Hitting the Marketing Jackpot: creating competitive advantages when entering new markets

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Mathew Ratty, co-founder and CEO at TrafficGuard , shares how sportsbooks must create competitive advantages when entering new markets.

US.- Sportsbooks have a massive opportunity in new markets where they can reach the right players with the right marketing. As bad actors diversify their efforts towards high-profit industries like sports betting, operators need to focus on maximising the value of their marketing to compete in new and growing markets.

Changing legislation is opening up new global markets, and sportsbooks need to analyse their marketing strategies to create and maintain a strong market position. Gathering research and evolving marketing strategies is crucial to stay one step ahead of harm.

An important element of sportsbook marketing is the identification and segmentation of target audiences. Since 2018, around 38 states in the US have legalised sports betting. To keep up with the growing market, operators need to diversify their marketing efforts to keep up with the competition.

The change in sports betting trends is also becoming more apparent, with a mobile app boom being seen to offer new opportunities for operators. However, it is crucial for companies to maximise the value of marketing to compete in new and growing markets. In 2022 alone, the igaming industry grew to $63.53bn. Not only this but the industry is predicted to get even bigger, reaching $153.75bn by 2030.

Only 3 months into 2024, we’ve already seen huge developments and prospects going forward into this new year for sports competition. Insight into reliable marketing strategies to reduce the prevalence of invalid traffic will help marketers and operators generate growth and create opportunities. By doing this, sportsbooks can maximise both audiences and revenue.

Growing Markets = Growing Profits

As betting evolves, marketers are facing challenging changes to requirements. With an increase in betting seen across the world, sportsbooks must understand each market’s regulations, challenges, and opportunities to keep their marketing strategy relevant and boost revenue. Some regulation changes include responsible advertising, limited access to gambling sites and deposit limits.

Mobile betting is bigger than ever, with New York recording $165.6m in revenue in September 2023  in mobile sports betting alone. As well as this, smaller and more niche sports are being introduced into mainstream media alongside betting opportunities to grow the market.

Where there’s growth and profitability, the shadow of fraudulent activity looms large. Instances of inauthentic leads and clicks are on the rise. While some may occur inadvertently, a significant portion of false leads stem from sophisticated bots aiming for bonus abuse, disrupting CRM systems, and employing common tactics like ad injection, ad stacking, app install farms, location fraud, and numerous others.

Invalid traffic (IVT) refers to any clicks, impressions, or app installs devoid of genuine interest. IVT stems from various sources, including accidental clicks by users as well as deliberate manipulation by fraudulent users, bots, and other online threat actors.

In the first quarter of 2022, gambling’s fraud rate grew by more than 50% globally compared to the same quarter in 2021. Wasting ad spend clicks which don’t convert into anything means financial loss for operators, not to mention time wasted by marketing teams. Large volumes of IVT lead to marketers diverting spend towards invalid or useless leads. Time, effort, and budget are all funnelled into sources that harbour bad ROI.

The competition landscape is changing, and alongside growth and regulation changes, operators will need to refine marketing strategies for the best chance of success.

Taking Back Control

To enhance the attraction of both first-time and repeat depositors, it’s essential to optimise spending away from sources of invalid traffic, such as returning users (already acquired), bots, and disingenuous engagements. Without robust protection against invalid traffic, marketing initiatives risk squandering budgets and falling short of their potential to entice new customers or re-engage existing bettors. Recent research conducted by TrafficGuard reveals that up to 60 per cent of the expenditure on Google Ads is consumed by existing users simply searching for the brand name to log in. In a business landscape where companies strive for incremental growth, only a fraction of this advertising expenditure is directed toward acquiring new users.

For marketers to have the best chance at succeeding in their targets, reliable solutions are needed with customer verification rules and shadow campaigns to limit IVT, preserving budgets for genuine and successful marketing outreach. If companies can achieve the right marketing, they can expect to see increased ROI, capturing more of the right kinds of targets.

Marketing Strategies to Rival Any Team

Diversifying marketing for the new bettors’ landscape will be a continually evolving process with the introduction of new sports, further mobile adoption and other internal and external factors. However, marketers can leverage a wide range of strategies to evolve communications with prospective or existing customers.

Install a Verification Platform – A verification platform is a great way to gain transparency into data. Without accurate reports, sportsbooks are at risk of exposure. To give back control to marketers, sportsbooks can use an accountable verification platform which leverages third-party analysis to confirm compliance with privacy platforms. Without the need for unreliable algorithms, both operators and marketers can be assured they are receiving quality and accurate data to guide them through decision-making.

Leverage a Data-Focused Approach – It’s all in the data when it comes to finding the right strategies. Leveraging hyper-localisation, live data and precision marketing means that sportsbooks can produce optimised ads at scale, and in real-time. This means adding live score alerts, betting odds and countdowns. Creating this sense of urgency will allow sportsbooks to harness last-minute bets, first-time bettors, and increased inputs. As well as this, operators need to gain full insight into passing traffic. Regular monitoring of systems will help sportsbooks to detect discrepancies, fraudulent activities and threats before it harms profits.

Analyse Traffic at Click Level – Understanding Every Click will help marketing teams divert their budget and attention to the places it counts. Choosing a platform which allows operators to set custom rules means sportsbooks can limit the number of times a user can interact with their paid advertising campaigns. Once this threshold is reached, the user is prevented from seeing that campaign for a set period of time. This gives sportsbooks greater control over their traffic and inhibits these users from driving up cost-per-click (CPC) rates, giving optimised pathways to drive more first-time depositors. Eliminating or even just reducing fraudulent clicks will mean that more efforts can be placed in strategies which have a higher potential for ROI. Using a solution built to prevent all kinds of invalid traffic results in genuinely good engagement, greater ROI and better data to tailor ads in the future.

Landing and Expanding

Taking back control over costs is essential for marketers to compete in this environment. Deploying clever marketing strategies, such as monitoring and ad verification, means that businesses can unlock new levels of visibility and authority over campaigns. Once these strategies have been established in one market, companies can easily replicate it to open more markets, giving organisations a playbook for growth.

This competitive edge will position them in the best place for utilising sports betting opportunities, reinvesting savings back into marketing, and increased revenues to gain advantages and win the match.

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