What Percentage Does a Speakers Bureau Take?

What Percentage Does a Speakers Bureau Take?

You’re probably wondering: What percentage does a speakers bureau take of a keynote speaker’s fee? When you’re looking to hire a professional speaker for an upcoming event, working with a speakers bureau can be a valuable resource. These agencies represent a roster of talented speakers and handle the logistics of booking them for various engagements. At the same time, it’s important to understand the fees associated with using a speakers bureau, as they typically take a percentage of the speaker’s fee as their commission.

The standard commission rate for speakers bureaus can range from 25% to 30% of the speaker’s fee (although this can vary outside of these bounds and wildly so based on project, assignment, location and provider). This means that if a speaker charges $10,000 for an engagement, the bureau’s commission would be between $2,500 and $3,000. In other words, you can save significantly by booking a program directly with speakers themselves.

That said, talent agencies would argue that they provide certain services that justify the fees.

First and foremost, these agencies have established relationships with a wide range of speakers across various industries and topics. If you don’t have a presenter in mind, they can help you find the perfect speaker who aligns with your event’s goals and audience. Also, they handle all the logistics of booking the speaker, including contract negotiations, travel arrangements, and event coordination.

Another factor to consider is the level of experience and expertise a speakers bureau can offer. Many bureaus have been in the industry for decades and have a deep understanding of the speaking circuit. They can provide valuable insights and guidance throughout the booking process, ensuring a seamless and professional experience.

It’s worth noting that some speakers bureaus may offer slightly lower or higher commission rates, depending on the speaker’s level of prominence and the nature of the event. For example, a bureau may charge a lower commission for a highly sought-after keynote speaker or a higher commission for a niche or less well-known speaker.

When working with a speakers bureau, it’s essential to discuss their commission structure upfront and ensure that you understand all the associated costs. Some bureaus may also charge additional fees for services like event planning or travel coordination, so it’s crucial to clarify these details before committing.

While the commission rate may seem steep, remember that you’re paying for the bureau’s expertise, connections, and ability to find the perfect speaker for your event. By partnering with a reputable agency, you can ensure a successful and impactful speaking engagement that provides value to your organization. But again: Fees can vary widely – and you can save a considerable amount of money by booking with keynote speakers on a direct basis.