Tag Archives: raffle tips

Successful Fundraisers Hinge On Smart Goals

How did your last raffle go?  Were you happy with the amount of money you raised?  If not, you may think that raffles aren’t the best way for your organization to raise funds.

But hold on.  Ask yourself, what part of the fund raising went poorly?  Was it that not enough tickets were sold?  Were they priced too low, or too high?  Did you factor in the cost of the prizes, the cost of the ticket making and the cost of the drawing event itself?  Did you even have a dollar amount in mind when you started?

Many times, a disappointing result to a raffle fundraiser can be blamed squarely on a lack of planning from the outset.

Know How Much Money You Need to Raise:

Sure, that sounds straightforward, but it’s more than just the cost of the thing you are trying to raise money for.  You need to factor in the additional costs you’ll incur in the fund raising itself.

Here’s a list of costs to factor in:

  • Money needed for project = $10,275 roof repair estimate
  • Cost of the prizes = $1,348 for gift baskets, gift certificates, vacation package
  • Cost of the tickets = $120 for 7 packs of perforated bond paper
  • Cost of advertising = $827 for 10 radio commercials, 2 newspaper ads, 500 posters
  • Cost of selling the tickets = $75 for gas receipts, bag lunches
  • Cost of holding the drawing party = $175 for 8 pizzas, punch, cookies

Suddenly, you realize that you need to raise 25% more than you originally bargained for.  I can guarantee you’ll be disappointed in the results if a quarter of your profits disappear in overhead costs.

As intimidating as these numbers can look on paper, it’s very manageable so long as you plan for the extra costs in advance.

Find the Right Price for Each Ticket:

The face value of your tickets will have a huge influence on how many tickets you sell.  It’s also a big determiner of how and where you’ll have the best success selling them.

If you have high-value items to raffle off, you can obviously ask a higher face price for each ticket.  If you have a car or house as a prize, for example, you won’t have trouble asking $20 or even $100 for each ticket.

Mid-value prizes – like snowmobiles or guns – can still get high face values if you limit the number of tickets sold and make that a clear selling point.

More humble prizes, like gift certificates or baskets, limit the interest any given individual will have in winning – even if you have many prizes to raffle off, thereby increasing the odds of winning.  The odds of winning do come into play in a prospective purchaser’s mind, but usually as a secondary factor, so chances are that the individual will have made up their mind to purchase or not to purchase before they consider the odds.

Target Your Market:

You might have a tough time selling a $20 ticket from a table in front of a grocery store as shoppers hurry to their cars.  That same ticket would be much easier to sell at work, on payday, after you’ve told all your coworkers about the raffle days in advance and shown them photos of the prize.

Always keep in mind what kind of cash purchasers are likely to have on hand.  And save yourself headaches by choosing whole dollar amounts so you don’t have to lug around a bunch of change.

$1, $2, and $5 tickets usually sell without too much trouble.  If you get into larger face values, you should be prepared to either accept personal checks or wait until the prospect has a chance to go get cash (and possibly lose the sale).

And don’t overlook the chance to up-sell.  If your tickets are $2 each, or 3 or $5, many people jump at the chance to save a dollar.  Meanwhile, if you don’t offer the deal, you’ll have fewer customers buying two or more tickets.

Quality Depends on Price, or Visa Versa:

Now that you have an idea what face value you can ask for your raffle tickets, calculate how many tickets you’ll need to sell.

Let’s say you think you can sell a lot of tickets if you can keep the face value down to $2 each.  You estimate that you’ll need to raise at least $12,808.  $12,808/$2 = 6,404 tickets.  Right away, you’ll be able to set a sales goal of 6,500 tickets.

Harvest American’s perforated papers come in 1,000-ticket packs, so if you buy 7 packs, you’ll be able to print 7,000 tickets.  You’ll also save on shipping because you’re buying all of your paper at one time, plus your order will qualify for a 20% volume discount!  7,000 is a reasonable goal, and it gives you enough extra to cover the up-selling deals of 3 for $5.  (Remember, if you plan to sell more tickets,  you’ll need to cover the cost of the extra paper).

What if you decide that there’s no way you’ll be able to sell 7,000 tickets?  Could you sell 3,000?  If so, you’d need to ask $4.25 each.  But, that’s not a convenient round number, so maybe you should ask $5 each and try to sell at least 2,500. 

Once you break it down, the goals are less intimidating.  You’ll gain confidence as you see how sales are progressing and you’ll be able to make adjustments to your tactics if you see that sales are lagging.

