Smartphones Win at Auctions
10 November 2016 at 10:41 am
How is mobile bidding technology such as Bidding for Good by Frontstream, improving the way fundraisers run their events?
The latest release of a new smartphone or tablet has people queuing up all over the world to upgrade their devices. We now spend more and more time glued to our tiny screens. This shift in behaviour has an impact on all industries, including fundraising. All websites and donation pages must be mobile optimised and linked to social media sites. As a result, this has changed the way we fundraise for our causes.
One fundraising type that has been impacted by the migration to mobile is online fundraising auctions, most notably those held at annual gala balls, dinner fundraisers and even sports events such as fundraising golf tournaments.
The annual gala ball is a much loved fundraising event for many not-for-profit, school and community organisations. Gala events provide an opportunity for the community to come together around a higher goal and remember why they care about a particular cause or issue. They are essentially fundraising events of course, but just as importantly, they are a time to refresh everyone’s memory about the mission and achievements of your cause, including why you are raising money.
So how is mobile bidding technology such as Bidding for Good by Frontstream, improving the way fundraisers run gala events? Instead of the traditional silent auction with clipboards and items displayed around the room, live auctions are now hosted online through smartphones, tablets or laptops inside the room. Instead of bidders stalking the silent auction line in order to secure that much coveted item, bidders are sent an alert on their phone when they have been outbid or when the auction is about to close.
Sound familiar? How much easier is that? Throughout the event, whether you’re standing at the bar, sitting at your table during dinner or chatting to a friend in the foyer, the auction stays with you.
Additionally, invited attendees as well as absentees can browse the listed items in the auction days before the big event and start bidding. Bidders will know exactly what they are interested in and give themselves every opportunity to end the night with the win.
Now, because of mobile bidding technology, revelers can enjoy the party and still bid for the items they want to win. Many of the struggles of the traditional silent auction have gone away, and it is even better news for fundraisers as payment is automated when participants sign up to Bidding for Good before the gala event. No more waiting for the winning bidders to pay, as the auction closes the funds are paid into the host account.
Just as we see people totally captivated by their smartphones, it’s easy to understand why there is real excitement when you can bid at an auction and win some great items, all from the palm of your hand. And the good news for fundraisers is that it is raising more money. We know this from some stellar results in the US. To date more than $300 million in bids have been raised through the Bidding for Good platform. It’s not exclusively designed to fundraise for charitable organisations. Bidding for Good clients are also raising funds for schools, sporting organisations, and grassroots community groups.
Because it’s digital, why stop at simply hosting an auction? Bidding for Good also has a hand in the event planning stage, with ticketing integration, microsite functionality to openly promote your event and access thousands of registered bidders who are keen for a unique auction prize. Imagine the amounts you could raise if your bidding community came from not only outside the event room but from outside your subscriber database.
More digital data is automatically being created as it passes through the Bidding for Good platform so fundraisers can reflect on event results, measuring dollars raised, at what times people bid and even how far out they purchased tickets to attend the event and everything else in between. This all helps when planning the next event and how the event will look.
This technology is not only changing the flow of gala events, but it is making a profound difference in the total dollars being raised. In a world of tight budgets and an unpredictable economy, fundraisers need every campaign to work well and to grow their donor base, and online fundraising auctions should definitely be part of the mix.
Want to know more? Contact Dr Steve Francis at Steve.Francis@frontstream.com