Eileen King essay

The Power of a Raffle

I believe the power of a raffle is definitely overlooked by many people. It creates excitement and often makes a positive contribution to a noble cause. I remember always being in awe whenever I would go to a fundraiser or event that offered raffle prizes, as well as the anticipation that you felt as names were being drawn. Knowing how raffles I entered have impacted me, I created my own when I acted as my school’s drama club publicist my Junior year of high school.

The drama department was putting on a production of Romeo and Juliet and all of the cast members involved were incredibly proud of the hard work they put into the show. However, Romeo and Juliet isn’t that big of a draw for high school students, and the hype around the show was pretty minimal. The whole drama club was looking at me to come up with a creative way to get the auditorium seats filled. It made me really nervous trying to figure out a way to effectively get the word out about a show that isn’t particularly appealing to high school age kids. All of a sudden, it hit me: in order to get kids pumped up about the show, we had to do a raffle. It was the best option. After a bit of brainstorming on my own, I came up with the perfect prize: a gift certificate for a milkshake. We have a really popular diner a block away from our school that kids like hanging out at, and I thought that offering a gift card as a prize would make the contest more appealing to a larger group of people as opposed to just giving away a milkshake. Even though I was giving away a gift card, I marketed this raffle as “Win a William SHAKEspeare!” because it’s really catchy! Once the prize and contest ideas were out of the way, I made about thirty raffle tickets that were designed as mini posters promoting the show and hid them around the school. I submitted an announcement to be broadcasted to the school detailing the contest. Low and behold, the contest garnered a lot of attention and all of the thirty tickets were submitted into the raffle, as well as the publicity garnered for the show was pretty impressive. I seemed to have impressed my fellow drama club members with my raffle idea, because they elected me president the following year!
Overall, I was really proud of myself for getting the whole school involved in a contest that promoted a program that I was (and still am) very passionate about. This whole experience of being trusted to promote something to a large group of people made me realize that this might be a possible career path for me in the future. Something in the marketing field could be a really cool career option for me because I love being creative and I love making people happy while still promoting something I find important.

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