Screen Shot 2014-09-30 at 09.31.10Whether you regularly host paper based auctions, live auctions and fundraising galas or you’re looking at organising your first fundraising event, Team iBid have helped charities #RaiseMore for over five years now and we are here to help you too. In the last 12 months alone we have supported 650 events raising over £20million for a range of global charities and therefore, literally re-written the silent auction text book! With all this experience and knowledge under our belt, we always advise our clients on best practice options, tips and tricks to ultimately raise more money on the night.

We appreciate that every event is different and therefore some of the below may not apply to you and your events, but we hope you find the majority, or even one or two, useful.

1. All eyes on your auction:

Do not run the silent auction during post dinner entertainment (e.g. brands, DJ’s etc.) as barely anyone will get back to the table to bid once they are on the dance floor. We typically suggest to close the silent auction after the live auction, so that you still have guests’ attention while they are seated.

2. Don’t be shy of announcements:

Be sure to allow enough time during the night for announcements about the auctions – introduce, remind and conclude. Make follow up announcements throughout – it works and it helps raise more.

3. Ensure a brilliant MC:

Don’t underestimate the role of an MC. To keep the event moving, communicate key messages to guests and help build the atmosphere for a superb fundraising event. They are worth their weight in gold!

4. Offer something different:

There are lots of fundraising events happening throughout the year and you want to stand out, so provide something different that will get guests talking and coming back for more next year. Different style food, cool photography booths, brilliant interactive technology and acts, etc.

5. Who is in the room?

When sourcing lot items try to consider your audience and the demographic in the room as best as possible and not what you (the client) would like to bid for. Target your audience with lot items they would be interested in!

6. Offer a wide range of auction items:

Don’t narrow your fundraising potential by only having memorabilia or experiences. In our experience the best events from a fundraising perspective include a wide range, from holidays and experiences to signed pieces and art.

7. Quality not quantity:

Focus on sourcing quality items rather than a larger quantity. It’s a fine balance but turning the auction list into a ‘shopping list’ will not raise you more money, but limiting the number of items to increase the bids on each item will.

8. Use the leaderboard:

Try and show the leaderboards on the screens as much as possible and also ask the MC to really push the system and encourage competitive bidding.

9. Think about a live pledge moment:

Remind your guests of exactly where their money will go and what difference their donation will make. Live pledging on tablets enables your guests to easily donate throughout your fundraising event and will be displayed on an instant leaderboard.

10. Organise your payment collection:

Build a time into the end of your event to allow sufficient time for collecting the money from your guests. It’s so much easier when they are sat at their tables rather than on the dance floor!

So there we go. Ten of our top tips which probably appear simple but in fact are often over looked.

This guest blog was written by the team at iBid events a specialist provider of technology to raise funds at charitable events