How Lotteries Can Deliver Experiences Through Prediction and Surprise

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For today’s consumers, exciting and enriching experiences provide social capital in the form of stories to share. Social media has become a living journal and portfolio of our daily lives, and therefore consumer demand for experiences to fuel these online story platforms is naturally increasing. ­

IGT’s trendspotting partner, Foresight Factory, has found that over half of global consumers enjoy discovering new experiences. 57% of global consumers would describe themselves as someone who enjoys learning about or discovering new things, places, ideas or experiences. This rises to 67% in Brazil and 66% in Mexico, suggesting consumers in these markets are more open to experiences they have not tried before.1

Although the trend is more apparent in younger consumers, this “Experience Seeker” mindset is universally appealing. On average, 63% of Americans enjoy learning about or discovering new things, places, or experiences, and the gap between weekly lottery players and non-players is negligible (< 5%). Globally, these numbers hold true across most markets, although agreement among weekly lottery players is a little lower in Denmark (54%) and Germany (46%).2

This offers an opportunity for lotteries to drive engagement and lottery purchases by leveraging consumer desire for novelty.

Aligning with trending interests on social media engages fans of those topics. In 2017, the Missouri Lottery launched a Facebook Live campaign called Cats vs. Dogs designed to drive fan interaction and acquisition, reports La Fleur’s Magazine3. “Fans encouraged specific cats and dogs, and cheered them on through comments and likes during the duration of the campaign. In total, the campaign drove 2,315,993 impressions, 2,208 comments and 7,323 likes. Additionally, 535 people shared posts featuring their favorite cats and dogs, which helped us reach an even wider audience with 418 new page likes attributed to the campaign,” said Nancy Rollins, Marketing Manager, Missouri Lottery.

Unboxing videos (videos of consumers unpacking a recently purchased product) are a growing phenomenon and a favorite among social media influencers, potentially reaching very large audiences. Aligning with this trend, the Minnesota Lottery developed a digital campaign that featured videos of novice lottery players scratching lottery tickets. “Minnesotans Play Lottery Tickets for the First Time” featured short, fun video clips that showed people playing scratch tickets for the first time, capturing their emotions; a great way to introduce people to the lottery who may not typically play. La Fleur’s reports that the video received more than 1,054,125 impressions on Facebook and Instagram. It was also posted on Twitter and YouTube, as well as on the lottery’s website.

While Experience Seekers search for stories to share, the trend towards planned itineraries to reduce risk and increase the consumers’ sense of control over their lives, serves to diminish the opportunity for surprises. Consumers will welcome brands that create micro-moments as surprises to escape their over-programmed lives. The Hoosier Lottery spread awareness of a growing Powerball jackpot in 2017 with a social media post inviting their Facebook followers to share their dreams about what winning the jackpot would mean, creating dialogue between the lottery and its players and between the players themselves, and giving players the opportunity to indulge their imaginations. The campaign, which ran twice in 2017, reached nearly 1 million Facebook users.3

Another way to prompt players to dream about a lottery comes from Sweden. Svenska Spel introduced the Lotto Bucket List 5D Experience in 2017. The experience was delivered in a hangar in Stockholm and included five different VR applications which, together with different simulators and sensory effects, including fans, heat lamps, water sprays, a snow machine and a 5000-liter water tank, offered a unique five-dimensional experience as a way to discover what it would be like to be a lottery winner. Participants took part in spectacularly convincing experiences of Skydiving, a paradise beach, a safari in Africa, and diving on the Great Barrier Reef.4

These are particular instances of lottery brands thinking creatively to engage their current players and attract new ones, while indicating a principle action point: to engage consumers with unique experiences that are personalized and/or unexpected. This will reinforce connections with existing players and draw in non-players – the experience seeker is present in both audiences.


The research used in this post was conducted by our research partner, Foresight Factory.

Source: Foresight Factory | Base: 392-3433 online respondents per country aged 16-64 [Indonesia 16-54], 2017 August 
2 Source: Foresight Factory | Base: Weekly lottery players among 392-3433 online respondents per country aged 16-64, [Indonesia 16-54], 2017 August
3 Source: La Fleur’s Magazine, “Digital Marketing 2018 Trends.”
4 “The Bucket List 5D experience.”

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