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January 6, 2017 Shout It Out LOUD! – Live Auction Item Displays

Nonprofits who offer live auction items very often don’t have plans to display those items.  “Why”? I ask.  To which they usually reply “We don’t have room to display them” or “The guests can see the information in the program, we don’t want to clutter up the room”.  My response back to them is why would you NOT display these items?  The live auction portion of the evening is normally the highest revenue-generating activity of the event, other than maybe the Fund-A-Need.  I say to everyone that when it comes to your live auction items, SHOUT IT TO THE ROOF AND BACK.

I suggest putting all of the information on each auction item in the order they will be sold into your event program.  Those items, especially since they are most likely big ticket items, need to be known about by your guests. I recommend you create eye-catching displays to get the guests’ attention.  If an email blast is not going out to the guests a week or so before the event, they aren’t going to have any idea what is being offered in your live auction lineup.  Taking a trip to South Africa, Italy or Paris is not something that is often decided upon at the drop of a dime.  Place the live auction item displays in an area the guests will be populating at the beginning of the evening.  Close to the bar is a GREAT location.  If you have tangible items, be sure to display these as well.

Speaking of tangible items, when you have them I do not suggest these items be “walked around” during the time they are auctioned.  Instead I recommend you create a PowerPoint of each live auction item that is projected as the items are sold.  This PowerPoint slide needs to have only a small amount of information because you’ve already listed the items with detailed descriptions in the program with blackout dates, restrictions and values.  So, your PowerPoint slides need only include the name of the item, a small description and a picture of the item or a photo selling the “lifestyle” of the item.

Creating eye-catching displays of your live auction items will guarantee your guests know all about the items before the live auction ever begins and is therefore almost sure to generate more revenue.

Make every minute a revenue generating minute!

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