For many decision-makers in the gaming industry, loyalty programs are the backbone of an effective marketing communications strategy. In fact, one national casino brand generates over $6 billion annually from its loyalty program alone, communicating to customers so effectively that it has been able to cut its conventional marketing budget by half. Plus, through the use of durable, American-made digital loyalty program kiosks, casinos and resorts can make it easy for guests to signup and access loyalty rewards.
The following are three tips for creating an effective loyalty program:
1. Focus on Non-Gaming Activities
As recently as 20 years ago, most of a casino’s revenue was generated from gaming. Increasingly, though, table games and slot machines have taken a back seat to the more dynamic non-gaming activities that casinos are offering, such as must-see live entertainment events, celebrity chef-owned restaurant experiences and extravagantly luxurious spa treatments.
In fact, one study showed that over 60 percent of all casino revenue comes from non-gaming activities, a 20 percent increase since 1990 and continuing to trend higher. As a result, many casino operators are revamping their loyalty program offerings to allow customers to collect rewards for just about any non-gaming activity or amenity, including concerts, buffets, hotel accommodations and even parking.
2. Create an Intuitive User Interface Experience
Today, many consumers, especially millennials, live their lives through a variety of digital screens. One study showed that the average person owns almost four digital devices, and 83 percent of millennials sleep with their mobile device next to them.
As brands consider improving their loyalty programs, many innovative casino executives are taking advantage of the fact that digital loyalty kiosks can offer customers an easy way to keep track of their rewards benefits. Casino loyalty kiosks can be configured with highly intuitive user interfaces that allow customers to make decisions as seamlessly as they can with a mobile application. Plus, through beacon technology, they can stay in touch with the kiosk even as they move around the casino or resort.
The benefits of casino kiosks reach beyond loyalty program communications as well. Kiosks allow facilities the opportunity to cross-sell or up-sell services, advertise through digital signage and help customers easily find and get to amenities that may be underused.
For many casino operators, digital kiosks pay back big returns: Research shows that 66 percent of consumers will continue to use products or services if they are satisfied with a self-service experience, with some businesses experiencing a 10-fold ROI on the investment in the kiosks.
3. Understand Your Customers
In any industry, trends fade as quickly as they rise, and one of the most important reasons to offer simple, intuitive and interesting loyalty programs is to retain existing customers. Studies show that it costs businesses up to 10 times more to acquire a new customer than keep an existing one. Plus, on average, current customers spend about 67 percent more than new customers.
As the gaming industry turns to self-service to help it interact seamlessly with loyalty program members, many casino operators also are realizing the value of the comprehensive analytics engine that comes with many digital kiosks. Access to this data allows casino operators to gain insight on customer preferences while still adhering to privacy standards.
Staying in front of trends can be big for a brand’s bottom line; one study showed that even small increases in customer loyalty can almost double profits.
4. Bet on the Right Technology
It takes special kiosk hardware to survive and thrive in a casino environment. Consider the following:
- Because many gaming floors operate 24/7, the kiosk must be built with high-grade professional components. These are not kiosks that are turned off at the end of a 14-hour retail day, and the hardware must be braced for that reality.
- Much of the U.S. is smoke-free these days, but exemptions often permit gamers to light ‘em up, at least on specially designated smoking floors. Those pollutants can gum up the workings of a kiosk and even coat surfaces, making heat dissipation more difficult. Kiosks need to be built with that challenge in mind.
- Casinos are designed to over-stimulate the senses of players. A cacophony of sounds and lights assaults the patron, with individual sources clamoring for attention—and chips. A kiosk must on its own stand out and make its presence known. Olea’s new Monte Carlo gaming kiosk, for example, features multiple tracks of programmable LED lighting and a second screen to feature an attract loop. In a busy casino environment against some of the most brilliantly designed games in the industry, the Monte Carlo announces its presence. (The kiosk was recently awarded a Most Innovative Kiosk award from the more than 21,000 readers of KioskMarketplace.com.)
“We really have fun with our work in the casino industry,” said Frank Olea, CEO of Los Angeles-based Olea kiosks. “We understand that the kiosks have to do a great job for their deployers, but to do that, they need to emulate some of the fun and the energy of casinos themselves. That’s why we’ve been successful in getting our kiosks placed not only in major U.S. gaming facilities, but also in overseas gaming capitals such as Macau and Singapore.”
Start Building a Better Loyalty Program Today!
Many gaming-industry leaders are seeing big profits and satisfied customers as a result of their implementation of casino kiosks. Contact Olea Kiosks today to find out how our award-winning kiosks can help you effectively engage customers through your loyalty program.