How Much Does a One-hour Conference Cost?

CPhoto credit: Cosmos Image, Client: OPC Events for Desjardins Financial Security

This is a question I’m frequently asked. It’s an important one, so I’ll use this blog post to present the factors that influence the process leading to the development, delivery and follow-up of a conference.

Firstly, what’s your objective for the conference? This will determine the process which in turn will influence the price. If your conference is part of an event, what’s the event’s objective? What role will the conference play within it? Maybe the conference aims to stimulate the participants’ curiosity at the beginning or to serve as a call to action at the end of the event? Or perhaps the conference will help prepare your employees for an organizational change, communicate the strategy for the year to come, consolidate the team, develop leadership or even equip your colleagues to take better care of themselves? It’s not necessary to have everything laid out before contacting the speaker since most of the time the experience is developed as a partnership.

The biggest criteria for success is meeting the expectations of the participants. When participants make links between what they are hearing and what they are feeling during a conference and what they’re living in their daily lives, your initiative is on the way to becoming a success.

To get to this stage, you must plan preparatory exchanges, when developing the conference, between the speaker and members of the organization, including the person in charge of introducing the speaker before their talk. The professional speaker’s preparation will take into account both leadership objectives as well as the participants’ perspective. In some cases, when the objective of the conference is to give participants the means to prepare for an important change, the speaker may even offer coaching to the manager who wants to use the conference to position themselves as a leader in the changes to come.

As I previously mentioned, if the participants are able to identify with the content you are on the way to creating success. “On the way” because your conference may create expectations about how to proceed. That’s why you need to think in advance about what to do with the conference once it’s finished.

You should ask yourself if you feel equipped to help participants integrate at least one thing they’ve realized thanks to the conference. If this isn’t the case, the speaker may be able to help. As a matter of fact, the best speakers discuss how to incorporate the elements of the conference into day-to-day life with the organizers before giving the conference. This prepares managers in advance if it’s useful.

So, how much does a one-hour conference cost? The answer will vary according to the credibility of the speaker and the process they are offering to ensure a fulfilling experience for your team. Note that in certain cases the number of participants and the possibility of recording the conference can also vary the costs. In conclusion, you can expect to invest between $2,000 for a limited amount of personalization and a small audience and $10,000 for a rigorous process of personalization, including integration support, and a large audience.

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