Kathy Kingston’s Cardinal Rules for Record Breaking Benefit Auctions

Keepin' Warm Watercolor by Kathy Kingston © 2010 All rights reserved

1. Focus on Fundraising
Show how guests can make a difference. Showcase your mission throughout your auction. Using compelling video, brief inspiring remarks and other communications, envelop your audience in the cause and show how their contribution matters to transform your clients and community.

2. Fill Your Audience with the Right People
Audience development is #1. Take the time to research and cultivate. Remember, people give to people. A personal ask is the most important key to success.

3. Find the Right Match
Solicit auction items that fit your guests. Know your crowd! Do they respond to rich and varied experiences while traveling or are they more excited about cultural and sporting events? Match your guests interest. Do your homework.

4. Add Consignment Auction Items
Complement your donated items and add excitement.

5. I Can Hear You Now
Invest in a professional sound system. Your guests will respond best when they can hear and understand your mission and your auction items. Every detail counts.

6. No BS
No Boring Speeches Enough said.

7. Stories not Stats
Success stories inspire generosity – appeal emotionally and it will pay off in the generous giving at the auction and testimonial stories will be encourage your supporters to continue to invest in your cause year round.

8. Don’t Leave Money in the Room
Ignite giving with a “Fund A Need Special Appeal” where a passionate, involved speaker does the “ask” to build emotional and financial support.

9. Add Fun!
Add profit-making revenue activities to keep those bid cards waving! Make sure your organization procures hot auction items that keep driving excitement and interest – items that fulfill fantasies and dream vacations and experiences.

10. Invest in a Professional Auctioneer
Why risk it? Retain an experienced professional benefit auctioneer who can interest, inspire and influence your guests to maximize your revenue.

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