Running a fundraising event with a silent auction is a LOT of work. The auction alone means sourcing prizes, marketing the event, booking an auctioneer, running the auction, collecting money and distributing the prizes. Are the returns worth the effort? While we know how much work goes into making a silent auction a success, we believe that the returns justify the work. Here's why silent auctions will remain a key element of any fundraiser's revenue raising strategy:
Silent auction prizes are mostly sourced from donors and sponsors. It can take a lot of door knocking to drum up a decent range of quality items, but every penny raised selling them through a silent auction is straight "profit". You may choose to sell certain items on a consignment basis. This means a third party provides you with an auction item e.g. a holiday. Consignment items are generally prizes fundraisers find difficult to source or provide themselves. If you sell the item the provider will take a percentage of the sale â€“ if you don't sell the item there's no charge. The benefit is that consignment prizes can be highly sought after and generate significant amounts of revenue.
While your cause may have plenty of supporters, translating that sentiment into donations can be a challenge. People are busy and have many elements competing for their time and money. A silent auction focuses supporters on the cause and the need for monetary support. An auction event gives you a platform to reiterate the importance of the cause and why it needs funds. Citing specific programs that will directly benefit from auction funds gives supporters a concrete reason to open their wallets!
Unlike sponsored sporting challenges or activities, a fundraising event is an opportunity to give a little back to your supporters. People appreciate a show of gratitude. There's nothing like a dedicated evening with good food and company to make your supporters feel like they matter. Reinforce that feeling of appreciation by making a speech that acknowledges the efforts of your supporters and how much you value their contribution.
A fantastic benefit of modern silent auctions is they needn't be restricted to the event. The right provider can get your silent auction online. Digital bidding means your auction can be in full swing before the event even starts. It also means supporters (from around the world) who can't attend the event itself can participate in the auction. Social media not only promotes the auction but also acts as an additional means of marketing your organisation and the great causes it supports.