What Betting Advertising Techniques Are Used To Entice People To Bet?
There are more sports and casino gambling advertisements in operation today than there has ever been before. But what is it about these adverts that really catches a player’s eye? Or what is it that the marketing people hope these advertisements will do for the gambling industry? What sort of techniques do betting companies utilise within their advertisements so as to ensure that they capture the imagination of their viewers? Is there any real comparison that can be drawn between the advertisements used by online casinos and online sportsbooks? Or do they follow a similar sort of pattern?
It’s obvious that marketing strategies are essential in a gambling environment, just like they are in many other industries. This is why the number of advertisements relating to gambling have exploded in recent years. A 2014 report that was published by the Victorian Responsible Gambling Foundation of Australia estimated that viewers of the Australian Football League and the National Rugby League are exposed to between 10 and 15 minutes of commercials and advertisements for betting per game.
Potentially, the possibility for such in the United Kingdom is even greater. That being said, there are gambling advertising rules to follow, as laid out by the Advertising Standards Authority. These do ensure the protection of children and vulnerable people, so what techniques do gambling companies actually utilise so as to draw in players and adhere to these specific rules?
Social Media Leads the Way
Obviously, social media is a wonderful way for companies to reach out to a large number of bettors. Over 3 billion people around the world have their own social media account, with the vast majority of these being on Facebook. What’s more, users often hold more than one social media account, meaning that it makes for great marketing opportunities for betting companies to utilise. Just about all of the top online gambling companies market their services via social media.
While many brands have a preference for using Twitter, due to its success as a marketing tool in general, others opt for the visual side of Instagram as an alternative. However, because of the vast number of people who utilise Facebook, this is almost always a must-use network for marketing. Others like Snapchat and Pinterest have also been used for such, but to a lesser extent.
Instagram is obviously a photo sharing social media app, so it’s generally the case that more visually appealing marketing will be used on this particular outlet. Therefore, you can expect to see more imagery rather than words when it comes to Instagram. Twitter, on the other hand, may have much more vibrant lettering, so as to stand out to people when they’re scrolling through their feed. Generally speaking, this form of advertising will be pretty much the same, regardless of whether it’s for a sportsbook or a casino site.
Social media advertising can often be more tongue-in-cheek and this has got companies into trouble over the last few years. William Hill were fined for a Twitter ad that featured celebrities under the age of 25 as well as an advert sent to Tinder users. Football Index were also fined last year for using the same ploy on Facebook. 32Red received a ruling against them for featuring imagery that could appeal to children.
In today’s world, celebrities will grab the attention of those people who already participate in gambling and those who are simply a fan of the celebrity in question. That’s why it’s become the norm for a few online gambling sites to utilise a celebrity star so as to endorse the product or service they’re providing.
A Harvard University Study recently discovered that celebrity promotions increase a brand’s sales by at least 4%, in comparison to those products with no endorsements. For example, it was in August of 2015 that BGO Casino opted to create a television advertisement with endorsement from Verne Troyer and Paris Hilton. Regardless of what some people thought of the advertisement in general, it stands to reason that two such stars would generate more interest from people – especially those who are fans of them. However, this is hardly the first instance of well-known stars supporting online gambling brands.
Andrew Luck, who is a former football quarterback for the Indianapolis Colts of the NFL, went on to form a partnership with a popular online poker and sports betting site known as Bovada. He represented the face of that brand for several years.
Another instance of celebrity endorsement comes in the form of Usain Bolt. One of the world’s fastest sprinters, Bolt may have retired from athletics already, but in January of 2020, he was secured by Ganapati PLC to help the company launch a brand-new online slot game. Granted, that slot game centred on Bolt himself, so the unison was very appropriate under the circumstances, but it makes for another celebrity endorsement in this area that worked towards drawing attention to the game.
Even adverts from some of the biggest sports betting platforms in the world have utilised celebrities to assist with their marketing. Ray Winstone joined up with the popular Bet365 company towards the beginning of 2019, fronting various advertisements for the brand. Even though his own daughter expressed her disapproval of Winstone proceeding with advertising the betting brand, this certainly drew a lot more attention towards Bet365 in the long-run.
Celebrity endorsement techniques have been something that betting companies have been using for some time now, with sports stars often used to advertise online sportsbooks more specifically. However, singers and actors have gone on to advertise online casinos, meaning that it’s quite the universal route for such brands to take. Clearly, they’d have to be able to offer the right sort of price to acquire such popular stars to endorse them, though.
Very recently the a commission has been established that will look into whether celebrities should be banned from appearing in UK gambling ads.
