It can be like pulling teeth when trying to obtain successful auction items for fundraising events. Many mistakenly focus on quantity rather than quality, which can lead to the surplus effect wherein bidders seek out bargains rather than being affected by competing bids on a smaller pool of items. Modest items (anything under $100) should be avoided or included in goodie bags.
While it is important to understand your audience, certain items seem to sell well no matter what. If you’re looking to raise more money at your organization’s event, try these auction pieces that appeal to a broad demographic.
One-of-a-kind experiences are some of the hottest ticket items at auctions nowadays. Consider including some of the following:
- Gift certificates to local up-scale restaurants
- Accommodations at a nearby hotel
- Tickets to a live performance, sporting event or local attraction
- Tour of a craft brewery or vineyard
- Hot air balloon ride
- Lap around the track at local speedway
- Sky-diving package
Bundling related donations is a creative way to build a highly coveted vacation package. As an example, passes to Universal Studios could be paired with a local hotel or resort.
Successful items include services provided by local businesses, such as a session with a personal trainer, photographer, massage therapist, esthetician or hair/makeup artist.
Signed music and sports memorabilia typically bring in some of the highest bids.
Cultural Crowd Pleasers
Artwork can sometimes be tricky for two reasons. Much like jewelry or clothing, art is subjective. Another challenge is getting known artists to part with their original pieces.
Putting your best foot forward by securing the best-selling items, and then properly displaying and describing them, should lead to the highest yield for your organization.