Auction items sell best when emotions are involved. A drink or two during a silent auction and wine at dinner certainly helps to heighten one’s emotions and will make a definite impact on your bottom line - provided you watch your time! When alcohol is in play, timing is everything!
First Hour - Guests will feel a slight exhilaration and loss of shyness.
Second Hour - Guests become more relaxed, inhibitions are lowered and so is their caution.
Third Hour - Guests are experiencing great euphoria and their judgment and self-control are reduced - ripe for your Live Auction!
But after three hours of drinking they get anxious, restless and their reaction time and hearing are impaired. If you are planning on serving alcohol, plan on timing your auction based on alcohol’s effect on your buyers. If you are not done with your live auction after three hours, alcohol becomes your enemy.
Alcohol Plays into Everything!
Alcohol will affect all of your guests throughout the evening! Those drinking will become louder, less attentive, more demanding, and as the evening progresses, easily bored, cantankerous and even downright rude! Those not drinking will be affected by those that are!
And when it comes to the end of the evening and your guests are expected to check out, they are typically at their worst. Be sure to remind your cashiers that alcohol is in play and guests should be treated with understanding and respect. Often times, problems that occur at cashiering should be left for another day. Any confrontation with any inebriated guest will be a lose-lose situation for your event.
Alcohol and Volunteers!
Remember, alcohol affects the drinking volunteers, too!
Although it is tough to enforce a non-drinking policy amongst your volunteers who are also guests, a policy none the less should be stated; those volunteers working the registration tables should not begin drinking until after registration is over; those working the cashiering should cease drinking after the silent auction is over; or something along those lines.
You should always have at least one “designated driver” who knows your event and is not drinking at all during the evening to lend a clear mind to any potential problems that might arise.
Volunteers who are not guests of the event should not drink alcohol until after the event is over, if at all.
Alcohol is the #1 Silent Auction Best Seller!
Whether a case of Two Buck Chuck or a premium bottle of wine, a fine old bottle of Jaminson Irish Whiskey or a six pack of craft beer, alcohol is the best selling item at anyone's Silent Auction.
Much like golf clubs, your potential bidders like to pick up the bottle to determine their interest. Don't hide them in a basket or display them where they can't be handled or the serious buyer won't be interested.
Unlike commercial auctions, where alcohol is taboo for the savvy bidder, at most charity events, cocktails are an accepted means to prepare for a night of frenzied bidding!