When conducting fundraising auctions, many clients ask what an item should sell for at the event. Most times when I hear that question I step back into the world of asset appraisals… by the way, in addition to being a fundraising auctioneer, I am also a Master Personal Property Appraiser.
So back to the title of this post – the market is the expert. The market is, in general, who you are selling to. Secondarily, other factors play into this – location of the event, timing of the event and the audience you are selling to.
If you have an event in Charlotte, NC on June 1, 2012 with an audience of 350, you are going to achieve different results on a Carolina Panthers football game Sunday. The point is dynamics change… so do audiences and prices realized. Again, no matter if item ABC brought $4,000.00 at last year’s event… those two bidders’ children may have left the school at the same time… thus yielding an item that may not be alluring to this year’s audience.
How do you achieve greater results? MARKET THE ITEMS!
Some quick steps to market:
- Social Media pages – Facebook, Twitter updates
- LinkedIn group pages for your Association
- School newsletters given to children at the school each week
- School websites and parent email blasts
- On Save-the-Date cards
- In with the event invitation
Each of these require EARLY procurement of the live auction items. If you do not have this luxury, make sure to highlight what you are raising money for – especially if you are part of a school fundraiser where you have specific items you are funding.