As seen on GI Friday.
Hammon puts forward his thoughts on why content differentiation will accelerate success in 2021.
It’s no secret “unique” and “innovative” are terms that are often overused in the online casino industry when referring to new products, services and companies themselves. But with the trials and tribulations set forth by upcoming regulations, married with ever-increasing competition, it’s those that can actually deliver against market needs that will gain cut-through in 2021.
Standing out in a highly saturated marketplace has long been a key requirement and this need is only increasing. A quick scan of the landscape in 2021 reveals a tightly packed arena, with suppliers jostling for prominence, new regulations on the horizon and M&A deals continuing to create landscape shifts, each imposing different pressure points on the market as we know it. With the infrastructure to bring more unique content to light, there’s no denying the threat posed to up-and-coming studios by super-suppliers.
However, operators require more than a few big hits to satisfy the varying wants of their players and challenge their competition, making it an opportune time for smaller suppliers to make an impression. Here, true innovation and genuinely unique products and services have the chance to separate themselves. From the ground up, game design needs to consider several aspects; bright visuals and a trendy theme won’t suffice, but allying those with innovative mechanics, the right volatility percentage, reel configuration and a market-tailored approach and you’re likely to catch players’ attention.
Noteworthy is that, even when a title is complete, other wider, individual considerations still need to be addressed. Serving local market content within a robust and reliable framework that aligns with jurisdictional compliance is also key, especially given the constantly changing environment that is the online gaming space. This is where an aggregator proves invaluable: the infrastructure, experience and compliance know-how is already in place. This ensures peace of mind and essential speed to market, providing technical excellence, quality content and most of all convenience in one.
Moreover, the player base is not what it once was; today’s consumer is more careful with his or her time, looking to affiliates to test the waters before experimenting with fresh material. Unlike the traditional player who looked for frequent, small wins, today’s majority prefers higher volatility so long as their distinct wants are met throughout the gameplay experience, thereby introducing another component to the myriad.
Listening to players and building on their feedback is one of the most important ways to differentiate content and satisfy today’s consumer. We feel games like Iron Bank and Money Train 2 act as perfect case studies, exemplifying the effectiveness of a feedback loop involving both player and affiliate. All-in-all, driving differentiation is vital across the supply chain to ensure our sector continues to thrive; we need to think differently and perform with consideration, forethought and nous. Aggregators innovate by not only pushing the envelope with their own content but by partnering with up-and-coming independent studios, peers and even audiences to bring fresh perspectives to the table. In a turbulent industry like this, there’s strength in collaboration.