As in all other industries, players have caught up with the quick tricks and corner-cutting methods that some suppliers have come to rely on to keep up with this high-churn market. As streaming has made game formats more accessible and an already educated audience is demanding more, players are increasingly looking for volatility and depth to the content they spend their time on. In this red ocean of competition and regulation, what chance do the innovators of the industry have to combat the issue of return-on-investment when striving to create truly differentiating content month-on-month?
Simon Hammon, Relax Gaming’s CPO, Tobias Svensen, CEO at CasinoGrounds, and Johan Ekberg, Group Casino Games Manager at LeoVegas, discussed just that at this year’s EGR Operator Virtual Awards, each bringing unique perspectives as a result of their varied backgrounds as supplier, affiliate, and operator.
‘Prioritising quantity over quality won’t get you far in today’s market’, began Simon, ‘a carbon-copy of last year’s hit ultimately doesn’t drive revenue. If you put your heart and soul into a product there is so much you can do, but it requires external support to help cut through the noise of this densely saturated market and make a return on your efforts.’
The three agreed that in order to drive differentiation and keep the industry moving forward, other sectors must serve as longer-term inspiration. Johan said, ‘We would love to create a personalised lobby for every player that logs into our platform, but effectively promoting new titles would take a lot of work to be done properly. I look forward to the day that we can implement a model similar to Spotify and Netflix, and tailor our pages whilst marketing new content that they would enjoy.’
Feedback plays a huge part in creating a personalised user interface, the mammoth task lies in monitoring players enough to be able to segment them according to their likes and preferences. ‘We frequently gather feedback from our players and feed that to our suppliers, but it’s close to impossible to keep up with the demand as well as the depth of insight required due to the sheer quantity of new releases. In this sense, affiliates give us a huge helping hand and bridge the gap between players and producers.’ Tobias seconded the statement saying, ‘All marketing trends are moving in the direction of watching others experience a product before deciding to invest time in it themselves, it’s great for players as well as suppliers. Getting feedback straight from the horse’s mouth is an insightful and inspiring experience to say the least.’
In the height of the review-focused, video marketing, and influencer era of advertising, the trend has rippled into the gaming sphere and was welcomed with open arms by suppliers, operators, and players alike. Despite the mounting pressures, Simon is positive about the future of the industry, ‘Relax was, still is, and will continue to be all about making quality content instead of low RTP varieties. In our book, quality is king, and unique material will keep driving differentiation in the industry. This model can be sustainable if supported by operators and affiliates, and the support we’ve seen so far is encouraging. All in all, I believe the future of innovation relies on teamwork with our peers.’