Live Auctions 101

Non- Profit Live Auctions – Definition, How they Works and Success Tips

What is Non-Profit Live Auction?

A non-profit live auction is a fundraising method where bidders gather in a chosen location to bid for the various items available on sale. Unlike silent auctions, live auctions involve announcing the highest bid by an auctioneer. Bidders are given a chance to bid again until the highest bidder takes the item on sale.

How Does a Non Profit Live Auction Work

During this type of an auction, the different items solicited from donors are organized in lot numbers. Each lot number represents a certain item. These items could include goods, services, gifts or any other item. The attendees of a non-profit live auction often receive a catalog, which contains all the items that are on offer (description of the item, condition, appraised value, donor) and their lot numbers. Furthermore, bidders are given a paddle to use during the bidding process.

When the bidding process begins, the auctioneer will then pick each of the lot numbers systematically and announce it starting with the lowest bid. Interested bidders will then hold up their paddles and bid up the item. After announcing a 1-2-3 countdown, the item will be awarded to the highest bidder.

How to Succeed in Non-Profit Live Auctions

Like any other non-profit auction, your success will be influenced by a myriad of things. These steps should be part of your auction blueprint and include the following:

1. Have Goals You Want to Achieve

Before you organize a non-profit live auction, you need to state your non-profit charity goal. Your goal is one of the most important steps towards success. From the objectives, you should then come up with steps that will make you realize them. If you want to raise $10,000 for your charity organization, have this as one of the objectives.

2. Understand Your Audience

Know your audience and understand whom your fundraising efforts will target. If most of your event audience is male and over 60 years old, there is most likely no need to offer handmade cookie jars. Most likely, they'd rather bid on bbq and golf equipment and fishing rods. There is also no sense in auctioning toys to people with no kids.

3. Market Your Event

Using the various channels of communication such as online marketing, press releases, social networking and various others, ensure you create as much publicity as possible. Furthermore, ensure people have as much information as possible, including information on items.

4. Ensure Live Bidding Event is the Best

When organizing a non-profit live auction event, ensure that the actual bidding event is entertaining as well. To minimize the cost of organizing a live event, find auctioneers who will volunteer to support your cause. They should be lively and passionate about their work.

5. Careful Seeking Items for Sale

Items of sentimental value are always a hit. Items such as photos of famous people, handcrafted items, and items used by celebrities are most likely going to sell well. Involve your whole team in soliciting the right kind of items bearing in mind the kind of people you will be targeting.

6. The cause of the Auction

When organizing a non-profit live auction, make sure the cause of the auction is appealing to many people. Many donors and bidders will be willing to participate during the event if they get the conviction of the cause of your auction. The significance of the cause to the bidders can mean much more than the value attached to the item.

To conclude, you should also come up with means of retaining most of the people who finally attend your live auction. Take their contacts and inquire if they would wish to get updates on any similar events.