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When you think of a motivational speaker, you might only assume there’s one kind. The motivating kind. But, in fact, I can break it down even further.

Best Types Of Motivational Speakers

  1. Motivational speakers are often professionals
  2. Opt for an inspirational speaker
  3. Trainers often can go into a speaking career
  4. Industry leaders make for reputable speakers
  5. Virtual motivational speakers take their craft online
  6. A keynote speaker sets the event stage
  7. The humorous motivational speaker can take it to the next level
  8. Entertainers can use exceptional speaking skills to be great motivators

Here are eight types of motivational speakers that are worth knowing about.

See Related: 12 Tips For Becoming The Best Motivational Speaker

#1. Motivation Comes From Professional Speakers

When planning an upcoming event, a critical part of the process is knowing what kind of speaker to get. After all, that’s the entire foundation of your event!

Event planners often opt for motivational speakers. Motivating speakers really know how to connect with an audience through the art of the spoken word. They are skilled in public speaking, and their message is often quite impactful.

The mark of a great motivational speaker is originality and authenticity. Their message needs to be unique, and their delivery needs to be distinctive to them.

Motivating crowds of people is no easy task. But professional speakers know how to utilize exceptional delivery and appropriate words to make it possible.

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What Makes A Motivating Professional Speaker?

That brings us to our first type of motivational speaker. Motivational speakers are often professionals in whatever topic they’re speaking on. And these professionals are often hired to enlighten the audience on critical and relevant information.

They are responsible for entertaining, encouraging, and educating their audience. Though their specific roles can vary quite a bit, the end goal is the same. They want their audience to walk away feeling motivated and inspired!

But professional speakers aren’t just anyone. They have substantial personal experience and outstanding credentials that make them true professionals. They are credible, reputable, and logical.

And as a professional corporate emcee, I know firsthand the lifelong dedication that goes into being a speaker. At the end of the day, it’s incredibly rewarding and heartwarming to see how your words can really make a difference in people’s lives.

#2. Opt For An Inspirational Speaker

Motivational speakers and inspirational speakers aren’t the same. Though they are pretty similar, there is a significant difference that you should know if you’re considering getting a keynote speaker for your next event.

In general, motivational speakers are more focused on the “here and now,” and they work to motivate their audience in the short term. But inspirational speakers are more concerned with reaching their audience deeper to form a more intimate connection.

Inspiration has to do with the “why” of things. Inspirational speakers pose meaningful questions with a strong message like:

  • Why is this your goal?
  • What do you hope to accomplish with it?
  • How do you want to get there?

Thoughtful reflection is key for inspirational speakers when it comes to connecting with their audience.

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#3. Trainers Who Become Speakers

I’ve already covered the fact that speakers are often professionals and experts in their craft. But there’s one type of motivational speaker that has a powerful way of showing it.

We’ve all heard the saying that if you know something well enough, you should be able to teach it to others. With this saying in mind, one of the most distinctive types of motivational speakers is coaches or trainers.

But still, this is a broad category. Let’s break it down a bit more.

  • Business coach: A business coach is a type of speaker who specifically deals with members of the business world. This can be business owners or clients looking to find new strategies to grow their brand, company, or organization.
    Motivational speeches give them a new way to discover strengths and weaknesses.
  • Product trainer: Often, individuals or organizations have a product they want to sell or promote. But this process isn’t always easy! Product trainers use motivating tactics and industry expertise to help their audience reach the next level.
  • Public speaking coach: Simply put, motivational speaking is a form of public speaking. So the keynote speakers you have for your next company event are likely the best people to coach others toward speaking success.
  • Corporate trainer: Job and employee development are essential aspects of any business. And often, corporate trainers are hired to help educate employees or business leaders on their job-specific duties.

Trainers and coaches, as motivational speakers, can often enlighten and inspire people with their knowledge and educational skills. And a motivational speaker is often one of the best people to teach others valuable insights.

#4. Industry Leaders Can Provide Excellent Insight And Knowledge

Sometimes, speakers can be generalists, and their primary asset is that they can inspire and motivate scores of people with a solid and clear message. But industry speakers take that and bring it to the next level.

Sometimes, a simple motivational speech won’t cut it. People need practical and relative knowledge to make positive changes in their life!

And industry leaders are the speakers that can help make that change. They often have specific personal experiences in a particular field that they then utilize to reach their audience. 

Public speakers often have a previous background of real-world experience that they use to succeed as motivational speakers. For example, someone with previous experience in sales can use that to motivate and inspire a group of hungry salesmen!

People can speak on any subject. But the people who are already well-established in that field might have the upper hand when motivating others in that industry.

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#5. Virtual Motivational Speakers Amidst A Virtual World

Since Covid, it seems everything has an online counterpart. And this new world has made it much easier for motivational speakers to reach the right audience with the click of a button!

Virtual motivational speakers can be anyone, but just online. As a result, people like thought leaders and educational speakers can bring their talents and skills to a much wider audience and motivate even more people than before.

Virtual events have made it much easier for people to indulge in the art of inspiration and corporate entertainment. And at the end of the day, finding the perfect virtual speaker is the foundation of it all!

Bonus: 8 Ways To Create A Positive Workplace Culture

#6. A Keynote Speaker Can Change The Game

Speakers can play many different roles at an event. Often, people host or invite guest speakers who give smaller talks. But the star of the show will be the keynote speaker.

The keynote speaker is the one who will headline the conference or event. They’re often the most well-known and established speakers on the roster and have influential names.

Keynote speeches can be about broad topics that everyone in the crowd can relate to. And the guest speakers are those who will then discuss more specific issues.

It’s simple for a keynote speaker to incorporate inspiration into their speech. And that’s what makes them so motivating!

#7. The Humorous Motivational Speaker

Every motivational speaker needs a few tools in their back pocket. For starters, they need to have solid communication skills and be comfortable speaking in front of a crowd.

That much should go without saying.

But another skill that’s invaluable to motivational speakers is humor. The best way to motivate a crowd is by making them laugh!

Laughter and humor play an integral part in the connections we make with others. Simply put, humor is a fantastic way to communicate and arouse emotion. 

Motivational speakers often use humor as a way to drive their point home. I do the same thing each time I give a corporate speech, and I can say it’s effective.

Seminar leader personal development keynote speakers keynote speakers different types organization expertise events life deliver audience power motivational#8. Entertainers Always Make Exceptional Motivational Speakers

People don’t like boring speeches. As soon as it starts feeling less like a conversation and more like a lecture, people turn off to whatever is being said.

The best motivational speakers need to be entertaining. They need to know how to “wow” an audience and leave them wanting more. And there are many ways to do this!

But the key to it all is authenticity and originality. Motivational speakers with a unique way of entertaining a crowd are the ones whose message sticks around.

Keep Reading: Why Employee Empowerment Matters

Adam Christing has been called “The Tom Brady of emcees.” He has hosted more than 1,000 company meetingsspecial eventsgala celebrations, and more. He is the author of several books and founder of For more event tips, follow Adam Christing on InstagramFacebookPinterestLinkedIn, and YouTube.