Written by Reginald Chan on February 17, 2021

Customer Acquisition Strategies in the Online Casino Industry

The iGaming industry has become even more competitive in the last twelve months as the COVID-19 global lockdown caused online gaming traffic to increase exponentially. iGaming operators are always battling it out to get ahead of the competition and capture more market share by using different customer acquisition strategies.

The top gaming operators continue to experiment with different strategies while the smaller gaming operators pay close attention to what the big boys are doing and then follow in their footsteps. We take a look at some of the tried and tested customer acquisition strategies in the online casino industry below. 

Online Casino Bonuses

The most attractive customer acquisition strategy for iGaming operators comes in the form of casino bonuses. Online casinos try to distinguish themselves from the competition by loading up their welcome bonuses. These welcome bonuses usually come in the form of match deposit bonuses and no deposit bonuses.

Chloe Wilson from AustralianCasinoClub.com comments: "By far the most efficient value propositions at online casinos is the casino bonuses. That is the hook that starts the funnel."

The most popular bonus with online players from around the world is the no deposit bonus. Players gravitate towards casinos that have heavy no deposit bonuses. As the name suggests, a no deposit bonus does not require a player to make a real money deposit of their own.

No deposit bonuses can come in the form of free cash or free spins or both depending on how generous the casino wants to be. If the casino is loaded with slots, you are more likely to get free spins as a no deposit bonus. If the casino has a good selection of table games, you could also get free cash as part of the no deposit bonus

Match deposit bonuses is when the casino decides to match a certain percentage of deposit bonus. These bonuses are also attractive but require the player to make a real money deposit of their own to claim the match deposit bonus.

Do keep in mind that the best no deposit and match deposit bonuses not only have a good bonus offer in the form of free spins or free cash but also has a low wagering requirement. A few casinos not only give you a no deposit bonus but also don’t impose any wagering requirement, making it easier for players to win and cashout.

Social Media Marketing 

Social Media Marketing for Online Gaming

iGaming operators spend a lot of money on social media marketing and use multiple platforms to reach their audience. Social media advertising can be a costly affair when the ads are run on a daily basis. The top gaming operators who have big marketing budgets do not shy away from social media marketing.

The top gaming companies have special social media marketing departments who know how to run these ads without falling foul of the terms and conditions of these social media platforms. They monitor the conversion stats of these ads and ensure that they get a strong ROI.

Brand Ambassadors 

Top casino and poker room operators have used brand ambassadors for decades to get their brand in front of a gaming audience. Over the years, top gaming companies have experimented with different brand ambassador strategies.

Some brands have engaged the top poker players to represent their brands, others have engaged top sports stars and celebrities to endorse their brands while a few have experimented with using social media influencers and YouTubers to boost their brand presence and acquire more customers.

The only way to test the success of the brand ambassador strategy is to engage different brand ambassadors from different fields and then measure the increase in customer acquisition numbers. This strategy is mostly used by top players in the industry and it takes a fat bankroll to be able to sign top brand ambassadors.

Television Ads

Television ads are one of the traditional methods of getting new customers but can be a very expensive affair. The top gaming brands in the industry do not shy away from spending big sums and advertising their brands during prime time television.

Television ads continue to be successful for gaming operators but it is becoming more difficult to advertise gambling on TV due to the pressure from advertising and gambling regulators who are concerned about the increase in problem gambling.

Gambling operators who have primarily relied on television advertising as their main customer acquisition strategy will have to quickly change their tactics, especially if their main market in the United Kingdom.

Affiliate Marketing

Gambling operators have relied heavily on affiliate marketing for years to bring in new customers. Most online casino operators continue to rely on the affiliate marketing strategy and are happy to pay their affiliates a percentage of new customer spends in exchange for them taking on the responsibility of marketing and bringing in new customers.

Affiliate marketing in the online gambling industry can be a very profitable experience for both the online casino and the affiliate if done right. However, gambling regulators in different jurisdictions have started to crackdown on gambling affiliates who do not toe the line of gaming compliance.

iGaming operators can continue to use affiliates to help with new player acquisition but need to be very picky about who their affiliates are. This is because an online casino operator can be fined by the gaming regulator if their affiliates are found to have breached gaming regulations.

iGaming operators will continue to use the above tried and tested methods for customer acquisition but will also be keen on experimenting and testing new ones as the market continues to evolve.   

Article written by Reginald Chan
A meticulous entrepreneur by nature and a serial entrepreneur. Founded a few awesome startups including Marketing Lancers, WP Maven and TheMarketingHuddle.com. Reginald is a sought-after success coach, digital marketing consultant and TEDx speaker from Asia. Currently, he teaches others how to make money online for free.

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