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Viva Las Vegas: Super Bowl touches down in Nevada

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The Super Bowl is one of the biggest sporting events in the calendar not just in the US but the rest of the world. And as all eyes turn towards the Allegiant Stadium in Nevada, gambling companies will be looking for new opportunities to elevate the experience for bettors.  

We spoke to Allan Petrilli (Managing Director at Acquire.bet), Troy Paul (Chairman of the Board and Co-Founder of SGG Media) and Jamie Shea (Chief Marketing Officer at Strive Gaming) to get the low-down on all things Super Bowl.

 

This is the second year that the Super Bowl is taking place in a state where sports betting is legal.  From a betting perspective, are there any lessons that could perhaps be taken from last year’s event in Arizona?

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Allan Petrilli:  While I do not have much to add comparing to last year in Arizona – Las Vegas is the MECCA of betting. When considering whether any lessons that can be learnt, my first thoughts went directly to the experiences that brands can offer their VIP customers, and particularly the acquisition-focused promotions that they can run in the lead up to the event – think giveaways, trips, hospitality experiences etc.

It may be a bit late to start rolling out these experiences now, but who doesn’t want to go to Las Vegas to watch the Super Bowl?

Troy Paul: Everyone bets on the Super Bowl! Even those that watch one game per year. However, any serious gambler will already have a wagering account- so it’s not really a time to sign up massive numbers of new accounts. However, the Super Bowl is a great time to incentivise your players to make their biggest wagers of the year.

We have seen young fans like “Prop” bets and Parlays- so the Books with the best prop and parlay odds and the best web site from a usability standpoint is paramount. If you have a user site that is not player friendly the gamblers will just go back to the sites they understand and find easiest to navigate.

Jamie Shea: The Super Bowl will be very different from last year’s event. In Arizona, companies like DraftKings had a significant presence. However, DraftKings isn’t present in Nevada; FanDuel does have a retail location, though. In Nevada, you must register in person to wager online. This year, I think BetMGM might emerge as one of the big winners—they have retail locations and an online sports betting presence.

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Since people won’t be able to bet with the other big national operators, BetMGM and Caesar’s have a tremendous opportunity to make their product known to the influx of people coming to the city for the Super Bowl. It will be intriguing to see how those coming into Las Vegas from out of town, who are accustomed to brands like FanDuel or DraftKings, will react. It will also be interesting to see if out-of-towners’ experiences with the BetMGM app might influence them to switch to that app after they return home. This could significantly impact player conversion.

This year will certainly be quite different from previous years. I’ve grown up in this industry, having run sportsbooks at retail locations for years. Nevada, formerly the only place in the country to bet, has maintained its requirement for in-person registration, a mandate not seen in other states. This makes it challenging in Nevada. However, unless regulations change, I fear Nevada might not thrive as much as other states.

 

In your opinion, what new opportunities / challenges does hosting the Super Bowl in Nevada present for sportsbooks? Could this be the year of ‘record bets’?

Allan Petrilli: In my honest opinion, I don’t necessarily believe that the location of the Super Bowl does, or should, have an impact on the volume of bets place. Of course, if we’re looking at the land-based industry in Nevada, then sure, we may see more bets placed at brick-and-mortar casinos. Although Las Vegas has always been a popular destination on Super Bowl weekend, regardless of where the game was being played.

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That being said, I do believe that there may be some challenges around the lack of pure mobile betting in Nevada. Across the Silver State, players need to create their betting accounts in-person; so, I wonder if sportsbooks will be able to handle the increased volume of bets on gameday in a manner that doesn’t resolve in massive lines.

Troy Paul: Absolutely! Super Bowl LVIII certainly has the potential to be the year where we see a record number of bets placed.

