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Books Face Delicate Balance In War To Acquire Sports Bettors

Bob DeChiara/USA TODAY
Written by publishing team

Take a trip to Rivers Casino & Resort in Schenectady and there’s a good chance you’ll look at a billboard promoting mobile sports betting in New York.

Banners, much like Caesars Sportsbook commercials curb your enthusiasm JB Smoove stars as the eponymous Roman dictator, omnipresent in the New York metropolitan area. With online sports betting now available in the country’s fourth most populous country, the race for a sportsbook’s portfolio continues.

On Saturday, New York’s premiere day for mobile sports betting, bettors placed more than 300,000 bets in the opening hour of the state’s debut, according to geolocation security firm GeoComply. In total, GeoComply recorded a transaction volume of 17.2 million during the first weekend of online sports betting in the Empire State, an unprecedented number in the short history of the legal sports betting market in the United States since the landmark PASPA Supreme Court ruling in 2018. It seems that the comfort Being essential, especially with regard to in-game bets inside Manhattan’s famous watering holes.

While these numbers are still early days, the numbers suggest that sports book operators could achieve the goal of liquidating $1 billion in total online gaming revenue in 2022. If the first week of mobile use in New York is a harbinger of first-year market dynamics overall, the The battle for acquisition The new clients will be thugs.

Since New York legalized mobile sports betting, major sports betting operators have grappled with a tough job offer. On the other hand, sports betting writers need to spend enough on free betting offers and other smart promotions to beat their competitors. However, companies need to be wise enough with their spending habits to generate a strong return on investment relative to a metric known as Life-Customer Value (LTV).

“Managing this ratio is absolutely essential for anyone in this industry,” said Matt Prevost, chief marketing officer at BetMGM. sport handle. “Every Mali team will look at things differently. You have to go knowing that there is enough in LTV [the customer acquisition costs, or CAC] It will be important.”

The importance of the ratio of LTV: CAC

In 2020, DraftKings reported that the lifetime value of a customer hovered around $2,500, while the average CAC came in at $371 per customer. Since New York issued conditional mobile sports betting licenses to nine companies in November, sport handle I reached out to a wide range of industry experts — sports book operators, Wall Street analysts, marketing consultants, and others — to gauge whether the metrics in New York would be in line with the rest of the nation.

The unique aspects of the New York market make exercise a challenge, evidenced by the various opinions. When asked to predict whether CAC costs in the market will be sustainable, some believe they could be astronomical at first and eventually drop dramatically. Analysts without skin in the game have suggested acquisition costs could fall in the $1,000 to $2,000 range per customer, while those representing a portable New York sportsbook have been cautiously optimistic that costs won’t be that high.

“Oh, I hope not. I hope it’s a lot less, it’s going crazy,” said Soo Kim, president of Bali Corporation. sport handle Last month on the sidelines of the SBC North American Conference in the Meadowlands. “I don’t even understand how people are going to make money there.”

Bally Bet is one of four notable companies that participated in the so-called “super bid” to reach the market in New York. Two of the four, DraftKings and FanDuel, are now streaming live, while Bally Bet and BetMGM prepare for launch.

Market trends have developed over the past 15 months when the DraftKings LTV:CAC ratio has remained around 6.75:1. For context, the ratio around 3:1 is usually seen as the preferred ratio among Saas (Software as a Service) companies, a subset used by analysts As a comparative tool for evaluating sports betting IPOs. When the ratio approaches 5:1, it is widely believed that companies are stifling growth by spending too little. Conversely, as the ratio approaches 1:1, these firms may spend a lot.

When calculating lifetime value, companies look at “disruption,” or the rate at which customers will discontinue their relationship with the company. For example, if 5% of a company’s customer base stops placing bets on the mobile sportsbook within a 12-month period, the average customer life will be around 20 years (1/5% change rate). The company will also produce a retention rate of around 95% (1.00 blend rate).

