Charity Auction Problem: It’s a Dull Auction

“Our auction is getting stale. The benefit auctioneer is boring. We need energy.”

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Jan is a professional artist from New Orleans and has sold loads of artwork at auctions. But this gala was different.
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Sue and Dina are co-workers at a hospice facility in southern California. We chatted on our way out the door to the check-out area.

 

“I don’t know what you know about hospice,” said Sue, “but [your performance] made me believe you know a lot about it. That might not be true, but ….”

 

“Effective, but not in the least high pressure,” added Dina.

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I asked Demetress if she’d mind saying a few words on video about her auction experience. When she started to speak, I almost dropped the camera. She was so eloquent and poised it was if she’d rehearsed! I secretly wondered if she delivered sermons each week in church but later learned she’s the Executive Director of a hospice organization. Now it all made sense.

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The National Italian American Foundation loved the “engaging and interactive” auction at the 2010 gala.

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This group doesn’t make a move without dialing 1 800 ASK SHERRY!

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Charlie is a businessman in Annapolis, MD and also runs a foundation. At this community college foundation gala, he shares “you were just *that* much more than the average (benefit) auctioneer.”

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Dull at this event? No Sir!
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This auction had experienced sliding revenue and apprehensive donors before we took it over.

Over the last three years, revenue has dramatically increased.

With a gift of cookies, the event manager wrote:

“Thank you for another incredible Chef’s Best!  The auction was the highlight of my night and we truly appreciated yours, Bill’s and your team’s efforts and enthusiasm!Can’t wait to work together again.  Have a wonderful summer!”

Stacy

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While I visited with some of her West coast colleagues, Mary walked by. “Heeeey Mary!” they shouted, “Come over here and tell the auctioneer how fun it was!” She walked over, set down her items, and jumped on camera, despite having an early 6 AM flight the next day. Thanks, Mary!

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Darleen has attended “hundreds” of auctions (her best friend is an auctioneer), and she loved how Sherry was “cunning” with the audience. (Or maybe it’s “cutting?” With that lovely Tennessee accent, I can’t quite make it out…)

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This performing arts gala has ~180 guests. I saw this gentleman the next year at the gala, too. He said, “You can continue to use my testimonial. It still stands.”

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A woman at this Montgomery Hospice gala of ~150 guests seems pretty convinced. “”I’ve been going to these things for 20 years,” she says, “You are the best auctioneer I’ve seen.”

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After Red Apple Auctions’ debut in Baltimore in 2011, we heard from this guest who talked about charisma.

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The Holy Cross Hospital Gala has ~800 guests. When the Gala team decided to uplevel their auction, Dan’s event management company suggested he call Red Apple Auctions.
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These guests are both from the Midwest and have seen their share of auctions. Or so they thought.
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This Girls Inc gala had ~150 guests. Guest Stephanie has attended the auction before and shares her opinion about the night.
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Carol is an enthusiastic supporter of nonprofits. The Community Foundation of Montgomery County named her the 2010 Philanthropist of the Year for her work with more than 90 nonprofits in the county through the foundation she and her late husband started.
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This guest stopped me to visit as he was getting his car at the valet. He’s been to commercial and benefit auctions, but liked this the best. I’ll let him tell you why.
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“Thanks, Sherry, for the great job running our live auction, which exceeded our goal this year. You’re a rock star. It’s great how excited you get when you sell an item. I’ve been smiling about it all weekend.”

Fred Diamond, DIAMOND Marketing
Live Auction Chairperson 2009
Northern Virginia Family Services

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Sheryl talks about why the 2011 Baltimore American Heart Association gala had the best Heart Ball auction in 10 years. (Hint: It had something to do with the charity auctioneer.)
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Paul sits on the Board of this Hospital Foundation.

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At this Bollywood-inspired auction, a guest talks about Sherry being “auctioneer-y,” but in a non-threatening way that made it fun.

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A seasoned auction attendee, Hugh and his wife have attended events all over the USA and Europe. He’s got an interesting opinion on what he saw different from Sherry.
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This church auction of ~130 guests is comprised entirely of young professionals between the ages of 18 and 30. What did this gal most appreciate? “Your sense of humor actually made people want to bid more…”

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“We heard so many compliments about you!

During the auction, the other guests seated at my table started whispering to me, asking me how they could book you for their own galas.”

Barbara Cullen
2007 Auction Co-Chair
Les Dames d’Escoffier, DC Chapter (Washington, DC)

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Within days of holding their auction gala, this organization locked in the date with Red Apple Auctions for 2012.

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Darrell witnessed a Red Apple Auctions tag-team auction. He’s been attending his school auction for almost 10 years … and almost didn’t come this year because it’s been so boring. He’s glad he and his wife made the effort this year.
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Was your last auctioneer embarrassing? Or did he embarrass someone? Neville thinks you’re safe with Sherry.