Our Latest iGaming Business Article: 'Meeting of Minds' (Part 1)

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In the wake of the US Supreme Court's May ruling to repeal PASPA, we developed an article for iGaming Business exploring how the US and European markets can each succeed through collaboration.You can read the full the article on the iGaming Business website. The article is also available here with part one featured below. Part two can be read here.

With change comes opportunity. No maxim better defines the US sports betting market following the Supreme Court’s repeal of the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) on May 14. Signed into law in October 1992, PASPA’s fall gives way to an environment where excitement and analysis abound regarding forthcoming state legislation and strategic frameworks.

As with previous regulatory shifts, stakeholders in US and European markets will increase their potential for success by collaborating on strategies and solutions that reflect each other’s needs. The list of potential areas for collaboration is extensive - below are several of the most noteworthy.Affiliate MarketingAffiliates have been important stakeholders in the growth of regulated online casino and poker in the US, but sports betting is a different prospect altogether. Fortunately, the level of expertise found in the European market is seasoned and well-situated to provide strategic insights for both long and short-term objectives.

Making the most of regulated sports betting will require partnerships founded on shared knowledge and a willingness to assume leadership roles, guiding affiliates and positioning themselves for enduring success. As seen with casino and poker, clarifying and understanding the terms under which affiliates can operate within US markets can prove demanding but achievable.

Having capably navigated evolving legislative frameworks when the US began reopening its doors to igaming, affiliate marketing has gradually established a presence within the market. US sportsbooks and affiliates hoping to leverage the channel for sports betting will need to rely on similar resourcefulness and expertise from stakeholders based overseas.

According to iSpot.tv, DraftKings and FanDuel combined to spend more than $300 million on TV ads in 2015. While daily fantasy sports (DFS) and sports betting are distinct products, it is notable that each brand scaled back their TV ad spend by more than 90% from 2015 to 2016.

While new entrants to the US market will spend millions advertising through traditional media, they will also consider digital tactics that can minimise such expenditures and increase ROI. This is where affiliates can integrate as part of a broader digital marketing strategy, given their potential for high acquisitions with less upfront costs.State-by-State Marketing StrategiesAccording to Standard Media Index, NFL in-game advertising was down 1.2 percent in 2017, but still resulted in $2.42 billion of revenue. This figure highlights the scope of the advertising environment within which new entrants to the US sports betting market will operate.

The impact of legislation on traditional and digital marketing strategies will become clearer with each state that passes its own set of rules and regulations. Early outlooks are optimistic, including that of Evercore ISI analyst Antony DiClemente who, in a note to investors following the PASPA ruling, estimated that sports betting could result in “$7bn incremental US ad spend in 2019.”

It will be especially interesting to monitor the status of PPC advertising policies, the cost of related media buys, and the likely surge in App Store offerings, despite there still being tight restrictions on interstate sports betting.

Given the autonomy enjoyed by individual states, this should provide an opportunity for local experts to provide support through knowledge of market trends and state policy. This knowledge can then be leveraged by European stakeholders already equipped with their own strategic tools and resources. Ensuring their effective deployment, however, requires a comprehensive plan of action.

This is one of several areas where the existing sports betting market in Nevada will come into play. William Hill US, arguably the most influential name in Nevada sports betting, should inspire prospective entrants currently evaluating their priorities. These priorities will presumably include mobile app development, geo-targeting requirements and creating a symbiotic relationship between land-based and online properties.

The greatest takeaway from William Hill’s success is the importance of preparation. It’s difficult to predict which states will permit single-event wagering in local casinos and which of those will also eventually accept online wagers. But it is crucial to prepare corresponding strategies in anticipation of such clarifications.

What are your thoughts on post-PASPA iGaming landscape? Let us know in the comments section below. We’ll share the second and final part of the article tomorrow.