With new entrants coming in the market every year, strategic marketing campaigns to get afloat in this seemingly lucrative industry are definitely a must. Currently, a few betting companies are standing out on this front mainly because of the marketing strategies they have employed, coupled with their model of existence.
Those with the biggest marketing budgets are making an impact and their strategy is reflecting on the ground. A number of the sports betting companies have emerged tops while others have chosen the tail end – struggling to survive the competitive industry. The number of years a company has been in the country has little or no effect on their performance. It’s all about the marketing plan! Some who were seemingly doing well three years ago are at the mercy of the big spenders so they now have to run for their money to show their impact and get the desired number of tickets on their platform like M-Bet.
So what is keeping the top betting companies on top? A quick check showed that the better their marketing campaigns, budgets and distribution, the bigger their impact. In the past year, the industry has seen new entrants like Betway who are big globally and have a huge marketing spend on radio, TV, newspapers, billboards (both digital and still) as we as a vigorous digital online campaign. They have also opened some outlets at malls and kiosks, just like Airtel and MTN have done. This is a strategic move. Through their huge marketing budget and well thought out plan to feature on almost all radio stations in Zambia in different languages, who would not capture the market in such a short time?
Their 100% bonus campaign has also done so well with people doubling their winning on multiple tickets. Their Betgame, casino and live casino games are also gaining popularity on the market. We would not be surprised if in the next year, they become the biggest sports betting company in Zambia.
Another online betting company proving popular is BetPawa. Its current marketing strategy is to brand busses and they have taken over the Copperbelt billboards with their huge sites they are occupying. You cannot miss these big billboards stretching from Ndola to Solwezi. They have the biggest bonuses on the market and we have been seeing people winning big almost weekly, which they sometimes publish in the newspapers, unlike the other betting companies who have two adverts weekly. These companies have changed people’s lives. For instance, one winner named Loti bet a K5.00 and won over K67,000.00 while Davies from Lundazi played with a K10.00 and won K31,510.00.
This campaign has proved to be a success with people winning in Eastern, North Western and Copperbelt provinces, to mention but a few. BetPawa online player Mathew Bwalya in Monze has testified that there are now more companies on the market offering good deals but he has stuck with betPawa because of the 250 per cent bonuses. He, however, complained about the lack of more information on this bonus which he said he knew about only when he got to the platform.
On the mortar and pestle betting companies, we have Bola Bet who are leading on the market with the introduction of an online platform that the users are now able to utilise apart from the initial store visits. We expect to see more and more campaigns both in traditional media, digital and non-traditional. We wait and see how this will work for them with their current marketing campaigns, though a few predictions of who will come out on top are inevitable.
Other betting companies trying to make an impact on the Zambian market are M-bet, Gal Betting, Castle Bet and new entrants on the market who are yet to launch but should launch before the end of the year. With the growing numbers of the sports betting companies, we expect ticket sales to go down for those who will have little or no marketing and a growth in the ones with good marketing strategies and budgets.
As the soccer season gets in the overdrive gear, betting companies will have to do more and more marketing campaigns and also start giving back to society through progressive and well thought out corporate social responsibility.
We also expect to see an increase in experiential marketing for the interaction with their existing and prospective clients. We will also see more sponsorships by the betting companies in all sports in Zambia.
We recall that in the past, we had seen M-bet sponsoring a football team and we do want to see more of such initiatives. These sponsorships are a way that these companies can support sports in the country and the communities.