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7 Effective channels for charity raffles and weekly lotteries

Which channels are working for your prize-led programmes? 

Charity fundraisers rely on effective communication channels to raise funds for their causes. In this blog post, we will explore the various channels that have proven to be successful for charity raffles and weekly lotteries.

In particular we will look at:

We will also delve into alternative acquisition methods and the significance of channel choice for retention and lifetime value. Let's dive in!

If you're a charity fundraiser working in raffles and weekly lottery, you might find our Prize-Led Fundraising Benchmarking and Trends webinar of interest which is available on-demand.

1. The continued importance of direct mail

Direct mail remains a vital channel for charity raffles, accounting for over 80% of raffle response and income across various organizations. Despite the rise of digital communication, physical mail can still make a significant impact, particularly with more traditional audiences and for younger audiences seeking a tangible experience. Warm direct mail is also effective for lottery campaigns, boasting the lowest attrition rates compared to other acquisition channels (although response is relatively low).

Red envelopes in letterboxes, representing Woods Valldata’s direct mail fundraising services.

2. Embracing digital for prize-led initiatives

Digital channels have become an integral part of fundraising, but their effectiveness varies. While the average online response rate for raffles in 2022 was around 11%, it experienced a temporary drop during the summer months, possibly due to seasonal factors. Nonetheless, digital channels, including email and newsletters, continue to play a role in engaging supporters. It is essential for charities to explore how digital strategies can complement their prize-led initiatives while considering the preferences and behaviors of their target audience

3. The return of face-to-face interactions for lotteries

Face-to-face interactions have seen a resurgence in lottery acquisition, providing an avenue for high-volume recruitment. Despite the capacity challenges and higher attrition rates (compared to digital, DM or DRTV) associated with face-to-face campaigns, it remains a preferred channel due to its potential for substantial recruitment volumes. Where it has been initiated, the return to face-to-face interactions has proven successful for lottery campaigns, contributing to the growth of regular giving.

4. The rise and integration of digital and DRTV

Digital and DRTV channels experienced a surge during the COVID-19 pandemic, with organizations taking advantage of cost-effective media rates and the novelty of digital platforms when the UK were spending more time online than ever before. However, as the dust settles and the channels which were not feasible during the pandemic return, these channels have become part of the overall marketing mix. Depending on an organization's goals, budget, and trustee buy-in, they may choose to focus on all or some of these channels.

Confident male designer working on a digital tablet in red creative office space

5. Exploring alternative acquisition methods

The budgets required for successful face-to-face and DRTV campaigns are not accessible to many smaller and medium sized charities. In these cases, smaller charities can leverage organic opportunities, such as organic (and paid) social media, emails, direct mail, piggy-backing other supporter communications with inserts and ads and targeted phone calls. Local press inserts, posters and local press advertising also offer ongoing and cost-effective ways to gradually build a supporter base without extensive expenses.

6. Channel importance for retention and lifetime value

Supporter journeys, along with appropriate channel selection, play a crucial role in improving retention and lifetime value. Understanding supporters' preferences, engagement patterns, and the right frequency of communications are essential for effective retention and stewardship programs. While direct mail allows for easy tracking of acquisition efforts, other channels like email require careful evaluation to ensure effectiveness. The halo effect of utilizing multiple channels should also be considered to enhance engagement and retention.

7. Optimizing your channel selections

Whatever channels you choose for your prize-led fundraising acquisition and retention, the most important thing is to test. Test how each channels performs but also test how a channel might help increase the response rates and engagement with other channels. There’s a lot of talk about omnichannel and phygitial communications and the way audiences consume media is forever increasing in sophistication and it’s important to keep on top of latest trends to ensure your prize-led fundraising is both enhancing your supporters’ experience and delivering you the best long-term fundraising income.

To conclude: the future of fundraising channel selection is omni

Charity raffles and weekly lotteries can benefit from a multi-channel approach to maximize fundraising potential. Direct mail retains its significance in driving response rates, particularly for raffles. Digital channels offer engagement opportunities, while face-to-face interactions remain crucial for high-volume recruitment in lotteries. The integration of digital and DRTV, along with alternative acquisition methods, provides further avenues for growth. Effective retention and stewardship programs rely on understanding supporters and utilizing the appropriate channels to foster relationships and encourage ongoing play. There’s no quick fix or one size fits all approach. Each charity is different and it is essential to test to understand the best approach for your charity.


Want to enhance your channel strategy?

The team at Woods Valldata are experts in weekly lottery and raffle strategy, including channel selections, testing programmes and supporter journey planning. Get in touch with us today to find out how migrating your prized-led programmes to Woods Valldata will elevate your ability to achieve more.


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