Strategic Player Catering
North Carolina Education Lottery’s (NCEL)
The North Carolina Education Lottery’s (NCEL) scratch-off portfolio plan shows how its response to changes in players’ preferences has changed the mix of scratch-off games in market at any time. Higher price point tickets now represent 48% of total scratch-off sales, a dramatic increase from 32% in FY18. Lower price points have seen a corresponding decrease from 44% to 32%.
“We don’t have any immediate plans to phase out the $1 and $2 price points. We do still feel that they play a role in the overall portfolio, although a much less significant role than they did five years ago. While they account for a relatively low percentage of overall sales, our research indicates that a high percentage of our player base is still playing these price points. Our goal is to find the right balance between new game introductions and the number of games merchandised at retail given the new role those price points are playing in the portfolio. We will continue to evaluate the reduction of the number of new games introduced at those price points to try and optimize our space at retail and the variety of games available to our players,” said Randy Spielman, Deputy Executive Director for Product Development and Digital Gaming, NCEL.
As the NCEL looks ahead to FY24, it has outlined several strategic plans to enhance its offerings and better cater to the preferences of its players. One of the key initiatives involves scaling back the number of $2 game launches. This decision is aimed at giving retailers more room to focus on marketing higher-priced games, which are in demand among their clientele. To diversify their portfolio, two new $30 games and the first-ever $50 game are set to be launched, catering to players looking for more thrilling and high-stakes experiences.
“We have gradually reduced the number of lower price point games on sale and displayed while increasing the number of higher price point games. We find that the gradual shift allows for better retail execution since the changes occur more organically as games sell out and come out of the market. The planogram increased $30 facings from two to three, with only two $1 tickets and three $2 tickets. Our strategy is to build a scratch-off portfolio with a wide selection of games that appeal to as many current and potential players as possible. In simple terms, we want the right games on sale at the right time for the right consumers,” said Terri Avery, Deputy Executive Director for Sales, NCEL.
Additionally, the NCEL aims to promote games that are specifically designed to create engaging winner events, fostering a more enjoyable and rewarding experience for players. The NCEL also plans to maintain its successful strategy of leveraging strong game themes through a carefully curated “family” of games launch, ensuring continued excitement and engagement among its player base.