WINSPIRE NEWS

Your destination for insight into the world of event fundraising and charity auctions.

Does Hiring a Professional Fundraising Auctioneer Really Make Sense? [VIDEO]

Posted by Summy Lau
Video_screencap.png

At live auctions, who is the most important person in the room?

We believe it's your auctioneer. He or she is the "quarterback" of the night, guiding the program and extracting as much money from guests as possible. As a result, choosing whether or not to hire a professional fundraising auctioneer for your fundraising auction is one of the most important decisions you'll make in the planning process.

Check out this video from our partner and Benefit Auctioneer Specialist Danny Hooper as he explains why hiring a professional fundraising auctioneer not only makes sense—it can mean the difference between an OK event and one that brings in record profits. 

As mentioned in the video, not all nonprofits realize how critical it is to hire an auctioneer trained to handle the unique needs of a charity auction. In the past, auctioneers with a specialty in the for-profit sector would donate their time to chant during the live auction portion of a charity event.

Now as more nonprofits turn to event fundraising, auctions need a host with the ability to motivate the audience to donate beyond the live auction.

Here's what we mean.

When a typical (non-fundraising) auctioneer steps onto the stage to sell an item—be it livestock, real estate, automobiles, art, heavy equipment and more—they have just one goal in mind: How much money can I get for each item?

However, a fundraising auctioneer is required to think differently. After looking around the room and assessing the crowd, the question they ask is: How much money is in the room, and how can I extract the greatest amount possible?

Read "5 Questions to Ask Before Hiring a Benefit Auctioneer."

To do that, benefit auctioneers employ a diverse "toolkit" of skills and techniques that simply aren't used in other kinds of auctions.

Fundraising AuctioneerFor example, "Regular live auctioneers want to conduct the Live Auction portion of an event very, very quickly," Danny notes. "With benefit auctioneers, we slow things down. We throw in some entertainment, we work hard to engage the audience, and we use all kinds of strategies and different revenue opportunities."

One of the most profitable opportunities unique to benefit auctioneers is their ability to deftly propose a Fund-a-Need (donation toward a specific program or expense of the nonprofit), Fund-an-Item (underwriting a big-ticket item purchased on consignment, like travel packages) or general cash appeal.

"It's tough to stand and ask people to simply put their hands up and pledge cash," asserts Danny. It requires expertly reading and engaging the crowd, then finding the perfect opportunities to capitalize on momentum. "Fortunately, we've got that skill set."

For help finding a great auctioneer in your area, contact a Fundraising Specialist today. Our trusted auctioneer partners have years of experience maximizing revenue from consignment items.

Besides the Live Auction, other unique fundraising strategies Danny specializes in include Wildcard™ auctions, Legacy auctions, Sealed-bid auctions and more. You can learn about these different strategies and more in our 2-part webinar series.

Watch part one, "10 Deadly Sins of Charity Auctions (and how to prevent them)", here.

Watch part two, "Generate Record Profits at Your Next Fundraiser", here.

Bottom line: Hiring a professional fundraising auctioneer is never a cost; it's an investment that will pay incredible returns. Leaving the job to a non-benefit or volunteer auctioneer, however, could end up being your auction's greatest expense.

Winspire's Top 10 Best Selling Experiences

Event Production, Benefit Auctioneer
Summy Lau
Summy Lau
As Fundraising Editor, Summy brings hands-on experience in nonprofit development, event fundraising, publishing, copywriting and design to Winspire News. She creates blog content, infographics, templates, eBooks and other resources to help fundraising professionals and volunteers exceed their fundraising goals. Her two favorite perks of working at Winspire: hearing nonprofit success stories and dreaming of new bucket list destinations.

Related Posts

7 Fun & Unique Summer Fundraising Ideas

Don't let the summer fundraising slump get you down Summer is the time for us all to take a breather between the chaos of spring and fall gala season. However, we know for busy nonprofits, the need for fundraising never quite goes away, even as donors go on vacation and the team gets a well-deserved break. 

Update: An Enhanced User Experience for Winspire Fundraising Software

If it's been awhile since you logged on to your Winspire Fundraising account, next time you start a new campaign you may notice the set up experience looks a little different. We've made some changes, with you in mind, to our experience set up. Users will now be able to better distinguish between fundraising campaigns for specific causes, and one-time events!

Strategy that Can Double & Triple Revenue from One Auction Item

Consignment travel packages can be extremely lucrative for your nonprofit, providing the ability to sell incredible trips multiple times, at no risk to you or your organization. Doing so benefits your event in three ways: Increase revenue: Double, triple, or quadruple your profit on a single package. It's a win-win: Making Bidders happy means making your nonprofit happy. Capture secondary bidders: Why have one winner when you can have multiple? Having more than one of the same auction items means there is no second place. Doubling up enables your auctioneer to capture additional revenue from more people.   It's easier to pull off than you might think! There are unlimited ways to sell multiple no-risk consignment travel packages at any point of your event timeline—before, during, and after—that doesn't take any extra procurement on your part and costs nothing if items do not sell. Read on for the strategies our nonprofit clients have used to double, triple, even quadruple their revenue on a single package to raise a lot more for their cause.