Benefit Fundraising Event Tips for Charity Auctions by Impact Auctions.
Auctioneer, Ron Hitzel and I have been lucky enough to travel all over the United States doing charity events. We have compiled 15 key tips we would like organizers to be aware when planning the event. We believe these will be impacting points to improve fundraising events.
1. Mission Statement
Your guests need to understand the organization’s mission statement, how much money is needed to accomplish the goals set, and how the money will be spent once it is raised.
2. Find a Professional Auctioneer That Has an Auctioneer’s License That Specializes In Non-Profit Events.
A Benefit Auctioneer that specializes in non-profit live auctions is a must. Benefit events are totally different than an auctioneer at a car auction. A benefit auctioneer can control the crowd, get attention from the guest, play up important items, and be a real entertainer. Fast talking auctioneers can intimidate the crowd into NOT bidding. A benefit auctioneer slows down their chant and engages the audience into raising their hands more often.
3. Professional Assistant Auctioneers Should Accompany Stage Auctioneer. (Bid Spotters)
An assistant auctioneer is someone who stands in the crowd looking for bidders. Impact Auctions promises that our assistant auctioneers are truly highly trained and can tell a wave from an auction bid. They are mini auctioneers at the tables and will make a huge difference to your live auction funds raised.
Impact Auctions says to place descriptions or a short list in the invitations or mailings before the event, so that people can plan ahead of time to purchase them at the actual event. Social Media is a great way to make sure every guest knows what they can win and will produce more revenue.
5. Programs Should List All Your Items
It’s very important to have a detailed list or descriptions of the items being sold in the auction. Make sure the live auction items are visible on a big screen when the live auction is going on so the guests know what they are bidding on during the live auction.
6. “Unique” Experiences And Trips Sell
You want unique items that you can’t buy anywhere else. Items of an “experience” can be priceless – far better than something with a tangible value. What’s the experience of a locker room visit at Carolina’s Panthers team’s next game – priceless!
7. Group Silent Auction Items into Theme Baskets. Visual of the Items Being Sold Is Important.
Display smaller items at your silent auction in baskets with a theme. Limit silent auction items to a ratio of one item to every four guests.
8. Close Silent Auction In Sections.
Closing the silent auction can be done in sections or in tables. This is done very easily if you have mobil bidding. Close one table before dinner is served. Close another table before the live auction. Remember, the last five minutes in any silent auction is the most important. Have your MC announcing the close out times. (which may be the auctioneer) No checking out before the live auction has ended. People may not win an item in the live auction, so let them bid again on silent auction items to close the night out. Check out our free EBOOK for more ideas.
9. Auctioneer and Team Should Be Mingling In the Crowd.
Having the auctioneer and the assistants working the crowd before hand talking to the guest about the live auction items is a great way to get questions answered that the guest may have.
10. Good Lighting
Bring up the house lights and kill the stage spotlights when the live auction begins. Impact Auctions have attended auctions where there was very low or even no lighting for the auctioneer to see the bids. Lighting is also very important on the Silent Auction items.
11. Have the Auctioneer Test The Sound System Before The Crowd Arrives.
Rent a professional sound system or borrow one. He/she needs a hand held wireless microphone and a back one just in case.
12. Live Auction’s Items should be Strategically Placed in the Auction.
Do this by having the highest priced item 3/4 of the way into the list.
People will begin to leave at 9pm. Larger numbers will leave at 9:30. By 10pm, you room may become a ghost town. Watch your timing. People will start to leave by 9pm. Have the live auction early in the program or while the guests are eating.
14. SHUT THE BAR’S DOWN during Live Auction.
This is one of the most valuable tips you will ever receive. Why give your guest reasons to leave the live auction while it is in process.
15. Sponsorships for Trips.
Impact Auctions suggests getting sponsorships for trips. * This is discussed one-on-one with your free consultation from Impact Auctions.
Just like all areas of fundraising, there are some best practices that help you figure out where to take shortcuts and where you need to make investments.
Impact Auctions has a free consultation service to help non-profit organizations make the best decisions that will IMPACT your fundraising event.