Andy Caras-Altas discusses how online casino space presents new opportunities for land-based casinos.
There is a unique opportunity for a convergence between land-based casinos and the online casino space—if they choose to grab it.
Traffic Generation CEO Andy Caras-Altas said casinos must look at the online space, especially now that more casinos are being built.
“I think it’s an inevitable change in the world. It’s not about the millennials getting on to their cellphones. It’s actually about people engaging with digital channels,” Caras-Altas told CalvinAyre.com. “Generally, you’ve got competition increasing. There’s more casinos being built. You’ve got in-state lotteries, and you’ve got a general movement to the digital demand.”
He pointed out the behavior of gamblers, particularly the mature 45-plus, 55-plus and the core slots players who are already moving online.
“What does it mean for the average casino? That means you can try for revenue, additional incremental growth. With very small risk of cannibalization, you can engage with your players, you can build [it] into a larger scheme and have holistic online channel marketers and really push away from some of the traditional marketing channels that are getting more difficult,” Caras-Altas explained.
Tribal groups fear that offering online social casino products will cannibalize land-based casinos, but Caras-Altas said it’s “absolutely unequivocal” that this is not an issue.
“There’s a lot spoken about this issue, but the data is clear. There’s incremental growth and in property and overall lifetime value, you’re going to make more money from your players,” he said. “The session rates will increase, the amount of visits to the property will increase, the opportunity to get new customers through the door. I wish there was more debate to be had, but the data is clear cannibalization isn’t an issue.”
The Traffic Generation CEO, however, has a warning for land-based casinos wanting to try their hand at online social casino products: avoid siloization.
“It’s buying a digital casino, giving it to a single marketing person, and then abandon it,” Caras-Altas noted. “That happens more often than not the right way to do it… You involve your player development people, you involve your property marketing team, your loyalty team, you incorporate it with your property management systems—bookings, loyalty points, gameplays—and you use that to engage your customer. And when people do that, that’s when we see the incremental growth. That’s when we see the lack of cannibalization.”