Whether you’re thinking about having your first fundraiser or you have already been doing it for a while, we can help you get to the next level with the most current ideas that have been tested and proven in the fundraising world. We are as involved as you would like us to be, from inception to consolidation.

Our knowledge and experience minimize stress and stumbles. Below you will find a list of steps that can help you plan your next event. If you have any questions we are happy to discuss them at any time, simply call us or fill out the contact form and we will get back to you ASAP. These are brief ideas of what we have seen committees doing to be successful, this can be done in any particular order and can help get you underway to a successful fundraising event.

Step 1: Pick a Date and Coordinate!

Keep in mind your region and your attendees. Think about what other events are going on that date, and try not to cross-pollinate with other organizations. Make sure there is availability at the desired venue and that your auctioneer is also available. We have clients that hold events around the same time every year and most benefit auctioneers and some venues are booked for that date 2 years in advance. Getting an early start coordinating with your venue, staff, big donors and the auctioneer is the first critical step to getting the whole team together and are the important ingredients for a successful event.

Step 2: Get your committee members picked.

There are lots of details involved and trying to take them on by yourself can be very overwhelming. Put together a team and delegate specific tasks such as Décor, Audio/visual production, Invitations, Marketing, Check-in/Check-out process, Silent auction, and Live auction just to name a few. Prepare all your committee members to spread the word. Whether it’s to clients they do business with on a regular basis, friends and family from their personal life, or folks who would be compelled directly by the cause. A personal invitation extended by one of your committee members has a much greater chance of being accepted. This step directly affects the pre-event sponsorships which help fund the event, brings their network of personnel to your event, and is the first step to procuring
auction items.

Step 3: Procuring pre-event sponsorship and auction items.

This goes hand and hand. Always shoot for the moon and ask for full sponsorship
and work your way down. Remember, you have plenty to offer prospective sponsors. For example, the back of each bidder card is prime real estate for your top-level sponsor’s logo to be in the hand of your guests or you can give VIP treatment, a table front-and-center, or a special tour show or cocktail party. If they say no to a sponsorship, ask for a live auction-worthy item, does someone have a vacation home, airline miles, or connections to fine dining or some sort of entertainment, we can get very creative and build experiences that are fully donated and are 100 percent profit. If they say no to a live auction-worthy item, how about a silent auction-worthy item, accept anything you can get, and we will help place them in the most beneficial spots in the evening. Wine is very versatile for an event, you can do so much with it, raffles, wine wall, silent auction baskets, and instant wine cellar live auctions. Once again get the donations and we will help to place them creatively!

Step 4: Create your tentative timeline

Creating your timeline starts well before the night of the event. Timing when to get the sponsorships, send invitations, put up the items for pre-bid if desired and when to have a deadline to have all the info you need is very important to not be crunched at the last minute.
Then you have the day of the timeline. We need to consider the content you want to deliver, and who you want to speak on stage. What videos do you want to show?
What message do you want conveyed? What will be the entertainment? Menu? The Day of the timeline is built upon the content you want to be delivered. Keep in mind that the event is a production, every scene needs to complement each other and lead into the next. We want to plan to do the live fundraising in the sweet spot of your crowd’s attentiveness, energy level, and relative sobriety. There is no uniform time to start the live fundraising. Some clients like to have it at the beginning so people can party the rest of the time, and some like to start as the last table is being plated. There is no right or wrong way to do it, and we are here to give you ideas on what will best suit your crowd and needs. The timeline is a wish list of how you want the event to go, there can be updates added even the day of, but there could also be hiccups and we must roll with the punches and be able to transition, think on our feet, work together and
communicate to overcome.

Step 5: Place the procured items before going to print

This is unique to what you’re able to get. Determine general sections of where to place items for silent auctions, live auctions, raffles, revenue-enhancing games, and gifts to sponsors.

Once you have accumulated the items and are ready to print your handout or brochure, for which there are plenty of options, you can go as simple or extravagant as you like. Bidder numbers are almost always a must and the preferred method to help capture bids and payments quickly throughout the event. If you plan on doing a paddle raise, and I don’t see why you wouldn’t, card swipers and collecting can possibly create a bottleneck. We can work with you to find the solutions that will work best for your needs. We can also work with you and suggest the order of the live auction items. After agreeing on the order, we can ensure the printouts and the Live auction follows in the same order.