Jamie Shea: Every year is a year for record bets. Since the repeal of PASPA six years ago, the understanding and popularity of sports betting have steadily grown. I believe this trend will continue, and Nevada, in particular, might see a record year for sportsbooks. Station Casinos, local to Nevada, will likely see a record number of sports bets placed. Nationally, with the sports betting industry’s substantial growth, massive numbers of bets are expected through major operators. Those not traveling to the game as well as those getting their bets in, in their home state before traveling, will be a big number indeed. The promotions have been fantastic, further fueling the growth of sports betting. The popularity of the Super Bowl is influenced by various factors like team matchups, halftime show performers, and fan bases. The industry’s continued innovation, including popularizing prop bets and live betting, will keep the Super Bowl engaging.

 

And how about casinos, are they going to miss out on the action? or is there opportunity for cross-selling casino to sports bettors, and vice versa?

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Allan Petrilli: The land-based venues are obviously going to benefit from the increased footfall that weekend. But I don’t believe that there is a significant opportunity around pure casino acquisition during the Super Bowl.

That being said, acquiring new players during Super Bowl weekend is relatively “cheap” for online betting and gaming companies, especially given the organic interest around the game and the widening of relevant audiences. But generally speaking, this type of traffic tends to be lower quality and, quite often, churns quite quickly.

That isn’t to say that there is absolutely no opportunity for casino acquisition, however. For brands with multiple verticals, there is a great opportunity to potentially acquire casinos for a low price and, at a later date, cross-sell other products. This strategy is much easier said than done; if brands want to do this effectively, they need to be creative and timely in their offering.

Troy Paul: There are opportunities for casinos, but only those situated in Las Vegas. Over Super Bowl weekend, players flock to the Mecca of sports betting that is Las Vegas for a bit of entertainment. And many big gamblers would much rather spend their money on wagering in the casinos than on an expensive ticket for just one day! So there is no doubt that sports fans in the city will also have a flutter on casino games too.

Jamie Shea: Regarding casinos, I don’t think they will miss out on the action. Everyone coming to Las Vegas for the Super Bowl will likely stay at a casino property, exposing sports bettors to casino games. The excitement will be palpable. Who doesn’t want to play craps alongside excited fans of their team or of the NFL, in  general?  The sports bars, slots, table games and restaurants will be filled to the hilt with enthusiastic fans.

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What more can, or should, the gambling industry be doing to capitalise on the hype surrounding major sporting events such as the Super Bowl?

Allan Petrilli: For me, it always comes down to personalisation. Acquiring new users and getting bets placed for the Super Bowl is sometimes seen as being “easy”, but converting those users into long-term, loyal customers is quite the opposite. It is very difficult. This is then made that bit harder because those newly acquired customers are then looped into the same CRM and loyalty schemes as the more traditional bettors, but you need to approach these players very differently.

One way to keep these players engaged is by offering interesting, unique markets for future bets – whether that’s politics or even entertainment. This is really important. What you also need to ensure is that you educate these users and communicate with them in a way that makes them feel safe and not alienated. This is why personalisation is so important.

Troy Paul: Firstly, the gambling industry should make sure that they are promoting the products that their audiences want to see – namely prop bets and parlays. If you give players what they want, then they will certainly be happy.

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Secondly, sportsbooks should offer Bonus Boost bets for the markets that they have on offer; if you do that, players will certainly show up.

And thirdly, this is more specific to the casinos, but have lots of TVs and places to sit. This might sound like a simple idea, but it will be very effective – players want to be comfortable when having a bet. They might even pay a fee for the luxury of having a comfortable seat. But just make sure you don’t make that fee egregiously high!

Jamie Shea: The industry is already maximizing the Super Bowl hype through promotions and marketing. Operators like BetMGM and Caesars should ensure easy account registration on their properties. While promotions and advertising are crucial, the long-term success hinges on offering a superior product.

The Super Bowl presents an opportunity to attract new customers, making it essential for sportsbooks to provide user-friendly and appealing platforms. Additionally, the industry must prioritize responsible gambling, ensuring sports betting remains a safe and sustainable form of entertainment.

 

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And finally, if you had to make a prediction on who will win the game, who would you guess?

Allan Petrilli:  I think that this might be the year for the Chiefs.

Troy Paul: Taylor Swift versus Patrick Mahomes … now that’s too tough to call!

