Do you have Post-Traumatic Stress from your previous event Emcee choice? Do you ever have the urge to cut your Master of Ceremonies' microphone cable? Well you're in the right place - I am going to teach you how to find a terrible Emcee so you can keep on ruining your event and placing your job on the line!
1. Ask the Office Ham to be the Emcee
Bob in sales might have a funny sense of humor, or at least his mother thinks so. And, heck he loves to be the center of attention and hear himself talk. Better yet, we won't have to pay him! I mean some times his jokes are a bit off-color, but surely he'll know to clean it up a bit for this. Oh yeah, I can totally see where this is all headed.
2. Expect Your Boss / CEO to Emcee
Assuming this event is a really big deal and representing your organization and brand to say, clients, investors, partners, advertisers . . . what better way to stress your boss than to put a spotlight on him/her and have them fill the role of entertainer and master of anti-boringness at all times. That way he/she will spend more time thinking about his/her lines than about networking and making connections with key people.
3. Expect The Event Planner To Be The Emcee
Yeah! They won't be stressed at all or doing a million things or anything. Besides didn't they go into this line of work because they love it or something? So if they love it so much, they will totally love adding this in, right?
4. Have No Emcee At All
Come on people can just pull up the event schedule on their phones - they'll figure it out. People know when to sit, stand, stop talking, evacuate, etc. Let's challenge the people! Let this be a time of growth for the crowd to become self-governed and basically perfect and all knowing, like God.
Okay now that you have successfully achieved your goal of finding an utterly terrible Emcee for your event, you can go back to whatever you were doing. Or, you can be an open-minded person and read on to learn what the other half is doing - those narrow-minded and picky folks who think their events just have to be perfect or something.
1. Hire a Professional Comedian or Entertainer To Emcee
This is not the front man of a band, but rather an audience engagement expert who is skilled at keeping the energy in the room and making sure there are no awkward lulls - the whole Emcee role becomes part of the show. How to find one? Search for entertainers who describe themselves as "corporate entertainers." Also look for the words "clean entertainment" to best represent your company. If you are also hiring entertainment - you can likely save $$$ by finding and entertainer who can also emcee.
2. Hire A Local News / TV / Radio Personality
If your event is in a city that doesn't offer a plethora of emcee or entertainer options, call the local TV and radio stations and ask if any of their personalities also hire out as event hosts.
3. An Invisible Emcee is better than a Bad Emcee
By invisible, I do not mean non-existent. Consider a "Voice of God" option, having a pre-recorded announcer. This works well and is a money saver if you only have a few announcements and not a full program. A local radio station or talent agency can help you find the right voice, or you can hire free-lance voiceover artists on some online platforms. I have had a lot of success with online voiceover artists and they are very affordable. Pro Tip: If you choose an Invisible Emcee, be sure to give a dramatic lighting cue to your audience such as dimming house and the lighting stage to get their attention.
Okay, let's hear your emcee horror stories! Or maybe your success stories? Your comments are always inspiring and could fuel my next article idea. Happy event planning!
Lacy Miller is an events and entertainment professional with The Gracie & Lacy Show based in Charleston, SC.
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