Thanks to SCOTUS, sports betting is legal and scorching hot. Here’s how you can prepare your casino even before it is legal in your jurisdiction.
Unless you’ve been under the proverbial rock or in the Himalayas on an epic quest for enlightenment from a spiritual guru the last three months, I’m doing my best Captain Obvious impersonation when I say that sports gambling is the hottest thing to hit the casino market in recent memory. This is true even for casinos located in state’s that haven’t approved it yet.
The folks at G2E are predicting that this year’s event will be their biggest year ever in attendance thanks to – you guessed it – sports gambling. In fact, the demand to see the keynote speech by ESPN’s Scott Van Pelt is so high, they are looking at a larger room and other ways to make sure they can accommodate it.
Where is it legal?
To date, Mississippi, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, Delaware, New Jersey, New York and Rhode Island have already legalized sports betting and many more states are in a full court press to get there. Montana and Oregon were grandfathered into the previous ruling, but they aren’t aggressively pursuing it at this time.
What does it mean for casinos?
The windfall to casinos from sports betting could be enormous. In a recent survey, almost 50 percent of people 18 years and older in the United States have placed a bet on a sports event at least once in their life. Additionally, it is suggested that 1 out of every 5 Americans or over 65 million people are currently active illegal, social or casual sports bettors.
The American Gaming Association has also estimated that there is a $150 billion illegal sports betting market in the United States. So, when you factor that in with the nearly 60 million people who participate in Fantasy Sports, that’s a ton of money and players waiting to be grabbed thanks to the SCOTUS ruling.
“That’s great, Captain Obvious … but our state doesn’t have legalized gambling yet. What are we supposed to do in the meantime?”
What we are seeing is that aggressive gaming companies are examining the products they can offer now that can help broaden their player’s connection and experience with sports gambling and, most importantly, begin to build a meaningful database. They are looking to bridge the gap to legalization with innovative products, designed to mimic traditional sports betting, while also complying with the newer fantasy sports laws.
Where to start?
At Engaged Nation, we responded to these demands by creating two incredible programs that do just that … The Million Dollar March Mania Challenge and our new and improved $2 Million Dollar Pro Football Frenzy. And if results from this year’s March Mania program were any indication, the appetite for your players to engage in fun, interactive and legal sports programming right now is at an all-time high. The online participation from March Mania that directly drove more than 10,000 property visits to our clients was a clear indication that players – both women and men of all ages – embraced their properties through these sports programs.
Moving forward, we are excited about these sports programs that actively engage your customers over the entire course of two of sports biggest events every year – The NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament and the NFL, from the pre-season straight through to the Super Bowl. Stay tuned as there is much more sports programming coming your way.
Regardless, you and your casino need to start getting heavily involved in offering as many sports-related online to on-property as possible so that you’ll have the database to go after the sports bettors in your DMA when your state and/or Tribal council makes it legal to do so.