Benefit silent auctions are a good way to increase the funds raised for your cause. A lot goes into organizing a silent auction, especially if it’s going to be a major part of your event. Keep things as simple as possible to make it easy for everyone.
Provide an unique identifier number to every bidder: One of the things we noticed from doing silent auctions is to have those that want to participate sign up with the volunteer that’s managing the silent auctions. Have the volunteer take their name and phone number down and give them a bidder number, which they can use to place their bids. This solves two problems – one, it avoids the problem of trying to decipher bad writing and phone# if they’re the winner and you need to contact them. Two, it avoids the problem of friends seeing each other’s names on the bidding sheet and not wanting to bid against them, bidder number takes away any kind of biases that may be felt by bidders.
Use pre-filled bidder sheets: Keep the bidding process as easy as possible so your guests are able to bid on as many items as they want in the shortest amount of time possible. And one of the ways to keep it really simple is to have pre-filled amounts in the bid sheet, so all the bidder needs to do is review the form and pick the amount to bid and write their name or bid number depending on what system you’re using. This helps your guests avoid any mental math.
The Own It Now step: Add a Own It Now step for the items you think will be popular with your guest list.· Most people that go for the own it now set are doing so to contribute to the fundraiser and in the spirit of fun and supporting the cause, so don’t be afraid to set it above the retail value, people set it at anywhere from 25-50% depending on the type of product it is.
“Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn.” – Benjamin Franklin
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