As a sort of add-on to the celebrity endorsement route, betting companies, especially casinos, are also readily looking to introduce games that focus on popular culture. This means that games centring on television shows, movies, singers, video games and so on, are expected to bring in a large audience share, because they already hold popularity in the world. Therefore, a technique used by online casinos is to heavily promote such games coming to their platforms. Let’s say a slot game has been built around a popular rock band like Guns n’ Roses; this provides a wonderful opportunity for the casino to advertise themselves as offering such a pop culture game.
This also helps the actual software developers, too. It’s not uncommon to find multiple developers that have created games around such an entity or group of people. Games like Motorhead from Netent, Game of Thrones by Microgaming and Monopoly: Big Event by SG Digital, have also proved to be popular with players, due to the fact that they utilise a pop culture theme within them.
What is good for the player in this respect, is also good for the software developer, and for the online casino sites, too. That’s why it’s a frequent occurrence for providers to craft games surrounding these particular themes. And in turn, that’s why it’s also great for casinos to heavily promote these games with advertisements for such games. Subsequently, they’re also advertising their own sites as great locations for playing such titles at.
Exclusive Services Offered
Different sports betting sites and different casinos offer alternative rewards and services for their players to benefit from. Adopting innovations is something that the entirety of the gaming industry is quite well-known for. However, when it comes to the very exclusive offers from online casinos and sportsbooks, these can prove to be much more enticing than standard offers for some people.
If a sportsbook is providing a promotion where you have the possibility of winning a car or an exotic holiday, then it’s not uncommon to see them push this as a reason to join their site. Both sportsbooks and casinos utilise such advertising techniques, although there are only a few gambling sites that provide such offers to their players. However, it is these exclusive promotions that have made some casinos and sportsbooks hit headlines and even go on to receive masses of sign-ups practically overnight.
That being said, it’s not just these special rewards that casinos are able to push within their advertisements. If they’ve received awards for specific games or platform services or customer service for example, this is something else that they will likely proceed to make viewers aware of in adverts. Someone would be more likely to join an online sportsbook if it had been awarded certificates for best odds in a year than one that hasn’t achieved such, right? That’s just standard logic.
The thing with exclusive offers is that they don’t tend to remain active for a long time. It’s usually within a period of about one month that these advertisements of such will be utilised. However, they can prove to give such sites quite the boost when it comes to registrations.
The people who tend to engage in sports betting usually aren’t the same people who participate in casino gaming. Sometimes, there is a bit of a crossover between the two areas, but in general, sports bettors stick to sports betting and casino gamers play casino games. This is why the different areas will utilise language that tailors to the crowd they’re trying to hold an appeal with.
Sports betting ads will often use language that relates to sports betting tools, odds and betting options. This can frequently focus on things like in-play betting, Bet Boosts, mobile sports betting apps and the cash out function. On the other hand, casino ads will frequently put focus on the welcome bonus offers that they provide. This is because such rewards are often used to entice newcomers to their platforms, and include no deposit bonuses, bonuses on deposit and free spins alongside.
Sports betting sites do also offer such perks, such as free bets, but these aren’t as frequently utilised as a sole means of bringing people in as newly registered players. This is quite the difference between casino advertisements and sportsbook ads. And research has clearly shown that such adverts work for their respective gambling sites.
A Change in Techniques on the Horizon?
Some people have taken aim at gambling advertisements as being a specific factor in contributing towards the high number of people addicted to such. This is why those same people have also called for an end to such advertisements, requesting a complete ban on them. However, is this the right way forward? Others have called for better gambling advertisement, rather than a complete ban on it.
As it happens, one of the larger global betting operators, GVC Holdings, called for an end to all UK sports betting broadcast advertising in April of 2019. It didn’t address casino adverts in this statement, which is actually considered to be far more dangerous by many European governments. The company took aim at the whistle-to-whistle UK advertising ban which had been agreed upon, saying that that did not go far enough. Now, it has committed itself to ending all football shirt sponsorship deals with UK teams. However, it has been stated that taking television advertisements away will not remove sports betting as a possibility.
Instead, some have suggested that new techniques should be introduced for effective marketing. One commercial that was singled out at the time, was the Paddy Power brand, which introduced a great advertisement featuring Rhodri Giggs. This was noted as advertising gambling properly, with both subtlety and a relatable message, whilst also not harming customers in any way if applied properly.
The fact that many sports betting advertisements incorporate the words ‘Bet Now’ or ‘Best Odds’ were pointed out as being reckless ads. Gambling ads instead need to be tactical and measure their timing as well. In other words, they should know when to utilise a certain advertisement and when not to do so. That same general marketing rule applies in most industries already, so there’s little reason why gambling brands also shouldn’t follow suit.
Whether or not there will be significant change in the way that marketing is conducted for the betting sector remains to be seen. However, it’s likely that advertisements for such will remain in effect for the foreseeable future, so potentially, there needs to be some alterations to these techniques to make things both safe and effective as far as marketing is concerned.