Tracey James is President, and Chief Fundraising Ninja at Silent Auctions Canada, a full-service charity auction company located in Newmarket, just north of Toronto. When asked what changes she’s experienced in the auction business over the past five years, she’ll pause briefly, then eagerly share the challenges and changes Tracey and her company have made to deal with the new reality of fundraising and charity silent auctions.
Tracey left a successful marketing and purchasing career in the fashion industry to fulfill her need and desire to help those in the non-profit sector. First joining Silent Auctions Canada as a co-owner, she became president in 2020.
The company serves clients in Toronto, the greater Toronto area, across Southern Ontario and beyond. Led by Tracey, the company’s professional team of auctioneers, planners, and event specialists offer professional advice, event planning, and a variety of auction formats.
Tracey says, “Our approach is to first hold a client consultation, by phone or in person, so we have a thorough understanding of our clients and their needs. Then we work to fulfill those needs with unique, quality, merchandise, guaranteed to draw and hold bidders and ensure successful events.”
Silent Auctions Canada offers in-person silent auctions, live auctions hosted by an experienced auctioneer and a combination of the formats as well as virtual silent auctions. For smaller, do-it-yourself events, they provide a complete “Auction in a Box” themed to reflect the client’s need.
Here, Tracey is quick to add that the current auction favourite is the emergence and rising popularity of virtual auctions. When Covid forced the closing of in-person events several years ago, it left the fundraising sector and suppliers to the sector struggling under the restriction.
“Fortunately,” Tracey said, “as you know, we had partnered with MobilBid and were able to carry on providing our clients with auctions – virtual auctions – using a modern, mobile bidding platform that is easy to use and delivers impressive results.”
“For our part,” Tracey says, “we take all the heavy lifting off the organizer’s hands. We are expert MobilBid users who understand every nook and cranny of the bidding platform which results in a delightful experience for the bidders and maximum dollars raised for our charities.
According to Tracey, her clients adapted quickly to virtual auctions. The company has been successful in converting clients and prospects to the advantages of virtual auctions and mobile bidding.
“When hosting a virtual auction,” Tracey says, “our clients can increase the number of bidders using invitations through social media, publicity, email lists, and messaging. The platform is super-easy to navigate and just naturally attracts larger audiences.”
“Virtual auctions can be set to run for an evening, a week or several weeks, with or without a live event. And Tracey adds, “These auctions are more profitable for our clients and easier for us to manage without putting a strain on staff.”
Tracey insists on a post-event client report and breakdown of the results on every auction within days of the event. “Now,” she says, “MobilBid automatically generates data retention and analytic reports. We provide them to clients to help plan their next event.”
Tracey, and her staff are in step with the changes in the giving community and have adjusted their messaging and business approach to further assist the clients they serve, and improve the services they offer.
As Tracey says – “Let the bidding wars begin! We are Silent Auctions Canada.”
Next time you’re planning a major gala, golf tournament, art auction, or school fundraiser, contact Silent Auctions Canada they promise to make your event profitable and memorable.