To choose a keynote speaker in 2016, consider one of these 7 trending topics

by Leah Doyle | December 23, 2015

2016 trends

With emerging technologies increasingly shaping business, it's important to choose keynote speakers who can bring modern value to their audiences. If booking a great keynote speaker is on your agenda for 2016, consider those who are well-versed in one or more of the following trending topics.

Content marketing

The rise of content marketing in recent years as a cornerstone of corporate marketing programs has been meteoric and has shifted the attention of traditional PR firms. Content — including text, images, video and audio — reigns supreme and is now a primary method for attraction and retention of customers.

A fundamental goal of content marketing is driving traffic to a business website, often through regular postings to social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter. A keynote speaker who is well-versed in content marketing methodology can discuss the importance of data analysis for determining the types of media that work best for particular target groups. Your audience also is likely to be interested in tips for creating engaging content and promoting social sharing.

Future trends

With technology changing so quickly and impacting nearly every area of business and society, audiences are eager to hear credible speakers who can provide perspective. Those who can take the discussion to the next level and consider the human impact will be even more in demand.

While many speakers can talk about product development and specific technologies coming down the pipeline, fewer can address what work and life will be like in the future. How are technology and humanity shaping each other? What will interest, excite and engage the customers of the future? How can companies “future-proof” to ensure that unexpected events don’t knock them off course?

“Smart” supply and distribution chains

Consumers are increasingly interested in the “Internet of Things” and how it will improve their lives, but the trend is affecting manufacturers and retailers in a big way as well. In coming years, the growing prevalence of networked objects is expected to benefit manufacturers by significantly improving processes for tracking shipments and inventory.

For audiences with members in manufacturing, retail and related areas, speakers who can discuss the ways in which new technologies can improve production, distribution, and customer service will be highly sought. Consider keynotes that address how companies can fully capitalize on data captured with RFID tags and other connected technologies.


In recent years, “authenticity” has become a popular buzzword in the marketing realm. But the question for businesses is how to be authentic and how to use that quality in appealing to target audiences. For many consumers, authenticity equals likeability, which happens first through a commitment to a vision and values. When a company is committed to its vision and communicates that true vision through its marketing, consumers tend to respond. Real passion comes across, and consumers — especially the young — have become sophisticated detectives when it comes to sniffing out the false and the curated.

Speakers who are experts in the area of authenticity can help companies determine where their passions lie, find their true voice and communicate in a personal way with their customers.

Social media

Although Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and other platforms aren’t new, they constantly evolve, and consumers use them in rapidly changing ways. Speakers who discuss social media must be attuned to this quickly morphing environment; talks that worked a few years ago can now seem hopelessly dated.

Many companies still view social media as a bottom-tier marketing method because efforts may not show direct and immediate profitability. However, more than 90 percent of marketers described social media as important in 2014, and 80 percent of those said their efforts boosted traffic to their websites. Effective talks on social media should address the big picture and how the landscape is changing, along with some nuts and bolts of achieving results.

Digital healthcare

Health care providers were among the first wave of technology adopters. However, a number of barriers — including consumer hesitancy — has held the healthcare field back from creating fully integrated systems. With patients now more comfortable with accessing medical services and information in the digital realm, providers again are moving forward with full immersion into technology.

For audience members who work in health care or adjacent industries, effective speakers should address big issues that are both driving and delaying full implementation of technology in the health care field.

Thought diversity in the workplace

Employers have long understood the benefits of diversity and multiculturalism. In modern workplaces, diversity is evolving to welcome different ways of thinking that can spark creativity and increase innovation. Different people come from different cultures and backgrounds, and they have unique personalities. All these characteristics can result in new insights, more-efficient operations and increased satisfaction for both employees and customers.

Speakers in this emerging field are addressing how companies can use diversity of thought to avoid “groupthink,” which can result in sub-par decision-making and performance.

For maximum impact, choose contemporary speakers

While tried-and-true business wisdom will never go out of style in keynote addresses, audiences also crave information on the technologies and trends that will shape their companies in coming years. By choosing a forward-thinking expert in an emerging field, you can capture your audience’s attention and keep them talking after your event.

really good speaker


Topics: Blog

Written by Leah Doyle


Don't Miss Out!
Get monthly email notifications of our latest articles that include:
  • Keynote Speaker Highlights
  • Conference & Event Planning Tips
  • Free Resources
  • Industry News

Technology Checklist