Recently, I was asked to do an auction that was previously handled by a competitor. The organization interested in working with us came to us looking for comparisons and a way to justify the switch from our competitor to ClickBid. Some of the board was under the impression (by the previous silent auction provider) that due to using their particular software they were able to raise tens of thousands of dollars in donations and appeals totaling over $100,000. In our 10 years of doing auctions this is sadly not the first time we have been told this.
[callout_text]In some ways this may seem like we’re saying we don’t want to be the shiny cadillac of silent auction software. Well, truthfully we don’t.[/callout_text]The truth is, if your auction has raised tens of thousands of dollars or even hundreds of thousands in silent auction donations it is more likely due to generous donors and the ability of the organization to reach the “emotional truth” of the audience. To be clear, software is powerful and we strongly believe that ClickBid is great software. We’ve seen organizations expand capabilities with technology and create buzz with software that has affected the auction totals. It is the key reason why we continue to offer our services! But to say that our software can be solely credited for a successful and high return is reaching too far in our opinion and I would guess in the opinion of those who opened their checkbooks to give as well.
This story really exemplifies the basis for how we position our company in the marketplace. Many non-profits are surprised that we can offer a competitive service complete with phone, email and on-site support at a cost 50% (or more) below our competition. For us, providing our service is a balance between what we can provide and how we can maximize profitability. Your silent auction is a piece and not a whole of your event and therefore the services provided should be comparable to that ideal. It is a reason why our software is built on smartphone technology. Not only do we operate on smartphones provided by your guests because it’s the future of mobile computing, but it also costs significantly less than putting the rental cost of hundreds of devices on the organization. In addition, it reduces our on-site’ requirements, support, hardware costs and travel expenses. Overall, this results in the same service provided in a different way that results in the same outcomes at a completely different price range. In the end, the burden of the organization to justify or recover the cost of investment is drastically reduced.
In some ways this may seem like we’re saying we don’t want to be the shiny Cadillac of silent auction software. Well, truthfully we don’t. At least, we don’t in the same way that the director of development doesn’t want to roll up to a donor appeal in a BMW or Mercedes. But there is incredible value in knowing what you do well and how you can ultimately save your customers money in the process. That is what we feel makes ClickBid a solid partner in the organizations we serve.