Age = 1 / churning rate

Average Revenue Per Account (ARPA) = Total Recurring Revenue / Number of Accounts

Gross Contribution = ARPA * Gross Margin

Lifetime Value (LTV) = Total Contribution * [Retention Rate / (1 + Discount Rate – Retention Rate)]

Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC) = Total Sales and Marketing Expenditure / Number of New Customers Added

LTV / CAC Ratio = Lifetime Value / Customer Acquisition Cost

Methodologies according to

Prevost explains that in calculating customer-per-acquisition metrics, one of the most difficult aspects lies in determining what goes into the numerator. As eye-catching as it may be, it is now common practice for large companies to spend hundreds of millions on sales and marketing every quarter.

DraftKings spent $304 million in this category during the third quarter of 2021, marking the fifth consecutive quarter in which the figure has crossed $170 million. Meanwhile, Caesars CEO Tom Rigg has revealed an outline of plans to invest $1 billion in sports betting and iGaming’s dedicated spending to gain market share.

On Monday, Reeg appeared on CNBC croak box Morning show to discuss company opening weekend in New York. Caesars offers new customers $300 in free bets, plus an initial deposit match of up to $3,000. Reeg said Caesars would incur “significant launch costs” from such incentives and from broadcasting commercials during major sporting events. However, he expects Caesars Sportsbook to be profitable as a venture by the 2023 football season, while the company’s sports betting division will provide EBITDA margins of 25-30% at maturity.

However, New York offers a unique market environment. A high national tax of 51% on total online gaming revenue will put enormous pressure on operators to spend wisely. EBITDA margin, which measures a company’s earnings as a percentage of revenue, may be a better measure of long-term success than revenue alone. In other states, it is much easier to achieve the required margin with a lower business tax rate, said Crispin Niebuhr, partner at UK-based consultancy Orange Cap.

Thus, stifling tax rates can be a big determinant of whether New York sports books are able to sustain their advertising campaign beyond the first year.

“There will be a lot of soul searching about how heavy marketing is,” Niebuhr said. sport handle.

The path to profitability

The environment in New York may also force operators to brainstorm creative ways to separate themselves from the competition. Philadelphia-based customer engagement solutions provider OtherLevels sends automated smart messages to sports bettors as a way to inform customer behavior.

For example, at an NFL game just after New Year’s Eve, you might check your NFL scores between pickup games at your local YMCA. Then all of a sudden, Antonio Brown tore his shirt off and walked off the field at MetLife Stadium. You have a big bet on the Bucs money line. An alert from OtherLevels on Brown’s departure may convince you to hedge with the Jets in the game market.

“For me, it’s about player engagement,” said Jenny Lu, who is general manager of the North America division at OtherLevels. “You can’t keep them by throwing money at them. You keep them by keeping them physically engaged and giving them the information they want to hear.”

Industry hitters may be able to swallow the steep costs if they can offer strategies for using sports betting as a way to increase other “neighbourhood segments,” according to Lloyd Danzig, founder and managing partner of Sharp Alpha Advisors. These sectors include additional business sectors such as digital holdings, cryptocurrency trading, traditional sports bars, and NFT markets, among the many NextGen initiatives that cater to millennials.

“Because New York is a very visible state and because there are a lot of eyeballs on operators, some operators may be marginally less sensitive to customer acquisition costs, as they are looking to enhance lasting value through revenue opportunities outside of sports betting,” Danzig said. sport handle.

DraftKings, for example, is investing heavily in its NFT market. Last July, DraftKings announced a partnership with Autographs, a digital sports collectibles company backed by Tom Brady. In terms of New York, DraftKings is playing the long game. DraftKings CEO Jason Robbins plans to hire a guide similar to those the company has used in other notable states to follow a “two to three year path to profitability” in New York.

When asked if New York’s top players can turn a profit so quickly, others aren’t sure. While Neiboer noted that DraftKings could take steps to make profits by acquiring a smaller operator, he believes the task is more difficult if the company tries to do it organically. The environment for customer acquisition in New York will be intense, and Neiboer expects DraftKings competitors to keep fighting.

“It will be a while before anyone makes any money in New York,” Niebuhr emphasized.

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