Sports betting operator CrownBet is unveiling a new advertising campaign on Australian television—one that doesn’t mention actual betting.
The ad campaign will launch during Monday night’s telecast of the Australian Football League’s Brownlow Medal on Seven West Media, the Australian Financial Review reported.
In the TV ad, former Australian cricket captain Rickey Ponting driving a Ferrari along the glittering shoreline of Monaco, then watching the Formula One grand prix as well as indulging other experiences that “money can’t buy,” which was the theme that CrownBet was going for.
CrownBet chief executive Matthew Tripp said the advertisement is for the CrownBet Rewards loyalty program, hence the absence of betting component.
“[CrownBet Rewards] has helped us do a good job in acquiring customers, though it is expensive for us, but is has done an even better job in retaining customers,” Tripp told the news outlet, noting that 90 percent of the sportsbook’s 200,000 active customers are members of the loyalty program.
The ad campaign also marks CrownBet’s departure from its old “The Game Just Changed” brand to “Reward Yourself.” But more than that, the commercial is clearly part of a broader CrownBet strategy to differentiate itself from its competitors like Sportsbet, Bet365 and Tabcorp.
“We think this is very different,” the executive said, according to the report. “No one has gone down this path before, we think it is very unique in this space.”
CrownBet’s move comes at an opportune time, as there have been moves to curb gambling-related advertising on television. Senator Nick Xenophon, in particular, has started stepping up his efforts to entice major broadcasters with a discount on their license fees on the condition that they will turn down advertisements from sports betting companies.
The independent senator and habitual gambling scold is busy dusting off the gambling reform plan—the one that was junked in 2010—which would pave the way for a ban on sports betting advertising as well as a maximum $1 bet on poker machines, among other measures. Xenophon touched the issue of commercial TV licensing in July, when he said that it was unfair that local TV broadcasters had to pay fees when its competitors like Netflix do not.