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Silent Auction Guide & Toolkit
Learn how to create a successful silent auction fundraiser. Silent auction strategies, timelines, auction items and how to organize and display them, how to close an auction and take payments, and other add on fundraisers to boost the bottom line.

Secrets of the Charity Auction Experts
Learn from the experts! Discover the best selling auction items. How to get auction items donated. How to boost attendance. How to get more bids and higher selling prices. How to coordinating volunteers, staff and auction consultants.

Silent Auction Sale Boards

by Maureen and John Winter

Silent auction sale boards are an interesting, exciting alternative to the traditional silent auction tables we found in the New Orleans area. While somewhat labor intensive, bidding is very vocal and visible which tends to create a festive and enjoyable experience for a charity auction fundraiser.

Instead of tables with bid sheets in specific categories, the silent auction is divided into sections of approximately 20-25 items each, with no particular category designation and all items of each section are displayed on a large table. Behind the table is a large board on which had been prepared a listing of all the items in that section with a box next to each for Bidder Number and Amount. At the top of the Board is a large clock with a sweep second hand that is set for a specific amount of time, approximately 15-20 minutes.

Once the table is open, the clock is started and attendees fill out bid cards with their bid#, item and dollar amount which are handed to the table monitors. The highest bid is quickly recorded on the board for all to see. Bidding continues in this fashion until only 5 minutes (or any other pre-determined time) before the end, when it is announced that the table is now open for sealed bids only! At this point, until that table closes, bids are submitted and filed by the monitors in order awaiting the conclusion of the bidding at that table. Once the table is closed, the final bid is posted for each item. In the case of two bids the same, one bid is drawn by lot and posted.

Several tables can be open at the same time but the fewer that are open, the more intense the bidding and the drama. The best items should be saved for last and very often the last table is left open for bidding longer than the other tables. We do warn you that bidding can become quite intense with great productive results for your organization.

You must be forewarned that this system requires a substantial amount of preparation in producing the boards for each section and a core of well trained monitors who react quickly to the bids as they are submitted. These monitors cam be moved from table to table as sections are closed. Sounds complicated but we have seen it in operation and it makes for a very exciting and profitable silent auction.



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About the Author: Written by Maureen & John Winter of Target Funding Group who manage more than 30 charity fundraising auctions a year for organization large and small, have authored two books on charity auctions and designed a very user friendly software to accomplish all the tasks for a successful charity fundraising auction.

For more information, or to subscribe to their free monthly email newsletter, please visit their site at: http://www.charityauctionhelp.com



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