How to Ask Companies For a Raffle Prize + A Sample Prize Request Letter

Rubber ducks in a row on an aqua background. Get your raffle prize ducks in a row

June 19, 2023

Securing exciting raffle prizes for your nonprofit organisation’s fundraising event can seem like a daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be. With a well-crafted raffle prize request letter and a dash of strategy, you can successfully convince local businesses to donate those much-needed prizes. We’re here to guide you through the process to help ensure your raffle fundraiser is a roaring success.

Raffle prize prep work

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Getting Your Raffle Prize Ducks in a Row

Before you start dialling up potential raffle prize donors, you’ve got to have a game plan. Start by figuring out how many prizes you want for your raffle draw. Be sure to include big, show-stopping items that will get people excited and raise the most money for your cause. Next, whip up a list of businesses that could donate some great raffle items. The longer your list, the better because you’ll be sending out plenty of requests. As you create your list, don’t just zero in on national companies and brands—think local. Consider businesses that might not receive many prize donation requests, like tattoo parlours, dog grooming salons, personal trainers, and cooking classes. These hidden gems can offer fun service and experience raffle prizes. On top of that, they’re often more open to participating for the good vibes and potential new customers.
a cute white dog getting groomed. Great raffle prize idea!
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Making the connection

Once you’ve got your list of potential donors, it’s time to do some research. Go online or call around to determine the specific person to send your request to. The reason for this is that addressing your email or letter directly to this person increases the chances of it being seen. Tip: Pick up the phone and call potential prize donors. Yes, cold calling can be awkward! However, speaking directly with someone creates a connection. You’ll be able to talk about your organisation’s cause and raffle draw and increase your chances of getting a positive response to your request, especially if you happen to get the right person on the phone! Our prize request letter template (linked below) offers an example you can use to ask for prize item donations. Remember, the more you can personalise your request, the better the response is likely to be.

Sample Prize Request Letter

This example of a prize request letter will help get you started! As a bonus, it includes tips and best practices on elements to always include in your ask.

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The follow-up

Keep track of when you send out letters, who they’re to, and the responses you receive. Put this information into a spreadsheet to keep everything neat and tidy. If you don’t hear back after a week, don’t assume it’s a ‘no.’ Your contact might just be swamped. In this case, send a friendly follow-up email. Use your spreadsheet to keep track of who you’ve nudged a second time.
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The extra mile

Now that you’ve got the basics down, here are a few more tips to help you secure great prize items for your organisation’s raffle:
  • Research Potential Donors: Before reaching out, do some research on the businesses you plan to contact. Understand their values, their target audience, and their past philanthropic activities. This will help you tailor your prize appeal to align with their interests.
  • Build Relationships: Don’t just reach out to businesses when you need something. Try to build ongoing relationships with potential donors. This could involve promoting them at your event, featuring them in your newsletter, or finding other ways to provide value.
  • Sponsor Opportunities: Businesses are more likely to donate if they get something in return. Offering sponsorships, such as featuring their logo on your marketing materials or acknowledging them at your event, can make your request more appealing..

The net-net

By following these steps, you’re not just on your way to securing fun prizes for your event, you’re practically there! Remember, being organised, persistent, and personal in your approach is key. With this winning combination, you’re all set to make your charity raffle fundraising event a big success. So, go ahead, take the plunge, and start your raffle prize quest today. You’ve got this, and we’re cheering you on every step of the way! Want more great raffle advice? Check out  How to price raffle tickets to sell. To learn everything you need to know to make your charity raffle a success, check out our free e-book, Raffle for Success. If you’re looking for affordable, top-quality printed raffle tickets or a fundraising platform through which you can host an online raffle, count on Eventgroove!

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