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February 24, 2017 Consider Bid Numbers on Armbands at Your Next Fundraising Event

We are consulting with a nonprofit who is conducting a Cajun Cookoff that is being held outdoors.  At this event dozens of food vendors will be preparing a variety of dishes for the guests to enjoy.  The attendees, over 1,000, will vote for the best vendor, among other things.

This nonprofit incorporates a small silent auction during the event. In the past, tracking who the winning bidders are and collecting payment from them has been quite a challenge for this group.

It is always important to collect the guests’ information at your nonprofit events.  This holds true not only for the purpose of collecting payment for items purchased but it also serves as a mechanism to build a data base you can use to tap these guests for future communications about your nonprofit.

For this group, we’ve suggested they provide a large check-in area staffed with plenty of volunteers who will collect the guests’ names, phone numbers and email addresses.  In order to prevent long lines at registration, we recommend some of the volunteers carry clipboards and grab guests in the queue to let them go ahead and pre-fill their information on a form while standing in line.  This will expedite the registration process. When the guests reach the check-in table all they’ll need to do is show their admission ticket (or purchase one) and hand their pre-filled information form over to the volunteers.

At this event, we are recommending the nonprofit supply the guests with armbands or slap bracelets that have their bid numbers written on them.  This will help the guests remember their bid number when they are ready to bid on silent auction items.  These bracelets can be purchased online from numerous sources.  One such source is Oriental Trading Company.  Don’t forget to brand the armbands with your nonprofit’s logo and website, but be sure to leave enough room for a hand-written bid number.

With the use of bid numbers, you avoid the challenges presented when you allow guests to write their name and phone number on silent auction bid sheets.  You’ll evade being unable to read an illegible name plus you will already have contact info on file for the bidder because they provided this necessary information at registration.

Streamlining the check-in process for the guests and providing them with an easy means to participate in your activities will result in happier guests and more funds raised!

Make every minute a revenue generating minute!

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