Jamie Shea: Regarding predictions for the game winner, I’m caught up in the Taylor Swift hype. Her involvement brings fresh eyes to the NFL, introducing the sport to a new demographic, which is fantastic for sports engagement. In this sense, Taylor Swift has already won the Super Bowl in my eyes!

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Pickwatch makes paid media move with Acquire.bet partnership

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Sports media powerhouse selects leading paid-media agency to drive growth in its newly-launched Pickwatch Pro subscription product

Pickwatch, the website that provides bettors with data-led sports betting picks from industry experts, has picked Acquire.bet to run all of its paid media activity as it looks to drive awareness of and engagement with its new subscription product.

Pickwatch, which is already a major player in the sports media space having helped 10 million people source picks over the past 10 years, has just launched a subscription service, Pickwatch Pro. This is a premium product that uses all of its data to give players the very best picks from the top 1% of experts.

Acquire.bet has been tasked with using its unrivalled expertise in paid media across a variety of ad-platforms to drive growth for Pickwatch Pro as well as the wider business.

Acquire.bet provides a full customer acquisition service to operators and media brands in North America and beyond including paid media, performance marketing (via CasinoAffilliatePrograms) and its owned media assets which include SportsCashDaily and CasinoCashDaily.

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Allan Petrilli, Managing Director of Acquire.bet, said: “It’s really exciting to be helping an already established and large brand in the sports media space grow through its first foray into paid media.

“At Acquire.bet, we focus on ROI-led growth and scaling the right traffic. This can only be achieved by the leveraging the power of data – something that Pickwatch fully understands. We have some incredible campaigns lined up for Pickwatch that will ensure it wins when it comes to paid media.”

Shaun Lowrie, Founder of Pickwatch, added: “Acquire.bet truly understand paid media and the team really are the go-to experts in this area. It has an incredible track record of helping brands scale while achieving an excellent ROI.

“This is a new area of customer acquisition for us, and we move into it confident that we are working with the right team to drive success for us.

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Acquire.bet Names Allan Petrilli as Managing Director

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Industry veteran to take the reins of player acquisition agency, remains as Growth Advisor to Intelitics Software

Acquire.bet, the player acquisition agency that has been driving targeted, measurable traffic to casino, sports betting, daily fantasy and social brands for more than 20 years, has named Allan Petrilli (pictured) as its new Managing Director.

As the North American market continues to embrace legal, regulated online sports betting and iGaming, the demand for Acquire.bet’s services among operators has skyrocketed. Petrilli, who was previously the Sales and Growth Vice-President for Intelitics, which shares the same ownership group, will be leveraging his many years of experience in player acquisition to drive the business forward.

Acquire.bet offers a full customer acquisition service to operators in North America and beyond including paid media, performance marketing (via CasinoAffilliatePrograms) and its owned media assets, which include SportsCashDaily and CasinoCashDaily. These channels are vital as pressure mounts for brands to spend profitably on acquiring new users and provide incremental, measurable growth outside of above-the-line and traditional SEO.

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It holds licenses in all key regulated states such as New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Colorado and beyond and is already working with big-name operators, challenger brands and affiliate groups to turbocharge their player acquisition activity.

“Allan’s rise through the Acquire.bet group has been meteoric over the past four years and the impact he has made at Intelitics Software has been significant,” the President for Acquire.bet and the co-founder and Chief Executive Officer for Intelitics Software, Allan Stone, said.

“That’s what makes this move such an important one as Allan will be able to use the experience and knowledge gained during his time at Intelitics Software and over a stellar career and apply it to the tremendous growth opportunities that exist for Acquire.bet, which will ultimately benefit both companies. It’s also great to have been able to promote from within the organization and to give Allan the opportunity to continue to grow personally and within the group.”

“I am incredible excited to lead Acquire.bet into this next phase of growth after supporting the business through the early stages of United States regulated sports betting and iGaming,” Petrilli said.

“Paid media and performance marketing are powerful, measurable and scalable channels and with operators under pressure to deliver strong ROI on marketing spend I look forward to working closer with them to realize this through our services.”

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