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October 19, 2018 Taking the Temperature of Your Charity Auction Fund-A-Need

Charity Auctioneer Christie King

When you conduct a fundraising event and you are using mobile bidding during the live auction, do you incorporate the visual “thermometer” that tracks the giving for the public ask during the Fund-A-Need? If you are, there is some strategy as to when the thermometer should be displayed.

In this example, we are conducting an all-manual ask during the Fund-A-Need. Translated, no electronic devices are used and the auctioneer calls out the bid numbers of all the donors who are giving, which are then recorded manually. If the charity wants to use a thermometer, should you display it the entire time the Fund-A-Need is being facilitated?

The use of a thermometer or some other type of visual measurement of donations made during the Fund-A-Need can be very motivating to the guests. And it can function as a tool for your professional fundraising auctioneer, helping increase donations by offering a visual to reference. Frankly, I love these types of visual displays when they are implemented properly.

When using a thermometer, it’s important to know exactly WHEN to display the amount raised.

I’ve been involved in events where the organization didn’t have the right people in the room, or didn’t have any pre-commitments, and the donations were flat. In those cases, the nonprofit failed to reach their Fund-A-Need goal and I was left wishing the thermometer hadn’t been in play.

There have been other occasions when I was about halfway through the ask, requested a total and realized with the applause of the crowd that we were close to the goal. I continued, the giving continued and we surpassed the nonprofit’s Fund-A-Need goal. Thermometer SCORE!

If you are going to incorporate a thermometer into your Fund-A-Need, the timing of when it’s displayed is critical when it comes to motivating your donors. I suggest you consult with your mobile bidding company and professional fundraising auctioneer regarding the pros and cons of how you will display donations. The ultimate goal is to motivate guests to give.

Make every minute a revenue generating minute!

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