Betting on Loyalty Marketing The Gaming Industry (1,607 words)
by Robert McKim
Americans continue to show strong support for gaming as an entertainment activity. An overwhelming majority of U.S. adults—92 percent—say casino entertainment is acceptable for themselves or others. Sixty-two percent of U.S. adults say casino entertainment is acceptable for anyone (an increase of one percentage point over last year), and 30 percent say it is acceptable for others but not themselves. Only 8 percent of Americans say casino entertainment is "not acceptable for anyone."
One of the most surprising, yet logical places for sophisticated database niche marketing is the $7 billion casino industry. Faced with fierce competition in a crowded industry, more than 2,000 casinos operate in 103 countries—the smartest casinos have been leaders in building and using a database for direct marketing. Yet, with all the data they collect—including not only what games clients play, but also how long they play, whether they win or lose, what they eat, what shows they attend, even when they sleep—it's surprising what casinos don't know about their customers.
Playing the Smart Bet
Increasingly casinos are playing the database marketing card to extend marketing capabilities and improve yield. As database marketing, data warehousing and data mining become more refined, casinos are embracing strategic database marketing as a competitive weapon. Historically, casinos have wanted to know everything about their customers: age, birth date, anniversaries, marital status, type of work, where they live, the cars they drive, their favorite sports and entertainment and how many children they have. The information enables a casino to create specific promotions tailored to different customer segments and even individual customers within each segment.
For example, casinos send slot machine and blackjack players special invitations to tournaments, which say, boxing fans don't receive. Boxing fans, on the other hand, may get advance notice and perhaps be "comped" when there's a related event that is likely to bring them back to the casino. Big spenders may receive "comp" meals and hotel rooms and on their birthday receive a card and perhaps their favorite chocolates (to show that the casino really cares).