As a professional master of ceremonies for events, I've seen it all over the span of my fortunate career. I wanted to create this post to fast track new event Emcees (or anyone looking to hire one) to success. Some of these may seem obvious, but if you've been there, you know how easy they are to forget! My advice? Print this out and keep it close. I only wish I had these tips when I first started. If you are an event planner, you now know what to look for in a great MC that will help make your event great.
Let the Show Begin
1. Set The Stage Before The M.C. Hits the Stage
Have the microphone and podium set up in advance.
2. Make Sure The Emcee Gets A Strong Introduction
Invite a VIP from your organization to welcome your emcee to the platform.
3. Establish Your Host’s Personality First
Hire a likable master of ceremonies.
4. Warm-Up The Audience With Laughter
Have your M.C. open the event with positive humor.
5. Get People Participating
Work with an emcee who will involve and engage your audience.
6. Build Excitement and Anticipation About What’s Coming
An excellent host will share a preview of the program.
7. Introduce Your Guests In A Positive/Classy Way
The emcee should prepare a written introduction for each speaker.
8. Send Your Presenters Off With A Round of Applause
Have your M.C. give each speaker an “outro” by thanking him or her by name.
9. Create Smooth Transitions
Your host should build bridges between the segments of your meeting.
10. Give Them A Break
The master of ceremonies guides and dismisses attendees to breaks.
The Show Must Go On
11. Recapture Their Attention
The M.C. should welcome attendees back into the room and re-engage them.
12. Salute Your Sponsor
A pro emcee will make the host organization & sponsors look great.
13. Keep Things Moving!
The master of ceremonies is responsible for the pace of the program.
14. Show Them What You Can Do
The host can delight your group with his or her unique talent.
15. Make Your Team Look Good
Your emcee should acknowledge/involve your key players.
16. Use “Callbacks” To Create Memories
An entertaining M.C. will refer back to fun moments during the event.
17. Never Allow An Empty Stage
The host should remain on the platform until the next speaker comes up.
18. Create Moments Of Magic
A polished M.C. will spark memorable interactions with attendees.
19. Physically Re-Energize The Audience
Your emcee can boost the room energy with stretch breaks and icebreakers.
20. Handle Announcements Like They Matter—They Do
The master of ceremonies must keep the audience informed.
That’s Our Show!
21. Be A Clock Watcher
Your host should help you run an on-time meeting.
22. Handle The Unexpected
A pro M.C. can improvise and handle any glitches.
23. Have A Trick Up Your Sleeve
A veteran emcee can stretch when needed via a story, joke, or special bit.
24. Keep The Program On Purpose
The M.C. should keep the audience focused on the main goal of the gathering.
25. Give Them A Great Time... By Having One Yourself
Your host is the face of your event and should be seen enjoying the program.
26. Hold Their Interest
The M.C. should maintain enthusiasm for the final part of the program.
27. Recap A Remarkable Meeting
The emcee can remind attendees of the great experience they just enjoyed.
28. Finish Strong By Pouring It On
Your host needs to bring the meeting to a climax and close.
29. Thank Them…Thank Them Very Much
The M.C. should acknowledge the speakers, sponsors and event organizers.
30. Send Them Out Smiling
The master of ceremonies should dismiss the audience in a warm way.