By: Shannon Eason, Fundraising Auctioneer 

How about, back to live events! Yes, we’re back. As that thought is crossing your mind, what questions are concerning you? Here’s a few questions that organizations are asking. 

Do Donors Comfortable Attending a Live Event?

We say, yes! According to studies, 70% of Americans are ready to not only attend events, they are also ready to travel. And your next question of, “are travel packages selling?”, is a hearty YES! Our live events are already showing consignment and travel packages selling wonderfully!  By extending the travel terms to two years, people are feeling comfortable to purchase knowing they have an extended timeline to make arrangements. It’s all about giving your donors the confidence and reassurance that their donation to the organization by purchasing live auction items is a win-win. They’ll be able to safely utilize and make memories.

What Adjustments Do We Need to Make?

Extending travel time is a necessary adjustment. People have to feel their investment is safe and “do-able” when purchasing at an event. Other examples of adjustments can include greater table spacing, larger areas for less compact congregations, less buffets and more table service…whatever it takes to address our attendees concerns is what we want to do!

Do We Include a Virtual Component, Converting Our Live Event to a Hybrid Event?

Last year’s buzz word was “pivot” and this year it’s “hybrid”. Combining your live event with a virtual component is considered a hybrid event. What does that do? It means you’re adding another script, at least one more camera, a livestreaming component, and a production company that can handle all of it! That also means adding more dollars to your expense line. However, with a strong commitment to the virtual aspect of your event, that investment can pay off big dividends. That is an entirely different topic that we’d love to talk to you about. We’ll also be covering many areas of this in future newsletters, so stay tuned!

Will It Ever Be Like It Was Pre-Covid?

Well, I would challenge you to think, “do we want it to be?” 95% of our events had higher bottom lines than they did in 2019. So actually, 2020 was great for the organizations that make the difficult decision to hold an event. Yes, it was a difficult decision and pivoting a new direction was scarry, challenging and sometimes overwhelming. So now, here’s your opportunity. Are you going to go back to “the way you’ve always done it” or are you going to challenge yourself, challenge your organization to change it up? Keep up the commitment to go bolder, different and find the uniqueness that will set your organization up for higher goal attainment and thrilled supporters.

We’d love to help you with new ideas and new directions to propel your 2021 event over the top! We look forward to visiting with you.