Your destination for insight into the world of event fundraising and charity auctions.
Every generation has its own style and preferences, be it music trends, fashion, career goals and political values. The same extends to their unique giving preferences. With ever broadening audiences, many nonprofits are finding success employing multi-channel campaigns: campaigns that utilize traditional mail, social media, email and more.
No matter your cause, annual revenue, staff size, event calendar, or location - having a website, a virtual presence for your nonprofit, is essential. This is where supporters come to learn of new programs, read about your latest newsworthy achievements, buy tickets for the gala, and make one-time and monthly donations that power your services.
Did you know 1 in 5 donations occurred via mobile device in 2016? Some 77 percent of all Americans now own a smartphone, while charitable giving expected to reach nearly $400 billion in 2017. Translation: There is roughly $80 billion in mobile donations up for grabs this year!
Did you know? Experts estimate 30 percent of auction events today utilize some form of mobile bidding. As donors get more comfortable using smartphones or tablets to text bids in a silent auction, mobile bidding is a more viable option for nonprofits than ever. To help you navigate a changing auction landscape, we sat down with Debby Roth-Bush, certified benefit auctioneer and Relationship Manager at mobile auction software provider Greater Giving. She shares the top benefits of using mobile bidding, plus 19 concrete tips to get the most out mobile bidding in your event. In part 1 of a 2-part series, we'll cover: Top 3 benefits of mobile bidding Find the right mobile bidding provider. Consider cell reception before signing off on a venue. Get more event sponsorships (branded charging stations, anyone?) Tell donors ahead of time Bundle items What items sell best 1. Is mobile bidding right for your event? 3 Benefits "Mobile bidding aims to help nonprofits raise more money every day through products like event software management, mobile bidding, fast payment collection and online donations," explains Roth-Bush. Indeed, auction software is a way for groups to solve a number of problems at their events. Here are the top 3 indicators that mobile and online bidding may be right for your event. Solves space constraints "A few years ago, I was at my son's school auction, bidding on the front row seat of the play in which he was scheduled to perform," recalls Roth-Bush. "I remember being excited for the item - but when I went to check on the bid sheet, I literally couldn't get through the crowd of people holding their drinks. "I didn't want to spill something or make a scene. In the end, I knew the organization lost a little bit of money because I couldn't physically get back to the auction." Silent auctions can get too crowded if the space isn't carefully optimized - and you want to remove any obstacles in the way of the donor's inclination to spend.
Charity auctions are consistently among the most popular and lucrative events nonprofits can host. While the basic rules of fundraising auctions have remained the same over the years, the format of these events is rapidly evolving, thanks to the advancement of auction technology. On the one hand, auction technology has made planning and executing charity auctions much easier for nonprofits. On the other, because it’s so specialized, many organizations are at a loss as to what exactly auction software does and how they can use it in practice. We regularly receive questions from fundraisers about auction technology, so we wanted to clear up some of the uncertainty. We teamed up with our friends at BidPal to create an expert comprehensive guide to auction technology. Today we'll cover: Online Auctions & Event Sites Online Auction Catalogs Online Ticketing Mobile Bidding: More Profitable Silent Auctions Mobile Bidding: Smoother Live Cash Appeals Auction Scoreboards and Fundraising Thermometers Read on to learn the basic functionalities of auction software, plus practical ways these tools can raise more at your next auction. 1. Online Auctions & Event Sites Online auctions are, simply put, digital silent auctions. While most charity auctions are limited to a single night and venue, online charity auctions allow organizations to open up their auctions to more donors for longer periods of time. They're typically paired with silent and live auctions to make the most of your marketing efforts. Plus, since there are fewer costs with an online event, they can be done with minimal risk or investment.
Email is a key piece of any fundraiser's promotional campaign. In recent weeks, we've discussed how to write event emails that impact as many people as possible: writing compelling "Save the date" invitations; strategic best practices for emails leading up to the event; segmenting your donor database to increase participation; and timing emails when they're most likely to be read. The final piece: crafting emails that are responsive on mobile devices.
Are you and your smartphone connected at the hip? If so, you're not alone: about 7 in 10 Americans (and nearly 9 in 10 millenials) currently own a smartphone, and that figure is expected to rise dramatically in 2016. Whether shopping online or scanning to pay, mobile phones are increasingly replacing wallets as the easier, faster and more portable way to make financial transactions. For charitable organizations, this means it's more important than ever to incorporate mobile technologies into their outreach and fundraising strategies. In fact, in 2015, the number of individual donations made through mobile devices increased 45% from the year before. And annual events like Giving Tuesday are presenting nonprofits with unprecedented opportunities to combine social media campaigns with easy mobile giving, connecting more and more people to their causes.
Thanks to mobile technology and the widespread use of smartphones and tablets, Nonprofits can improve the way they manage both the process and success of their fundraising auctions. Mobile bidding is a paperless system for managing and running auction events and it enhances the experience for both guests and volunteers.
From the article "5 Tech Trends You Can't Afford to Ignore" by Eric Markowitz in Inc.com Silicon Valley was aflutter this week with Mary Meeker's bold new report on Internet trends. Here's what you missed. When Mary Meeker speaks, the Valley listens. This week, Meeker, a general partner at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers (the venture firm founded in 1972 that's invested in pretty much every major tech company of the last quarter century) unveiled her 88-page analysis of Web, mobile, technology, and societal trends. Here, we've excerpted the most important elements of the report, especially trends that may affect small business and startups.