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Mobile, so much more than just a channel

01 Dec 2015 / Author: Kamil Gajewski

The startling statistic that smart phone users look at their phones around 150-200 times per day, confirms how mobile devices have completely transformed our lives.

Suffice to say, they’ve also transformed our way of gaming. Not only has mobile made gaming products available everywhere but they’re now more accessible to players than ever before. The successful products are quick to engage and allow players to access a world of excitement and entertainment, anywhere, anytime. These products tap directly into the lifestyle of young adults who lead busy lives and look to their smartphone for moments of entertainment throughout the day. Without doubt, mobile is the only way to reach these young adults.

Staying relevant in the age of mobile

For many lotteries, reaching and engaging with this younger demographic is a hugely important challenge. In order to stay relevant, it’s crucial to offer products that fit their lifestyle in a natural way, and for young adults, the most natural way of reaching them is through their smartphone. It means lotteries have to offer a gaming experience that is widely available, easily accessible and offers instant entertainment. Otherwise the potential player looking for quick entertainment or a brief distraction will head for Facebook or Candy Crush Saga.

The younger demographic are used to excellent user experience across the board. It’s something they’ve become accustomed to from using the world’s most polished and enticing mobile games and apps. So it’s clear that being competitive in the mobile market is all about delighting the players with user experience, sharpening the quality and delivering new features and functionality based on data and consumer insights. Players are more informed than ever with switching costs minimal, and alternative options, many. Everyone is competing for their time. So there is simply no room for lesser products on the mobile.

Redrawing the industry landscape – the mobile opportunity and threat.

Mobile gaming has existed for over a decade but it’s only during recent years that it’s really taken off. Looking at the market trends, it’s evident that the mobile boom has had a massive impact on the competitive landscape. Several previous market leaders were caught off-guard and as a consequence lost vital market share to new entrants and operators who proved vastly successful by embracing the mobile trend. In the same way that online has disrupted retail, there’s no doubt that mobile will disrupt web in the coming years. The entire industry is increasingly focusing on mobile, as this is where the biggest growth is. This focus provides many new challenges for the lotteries, not least, offering an omni-channel product portfolio with a standout mobile offering.

However, the lotteries are in an ideal position to pick and choose what to retain in-house and what to outsource to a supplier. This enables the lotteries to quickly adapt to the changing market conditions and to partner up with a supplier who can provide maximum value for their players. Ensuring, in the age of mobile, that they emerge as winners.

Reconnect with young adults through a modern mobile Sportsbook.

One of the biggest and fastest growing products in the mobile channel is the Sportsbook. A modern mobile sports book offers players not only the option to play on what they want, when they want, but as long as young adults remain interested in sports, the sports book is guaranteed to stay relevant and attractive. Additional content such as statistics and streaming helps keeping them even more engaged. Of course, this needs to be powered by personalised algorithms, to make the displayed content as relevant as possible to them. Or preferably, delete the last two words and stop with “as relevant as possible”.

Today, Sportbook growth is driven by in-play betting in the mobile channel, with player behaviour differing from that in the retail channel or on desktop. Looking at the evolution of the sports betting experience, this is the natural next step. The industry has moved from retail, to web, to mobile, and the betting cycles are becoming increasingly faster, which naturally fit the mobile behaviour of short recreational sessions. Mobile is not just a channel. The consumer behaviour displayed on mobile is already driving new requirements for innovation in the Sportsbook. And this is just the beginning.

We believe lotteries now have a fantastic opportunity. By partnering with a leading sports betting supplier like Kambi, lotteries can offer their players new and innovative products, specifically designed to fit the behaviour of the mobile consumer. This enables the lottery brand to connect with young adults, positioning itself as fresh, relevant and innovative. But it also provides a valuable way  for the players to explore the rest of the lottery product portfolio in mobile as well as other channels.

Truly, a winwin outcome.

Kamil Gajewski is heading Kambi’s Business Development and Business Intelligence departments. He has spent the majority of his career in various business development and product roles in the gaming industry and has been working with Kambi since 2011. He holds a M.Sc. in Business and Economics from the University of Uppsala.

First published in The European Lotteries News, December 2015 Issue.