Raffle Fundraisers in Non Profit Organizations by Melanie Scarborough
Raffle Fundraisers in Non-Profit Organizations by Melanie Scarborough
Non-profits benefit enormously when they hold raffle fundraisers, especially as money gets tighter with the declining economy. There are various definitions of raffles, which can cause confusion. Thus for the sake of clarity, the Tennessee state government defines raffles as a game where people can buy a ticket or tickets. A randomized drawing then takes place and anyone who bought a ticket has a certain probability to win the prize or prizes offered. This indicates that revenue for the organization correlates with the amount of tickets sold, thus placing pressure on these organizations to sell as many tickets as possible. However, it can be difficult to increase revenue if buyers lack interest in the prizes or if ticket seller motivation is low. Thus it is crucial that desirable prizes are included that do not overly affect the organization’s profits while also creating an environment that encourages involvement and excitement among ticket sellers.
One way of gathering desirable prizes is through donation. Many businesses will donate services and goods in exchange for advertising. Donations also give the advantage of a higher percentage of profit. Yet, donation can be hard to come by so many organizations offer prizes at a discount, which still help create more profit for the non-profit organization. Regardless obtainment, some of the most popular prizes include money, cars, houses, vacations, events, gift cards, etc. While the larger and more lavish prizes sound daunting, the profit can be worth the initial expense. Another option is offering secondary and less expensive prizes for raffle players to win. This gives players a better hope of winning something, which can create more incentive for people to buy more tickets.
Motivating volunteers to increase ticket sales can be attained through creating a feeling of excitement. Volunteers who are passionate about the organization are more likely to create that same passion within potential ticket buyers. However, how does an organization create this sense of eagerness among their sellers? Many raffle fundraisers create a competition among sellers by setting up prizes for the top sellers to win. This can be something as simple as a gift card, free dinner, or getting to throw a pie into another volunteer’s face. Nonetheless, incentives give sellers a personal goal to attain. Similarly, breaking volunteers up into groups can increase ticket sells. The difference is that the winning team would receive a prize rather than just the top individual sellers. Another method to increase sells is showing volunteers how reaching their goal will impact the cause. This can show volunteers how their efforts can improve a situation, giving them a feeling of purpose. Further, posters that show how close the organization is to reaching the goal can create an overall incentive for the organization. This can be further emphasized by creating a reward for the whole organization like a free lunch or event for attaining the goal.
Besides increasing ticket sales through improving prizes and motivating volunteers, profits can be increased through other methods. In general, communication is key to create the best raffle fundraiser. It is easy to explain the raffle to family, friends, and neighbors since volunteers see these people the most. However, the general public needs to know about the fundraiser and its cause in order to increase profits. The best way to spread the word is in well-known locations like popular stores or malls. At these locations, the volunteer or group of volunteers should set up a large sign that clearly states the name of the non-profit organization along with their cause. Volunteers should then keep an eye out for people who seem interested rather than those who walk by without making eye contact.
Another method to increase sells is the price of the tickets. Some pricing methods include discounts for multiple ticket purchases. For instance, a potential buyer could buy one ticket for $3 or five tickets for $10. The price should also be considered when trying to sell tickets to the general public. Some probably will not be able to afford tickets if they are too expensive. A great way to decide an appropriate ticket worth is to figure out the total expense of the fundraiser then add that number to the monetary goal. This number is then divided by the total number of tickets. The resulting number should then rounded up to the nearest dollar. This should make the process much easier to creating a profit for the organization.
In general, a raffle fundraiser is a great idea for non-profit organizations. However, they need to ensure that they take the appropriate measures to ensure that no money is lost. Several ways create a profit is by offering desirable prizes, motivating volunteers to increase sells, communicating to the public, and figuring out ticket prices. This will take quite a bit of hard work and dedication but the end results will be beneficial to everyone. A raffle fundraiser can easily fulfill an organization’s cause as long as they are willing to put in the work.
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Contributed by Melanie Scarborough
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