The growth of the online slot industry over the past decade has been phenomenal.
Today, the online casino sector is estimated to be worth over $500 billion and is still growing.
The most prominent marketing for online slots comes through sign-up and deposit incentives such as slots bonuses and free games. Behind the curtain, however, the real power behind driving new sign-ups comes from the smart use of marketing funnels.
A marketing funnel is a concept and technique for measuring a customer journey from passer-by to purchase maker. Looking at the process of engagement in this simple and highly visual way is hugely helpful for making marketing decisions.
At its most basic, a marketing funnel measures how – and how many – customers pass through four key steps of engagement.
Step 1: Attention
This is where customers change from being oblivious of a product or service to being aware of its existence. Primarily, this is a marketing step reliant on ads, social media, and word of mouth.
Step 2: Interest
This step occurs when a customer is aware of a business and thinks it could satisfy a need for them. The potential customer has learned enough to know they are interested and wish to know more before going further.
Step 3: Desire
At this point, the subject has learned all they need about a product or service and they want it. No sale has been made yet but, assuming the right conditions are met, the customer is ready to buy.
Step 4: Action
A sale is made, either in the traditional sense of exchanging cash for goods or as registration to a service. This is the narrow end of the funnel, through which any business wants to get as much traffic as possible.
While there are variations and complexities, all marketing funnels follow this same basic flow, regardless of industry. Funnels apply to sales, but also to anything needing to attract an audience such as websites, webinars, videos, or gaming.
For slot providers using the funnel model, there are two main ways in which to increase the number of final customers.
Many companies use a marketing funnel to show the customer journey from interest to action.
Widen the funnel
One guaranteed way to get more from the bottom of any funnel is to put more into the top. When marketers refer to ‘widening the funnel’ this is exactly what they mean.
The broader a slot site can make its appeal, the wider the top of its funnel will be. This is about getting more people from step one to step two by demonstrating more reasons to be interested such as the variety of themed slot games available.
Stop the leaks
It’s no good getting huge numbers into your funnel if too many are leaking out before the end. Slot providers must look at where in the process people are being lost, and address why.
What is it that stops those who are interested from taking the next step into desiring the product or service? What information are they finding, or not finding, which turns them away? Is it loading speeds of the slots site, is it the signing up process?
Attention and interest
Through huge spending on advertising, online slots, casinos, and betting sites have established a highly visible presence around the world. TV and radio ads, social media, and sponsorship, particularly in sport, have all been a big part of this strategy.
Sponsorship of sporting clubs and events has often been the first step towards increasing interest. By aligning themselves with products customers are already emotionally invested in, slot brands create an easy ‘in’ for themselves.
Similarly, slots have often sought to theme their games, taking music or imagery from popular films or musicians. This ‘widens the funnel’ from ‘people interested in gaming’ to ‘people interested in movies and music’ – a huge expansion.
Slot providers need to create attention and interest amongst the public, which is where advertising space comes in useful.
Desire and action
Converting a wide level of interest into desire and action is also something online slots have worked successfully at. Constantly updating incentives are a key ingredient in converting interest parties to registered participants for the online gaming industry.
Deposit bonuses are the most common way in which online slots drive interested customers from interest to action. However, there are several other methods any brand can employ to improve the percentage of traffic completing the whole journey.
Invite people in
Making people feel a part of a brand is a great way to entice them through the marketing funnel. Sharing behind-the-scenes content, running a competition, or inviting customers to attend a conference are three great ways to do this.
Slot providers also offer an array of bonuses and promotions to new players to encourage the player to sign up with the site.
Trying something that hasn’t been done before or packaging a product in a unique way helps a company stand out. Many customers respond to being offered something outside their usual experience or tailored to their specific niche. Slot providers tend to offer a range of themed slot games and try to differentiate from their competitors offering.
Listen and respond
The best way to find out what a customer personally wants is to ask them. Market research will tell a business how to add value and give people a reason to take that next step.
Marketing funnels have helped online slots and casinos explode in popularity over the last decade. They have helped brands and businesses to understand the customer journey, where it is stalling, and how to fix it.
Any brand can learn to improve their conversation from attention to action by applying the lessons learned from this sector. Perhaps it’s time for your business to establish its marketing funnel and begin following in the footsteps of online slots.