Online raffles are an easy fundraising tool, but they still require some work in order to make them successful. Don't be fooled into thinking that if you build it - they will buy! There are a few things to keep in mind when you start your raffle.
1. Digital Mass
Starting with a large digital audience of front line supporters and donors is important. If you are considering running an online raffle remember, if you don't have a large group of people on your email list or social media channels, you may want to consider advertising your raffle
2. Engage Your Biggest Fans and Stakeholders
Find ways to get your key staff, board members, volunteers or other interest group connected to your organization involved in selling tickets and sharing your raffle. One way to do that is by turning on Competitive Sales for your raffle. Competitive Sales enables you to assign a unique tracking URL to individuals and then track the sales they inspire by sharing the raffle with those in their sphere of influence.
3. Engaging your Audience
Keep your raffle top of mind with those most likely to buy and share. Remember, people get inundated with emails and posts on their social media feeds. Work to make your email subject lines or posts catchy and interesting and spice up any headlines or social media posts about your raffle. Tell people what your goal is (people love a challenge) Share stories about how your organization is impacting lives or share a video for a personal appeal. Give people a "why" to buy and help inspire them about what they are supporting. Don't forget to tell them to share your raffle with friends and family. Depending how long your raffle lasts, plan on sending a number of emails - especially around your launch, and when ticket sales are ending. Believe it or not, but 3 per week isn't too many! Just change them up and make them memorable. Have fun with it! These are your supporters, after all.
Online raffles are not a "silver bullet" when it comes to fundraising. So whether you start with a big group of supporters to share your online raffle with or not, consider advertising your raffle across paid and unpaid channels. Do you have a monthly bulletin or newsletter you regularly send out? Add the raffle URL! Experiment with Facebook ads, posters, table tent cards at an event or wherever you can get the word out about your raffle.
5. Captivating Copy
Photos and descriptive words and phrases are "must haves" in your raffle design. Eye popping images and hair-raising headlines are a great start. Don't be shy about telling people what you want to do either! "Buy your tickets before they're gone" or "Share this raffle now" help to encourage participation, so don't leave phrases like that out!