$1.5B Jackpot Powerball Marketing, Because Heather Needs a New Pair of Shoes
Marketers know. Word-of-mouth works to sell games. I know there are other tricks, too, which I write about below. But for this $1.5 billion Powerball jackpot, all it took was one conversation.
A friend talked me into buying a ticket.
On the way to work, he said he’d quit his job if he won the mega jackpot and I should buy a ticket for the Multi-State Lottery Association’s prize, too.
So on Tuesday afternoon, I walked into the check-cashing shop across the street from my office for the first time in my life. A line that was nearly out the door greeted me. Philadelphians were buying Powerball tickets for Wednesday and Saturday’s drawings, just to be safe.
“I thought it would be empty,” a woman tells me.
She doesn’t want to see the insanity today will bring.
Pre-insanity or not, she paid $40 for her chance at $1.5 billion and talked about how a woman rifling through a recycling container may be looking for losing tickets for tax purposes.
Today, more regular players may meet newbies like me. [Full disclosure: I spent $10 and plan to share the jackpot with my hot dog, Louie. He can have all of the bacon he wants. And that will be a lot.]
Here’s what the players may be saying and what messages marketers can use to reach them:
- ‘If I Win, Can Quit My Job Before I Lose It.’ More consumers are willing to take chances on games when they’re not sure if their jobs are safe. State lotteries, marketing sweepstakes and more offer a little hope. “Researchers have found that when the economy goes bad, lottery revenues go up,” USA Today reports in 2011. While the economy is doing better than it was in the Great Recession, it’s not difficult to find someone who’s still scared of being unemployed in 2016. Marketers can play this game, too, by starting a contest. But first, this Target Marketing article may help them design them right: “Is Your Contest Illegal? 33 Important Legal Considerations for Contests and Sweepstakes.”
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- ‘What Would You Do With the Money If You Won?’ Far from being selfish, the people in line are happy and want to share stories. Tell the winners’ stories so they can discuss them with their friends and with new friends in line or while visiting your site. Did the winners quit their jobs? Did they give away their money? A Canadian lottery winner, Tom Crist, gave his entire $40 million jackpot to organizations fighting the cancer that took his wife of 33 years. “Crist said he plans to put the money into a family trust fund to be doled out to charities he and his kids pick over the years,” reads the CBC article from 2013. “Charities such as the Canadian Cancer Society and Calgary's Tom Baker Cancer Centre will be at the top of that list, he says.”
- ‘Who Would You Share the Money With?’ Many workplace pools place bets. This is true of fantasy football, as well. Targeting groups of workers with messages may be a smart tactic. “JOIN A FANTASY FOOTBALL PRIZE LEAGUE FOR A CHANCE TO WIN UP TO $5,000 IN EVERY 12-TEAM LEAGUE,” screams CBSSports.com on Tuesday, showing one example of targeting groups.
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