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Have You Tried a Raffle Fundraiser?

2014 September 29
by Raffle Tickets

Raffles are easy to organize and the tickets are generally easy to sell. However, because raffles are a type of lottery, there are laws that govern this type of fundraising (refer to “Raffle Laws & Requirements“). Before you commit, see what’s involved in planning a raffle fundraiser. This will help get you started.


Money Raffle: Monetary raffles can be arranged for just about any price range. Example 1: Sell 300 raffle tickets for $100 per ticket. Income is $30,000. First Prize-$10,000; Second Prize-$5,000; Third Prize: $2,500. Fourth Prize: $500. Profit is $12,000. Example 2: Sell 400 raffle tickets for $25 per ticket. Income is $10,000. First Prize-$3,000; Second Prize-$1,500; Third Prize-$750. Fourth Prize: $250. Profit is $4,500. Or, set the prizes at a monetary percentage of the money collected from the raffle. For example, first prize wins 25%, second place wins 15%, and third place wins 10%. Fifty percent of the collected funds will go to the school fundraiser.

Fifty-Fifty Raffle: A monetary raffle where half of the money collected goes to a single winner.

Single-Prize Raffle Option 1: Sell inexpensive raffle tickets (i.e. $1.00) and offer just one item as the prize. In this case the prize does not need to be a high dollar item, but we do recommend that it be something the kids will want to win. Your draw for this type of raffle is that the kids will encourage the parents to buy a chance to win and the parent will want to support your fundraiser with an inexpensive purchase. And again, try to ask for the item to be donated or ask a company to sponsor its purchase. For example, in December have a large airblown inflatable holiday lawn decoration (6′-8′). Video game systems, bikes, or stereos are all items a child would love to have.

Single-Prize Raffle Option 2: Sell inexpensive raffle tickets (i.e. 1 for $5.00 or 6 for $25.00) and offer just one item as the prize. In this case the prize is a more expensive item. One school I visited raffled off a Bose Wave Radio (retail value approximately $500) and raised over $4,000 on this one raffle.

Multiple Prizes Raffle: Sell inexpensive raffle tickets (i.e. $1.00) and offer three or four items as raffle prizes, with the largest item as the First Prize. These can be just about anything, depending on the theme of your raffle (i.e. electronics, trips, or tickets to professional sporting events).

Squares Raffle: Draw a grid of 50 or 100 squares on a piece of paper. Number each square with a unique number (1 to 50 or 1 to 100). Sell squares for $5, $10, $15, or $20 each. Set the prizes at a monetary percentage of the money collected from the raffle. For example, first place wins 25%, second place wins 15%, and third place wins 10%. Fifty percent of the collected funds will go to the school fundraiser. The draw to this type of raffle is that everyone can see that only a limited number of squares are sold so the chance of winning is high.

Calendar Raffle: A calendar raffle runs for an entire month. Create a calendar and designate one prize to be given away on each day of the month. Draw one name each day to win that prize. Try to obtain sponsored prizes (i.e. gift certificates, electronics, sports equipment, etc.). Monetary prizes (i.e. $25, $50) can be given away if you cannot obtain donated prizes for each day, but these will eat into your fundraising profits. Sell calendars for $10, $12, or $15 each.

Gift Basket Raffle: See Gift Baskets.

The ideas for raffles are endless. let’s hear of your ideas and successes!

Getting Prizes for Your Raffle Fundraisers

2014 September 17
by Raffle Tickets

Raffles are one of the most popular and cost effective ways to raise money for a non profit organization. However, it would not be a raffle if you had nothing to give away!

So what kind of prizes should you have? First of all, put yourself in your potential supporter’s shoes – What if someone comes up to you and says they are selling raffle tickets? What prize would you like to win?

Here are some prizes that attract many people’s attention:

Cars – Sports cars, Luxury cars, SUV’s in this years model. Another great alternative is a completely restored classic / collector’s car. You may or may not be able to get this donated. If not, consider other types of prizes, since your profit will be higher if all items are donated.

Travel – Always a winner. Roundtrip Airfare, a package deal, a cruise, hotel stays, even airline miles all make great prizes. Most people love to travel and the biggest obstacle is usually cost. Now if they win this raffle, they’ll just have to take some vacation time and go.

