Going, going, gone. Auctions can work as successful fundraising vehicles, but their success can be limited if they are not done right.
In her book “A Higher Bid,” Kathy Kingston recommends seeing auctions as a source of ongoing revenue rather than being gone once they are over. She wrote further that success in an auction is right there, in the word AUCTIONS:
A. Retain an experienced Auctioneer. Professionals cost money, but Kingston calls using an unpaid volunteer rather than a pro a case of tripping over a thousand-dollar bill to pick up pennies.
U. Select Unique auction items. The best auction items are ones that sell for more than their value.
C. Cultivate auction guests. Create a special team that focuses only on getting the right people in the room
T. Get the Timing right. This means putting all the elements of a program in the best order to support fundraising goals. This includes food style choices and the number of items to be auctioned.
I. Inspire guests to action. Showcase the organization’s mission and inspire people to action.
O. Achieve Outcomes. The ratio to measure is the value of an auction item to a high bid.
N. Make sure No bidder is left behind. Structure an event in a way that gets every guest to participate at a level meaningful to them.
S. Orchestrate the Sounds and lights. Professional sound and lighting are critical.