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How to Hold a Silent Auction PDF

Many organizations raise money through various types of special events. One of the most popular types of fundraising events is a silent auction. Putting together a silent auction event doesn't have to be difficult, and you can raise a significant amount of money for your organization if your event is planned an implemented properly.

Silent Auction Tips
If you'd like to hold a silent auction, the following tips can be very beneficial to you.

Choose a "Good Date" - When you start planning your silent auction, you need to find out what other special events are going on in your area. Try to select a date that isn't already crowded with other special events or fundraisers.

Put Together a Committee - Pulling off a silent auction is too much work for one or two people. It's a good idea to create a committee to work on the event. Each person should be assigned an area to spearhead, and the committee should meet regularly to make sure things are progressing as they should.

Select a Venue - Select a location to hold your silent auction. If you plan to hold a very large event, you may need to rent a meeting room or banquet hall. However, you may be able to hold a small event in your office, or at the office of one of your board members. You need to choose a nice location, but it is always important to control costs as much as possible.

Solicit Donations - In order to hold an effective silent auction, you need to have merchandise to offer for sale that people will want to purchase. Many businesses are willing to support silent auctions with donations. The only way you will know who is willing to make a donation is to ask.

It's a good idea to start with companies who have a reputation of contributing to community causes. If you have an opportunity to attend any other silent auctions, take advantage of them. This will give you a chance to get ideas for companies to approach regarding requesting donations.

Know Your Purpose - When you approach a company to request a donation, be prepared to answer questions about the purpose of the auction and what will be done with the money that is raised. You also need to be prepared to present a tax receipt to donors, so they may track their charitable gifts to your organization for tax purposes.

Organize Your Goodies - The day of the auction, you will need to organize the merchandise. Display each item, and place a bid sheet next to the item. The bid sheet should specify the item, list the minimum bid (if applicable), and specify the required incremental bid increase (usually $1.00).

Hold the Event - When the guests arrive, allow them to start bidding. Let them know what time bidding is scheduled to stop. Before abruptly ending bidding, it's important to give the attendees fair warning that the event is almost over. Call a 15 minute warning and a five minute warning. You'll be pleasantly surprised to see many bids going up during the last few minutes.

Collect Your Money - Once you call time, pick up the auction sheets and announce the winners. Have one person in charge of collecting money and another in charge of distributing merchandise to the buyers.

By following these steps, you'll be able to run a successful and profitable auction with a minimal amount of stress!

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