Pennsylvania Lottery

Players lead Pennsylvania Lottery’s product life cycle decisions

Optimizing games with consent-based feedback

Accelerating innovation by involving customers early in product lifecycle

De-risking expensive product innovation decisions


The Pennsylvania Lottery is the only state Lottery that designates all of its proceeds to programs that benefit older residents. For the eighth consecutive year, the Pennsylvania Lottery delivered more than $1 billion for senior programs. These programs include things like property tax and rent rebates, transportation, care services, prescription assistance, and local services including senior centers and meals.

Fast Facts


Lottery & Gaming



Customer Experience

Insights professionals

Product Managers

Use case:

Marketing effectiveness

Product innovation

Business Outcome:

Accelerate innovation

Drive revenue growth

De-risk decisions

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Business Challenge

The Pennsylvania Lottery needed a way to track the impact of new product launches that occur multiple times a month across various product categories. Since its business is driven by frequent new game launches in the Scratch-Off (60+ a year) and Fast Play (24+ a year) game categories, the Lottery’s products team needed a way to fairly, quickly, and concisely gather specific feedback from players about current games in order to optimize future game development.


In 2017, the Pennsylvania Lottery started collaborating with Vision Critical to administer its PA Lottery Insiders community on Vision Critical’s Sparq customer insights platform. Lottery officials use this platform to evaluate and track their frequent, new product launches, optimize games, and build player feedback into the full product life cycle. In 2018, Lottery officials conducted 34 activities with their Insiders, and invited each member to attend about two events each month. Prior to 2017, the Lottery did not have a cost-effective solution for conducting this type of timely, recurring game research. By using its engaged Insiders community of lottery enthusiasts, Lottery leaders are able to gather actionable intel without burdensome or laborious traditional surveys, which require repetitive collection of demographic information, or costly focus groups.

The Pennsylvania Lottery has fast, agile access to 12,000+ players who volunteer to give ongoing feedback, and are richly profiled and highly engaged. By leveraging progressive profiling, PA Lottery staff is able to target conversations and activities towards smaller segments of players who they know play specific games.

Pennsylvania Lottery players lead the product innovation life cycle by sharing their insights directly with business leaders at the beginning of the product’s life cycle rather than simply indicating their preferences through their purchase decisions at the end. As new or enhanced product features become part of new game launches for either Scratch-Off or Fast Play tickets, this continuous feedback allows the Pennsylvania Lottery to continue the conversation with its players about which features, styles, and value propositions are most relevant and motivating to drive a purchase decision. This methodology, combined with the high frequency of game launches, allows the PA Lottery to continually optimize the games to meet the ever-changing expectations of players and measure how new features, styles, or value propositions resonate with players.

The Pennsylvania Lottery continues to be an industry leader. In the 2018-19 Fiscal Year, it sold a record of more than $4.5 billion in games from which it paid a record of more than $2.9 billion in prizes to winners and, for the eighth consecutive year, generated more than $1 billion to benefit older Pennsylvanians. Per capita, the PA Lottery is among top five in the country for Scratch-Off sales. And if that’s not enough, in the 2018-19 fiscal year, which began July 1, 2018, their top line sales exceeded estimates by nearly 1 percent, and improved more than 7 percent over the prior year.

Optimizing games with consent-based feedback

Accelerating innovation by involving customers early in product lifecycle

De-risking expensive product innovation decisions

The biggest value in having the PA Lottery Insiders is the ability to obtain critical insights and make the results more directly relatable to stakeholders in real time. This is possible by having fast, agile access to a large group of richly profiled players, who want to give feedback on an ongoing basis.

-Craig Troop, Deputy Director of Research

When stakeholders have a question or a need to know, we can ask our highly-engaged community and get answers quickly to better inform business decisions.

-Carol Powanda, Research Analyst

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