Children's Cancer Institute Australia's Diamond Ball celebrated 19 years of supporting childhood cancer research this year and the event was a truly inspiring occasion. We had the honour of working with the CCIA staff and Vanilla Bean Events to facilitate the silent auction.
I asked Jana Perrino at CCIA, to share some of her experiences of GalaBid along with learnings and tips that would be helpful to other organisations. Here's what she said:
"This was the second year we used GalaBid. We opened our auction one week before the event and I felt that that worked really well. It meant the bidding was well underway before the event began and guests were familiar with the system by the time they arrived. Some guests even brought along their own mini iPads.
Because the night's so busy it was great comfort for me to know that the GalaBid team were there and looking after the silent auction. Their support is fantastic and the preparation before the event was a breeze.
We also ran a pledge drive this year which was a great success. Guests could make donations via the system or on paper and our team then delivered a flashing badge to each donor. People wore the badges proudly and the tables were ablaze with colour. Next year we plan to encourage guests to also donate through GalaBid once the silent auction has closed.
As we did last year we issued volunteers with iPads but the vast majority of guests happily used their own phones. We also had a phone charging station located at the GalaBid desk which was simple to set up and about 10 guests made use of it at some point during the evening.
Giving people the option to pay for the items they won directly on their phone at the end of the silent auction meant our checkout desk was really quiet. More than half of our winners made use of this service.
In terms of other recommendations and learnings I think showing the leaderboard on the big screens as much as possible is important and along with having MC to spruik any items where the bidding activity is low. crowdcomms are planning to create a video which can be used to pre-brief volunteers. I think this will really help us next year as our volunteers have a lot of information about the event to take in during the onsite briefing.
We've just locked in our date for next year's event and I'm looking forward to working with the GalaBid team again then."