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Allan Petrilli Managing Director of

Social media: the new frontier for betting engagement?





Since the dawn of the internet, social media platforms have been a great way for people to stay in touch. And as mobile technologies have continued to advance, we’re now more connected than ever. In fact, you’d be hard pressed to find someone who doesn’t have a social media presence nowadays.

From Facebook and Instagram to LinkedIn and even TikTok, social media apps have become a staple of our daily lives. So, it’s no surprise that gambling brands are looking towards such platforms as a means of tapping into new audiences.

We spoke to Allan Petrilli, Managing Director of Acquire.Bet, and Troy Paul, CEO and Co-Founder of SGG Media, to ask whether social media is going to become the next battleground for audience engagement.



BetMGM recently made the news after partnering with the social media platform X, formerly known as Twitter, in a deal which has made the operator the first online sportsbook embedded within a major social media platform. In your view, what could this agreement mean for the industry?

Troy Paul: It is a very smart play for BetMGM. If operators want to reach the new generation of gamblers, aged 21 to 40, they MUST establish a solid presence on social media.

Ultimately, social media is where this generation gets their news, sports updates, scores and share content with their groups of friends. Ignoring the power of social media would be a big mistake.


Could partnerships with social media platforms be the way forward for gambling operators to reach new demographics of players? If so, what impact could such agreements have on player engagement, and subsequently, player acquisition costs?


Allan Petrilli: Deals such as the one signed between BetMGM and X, or DraftKings and Apple Sports, are examples of sports betting brands getting more creative in how they plan to boost brand awareness and consumer trust. They are deviating away from the more traditional advertising models such as TV and other forms of above the line media.

Focusing specifically on the BetMGM agreement, X is a vibrant, passionate community that is heavily engrained in sports. It really seems like a great fit for what BetMGM is trying to do from a brand perspective.

X is also a hotpot of bettors, and this will ensure they are more heavily engaged with the brand. When it comes to lower customer acquisition costs (CAC), that is yet to be determined, as they haven’t released specifics of the deal. As it always goes, it depends on what they paid…

Troy Paul: Absolutely! Partnerships between social media platforms and gambling operators will be key for those who want to communicate with the more digital conscious bettors. If you then compare this to advertising verticals such as television and radio, social media advertising is also much more cost-effective.



Affiliates can be an effective way to engage with bettors across social media platforms. How can gambling companies better use affiliates to build a social media following?

Allan Petrilli: Micro-influencers are becoming more popular than ever as a significant driver of affiliate traffic, and this is due to their strong follower engagement and brand loyalty.

Many affiliate companies have SIGNIFICANT social presence and have already established their own communities. These types of partnerships can effectively give brands access to a whole new demographic of customers in a more organic fashion.

Operators needs to continue to offer their social partners a more organic way to drive traffic, with shareable bet slips, better deep-linking and more thoughtful partnerships. As these partnerships become more commonplace, operators, affiliates and social media partners will need to collaborate much more closely to find the most effective strategies to build new communities.



As more operators turn their attention towards social media as a marketing tool, how can they best stand out from the crowd? Could we soon see more brands getting creative with their campaigns?

Troy Paul: Social media should be used to create a COMMUNITY of sports fans, and sports gamblers. You cannot create a community by sending only ads. You must create fun, readable, informative CONTENT and occasionally drop in an ad or sign-up link. Content is King in this regard.

As the sports gambling world continues to mature, the smarter, savvier operators will continue to use social media as a means of retaining their customers and creating a social media-led community of loyal customers that not only enjoy their content but also continue to bet via their brand.

Allan Petrilli: Standing out from the crowd isn’t going to be an easy task. You really need to establish your brand identity. The real question is: who is going to be the Paddy Power of the US market, right?

In the US, I think that so far, we have seen quite a buttoned-up approach to social media. I do expect that to change, but I think that change will be quite slow at first. This is where micro-influencers could play a major role, they could really offer a big win potential for sportsbooks and casinos.


Just from what I have seen, I think that many brands can take a much more localised approach on social media. The power for targeting is there, the time is not to have creative, offers, etc that match the local bettor to better engaged, convert and retain them.


With that in mind, what role can multimedia assets, such as video and audio, play in driving brand recognition?

Allan Petrilli: Creative content, along with more engaging offers, are the lifeline of any campaign or branding exercise. Brands need a strong mix of branded video, user-generated content, live and pre-game content, and cross-platform retargeting strategies to get the most out of what they do. It’s all about striking that balance and delivering content that the end-customer finds interesting.

Troy Paul: Video-led content is super important if you want to drive brand recognition. The savvier operators will use platforms such as Instagram, YouTube, Twitch, TikTok and other video platforms to create those communities and establish a solid following. Millennials and Gen-Z have been shown to enjoy this quicker, more engaging form of content so it’s worth tapping into the world of video content.



When it comes to promoting odds and betting statistics on social media, how can the industry as a whole ensure that player protection remains at the forefront of any social media activity?

Allan Petrilli: The first thing that sportsbooks and casinos need to do is look at how they are targeting their customers and how they are informing their bettors about exclusion lists. The power is there, it just needs to be used properly.

More educational content is also a very important factor when looking to ensure that responsible gambling remains at the forefront of your social strategy. Throwing around $5000 sign up bonuses without ensuring players understand what they are getting into is a potential issue. That doesn’t always need to be in the ad, but brand should at least be introducing better landing pages and terms for players to be aware.


Pickwatch makes paid media move with partnership




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 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. 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. 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.


Allan Petrilli, Managing Director of, 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, 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: “ 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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