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►Mobile Bidding Considerations

July 7, 2015 - Author: Jenelle Taylor, CAI BAS
photo of auction display

Auction Bidding is Enhanced by Displays

Today a client asked me

“Quick question – mobile bidding. Does it enhance an auction? Have you seen increased participation (read larger bids) utilizing mobile bidding?”

and I replied:

 Good question!

Typically mobile only makes sense when there are a lot of attendees, a lot of auction items (100+) and the silent auction revenue is $30,000+.

Pros:

IF people use it, they can set max bids and not have to either log back in or walk to a table – most mobile bidding systems can just continue to bid for them up to a set maximum.

Auction displays can take less space

Everyone can see all the auction items if they wish (on a device) without walking around

You can close the bidding later

Cons:

Typically costs $3000-$5000+

Either you have to pay for one of the mobile company’s staff to be on site (could add $1000), or you’re 100% responsible for any kinks or problems. Unless you have a savvy tech person, this could add significant stress.

It can be hard to get people to engage in mobile bidding for several reasons:

 ~Some require downloading an app, though some just have a web address people key in

~Some say mobile is less social, since people move around less and must spend time staring at their phones

~Requires either than people use their cell phone data plans (and battery life) or the club has a reliable wi-fi connection that’s open to everyone; some mobile systems rely on wi-fi and can get bogged down or crash

Results:

Whether or not mobile adds revenue above and beyond the cost of using the technology is a source of heated debate! Just a few weeks ago auctioneers from around the country shared mixed reviews in an online forum. When the technology works as promised,  is adopted by the attendees and gets used, certainly there are benefits to being able to shop from anywhere in the venue and not have to physically revisit a bid sheet.

On the other side, paper silent auctions have worked for decades by generating that person-to-person, last-minute competitive bidding atmosphere, especially when your professional auctioneer is making announcements and making the auction closings fun for everyone in the room.

What mobile definitely does is eliminate the need to clerk, record, tally or key in silent auction purchases once bidding closes, and for some groups, that fact alone makes the technology worth several thousand dollars, just to eliminate checkout!

 There are 10-12 major mobile bidding companies nationwide, all scrambling for footing and market share. All have demos you can do or samples you can view.

Industry software leader Greater Giving has great educational info with just about everything you need to know about mobile here.

Because of the many pros and cons (and how those affect your overall revenue/schedule/logistics), it’s something you should ask your professional auctioneer about as early as possible.

Like this great client of mine did! Thanks for the question, Sara 🙂

Categories: Better Buyers, Consulting, Event Logistics, Silent auctions, Technology

►WOW! Does your auction team look like this?

May 1, 2014 - Author: Jenelle Taylor, CAI BAS
photo of Gala Gal and team

Your Auctioneer and Bid Spotters can look like this!

I am so thankful to these four lovely ladies for joining me a few weeks ago for a fantastic live auction and scholarship Fund-a-Need for the 18th annual Starry Starry Night!

All 5 of us are Florida-licensed auctioneers with specialized training in fundraising, and they did an awesome job working the crowd as Bid Spotters for me.

Would your big event benefit from an all-female team?

Your auction doesn’t have to look like everyone else’s. It can look like this 🙂

Categories: About GALA GAL, Auctioneers, Live Auctions, Other Money Makers

►Boost Your Benefit Auction – NEW Book!

August 19, 2013 - Author: Jenelle Taylor, CAI BAS
Cover Photo of new book Boost Your Benefit Auction

Advice for Charity Auctions from 50 Fundraising Auctioneers – New Book

I’ve been busy!

This has been a crazy summer, but this weekend I shipped the first copies of my 4th book!

Wow, was it a great project – challenging, fun, and an awesome end result.

I am so excited to bring this book to market BECAUSE…

there’s seriously never been anything like it.

50 auctioneer contributors.

42 auction companies from across the country.

More than 112 fundraising tips. (I stopped counting at 131!)

ORDER your copy for $29.95 at one of the following secure links:

Books and Seminars for Charities here:http://tinyurl.com/Solutions4Charities

Or (for auctioneers) Resources for Auctioneers here:http://tinyurl.com/Auctioneers-Boost
These shortened URL’s connect to the secure payment processor hosted by GreaterGiving.

 

Categories: Auctioneers, Better Buyers, Charity, Consulting, Event Logistics, Grab Bag, Live Auctions, Other Money Makers, Raffles/Chance Drawings, Silent auctions, Technology

►Planning Your Fund-a-Need Appeal

July 1, 2013 - Author: Jenelle Taylor, CAI BAS
Photo of GALA GAL Jenelle Taylor

Fund a Need donation appeal, 5 steps to success

Structuring a Successful Appeal

 

Determine your Fund-a-Need goals. 

    
Do you envision presenting the audience with one group goal, such as building the playground or raising enough to buy the $250,000 piece of hospital equipment? This strategy has the advantage of helping everyone in the audience feel able to contribute, regardless of amount, and works well with handheld bidding technology. Alternatively, some appeals promote several specific levels for donations, and tie these to the mission by explaining what those dollars can provide. For instance, $2500 furnishes a room in our shelter; $1000 provides legal service to a battered woman; $500 provides transportation assistance; $250 funds clothing and necessities.

Prepare the presentation.                            

In order to inspire giving, you need to communicate on an emotional level. Some groups show a video of their programs in action, and others invite a recipient to speak. The most important part of your message, however, must be a compelling story. Statistics rarely motivate people to give, but genuine emotion can. Take note, however, that even the most tragic story must be delivered with a hopeful resolution; your supporters want to feel uplifted by the transformations your services provide.

 

Let people know you will be asking.        

In the weeks leading up to your appeal, ask for commitments from your best supporters. It helps your audience tremendously when a bid card goes up in the air as soon as the auctioneer asks for money. Having donors already identified and ready to start the giving encourages the rest of the audience to join in.

 

Use matching incentives to boost funds.

Ask your major sponsors to offer a challenge match if a goal for dollars raised or number of participants is reached (“ABC Company will donate $10,000 when we raise $10,000”).

Know how you will track the donations.

Will the auctioneer call out bid numbers? Is there an envelope on the table? Will volunteers be coming around?

Categories: Consulting, Event Logistics, Other Money Makers

The State of Silent Auctions

June 19, 2012 - Author: Jenelle Taylor, CAI BAS

Just a quick link to an awesome survey summary put out last week by Bidding for Good, the online charity auction giant: What Non-Profits and Online Bidders Say About Silent Auctions

  1. It’s an 8-page PDF, so it’s easy for everyone to open, share and save.
  2. It’s got tons of graphics, so it’s easy to scan and understand.
  3. Lot’s of great takeaways; my highlights below: (more…)

Categories: Silent auctions, Technology