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Colorado Lottery Bets on Agency Cactus Again for Latest Mega Millions Jackpot Trigger Campaign

by Stephen Sapka

Advertising agency Cactus has created “Colorado Lottery Jackpot Trigger,” an integrated marketing campaign that features a genie in TV and radio ads, live radio reads that promote the game’s progressive jackpot amounts, and digital and social messaging centered on a “grant your own wishes” message.

Cactus has served as the Colorado Lottery’s AOR for the past 12 years (since 2007).

Cactus’ objective was to create an integrated campaign that would have the greatest impact on lottery sales. Ticket sales rely heavily on the amount of the jackpot for each game, so to build to Mega Millions, it is crucial to encourage players to play at lower jackpot amounts.

The four 15-second TV spots feature a sad, bored genie who’s trapped in a gilded bottle filled with jewels, gold and trinkets like ancient Egyptian artifacts and the Mona Lisa. “So everyone’s forgotten about me,” he laments over the series—the three wishes he once granted are worthless now that the Mega Millions Jackpot has reached various insane prize levels ranging from $325 million to more than $500 million. “You know what you can buy with that?” he asks the audience about one sum. “A rocket ship!” For each execution, the end card graphics and VO can be changed to reflect the rising jackpot values.

In the final ad, the character contemplates his relevancy. “How’s a genie supposed to compete with that?” he asks his audience of none. “I wish I’d never taken this job,” And “Poof!” He disappears into thin air…

The strategy Cactus is betting on: It is essential to understand player behavior at different jackpot amounts and invest the client’s media dollars at the moments they will have the biggest impact on sales. It is equally important to create work that makes an emotional connection to people, informs players of the current jackpot, and inspires them to take action.

“Trigger campaigns are challenging to accomplish,” explained Cactus Account Director Summer Duncan. “No lottery has successfully managed to see results from one, so this work is very exciting to tackle.”


Mega Millions


Colorado Lottery