When your non-profit is conducting a raffle, there are a million things to think about. However, there is one item on the to-do list that often gets over-looked or given very little consideration. That’s the look and feel of your raffle ticket.
That’s right. For all the hub-bub swirling around your raffle, it’s easy to just adopt the mind-set that “A ticket’s a ticket. What’s the big deal?”
Well, actually, it is a very big deal. Many people buy their ticket(s) weeks ahead of the actual drawing and will hold on to it. That’s a little piece of advertising for your organization that’s stuck up on someone’s refrigerator with a smiley face magnet. You want it to look good. Or at the very least, you don’t want it to look bad, right?
Honestly, people probably won’t notice if your ticket is a work of art, but they will certainly notice if it’s a flimsy, crumpled up piece of copy paper. So, when it comes your raffle ticket, you’re playing not to lose.
A Basic Raffle Ticket Blueprint
There are two parts to a standard raffle ticket design: the part the ticket buyer keeps when he or she purchases it and the part the non-profit that is sponsoring the raffle keeps. The part the nonprofit keeps is called the stub, and this is the actual ticket that is placed into the drum or barrel with all the other tickets, waiting to be drawn.
When a person buys a ticket(s), the person selling it or collecting it must make sure that all the information is properly filled out. If there is anything that’s isn’t clear, and that ticket happens to win, there can be confusion that could lead to a bad situation for everyone involved.
These kinds of errors can especially happen if the person buys a great number of tickets and quickly scribbles out the information by hand. To avoid any potential headaches, make sure that whoever is collecting the ticket stubs checks to verify all the information is accurate, legible, and complete.
While each state does have different regulations as to what must appear on a raffle ticket, here is a very basic list of what should appear on each portion of the ticket.
On the portion the TICKET BUYER keeps:
- Name of the non-profit conducting the raffle
- The date and time of the drawing
- The location of the drawing- use a specific address, not just the name of the building or business
- The grand prize and any other lesser prizes that will be awarded
- The ticket number and the number of total tickets printed- e.g. 0088 of 1,000
- The amount each ticket costs- e.g. $5 or 5 for $20
- The statement “Person need not be present to win” (if required)
- The raffle license number issued by the state (if required)
On the portion the NON-PROFIT keeps (also known as “the stub”):
- Name of the non-profit conducting the raffle
- The date of the drawing
- The buyer’s full name
- The buyer’s phone number
- The buyer’s address (street, city, state, zip code)
- The buyer’s email address
Note: Be sure to make the stub portion of the ticket big enough so that the lines don’t have to be smushed together and people have to write super small. Personally, I can barely print legibly on college ruled lined paper, so please give people like me some room to write legibly!
Here are five other items you should think about when designing your raffle tickets:
1. Check with your state’s regulations as to what has to be legally included on each ticket. Some states have stricter rules/laws than others. For instance, some states require the raffle license number be printed on both parts of the raffle ticket (as well as on all advertisements for the raffle!), while others demand that you include what all the prizes are on the ticket’s face.
Some states even make you print the statement “You need not be present to win” on the ticket. If you miss something that the state requires, that could place your entire raffle in jeopardy. Do your homework before sending the tickets to the printers.
2. Although there are numerous software packages you can purchase and several interactive websites on which you can create your own tickets, I would urge you to consider going old school and hire a professional print shop to make up the tickets for you.
I think that it’s worth the little extra money to make sure the tickets come out looking top notch. This professional touch will give your group a credibility that your personal bubble-jet just won’t. I’ve made business cards at home before too, but they never look as sharp as when I’ve paid a printer to do them. In addition, if you find a printer that has done up raffle tickets before, they might be able to help you ensure you’ve got everything you need in the right spot!
3. Think about selling advertising space on your raffle ticket. You could include a small logo of a corporate sponsor and write something like “The XYZ Corporation proudly presents the 2011 Annual Raffle for the ABC Foundation”.
Since every single ticket buyer will be laying eyes on their tickets very closely, you could charge a nifty sum for this prime advertising space. Check with other non-profit groups or schools in your area to get an idea for what business will pay for advertising in yearbooks, sports programs, and the like. Never pass up a chance to make a buck for your non-profit!
4. Make sure the tickets are printed on a heavy-duty card stock, since they may be in the possession of the ticket buyer a while before the drawing occurs. A thicker stock also makes a better impression than a flimsy piece of paper.
5. Remember that raffle tickets have two parts- the section that the buyer keeps and the stub that gets turned into the organization for the actual drawing. When individual tickets are sold, be sure that all the information matches on the stub and on the part the buyer keeps. This includes the raffle ticket number (0088 out of 1,000 for example).
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