With just that much forethought and preparation, you’re guaranteed to enjoy much more success.

Happy raffling!

View: Lucinda’s Google+ profile


Ideas for organizing your next drawing

Successful organizations have known about fund raising through the power of raffle drawings for many years. At the same time, they may not realize the full benefits of holding a drawing. Here are just a few ways raffle drawings have benefited organizations:

Raffle drawings can provide an opportunity for members of the public who cannot physically attend an event to still support that event or cause. By holding a raffle drawing, your income isn’t limited to a single, in-person fundraising opportunity; you also build invaluable goodwill in your community.

Some forethought regarding raffle drawings can lead to an income stream before and long after the date of your event. Printing your Web site address on ticket stubs – the part each and every drawing participant holds on to – gives you lasting marketing exposure to a relevant audience and can help draw potential supporters to you in the days and weeks following your drawing.

Smart organizations know that there is strength in numbers when it comes to raffle drawings. Forming a joint venture – teaming up with another group whose mission or interest is related to yours – benefits everyone involved by helping both groups reach a larger audience than either group would on their own. And larger audiences mean larger income.

Don’t pass up raffle drawings as a way to support your organization. Be one of the many groups that have enjoyed great success through their own creative efforts.

 View Lucinda’s Google+ profile


Thank your donors and sponsors

Many businesses can be enticed to donate prizes for your drawing if you promise to promote their business in return.
Keep a list of who donated and the value of their donation.

You can place your sponsors names right on the raffle tickets if you have room. If space is at a premium, you can use any program on your computer – like Word or Publisher – to print the names on the backs of each ticket.

To do so, simply flip a blank sheet of perforated raffle ticket paper over left to right. Measure the location of the perforations and place guides on your 8-1/2″ x 11″ document. Fit the text inside one set of guides and then copy and paste the text onto the other seven tickets.

Print a test sheet on regular paper, place it over the raffle ticket paper, and hold both up to the light to make sure the printing falls correctly in between the perforations. Adjust and repeat as necessary.

Once correct, print the back side of all of the tickets, flip the stack over, and print the front of the tickets normally.

Sponsorship levels

Think about offering different sponsorship levels to invite a little friendly competition among your donors.

For example, the biggest donor would get “Platinum” status and their name would appear near the top on every available printed material. If you have a wrap-up banquet, the platinum sponsor’s party would sit at the head table and receive special thanks during speeches.

Gold, Silver, and Associate sponsors would receive commensurate billing – from printing their name lower on signage to appearing only in the program.

You’ll be surprised how a little extra recognition goes a long way as an enticement to give.

Try it next time you have a drawing. Your donors will love it and so will your bookkeeper! 

 View Lucinda’s Google+ profile


How to Hold a Treasure Chest Raffle

One of the fun things about raffles is the fact that there are so many types of drawings to choose from. It’s easy to try something new and possibly spark fresh interest in your organization’s cause.One game you can offer is the Treasure Chest raffle. It’s a great way for players to take an active role in the game. Instead of waiting for their ticket number to be called (or for their phone to ring or a notification of winning in the mail), the players can be part of the action and know immediately whether they’ve won.

This style of raffle is great for repeating occasions, like club meetings, because the secondary prize grows bigger each time it is not won.

You’ll need:

– 2 different-colored series of 2-part, sequentially numbered raffle tickets

– A chest with a keyed lock (the “treasure chest”)

– A receptacle for prize-winning tickets

– A separate receptacle for key tickets

– A predetermined number of keys

– A game board with nails protruding from it (for hanging the keys). Be sure the number of nails matches the number of keys in play at the beginning of the game.

You can make as many keys as you like, but keep in mind that of all the keys made, only two will open the chest. One will be the master key. The other key will remain unmarked, along with the other (losing) keys.

Designate which ticket color will be sold to players. When a ticket is sold, the player retains one ticket stub for verification; the other is deposited into the key ticket receptacle.

When enough tickets have been sold (more than five), you’ll need a designated member-in-charge, or MIC, to divide the funds into three portions. One portion is your group’s profits (as appropriate), and another portion is evenly divided into smaller parts (for example, five) to serve as the prize pool. The third portion is set aside to serve as a secondary prize and is kept locked inside the treasure chest.

Hang one key from each nail on the game board and affix one-half of a ticket stub to each key, being sure to use a different color of ticket than what was sold. The other half is deposited into the key ticket receptacle.

