A Betting on Sports conference speaker (15-16 September), Pinnacle Marketing Director Harry Lang details to SBCNews the changing dynamics of marketing leadership amid new industry values focusing on data, knowledge-sharing and intelligence.
Lang tells SBCNews, that the future industry marketing winners will ultimately test industry legacy values in what is now a more accountable marketplace…
SBC: Harry, great to catch up ahead BOS. As a Marketing Director, how is industry leadership changing its approach to acquisition marketing and its overall impact on the industry value chain and operations?
Harry Lang: Everything is more accountable in line with the greater competition we face today. If you aren’t driven by tough KPIs and constantly optimizing your campaigns then you’re throwing budget away. The key for me lies in researching the value opportunities and tweaking Pinnacle’s acquisition strategy constantly between channels, verticals and markets to ensure we’re always squeezing the most out of our spends.
SBC: Assessing current industry acquisition models, where do you think/feel that operators may lack proficiencies be it in resource, knowledge, skills or intelligence?
HL: For Pinnacle the gaps probably sit somewhere between resource and knowledge. We have a great BI team and the channel marketing team is highly skilled but as we haven’t run totally integrated acquisition across the likes of PPC and display for a couple of years the world has moved on. We are resourcing the marketing team appropriately now but filling the knowledge gap, especially as far as the UK market is concerned, is a priority for us over the coming months.
SBC: 2016 saw bookmakers hit at Cheltenham, with many industry insiders claiming that the event was a ‘race to the bottom’. How can the industry maintain a better balance between player acquisition initiatives and actual marketing value?
HL: Pinnacle doesn’t cater for horse racing nor, due to our significantly lower margin model, do we offer bonuses on sports so the supposed ‘race to the bottom’ at Cheltenham was something we watched from the grandstand with a mix of mild glee and bemusement. Obviously this type of loss leading exercise isn’t sustainable for any operator so I’d suggest marketers seek value and pull up rather than risk commercial injury when they find themselves in such a race.
SBC: Due to outside impacts, the industry is entering a period of legal and fiscal uncertainty. From a player acquisition perspective how do you feel industry stakeholders should prepare for potential growth impacts?
HL: Marketing in the online gaming world has never existed in a static environment – the regulations across most markets have been in flux since the beginning, and its rarely straightforward to preempt the decisions of jurisdictional regulators. As such it makes sense to build flexibility and the ability to be agile into any acquisition strategy and have a hot line to your legal team so you receive information as and when it’s published.
SBC: Looking forward, which current consumer digital trends and habits do you feel will have the biggest impact on industry acquisition practices?
HL: Programmatic still needs polishing but can’t be ignored as the likely future for digital acquisition spending. The same goes for the burgeoning mobile and native app channels which have now fulfilled their early promise and rapidly become the preferred platform for the majority of betting customers.
SBC: You will be speaking at BOS on player acquisition strategies and best practice, what would you like delegates to take away from your session?
HL: I’d hope that we can prompt some debate about the best practice methodologies in the industry, what innovations might be around the corner and leave delegates with a few things to consider – and perhaps even utilise in their own acquisition strategies.
Harry Lang – Pinnacle Marketing Director – @PinnacleSports
Industry marketing strategies and player acquisition models will be discussed at the upcoming ‘Betting on Sports’ conference Grange Hotel Tower Bridge London (15-16 September). Click on the below banner for more information…