As an auctioneer who specializes in the nonprofit sector, this question was vitally important to me. Therefore, I undertook a research study.*
I found seven significant benefit auctioneer competencies for fundraising success.
The #1 response was resounding. “Auctioneers: Focus on Our Mission!”
Why? It’s just not enough to sell exotic trips and fancy dinners anymore. Now more than ever, benefit auctioneers must instill in auction guests the message that their generous support is vitally needed to achieve the mission of the nonprofit. (This tip alone will inspire bid waving!)
Here are some suggestions to share with your Auctioneer:
- First, meet with your auctioneer months before the auction
- Tell success stories to demonstrate your amazing impact
- Ask your Auctioneer to be “The Ambassador of Your Cause”
- Give written materials and website to study
- Ask them to visit with donors during the Silent Auction
- Expect your auctioneer to make an inspiring fundraising ask
- Write motivational bullets to incorporate during Live Auctions
- Thank bidders, donors and supporters throughout the event
Leverage these “mission-messaging” skills to inspire generosity and harness all of these dynamic auctioneer competencies to skyrocket your fundraising in any economy.
7 Ways Benefit Auctioneers Can Raise More Money
- Be an “Ambassador” to Champion Your Nonprofit Cause
- Offer Consulting and Pre-Auction Planning
- Generate Momentum and Excitement
- Polish Your Professionalism
- Engage and Match Your Audience
- Understand Fundraising and Nonprofits
- Be Adept in Fund-a-Need and Interactive Revenue Activities
Your powerful feedback is making a difference!
I was honored to present your ideas and the research results at the National Auctioneers Association Benefit Auctioneer Summit** (see pdf article) to top charity auctioneers in North America. Many asked me for more in-depth training, so I created an innovative Advanced Fundraising Auctioneer Workshop: Beyond Bid Calling™ on December 13 & 14 in Dallas. Thank you for your support!
* Using qualitative research methods, I analyzed over five years of data from nonprofits, benefit auction clients and seminar participants who answered this question. “What do you want your Auctioneer to do to help you raise more money?”
What’s your best suggestion? Send me an email with your ideas to
**This article was first published in Auctioneer, the official publication of the National Auctioneers Association.