Leading fast-growth marketing agency Digital Choo, Founder and CEO Iryna Kurochkina details to SBC audiences that industry incumbents have to move beyond ‘rational approaches’ governing their media strategies in order to extract long-term ROI.
Fresh from winning the ‘Marketing Services Provider’ at the 2019 Betting Awards, Digital Choo and Kurochkina credit their winning formula to bridging creative competencies with optimised media campaign strategies… betting incumbents should take note!
SBC: Hi Iryna, thanks for this interview. Could you please tell SBC readers about Digital Choo’s journey to becoming one of the fastest-growing gaming marketing agencies?
Iryna Kurochkina: Sure. It took two years to develop ourselves from a team of 10 people who really wanted to implement all of our accumulated knowledge in betting/gaming into a company of well over 200 people. I believe the key to this success has been our determination to do things as best as possible and an aspiration to achieve highly significant results. With this as the foundation of our day-to-day work, we have managed to create an amazing synergy between each team member and provide non-standard solutions that brought us to the top of the industry.
SBC: Considering industry dynamics, how is the role and relationship between marketing agency and betting operator changing?
IK: The most important task for any betting operator nowadays is to highlight their self in the market. Competition is harsh. To succeed, a company has to really catch the attention of its clients and maintain it. To be precise, analytically based messaging and high-quality content can do the job, but there’s another necessary component to this process. It is the ability to use our agency’s expertise to find working solutions to implement. Regardless of whether a client wants something more traditional or wants something risky, difficult or else. If you know with all your heart and all your expertise that the idea will work; you find a way to accomplish it.
It all takes a lot of consistency from an agency, and trust from betting operators. So we could say the relationship in the industry is shifting towards one of mutual trust. This has become the cornerstone of successful business development between parties.
SBC: As Digital Choo’s leader, you have placed a high emphasis on developing creative propositions to engage audiences; why is this dynamic hard to develop for industry incumbents?
IK: For many years, the rational approach reigned the market. Now everyone looks for powerful emotional arguments with strong analytical backup, but for many industry players, both agencies and operators, it is hard to overcome the customary methods and go unconventional. It takes courage. It takes an enormous amount of harmonious teamwork, and moreover, it takes foundational expertise. Digital Choo has accumulated all of it and succeeded, so I speak from experience. Each of our cases is a great example and we’ve been awarded with many local and international awards.
SBC: Have industry marketing and player acquisition strategies become too standardized? Is this an issue for industry stakeholders?
IK: I don’t think one size fits all. The industry is dynamic. The rules and approaches change constantly over time. So too does industry marketing and player acquisition strategies. It’s important to remember that there are always people – final customers – at the heart of change. A solution can never become standard if it doesn’t work. A whole other question to ask is whether there are other ways to make it work?
SBC: Finally, what debate or discussion do you believe industry executives should be having in terms of industry marketing?
IK: There are more than enough topics, from data gathering methods and analysis to legal issues all over the world, but it is not related to “what to talk about”, it’s rather “how to talk”. Pick any relevant topic and really engage yourself in conversation, and it will work.
Iryna Kurochkina – Founder & CEO – Digital Choo