When I was a corporate event planner, deciding on centerpieces for special events was one of the creative aspects of my work. Part of the process was making them functional and fun.
In my new career as an auctioneer, I have definite auction centerpiece ideas! What makes a centerpiece “good” now is a bit different than in my old days. At my former events, making money wasn’t the goal. Now it is.
To keep this post short, I’m only going to talk about fresh floral centerpieces. Non-floral centerpieces will be covered another day.
Three auction centerpiece ideas for selecting a good floral arrangement.
1. Keep them inexpensive.
Even if you sell the centerpiece, they usually won’t make you more than what you paid for them.
I’ve noticed a trend that centerpieces are being scaled down in this economy — smart move.
But even when the economy is booming I’d advise that you keep the centerpieces inexpensive.
2. Keep them small
Your benefit auctioneer needs to be able to see around and over the centerpiece. Both bidders and auctioneers get frustrated when they can’t see each other.
3. If you aren’t selling them (or borrowing them), give ’em away.
If you want to give them away and think there’s going to be a swarm of people clamoring for your centerpiece, create a process so guests know the correct pecking order. Mark one of the wine glasses with a gold star, or tell guests that the person with the shortest hair at the table gets first dibs on the centerpiece.
(If you want to sell them for a flat rate price, you might want to do the same.)
Another option is to conduct a centerpiece auction. This will make you by far the most money, but there is a process to doing it correctly.
Most of the groups I’ve talked with conduct the activity incorrectly and then believe the activity is at fault. Not true. It’s knowing how to set it up and motivate guests to pay high.