take advantage of the information at your fingertips. Browse videos on YouTube of previous conferences or speaking engagements to see who you will stumble upon or just get a feel for who you are looking for.  

6. LinkedIn 

See who you already know. LinkedIn keeps all of your connections in one place, making it easy to scroll down and see who you may already be in contact with that would be willing to help take your conference to the next level. 

7. National Speakers Association 

The National Speakers Association offers endless resources to landing the perfect speaker. Using this site, you are guaranteed to find someone who is already interested in speaking and has a professional background in doing so.

These are just some of the helpful tips for building a strong speaker list for your event.