Marketing pre-commitment tools: An Ontario case study

Responsible Gambling Conference um BCLC
26. Feb 2016

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Marketing pre-commitment tools: An Ontario case study

  1. PUTTING CUSTOMERS FIRST: Marketing Pre-commitment Tools An Ontario Case Study
  2. The Challenge: Low Demand + Relevance for “RG” Information Resources
  3. The Communications Plan To revitalize education in order to reach the broader player spectrum INSIGHTS • Current focus is too narrow, need better focus on: • Casual gamblers (before bad habits start) • Chronic gamblers (need new tools, up-take) • RG awareness: • Higher among “Serious social gamblers” but need behaviour change • Lower at start of customer lifecycle • Message overlap with other RG/PG groups GOALS • Be relevant/compelling to each profile • Cater messages to meet needs of all segments • Build on current suite of education program resources by designing new supports/tools (e.g. MyPlaySmart tools) that prioritize customer uptake No Gambling Casual Social Serious Social Harmful Involvement Pathological Gambling
  4. Can RG tools provide value to players? (Who is this runner?)
  5. Player expectations changing as new technology emerges Personal tracking tools are the norm
  6. Pilot at Georgian Downs: What is it? Player Plus Members Can Use • Simply need to create a profile by inserting their card in any slot machine Non-Members • Can sign up for a My PlaySmart card from the Player Plus desk to be used whenever they visit At any time, players can create their profile on a slot machine, change it at a kiosk or Player Plus desk, and if they’d like, remove it at Player Plus desk
  7. How Does It Work? • Members can track their daily slot machine play by setting the amount of time and money they want to spend playing • During play, members receive tracking notifications at approximate intervals of: - 50%, 90%, 100%, 150%, 200% • Members can also check how they’re tracking by selecting the My PlaySmart icon on their slot machine
  8. • Easy to use: Setting up a profile only takes a few quick steps • Convenient: My PlaySmart is built in to the Player Plus card • Non-members can sign up for a My PlaySmart card • Empowers players: with their play information on-screen PLAYER BENEFITS LESSONS LEARNED: Offer a self-directed budgeting tool… NOT a policing tool
  9. What Do Players Think? Discussion Groups at Georgian Downs November 2015
  10. • Georgian Downs is pilot site for OLG’s new Bally GMS • Low-key introduction of both PlayerPlus and MyPlaySmart – Zero marketing effort initially – Intention to prove concept, ensure technology works, obtain initial reactions, understand how players adapt – Gain insights before designing a marketing campaign • Employees trained to explain how tools work • Information available • Focus groups to obtain feedback to inform marketing approach Approach to My PlaySmart Introduction
  11. Discussion Group Who: Conducted two roundtables with individuals who had used the Player Plus program Goals: • To gather preliminary feedback on players response to My PlaySmart tools • To explore opportunities for framing the My PlaySmart offer to meet player preferences
  12. Need to Clarify the Proposition • Most participants thought My PlaySmart was a good idea in principle, and that OLG should provide it • Also resisted the idea that they could personally benefit from it • Concerns ranged from perceived interference with their play experience, to fears of being cut off or being monitored • Preferred Information Source: Most players preferred to either learn about My PlaySmart from: Emails or Casino employees. Ranked 4th Most beneficial offering of new loyalty program Player’s Plus (out of 4)
  13. 1. Unsure How it works • Participants confused about how My PlaySmart worked. • Some thought it was mandatory • Others did not know how to change their limits or create a profile. 20 Customer Perceptions “What happens if you go from one machine to another and you’ve reached your limit. Will it not let you play?” “It bothered me that I was being forced into it. I got my back up a little bit.” 20 Insights
  14. 2. “Not for me” Attitudes • Many believed that they personally knew people that would benefit from tool • Most distinguished their own play – which they felt was in control – from those they believed would “need” it, for example: • new gamers • “addicts” “I would never do that but I think it’s a good thing to have.” “It would be a good tool for the new gamer – gives them a bit more security.” “I think it’s a good idea [but] it’s something I would never use. I’ve been gambling for 30 years, I always set my own limit.” Insights
  15. 3. Dislike the idea of Restrictions • Associated the tool with restrictions – concern that it inhibited the fun and enjoyment of their play experience • Participants felt that they are able to self-regulate and set their own limits. “I may want to come in and just play, I don’t want to set a time limit.” “I don’t feel I have to use it, I leave my bank card and visa at home.” “I wouldn’t use it, I think I’m capable of policing my own gambling action.” Insights
  16. 4. Nervous about Surveillance • Worried about being controlled and feelings of being monitored • Concerned about other players seeing they had reached their limit on their machine • Feelings with shame or embarrassment “When you hear personal tracking tool you’re going to think… they’re going to be watching you.” “[The reminder message] is overblown… it’s more than when you get a jackpot… It’s stupid but I find it a little embarrassing. Maybe people are sitting there thinking this guy is blowing his wad.” Insights
  17. Solvable Problems: Education Concerns are not based on the fundamental design of MyPlaySmart, or how it actually works: instead, respondents resisted their own interpretations of tools. Views involve: • Misconceptions: mandatory usage, interruption of play • Issues of framing: tools appear intimidating or “not for them” • Need to normalize use of tools as part of expected gambling expereince Need for: • Clear communication of the 1-1 benefit of using My PlaySmart • Optimal mix of strategies and tactics, for example: • Tutorials from Casino Employees were ranked either the number 1 or number 2 information source for learning more about My PlaySmart • Educational promotions Insights
  18. • 700+ currently enrolled and continuously using tool • 1073 total sign-ups over 28 weeks (June 30/15-Jan 10/16) o Attrition of 367 who de-enrolled • 38 new sign-ups per week (average) o 13 de-enroll per week (average) So How Are We Doing? as of Jan 10, 2016
  19. Users Stick with MyPlaySmart • Very few complaints to gaming floor staff: only frustration from players who are less comfortable with technology, and some mistakenly enroll • Positive feedback: people overwhelmingly think OLG should offer tools • Unwavering incremental growth in net users every week • Positive part of player experience: those who use tools continue to use “I’m pretty good about controlling what I spend, but the little icon is a good reminder.”
  20. The Plan: On-site Activation
  21. Create Positive Associations Goal: to encourage players to make tools part of their regular routine Incentive: • Respondents were open to the idea of receiving some sort of incentive if it was linked to creating a My PlaySmart account • Priority is integrating My PlaySmart into the gaming experience, and avoiding experience as unwanted interruption Opportunity
  22. Player Plus Member Blitz Educate + engage players on MyPlaySmart benefits: • Direct/email to members reinforcing benefits/functionality – Address key barriers to adoption head-on • Onsite interactions “Hot Seats” with players using their Player Plus cards to engage with members and educate on functionality of My PlaySmart and key benefits • Incentive with key benefits reinforcement distributed on gaming floor. Communication Strategy
  23. Education and Engagement Train staff to proactively educate members on the benefits of MyPlaySmart and the slot machine functionality Key points for staff to emphasize to players: • Empower choice: manage how you like to play • A notification will come up as you approach daily maximums • Your play will not be stopped if you reach/pass your maximum – TIP: Set projected average daily budget or time spent that is realistic to your typical play • Can be changed at the Kiosk or desk anytime. Onsite Activation
  24. Where We Are Going March 2016: Activation, awareness and education campaign starting Post-campaign: Evaluate success, assess opportunities on a more segmented basis, e.g. how to build-in registration for new card members Winter 2016: Conduct analytics on impact of tools on player behaviour Spring 2016: Modify program (as needed) to maximize customer experience
  25. Thank you! Questions? Comments?
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