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Live Auctions: Your Event Seating Choices Can Raise More Money

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Everyone to please have a seat, take a load off, park your carcass, and make sure you’re sitting pretty.

All joking aside, seating at your benefit auction can have a huge impact on how much money you raise, so let’s take a closer look in a little segment I like to call: Sitting On A Gold Mine.

First, I want you to think of a time when you were on your feet for 4 hours straight.

Not much fun was it? Especially in heels, amirite?

Now imagine if you had to attend an event where they didn’t have a place for you to sit down. Wow, will your dogs will be barking!


It’s true that setting up a fundraiser as “standing room only” can create a perfect environment for a party. We’re chatting, we’re mingling, but we’re also expending a lot of energy just from being on our feet.

And we’re definitely creating a space where it’s hard to focus people’s attention.

When people are gathered around cocktail tables with friends, it often leads to rowdy conversations.

Fun? Sure.

Profitable? Not hardly.

People have a much easier time staying focused when their butts are in seats.

True story.

When people are seated comfortably, they can actually hear your message and mission, and that’s exactly what we need for them to be ready to give.

A lot of times we want them eating, too, which keeps their mouths occupied so they can listen to your presenters. If you have a seat for every single person, then you are Sitting On A Gold Mine.

And don’t go trying to be clever and have half the crowd seated and the other half standing...or you’ll find the half who ARE seated will be distracted by the half who are standing.

If you DO choose to have a standing event, make sure you have your fundraising earlier in the evening, so your money doesn’t walk out of the room when their bunions start burning.

And don’t forget, you DO have seating options.

You might choose a sit down dinner or family style meal. You can always check out my whole rant on why you should NEVER HAVE A BUFFET, EVER as well. Except for this one case...

You can also skip dinner altogether, and do a quick 20-minute theater style program complete with a special appeal.

There’ are endless solutions to building the event you want, but please, please, please, make sure every bidder has a place to park it when you want them to focus on giving.

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