How to get auction items for charity — using tourism brochures

After visiting a hotel in my client's city, I assembled this package to mail to them.  But before I sealed the manila envelope, you get to peek inside. You, too, can use this technique to secure auction items for your charity.  It works especially well if you're trying to fill a silent auction.       « Continue Reading »

Big life transition? There’s a show for that.

Are you overwhelmed with a life transition?  Are you undergoing your own personal transformation? I've done a lot of that in my own life.  Though I'm hardly an expert in the subject, I have learned that it requires a lot of internal fortitude, self-confidence, and a darn near total disregard for what anyone else thinks or says about you. None of that is easy. That's why I think it's fabulous that Joyce Buford, a life coach in Tyler, TX, has a weekly live radio show focused on this subject.  Each week on her show Second Wind, she asks women to share their own stories of transformation as a way to encourage and inspire others « Continue Reading »

Promoting your gala honoree to maximize your exposure

benefit auction Gala honoree of a family

For some nonprofits, the date of the auction gala is determined after careful examination of a single individual’s calendar.  This well-regarded person doesn’t (usually) work for the organization, yet still holds enormous influence over the timing of the nonprofit’s largest fundraising event.  Dates are checked and re-checked.  Venues are called and called again to confirm availability.   Who is this VIP? He’s the gala honoree.  (“He” can just as easily be a she, family or it, as in the case of an entity.) Currently I have clients in Miami, Los Angeles, Boston and D.C. working with honorees.  If you’ve honored someone of « Continue Reading »

Fake charity auction memorabilia raises problems


Experts suggest that the majority of music memorabilia sold at charity auctions is fake. What’s your charity’s policy on these items?

Continue Reading

Easy tip to help activate sponsorship benefits: Show and Tell

Smiling Businessman Holding a blank businesscard

Once you have an auction goodie bag filled with items, here’s an idea to boost those donors (or a sponsor’s) visibility. I call it “Show and Tell.”

Continue Reading

Ban catchy titles in your silent auction displays

Silent auction display descriptive title

It’s fun to get flowery with the titles in our live and silent auction displays. My advice? Channel Hemingway (not Shakespeare) when it comes to writing.

Continue Reading

Benefit auction workshop in Louisville, KY next month

I’m heading to Louisville, KY to conduct my workshop, Better Benefit Auctions. In 4 hours, learn how to conduct a more profitable and interesting event.

Continue Reading