Posts Tagged ‘Live Auction Acquisition’


So who do you know?

March 4, 2013

My clients often ask what is new and fun that I am selling at other benefit auctions. Here are three auction prizes that I recently sold:

  • A three-hour private house concert featuring a prominent local singer/musician along with a three piece band. This was a great item, and might have been used for a block party, graduation event or entertainment for a small company get-together. The person that arranged for the donation is a close friend of the musician.
  • A home irrigation system and installation. There aren’t that many “guy” items at most galas, but this was a fun one. Labor and materials for a lawn up to 10,000 square feet. The person who arranged for this donation had contracted with the firm for a system at their business and knew the owner.
  • A Sunday brunch for 24 people in a private room at a prominent Downtown Minneapolis restaurant including food and 24 complimentary rail drinks, Bloody Mary’s or beer. Again, the volunteer that was able to put this donation together has a relationship with the owner of the restaurant.

Ask your board and volunteers who they know that owns or manages a business. Be creative in suggesting a donation.


Acquisition items often overlooked

February 7, 2013

Many auction committees are working on auction item acquisitions. One suggestion I always make is to contact the organizations’ vendors and ask for a donation. Most often, the business manager will identify the 20 largest vendors that the organization does business with.  Some of the vendors will probably not commit, such as electric and telephone utilities, but others may want to donate a service, a cash contribution, or the vendor may have professional sports tickets, a vacation condo, or something that might make sense for your event.

If possible, see if the business manager might make the calls, as he or she probably has a relationship with the vendor. Your live acquisition person might want to look at each prospect with the person making the call in advance to identify some possible contributions that the vendor might make.

Most vendors are happy to make a tax deductible contribution to their clients in the spirit of support and maintaining a client relationship. The key is to ask.