The MIC draws five tickets from the prize-winning ticket receptacle. Each person holding the corresponding ticket stubs is awarded 1/5 of the prize pool.

After that, a key ticket is drawn from the key ticket receptacle for each of those five players, who are each presented with a key from the game board under the ticket stub that corresponds to his or her stub. Using his or her key, each player attempts to open the lock on the treasure chest.

If none of the keys opens the lock, the game is closed for that occasion. Those five keys’ tickets are destroyed, and the keys that did not open the locks are removed from play. Remove and safeguard the secondary prize – that is, the cash from the treasure chest – and secure the remaining keys with their key tickets inside the key ticket receptacle as well as the game board with its remaining keys and key tickets.

The remaining cash prize should be deposited into the raffle checking account (if applicable) and remain there until that amount is added to the treasure chest immediately prior to the start of your next Treasure Chest raffle.

If the secondary prize is not awarded within 170 days, the final drawing will be repeated until the winning key is drawn.

For a full listing of rules and regulations, click here. Have fun with the Treasure Chest raffle!

Springtime Opportunities

As warmer temperatures arrive, a whole new season of craft shows begin to fill the calendar. Spring is a busy time and people frequent shows looking to pick up ideas and supplies for their favorite pastimes.

Water Lily

By offering a raffle during a craft show, you are able to add another level of fun and excitement for participants while at the same time, sharing information about your organization or cause.

Because most show organizers require advance registration to reserve a space, some planning is helpful. Finding where craft shows are being held and registering with organizers in time can be tricky. In larger towns, you may have a number of shows from which to choose on a given weekend, while in smaller communities there may only be one or two shows a month.

Many times, upcoming craft shows will be listed in the classified section or advertised in a display ad in the local newspaper – you may even see signs posted along streets in the neighborhood where the show is to be held. Keep in mind that these listings are often notices of shows whose dates are rapidly approaching and whose registration dates have passed (meaning there may not be enough time for you to participate in that show), but by contacting either the organizers themselves or the facility where the show is to take place,  you will have a direct line to upcoming opportunities.

The Internet can be a great source of information for larger shows. Websites such as http://www.fairsandfestivals.net list a wide variety of shows sometimes months in advance of the show dates, organized by state. While details are made available only to paid members, the show names can be looked up separately through an online search engine such as Google or Yahoo. Other sites include http://festivalnet.com/craft_shows.html and http://www.artscraftsshowbusiness.com/default.aspx. You can also search the name of your town with the phrase “craft show” for smaller shows.


View Lucinda’s Google+ profile

Season of Giving

The first snowfall of the new winter season is here, with bright, cheer lights glistening in the chill of deepening night.  The holiday season is upon us, and the gathering of family and friends makes this a very special time of year.

Part of what makes the weeks between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day distinct from the rest of the year, is where we turn the focus of our attention.

Need doesn’t take a break; it knows no holidays, it has no “in” season.  And during the torrent of commercials and advertisements, and still, a small voice reminds us that buried beneath the retail throngs lies a desire to give.

For some, the holidays are a galvanizing point, the time of year when the spirit of giving moves them to ask others, “What can I do for you?  What would you like?  Is there anything you need?”  The eyes of their hearts look away from themselves and look up and around to see the needs and wants of those in the community.

Others – and perhaps you know someone who fits this description – makes a commitment to help others all year round.  For these dedicated souls, whose determination spans the length of the year, the holidays open the door to even greater opportunities for giving.  They will spend countless hours serving others, whether directly or indirectly, knowing that no gift of time is too small to provide a great and satisfying return.

And that gift of time is given in so many ways.  Setting up and making arrangements to hold a raffle or drawing to benefit a family or charitable organization, for instance, involves a number of people who share the same vision and work together for that common goal.  Someone has to make sure the tickets get designed, get printed correctly and arrive in time, after all.  Someone has to see to it that publicity is managed properly.  And someone has to keep track of donations, prizes, and all the rest.  I doesn’t happen in a minute, and it can’t get done on its own!

When it’s all said and done…when the winning tickets have been drawn and the numbers called…those who helped make the drawing a reality can savor the knowledge that they played a part in making someone else’s day that much brighter.  Those who put forth the effort to see that the fundraiser successfully met its goal can look back with the satisfaction of knowing all that work went to a good cause.

And ultimately, that’s what the season of giving is all about.


View Lucinda’s Google+ profile