Seven Tips for Successful Social Casino Marketing

Seven Tips for Successful Social Casino Marketing

With Churchill Downs the latest US gaming company to invest heavily in the space, social casino games are a growing contributor to the industry’s bottom line.

Published 10th February 2015

The online gaming industry is booming. Every day, millions of games are being played online, and companies are developing more and more games at an explosive rate to try to keep up with the pace. Social casino businesses must adapt quickly to users’ needs, and invest in sophisticated tools in order to improve gamers’ user experience and the uniqueness of games. An integral part of making these tools work is social casino marketing. Social casino games have become the most profitable social gambling sector in the online gaming industry, and as social gaming continues to trend upwards, marketers have to come up with new and creative ways to reach this growing audience. But as a marketer, what is the best way to know what creative will produce the results you’re looking for? Should you provide 3-D or other unique image types to make your ads stand out more? And how can you know whether something like adding or changing text will help make a difference?

Predicting creative performance

There are many factors to consider when designing your creative, and it’s not always easy to know which ads will perform better than others. When comparing two ads, one ad may produce a higher clickthrough rate (CTR) and install rate as compared to another ad, but at the same time could have a lower conversion to first time depositors (FTD) and Impression to FTD compared to the other ad. In this article, we’ll discuss some of the many other ways that you can help predict creative performance, and make your ads stand out from the others. Below we offer seven great tips for developing and scaling your advertising to capture your target users, generate better creative for Facebook user acquisition, and ultimately produce much improved ROI results.

Tip # 1: Know your audience

Simply put, this means matching your creative per segment. For example, There is obviously a difference in appealing to a male/female-based audience, which should be taken in consideration. Likewise, for music fans, Elvis may be the best bet, while for American patriots, images of Obama & Michelle with the American flag would better do the trick. For new gamers, you might go with a ‘Try Your Luck’ ad, or for returning users, a ‘Special! Loyal Player Award’ type of messaging might work best. The key here is to always be relevant and up-to-date on what your target audience wants to see, and to understand what it is that will get them to react and respond to your ad in the way that you want them to (See Figure 1).

Figure 1

Tip # 2: Showcase your product

Always keep your product out front and part of the ad. Our research has found that although showing celebrities and other such features are nice to have, in the end it’s your product that your users want to see. Quite simply, they want to see what they’re getting, and showcasing your product allows them to do so. Take for example the image on the left below. The spinning reel showcases your product, and allows your audience to genuinely ‘feel’ the excitement of playing slots, as if they were in their favorite casino. As another example, you can see in the image on the right an opportunity to offer a multi-line slot image, something that is extremely appealing to experienced slots players (See Figure 2).

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Figure 2

Tip # 3: Call to Action

Always provide a call to action button on your ad. While this seems obvious, many advertisers don’t include it. Calls to action could be as simple as the ‘Play’ as in the top left image, or something with more of an emotional feel to it, such as the ‘Spin and Win’ image on the bottom right (See Figure 3).

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Figure 3

Tip # 4: Listen to your users

It’s always a good idea to create components of your ad that you know your users are responding to, Like in this “Rocket Play” ad. What we found here is that users responded more favorably to us simply adding what was mentioned before – the multi-line, which symbolizes winning the slots. By including this creative touch, you’re giving your users more of what they like and want to see, increasing the CTR on your ad. As seen below in Figure 4, the right ad worked significantly well than the left ad with just a little bit of change.

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Figure 4

Tip # 5: Use the ad format wisely

With this tip, we go back to the idea of being creative with what you do in order to make your ad stand out. There are all types of ways to get your users to engage with your ad. We’ve found that one of the best ways is through the use of ad formats, and more specifically, ad formats that can help make your ad stand out among the rest. In the case of the image below, adding a 3-D effect helped drive a much higher acquisition rate and user reaction than similar ads (See Figure 5).

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Figure 5

Tip # 6: Timing is everything

Make sure your content is timed well and that it’s relevant to what’s happening around you. If it’s Christmas time, add images of Santa. If it’s Halloween, add pumpkins or ghosts to your ad. With holidays and events year-round, there is no shortage of opportunities for which to customize your content and get a better reaction from your users (See Figure 6).

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Figure 6

Tip # 7: Keep it Interesting

Studies have proven time and again that CTRs decline fast (See Figure 7). So if you want to keep your click through rate up and keep your pricing down, you have to keep your ads interesting by constantly refreshing your materials and generating new creative. We recommend 10 new creatives per week, in order to keep your users interested and engaged in your content. In order to deliver a better creative performance, marketers should look to engage a platform that can deliver the following: Uploading campaigns. The platform should allow you to upload and tag various images in a way that’s convenient for you. This can include, for example, organizing your images into different folders, and then seeing statistics on those images that can help you make smarter decisions, all while uploading your ads. Wide-scale A/B testing. Wide-scale A/B testing provides financial efficiency, and gives you the ability to test thousands of combinations simultaneously. Performance analysis of various banner types. This is where human insight comes into the picture, to help determine which ads will help produce the results that clients are looking for. At this stage, you can look at CTR, Install Rate, ROI, or any other metric you want to examine, and then optimize your creative accordingly. Creation of new performance-enhanced images. After you have a better understanding of which ads perform best, you can work with your design team and guide them to create better enhanced images, based on the insights gained from the previous steps outlined above.

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Figure 7

The bottom line

Your creative is critical to your brand’s success because it’s the end point in which your users begin their interaction with your brand. Take your creative seriously, and give it the time, resources, and energy it deserves. In the end, it may just be the best way to grow your audience.