In my last two posts I walked you through setting up your silent auction, recruiting helpers, finding items – but all of this will be wasted time and energy if you don’t communicate to a broad audience the items you have to auction off. Remember, your auction is to raise money for your charity – so promote away!
Your next steps would be to promote your silent auction early, often and widely. Effective promotion is key to a successful silent auction. By early, I’d recommend at least 2-3 weeks before your gala. This gives people time to peruse the items and place their bids. Some of the places I recommend you use are:
- Leveraging social media
- Email newsletters
- Event websites
- Local media to generate awareness
- Text messaging
- Peer to Peer reposts
But we all know that these days not everyone has to be in the room to participate so with mobile bidding text messages are your best friend. Sending texts reminds people to view the items and continue to bid. It can create excitement over certain items and help encourage bidding. Here are a few sample posts from some of our events:
- Welcome! (EVENT NAME) silent auction is NOW OPEN!
- Take advantage of early access to the silent auction! Register a credit card to begin bidding & save time at registration.
- Make sure to check “Items with no bids”. There is still time to take home some great items!
- Make your final bids! The (EVENT NAME) silent auction will close at (TIME).
Silent auctions foster a sense of community, allowing individuals to come together in support of a shared mission. These events also provide an opportunity for businesses and individuals to showcase their philanthropic efforts and build positive brand associations. It is often helpful to be able to share with the business’ how you will be promoting the silent auction items and give them an idea of the reach. Silent auctions create an inclusive environment that encourages participation from a diverse range of individuals while generating substantial revenue for your charitable organizations.