Why Speaker Bureaus Matter
The speaking world is a fascinating bubble. Since I live and breathe in this area on behalf of my clients, I often find myself surprised when someone hasn't heard of a speaker bureau's important role.
A speaker bureau is a collection of expert salespeople who connect the appropriate thought leader with their client for a specific speaking engagement. The bureau often works closely with both the client, but also stays very familiar with the speakers and their material. These clients might be banks, non-profits, or organizations that are going through a specific challenge or have particular needs. It's the bureau's job to ask the right questions and find their client the right match.
While a speaker manager works more closely with the speakers because they have their best interest at heart over the end client. It is the speaker manager's job to know his/her client's (the speaker) material very well and give the speaker bureau partner the tools they need to sell to the client so they can do their job well.
Speaker Bureaus (especially IASB member speaker bureaus) are a real value-add to have when doing a deal. They help mitigate risk, increase pool of resources if a cancellation were to occur, and help all parties feel more comfortable when brokering the deal.