Moving Forward

Kochan & Company

5 Things We Learned From the Downturn

Apr 28th, 2010 • Category: Advertising Articles, Casino Marketing, Consumer Insight

No matter the size or location of the property, the past 18-20 months have been challenging for casino marketers, something that was once unthinkable in the casino industry.

The current economic downturn has caused a fundamental shift in how players, even core players, are choosing to spend. At Kochan & Company, we see trends in trading down and over, but rarely up, as players at all income levels have had to reposition themselves. It can be very tempting to jump on the latest marketing fad, try to counter all the competitions’ offers or get a little too creative chasing new customers.

We know from past downturns that there are always smart marketers who manage to survive, or even thrive. What this economic environment has taught the Kochan team is that sticking with 5 basic marketing principals is a sound strategy for success.

1. Strengthen Customer Satisfaction or You never get a second chance to make a good impression. The minute a guest enters your property, make sure their service experience is enjoyable and exceeds their expectations.

2. Build Brand Loyalty or Never underestimate the power of “Free”. From free valet to free appetizers to free play, when you give your guests added value, you create an immediate sense of appreciation and loyalty.

3. Focus on Customer Retention or A bored player is a player that’s walking out the door. Spontaneity adds energy. Hot seat promotions, big jackpot celebrations, a visit from a casino host: anything unexpected can help keep the excitement level up on your floor.

4. Track Marketing ROI or If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. You can run successful promotions more than once. Make it an annual event, or depending on the size of the promotion, run it longer (6 weeks instead of 4) or even run it every month. You will save on precious marketing dollars, and reward your guests with a proven experience.

5. Insure a Return Visit or Bonus entries rock! Increasing your guests’ chances of winning a prize provides an incentive for another visit and more play…plus it can help build business on weak days.

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Leslie is the Client Services Director of St. Louis-based Kochan & Company. Her responsibilities include strategic development of new business opportunities, research initiatives, account management, and [...]

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