Email is increasingly being used to invite guest speakers to events, but your potential guest speaker may receive up to ten emails per day, meaning that your invitation may go unread. Therefore, we’ve prepared several tips on how to write an invitation letter to a guest speaker. For your letter to be read and to attract attention, you need to understand the best ways to find speakers and what such an invitation should contain.
6 Ways to find speakers
If you want to send a letter of invitation for guest speakers and get a positive result as soon as possible, learn the best ways to find them:
- Ask your target audience what they want.
One of the easiest ways to find speakers is to learn from attendees in Central Asia! Send a short survey to participants from previous events, and ask them for their opinions.
Explain that you are launching an event related to the interests of the participants and therefore want them to take on a key role in the selection of interesting topics. Motivate potential attendees in Asia with free invitations to the best places, for example, or an opportunity to meet and greet the speaker in person. Naturally, your budget may not boast incredible sums or the ability to attract world-famous speakers, but you can still focus your attention on popular Asian speakers for example.
- Track ads and new book releases.
Authors awaiting publication or those with recently published books always strive to maximize the use of advertising opportunities, making them good candidates as potential speakers. The big advantage is a clear understanding of their knowledge and the topics on which they can speak based on the content of their new books or other publications.
Many authors have personal websites, so a quick Google search can help resolve this issue. If a website search does not return any results, try contacting them via Twitter or Facebook or through any other social media platform.
- Search on professional forums and blogs.
Active forum participants who position themselves in their industries will most unlikely remain indifferent to an invitation letter for guest speakers. So go online and read or listen to what they say.
You can find such participants by commenting on industry news or blogs, participating in LinkedIn groups, joining Twitter conversations, and answering questions related to their area of expertise on professional sites.
There are also sites for specific industries where users can ask practitioners direct questions.
Using this approach, it is not all that difficult to find gurus who are ready to share their experience and discuss topics about which they are passionate.
- Also explore popular blogs.
Blogs with an active and interesting audience demonstrate that an author has something to say and that Asia is interested in listening to them. To find blogs on a given topic, point to your industry/event, and use a reputable blog directory. Pay attention to the rating by which you can judge the quality of the blog. Estimate site traffic, session duration, traffic source, and other indicators to see whether they would be a good choice as a speaker.
- Search among your existing LinkedIn contacts.
LinkedIn can be a gold mine of professional information. Put a post out in your network that you are looking for speakers, experts, or bloggers, and you might be surprised by the results. People love to help, especially if you are asking for their expert advice.
- Utilise YouTube as a speaker search tool.
While the top video bloggers can earn thousands of dollars on their channels, there are plenty of others who have not achieved superstar status. To fix this situation, search for any topics on YouTube that you want to discuss at your event, and see who’s talking about them. You can narrow your search by filtering the most popular content by the number of views and then contact the user who uploaded the video by sending him or her a message with a guest speaker invitation letter.
Must-Have Elements of Letters
How should you write guest speaker letters of invitation? All business and informational letters, or something like this sample letter of invitation for guest speakers, consist of five mandatory and four optional items:
- Message subject (required)
- Personal introduction
- Date and time of the event (required)
- Venue (required)
- Meeting purpose (required)
- Guest list
- Contact information (required)
The subject of the message and the writing tone should be official as this is an official document.
Tips for writing and mistakes to avoid
- Message subject
The topic should be as clear and concise as possible. It is better if it follows this simple pattern:
Type of event + date + event name
This method of writing a message subject works because people immediately recognize the main purpose of the meeting and the date of the meeting before they even open the letter.
When writing about a topic, many people make the common mistake of using an abbreviation. Note that this practice is unacceptable for official letters.
- Personal introduction
If you are sending an invitation to participants who you’ve dealt with at least once before, it’s worthwhile to add a few introductory sentences to the beginning of the letter.
Example: Hello. As we agreed last Thursday, we have sent you an invitation letter to a scientific conference.
This small note will help people quickly remember you and your event.
Tell participants and potential speakers about any requisite pre-conference preparation, for example, collecting information, making a report or presentation, etc. If such preliminary preparation is necessary, indicate this at the very beginning of the letter.
- Date and time
Be sure to include the full date and time of the event (including the time zone) in the text of your letter. If you are planning an international conference, carefully review the standards for writing dates in the countries participating in your event. Also, so that your guests don’t forget about the meeting, invite them to use your reminder about it.
A venue can be both physical and virtual. For an online conference, your invitation letter must include a link to the broadcast. If an event is held in a conference room, you should explain in detail how to get there and whether there is parking available, etc.
Do not forget to attach a map detailing the location of your conference rooms.
- Meeting purpose
Describe the purpose of your conference in one to two sentences.
Example: The purpose of the conference is to compare foreign and domestic experience when conducting business events.
If your event has an agenda that you want to discuss with participants, indicate this in the letter. Determine the order in which you plan to discuss key topics, and also add materials that may be useful for familiarisation before the conference. Note that it is better not to attach separate files to an email. This may result in email blocking or an error when opening the invitation. In order not to overload the letter or overwhelm your guests, it is better to add a link to the online storage in the text, where everyone can view and download the necessary data.
- Guest list
A file with the names of the people who will be present at the event can serve as proof of the significance of your event. However, including this item in your invitation letter is optional.
- Contact information
At the very end of the message, specify the phone number where you can be reached. You can also leave a link to your website and your social media handles.
Utilizing all of what has been explained above, you can form a sample formal invitation letter for a guest speaker:
Of course, this pattern is not the only correct one. When drafting a guest speaker invitation letter template, you must consider who you are sending it to a regular guest or a novice. Depending on this, you must appropriately choose the style of writing, the tone of voice, and the general form of the letter. Therefore, in order for the invitation to be as productive as possible, we recommend applying for conference services. Specialists will not only help to organize an event but also to prepare an example letter of invitation for guest speakers that is of the highest quality.
To create an effective invitation schedule, send your invitations in several phases, not all at once.
Sending out invites may be done in four steps:
- Send out a batch of invitations. This is the first round that goes to your top choices for speakers.
- Wait for replies. Take your time and wait; give yourself a certain amount of time for replies to come in. If you need to follow up with anyone, send a gentle nudge that you would love to hear from them as soon as possible.
- Make a few more attempts.Once some responses have been received, look through your speakers, look at your list, and replace those speakers who have declined with the other alternative candidates in the next round.
- Send another batch, and repeat the process all over again!
However, there is a more up-to-date and professional approach to setting up your invitation schedule. You can actually do that via GSI, which saves you time and effort, when you are completely through with the best candidates.
When a speaker says no
If your favorite speakers or entertainers say they are not accessible or aren’t willing to talk at your event, don’t make a fuss. Be flexible, and express gratitude towards them for even considering the opportunity. On the off chance that it feels proper, you could inquire as to whether they have any suggestions for different speakers. At that point, they will almost definitely give you the name of someone else.
For a successful event, it is not necessary to attract the best speakers in the world. Don’t lose sight of professionals you already know who are trustworthy and eager to share their experiences with your audience. At times, lesser-known people who succeed may be more interesting since very few, if any, of your guests, will have heard their story before!
Follow the methods outlined above to find great speakers, use letter templates, and ask for professional help, and your event will be a success!
Don’t forget to share and comment. Good luck!