Bingo is one side of the online gambling industry that is increasingly being shaped by the advancements made in mobile and social forms. Thanks to its popularity and the demise of land-based bingo halls here in the U.K. there have been a number of firms flooding the market wanting to pick out your balls and hand you a dobber.
One company that has its bingo-calling suit at the ready is the owner of popular portal OhMyBingo.com, 15Marketing. At a recent conference, CalvinAyre.com’s Becky Liggero caught up with Ben Starr from the company and it was obvious where he thinks the future for bingo lies.
“Lots of focus is on mobile and Facebook and we think that it’s the future,” Starr said. “Having a Facebook app is really cool and cutting edge and having a mobile one is quite cool as you’re everywhere.”
It’s not unusual to see firms posting treble digit percentage point gains when it comes to mobile and this has more than translated to the bingo industry. Going forward, if companies are able to marry mobile, social networking and gambling together, whichever side of the industry you’re in, it will reap big rewards. Whilst Starr remained excited about this he did recognize the online bingo market is already one that has been “flooded with new entrants” over the past few years as it’s “remarkably cheap” to launch.
15Marketing has the imaginatively titled 15Network to enable them to have a better understanding of how to operate even more successfully as an affiliate. It means they’ve reached the end of the rainbow as far as affiliates are concerned by opening a white label. Starr did admit that this isn’t the “ultimate goal”.
“You can survive with good content, something that I’m a big believer in. If you can build a small, active community with good unique content you can make a name for yourself in the affiliate industry,” he said.
In terms of the future for bingo, the online side of the industry is facing proper regulation and taxation in the U.K. for the first time in 2014 with the introduction of a Point of Consumption tax. It’s something he thinks has been “expedited” by mainland Europe’s insatiable appetite for regulation.
As for jurisdictions outside the U.K., many bingo firms have puppy eyes for the Spanish market. Starr stated that they’d be waiting to see how operators get on, as he has no plans to be “industry leading” in the country. U.S.A. won’t be getting any of their attention, affiliate-wise, until the “major states open up”, but Starr did admit that as an operator “we’d love to go in there”.