Researching Your Topic
There are a number of ways to find information on a particular topic—from talking with meeting planners and industry leaders to keeping up with the latest industry trends.
An excellent way to determine your best topic is to study the issues faced by the actual meeting planners (and the organizations that employ them). Some can speak at length about the topics that would interest their members. Many a successful topic has sprung from a meeting planner's request to a speaker to provide a certain type of program. In addition, periodically some of the leading organizations in the meeting planning industry, among them Meeting Professionals International, survey their members to ascertain what types of challenges they are facing.
If you're a little reticent to tap a meeting planner, an easy way to find out what's of interest to the members of an organization is to ask for their brochure, data, or a flyer from the previous year's convention. Alternatively, you could find information on the organization's Web site. The content doesn't change so quickly as to make this year's interests completely different from last year's. You can also request: