12 ways to build on your fundraising auction

Special event auctions can be big for fundraising, but somebody thinks they can be much, much bigger.

In her book “A Higher Bid” Kathy Kingston argues that that looking at fundraising events, such as auctions, as silos, one-day events rather than year-long fundraising opportunities is a way of undercutting an organization’s success.

In other words, an auction isn’t over when the last gavel is banged down.

Kingston urges seeing events through a philanthropy model, rather than a transaction model. Using events to build relationships rather than just to grab money and run has the following benefits, Kingston says:

Adds an upbeat, exciting dimension to on organization’s fundraising capabilities;

Maximizes staff and volunteer effort;

Creates pride and momentum within the organization;

Generates increased awareness within the community;

Educates the public about the cause;

Encourages businesses to become part of the organization’s constituency;

Helps merchants attract new customers, as a result of exposure to the auction;

Binds members and volunteers to the organization;

Offers attendees double the fun: buy at auction and support a great cause;

Continues to bring in money long after the event is over;

Broadens the organization’s financial base by attracting new donor sources; and,

Makes everyone a winner: donors, purchasers, the organization and the clients it serves.