Loffles Looks to Revamp Online Raffle Tickets With Targeted Ads

7/18/11Follow @xconomy

Loffles, a Providence, RI-based Web startup, is looking to put a spin on classic entries to raffles, and simultaneously give online advertisers a shot at targeting the consumers they’re actually interested in.

Consumers buy into a contest on Loffles not with cash, but with about 45 seconds of their time. Raffle entrants select a prize (worth somewhere between $50 to thousands of dollars) they’d like a shot at winning, answer a few demographic questions, and watch a short commercial. Advertisers, meanwhile, decide which consumers they want to target based on the answers to their questions, and pay Loffles for those views.

“It’s a validated targeted deal,” says founder Brandon Yoshimura, a Brown University undergraduate student. “That seems to be the sticking point. It’s a low-risk, high-reward channel.

Loffles (the name comes from combining “lottery” and “raffles”) works to make sure that consumers are actually checking out the ads, by asking them a question at the end of the commercial. Yoshimura said he and others from his water polo team at Brown thought of the idea for the company as meaningful way to connect advertisers with the consumers they actually want to target, through a raffle-like marketplace.

For those who don’t think it’s worth their time to repeatedly enter into a contest with only a chance of winning, Loffles offers more, says Yoshimura. Each time users watch a commercial, they earn currency, called loffles, that they can ultimately use to buy goods on the company’s online marketplace.

“It takes all of the element of chance out of the equation and makes everyone a winner, given enough time,” says Yoshimura.

Since opening up to the public three weeks ago, Loffles has seen users spend roughly 13 minutes on the site on average, viewing about 18 pages per visit. The company has … Next Page »

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