Since the Supreme Court ruled in 2018 that the previous ban against sports betting had been unconstitutional, the sports gambling industry in the US has exploded. Fantasy sports platforms were already making big money, as sports fans looked for ways to compete with friends and win prizes based on their ball knowledge. Now, many states across the country have legalized online betting and the industry has grown rapidly.
Current predictions estimate that the sports betting market in the US will be worth more than $40 billion by 2030. With an emerging market to capture, sportsbooks have spent billions on marketing themselves to sports fans, helping to grow demand for sports betting and compete with other betting operators. Considering the rapidly growing nature of the industry, there are a lot of lessons to be learned on how these companies market themselves to consumers.
Capturing Existing Markets
The success of the sports betting industry has been possible largely thanks to the fact that there was already an established market for these companies to move into. While sports betting was technically illegal, many sports fans across the country placed bets at offshore bookmakers.
After the change in law, sites could launch legally in certain states, with New Jersey sports betting being one of the first legal markets. Once consumers saw that they had the option to sign up to legal and licensed sites that were safe to use, the choice was clear. Legal sportsbooks could also focus their marketing efforts on specific states, only targeting those areas where they were licensed and saving costs on campaigns.
Another major factor in the growth of sports betting was the popularity of fantasy sports. These fantasy sports platforms were essentially just a lite version of sports betting, giving players the chance to win money from their knowledge and research into their favorite sports. Because this was already a huge market across the country, sports betting operators knew their target audience and how to reach them. Some of the most successful betting brands had previously been big players in the fantasy sports market.
Promotions and Special Features
When legal betting first started in the US, there was a modern-day gold rush by operators as they looked to get licensed and set up in each state. So many companies wanted a slice of the action and this led to a lot of competition between brands. One of the ways betting operators have tried to stand out from the crowd is by offering unique promotions and experiences to their users.
Betting promotions have been an important part of online sports betting in European markets, and a similar strategy was applied in the US. All major betting sites offer promotions as a way to attract new users, enticing them in with free bets, risk-free bets, and odds boosts. These promotions are often extended to regular bettors too, rewarding loyalty and improving customer retention.
Promotions are important for bringing in new users, but sportsbooks can also stand out from the crowd by offering unique features, betting markets and even live streams. With so many sportsbooks to choose from, users are normally going to go with the option that gives them something different. In marketing, this is known as a unique selling point, and it’s an effective strategy when operating in a saturated market.
The Future of Online Betting
Online sportsbooks aren’t going away anytime soon and the popularity of online betting seems to be on the increase. Sportsbooks need to stay ahead of the latest trends and provide unique experiences for users if they want to stand out from the competition.
The future of online betting will see sportsbooks have to get even smarter with their marketing if they want to bring in new users, even those who aren’t necessarily interested in sports. Offering betting on reality TV and other options could be a feature to look out for.