31 Live Auction Ideas That Are Sure to Make a Splash

Posted by Ian Lauth on Apr 2, 2015 9:45:00 AM

Over 30 Live Auction Ideas that are sure to make a splash!

Live auctions are big money makers. They also offer great entertainment value for a fundraising event, dazzling audiences and building excitement as patrons compete for once-in-a-lifetime auction items. 

A successful auction requires awe-inspiring items, which can make coming up with ideas for your live auction a little difficult.   

We thought it would be fun to compile a list of the best live auction ideas we've come across, drawing from the thousands of fundraising events we work with each and every year.

Some of the auction item ideas we've heard were so great that we developed them into our own no-risk travel packages, a few of which we’ve included in this list. Many of the other ideas, though, are too specific, extreme or difficult to scale for us to be able to develop into a workable charity fundraising package. 

We hope this list of actual live auction items from across the country will help inspire your auction committee to reach for the stars during the procurement process. And hey – if it doesn’t work out, you can always reserve one of our incredible Experiences for free and with no-risk to your nonprofit. Simply create a Suitcase or schedule a free consultation to speak with an expert.

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Topics: event-production, top3-event-fundraising

The Ultimate List of 100+ Silent Auction Item Ideas

Posted by Ian Lauth on Mar 10, 2015 12:05:00 PM



Are you planning a silent auction to raise money at your next special event? Most Nonprofit fundraising events aren't complete without at least a few tables filled with donated items for your supporters to consider.

Offering silent auction items not only raises more money for your cause, it gives guests something to do when they first arrive at your event. Your donors can mingle, socialize and sip cocktails while perusing the auction tables.

Over the course of your event, this can develop into a fun and competitive environment as the time to close the silent auction draws near. 

For a silent auction to be truly effective, it has to include unique and interesting items that excite guests and encourage them to start thinking about how much money they want to spend in support of your cause. 

Let's face it: Sometimes it's tough to come up with good ideas for silent auction items. You need items that are both easy to procure and valuable enough to bring in some cash; otherwise, it's not worth the immense amount of time and effort it takes to procure, set-up, manage and then fulfill these items.

Bundle Smaller Donations to Create Extraordinary Auction ItemsYou want to obtain and bundle together items that will generate a good rate of return so you can maximize profits and minimize work. For example, two movie passes won't bring in more than $20, but a package that includes movie tickets, a babysitter (include pizza for the kids!) and a restaurant gift card that is branded as "Ultimate Date Night!" can easily bring in over $100. 

The best ideas for silent auction items will suit your audience, work with your event theme, and have a high potential for income generation. 

Here is a list of 100+ silent auction item ideas to help your procurement team get their brainstorming session off the ground. (If you like what you see, click here to download over 400 ideas for unique items to include in your next auction!)

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Topics: event-production, top3-event-fundraising, auction item ideas

3-Step Guide for Setting Minimum Starting Bids on Charity Auction Items

Posted by Jeff Cova on Jul 1, 2014 11:18:00 AM

Charity Auction Items - 3 Step Guide for setting starting bid prices

Setting the minimum starting bid at a low, fair price can help your Nonprofit raise more money per item. Here are some guidelines for setting a minimum bid that will attract and encourage more donors to participate at your next charity auction.  

1. Determine Fair Market Value (FMV)

In the auction industry, the fair market value (FMV) describes the estimated value of an item based on similar products in the market and what the buyer is willing to pay. In order to set a reasonable starting bid for each of your charity auction items, you first have to determine each item's FMV.

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Topics: event-production, charity auction bidding, charity auction items, top3-event-fundraising, consignment

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Meet Winston & Winnie, the Winspire Twins

Winston & Winnie love to help Nonprofits raise money for amazing causes. They also love to travel and have a bucket list of amazing Experiences they are determined to complete in their lifetime. Winspire News is the result of this shared passion, offering fundraising advice, industry news and insight into charity fundraising with travel.