The larger trips such as week-long cruises or packages with airfare and hotel may draw more ticket buyers. However, travel doesn’t have to be exotic to make a great prize. Even a weekend getaway within driving distance could be a great prize. As long as it’s a place people in your area would want to go to for a vacation. A one night stay at a local hotel is not usually as appealing.

Electronic Equipment – Big screen TVs, DVDs, and stereos. These are big incentives, especially for the guys.

Gift Certificates – For stores like Home Depot, Best Buy, and local or chain restaurants. These make great secondary prizes.

These are just a few examples. As mentioned earlier, it is important to offer a prize that your potential sellers will place a high value on. A Barbecue Grill, a Handmade Quilt, a Gourmet Dinner, all of these could be great prizes for the right audience.

Okay, okay. So I know what you are thinking. How do I go about getting these prizes?

The absolute best way is to survey the members of your organization. Every member could possibly have something of value to contribute to the prize pool. And if not, they may know somebody who can. Go for your biggest prize first, though. You need to secure that “hook” in order to have a viable raffle.

One of the raffle fundraisers that I organized raised over $1000, with just 5 ticket sellers! In case you are wondering, our prize was a big screen TV. The company I worked for at the time had a point system incentive program. I pooled my points with some of my co-workers to get the big prize.

I also sent out an email asking my friends and the other ticket sellers for donations. I quickly got several more donations including some nice watches. Finally I went to area restaurants and got several gift certificates for third prizes.

It’s usually easy to get prizes from restaurants and some retailers such as beauty salons and video stores. Type a letter of request on your organization’s letterhead. Visit businesses in your area during the afternoon when they’re not as busy. Give them a copy of your letter and ask if they would be able to donate a gift certificate or other prize. Be sure to start canvassing your city about a month before your deadline, because some managers need to get approval or they may have a limited number of prizes per month they can distribute.

With a little creativity and persistence, you’ll be able to get some great prizes for your raffle!

Sandra Sims has been fundraising for various charities for over 10 years. She is the publisher of Step By Step Fundraising website, which helps non profit organizations get maximum results from fundraising campaigns. Visit her website to find out more about raffle fundraisers.

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Raffle Tickets to Promote Your Business

2014 September 11
by Raffle Tickets

Kids and adults alike feel a thrill at the announcement of a raffle. Toys! Gift Cards! Electronics! Free stuff! If the cost of ticket is reasonable for the prizes offered, you’ll find a wide array of people scrambling to win. For small businesses, a raffle could draw customers in- initially for the prospect of garnering free trinkets, but then developing a curiosity in the institution it derived from. For larger and more well-known companies, a raffle gives the corporation a fun aspect as well as helps retain customer loyalty.

In today’s world powered by technology, innovation, and a “What’s best for ME?” attitude, a raffle is a great marketing tactic. Psychologically, people are quick to enter contests because it means they have a shot at fortune in a single stroke. We hear of more and more awards by the prize sponsor through newspapers, TV, and magazines- and one can’t help but picture the glamour of an all-expenses paid trip to the Bahamas just by entering in a drawing. We have all heard stories of those who were near foreclosure, yet were able to recover their homes and buy a new car the next week thanks to a prize lottery winning. These stories give people hope and make us think, “That could be me!”

Because there is a lot to win in a relatively easy way, news of a raffle spreads fast through media and word of mouth alike. For a business small or large, this is an excellent marketing strategy. Contests like this keep the customers engaged and serve as a connection between consumer and distribution- a more intimate and charitable side of the company. Long time and satisfied customers will feel that they made the right choice with such a fun and spontaneous business, and new customers will be pleasantly surprised with the opportunities to win. Not only this, but raffles are a surefire way to draw in a new crowd. Family, friends, and family friends are likely to tell spread word of a contest, attracting an interest in at first the raffle but then the company behind it.

As I said, modern society is extremely innovative, engaged, and driven by productivity and a motivation to succeed. No longer are the days where raffles once offered things like a free steak dinner, today’s citizens want things that will put them at the front lines of technology- like a brand new car or a tablet- or a prize that can help them escape the fast-paced environment, such as a tropical vacation. Offering things along these lines as prizes no doubt would boost customer loyalty and retention because consumers will not want to miss an opportunity to cash in big virtually free of charge.

Raffles are no longer just for local non-profit benefits or parish picnics. They are a brilliant stroke of marketing genius that can be a source of revenue for a company as well as draw in new customers, garner public interest, and keep the loyal customers that you know and love.