All About “AuctionsBlue” Fundraisers

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Online silent auctions are a great way to raise funds for our Sister District candidates. Though they take more time and energy relative to other common fundraising projects in our system, leaders who’ve done them will tell you that the payoff is there if you’re willing to dig in. You can make decisions around auction items that might also showcase local small businesses and artists. Many donations are made by the businesses themselves, or by team members who have purchased gift cards from the businesses and then donate them.

Massive appreciation and thanks go to Sister District South Bay HQL Tom Surrette, the mastermind behind the website platform AuctionsBlue, and to Suzi Quatman and Doug Wilkins of Sister District San Francisco for managing the platform and helping others in the Sister District community use it!

To help you decide if you want to do an auction, please review the following:

1. Review Doug’s “10 Commandments for Auctions”

2. Review Suzi’s AuctionsBlue Administration step-by-step guide

If you decide you want to create and execute an AuctionsBlue auction, here are your steps:

3. Establish a Steering Committee. Key roles are: administrator of AuctionsBlue platform/interface with Suzi, donor solicitation & input, live event production, marketing & communications. It’s important to have a Chair to convene meetings, communicate with all committee heads, and ensure all bases are covered. Set up recurring meetings and map out a calendar for task ownership and completion.

Leaders of Sonoma County East and Sonoma West County collaborated on an auction in June 2020 and kindly put together materials to help other teams build and execute an auction. For templates, guides, and notes, browse this folder. As an example of what you’ll find in the Sonoma teams’ folder, see brief descriptions of each role here.

4. Make a copy of the SD SF 2021 Auction Management – Example Spreadsheet. You can then customize and use this tool as a way to manage the workflows and tasks related to your auction.

5. Follow the steps for administration laid out in Suzi’s step-by-step AuctionsBlue Administration document — first step is email Suzi and tell her you’re ready to begin!

Thank you again to Tom, Suzi, Doug, and to all leaders who have put in a tremendous amount of work running actions in previous election cycles and to Sonoma County East and Sonoma West County leaders for documenting their work and sharing with the rest of the Sister District family.