Success is not always about the best possible offer or the best value for the money – it’s often about the relationship built between provider and customer. And few businesses are better at this than casinos. Customer retention is one of their strongest points – after all, they have to thrive in an extremely competitive environment with customers with well-defined options. It’s their job to make them feel at home and come back again and again. And some of their tricks can be very well used in other industries as well.
Things get more complicated when it comes to online casinos. An online casino can’t use the same tricks its land-based counterparts do but they still know a thing or two about customer retention.
Success stories are perhaps the most powerful motivators today – and they are used wisely by gambling operators. Whenever a customer wins big, the casino is perhaps happier about it than the winners themselves because it gives them a big opportunity: showing the world that no matter what the statistics say, it can happen.
When a jackpot win in October 2015 broke the world record, both the gambling outlet and the company behind the game that paid it out made a big fuss about it, complete with extended press coverage and the mandatory big novelty cheque.
But success stories only convince people to try once. Other things are needed to actually retain customers.
Few things make customers feel better than the things they get as a gift. Casinos call these “comps” – and they play an important role in their customer retention efforts.
Las Vegas casinos will offer their loyal players anything from free drinks to free rooms to lay down after a long night of gambling. But they don’t stop here – sometimes, these “comps” can be as vacation packages or weeklong cruises.
Many companies hand out similar “comps” but they are often uninspiring clichés like pens, notebooks or wall calendars. But for the best effect, these gifts should be things your customers would really enjoy.
Casinos have encountered an interesting shift in their customer base recently – the older generations of gamblers were slowly replaced by younger ones with different needs and different spending habits. Their stats have shown them that older customers tend to find slot machines interesting, and spend just about a fifth of their casino money on food and drinks, while younger generations are looking for more challenging games that involve skill rather than luck, and spend way more on refreshments. And by correlating their customers’ age and spending habits, they could refresh their services to cater to them both.
The same principle can be applied to many retail businesses. Taking a look at the age range and demographic of your customers will help you figure out what they are looking for – and offer them what they need.
Giving back to the community
There is life beyond the casino floor – gamblers don’t just play their favourite games but have an entire life to live, and many of them like to know that at least part of the money they spend returns to the community.
In the US, casinos generate heavy millions in taxes that all pour into the purse of the state. But they are also often involved in charitable acts. Online casino operators have similar habits – there is even a state-owned one that distributes all of its gains to organizations and individuals supporting the community.
Charitable donations will always help improve the image of your company. But you can use them to make your customers feel better about their own by matching their donations for various causes, for example.