Two years ago, my 22-year-old son came home saying that he wanted to move to Malta because he had found a job with an iGaming firm. At that time, I knew a bit about social gaming, but the iGaming industry was then completely new to me.
More than twenty trips to Malta later, having had long talks with people in the industry, and after having provided consultancy services to a number of iGaming companies, I now understand the industry a bit better.
Still, I am left with a couple of questions. The most important one: why are all providers exactly the same?
You all offer the same games. You pay way too much money to affiliates. You distinguish yourselves from your competitors solely through free spins and bonuses. And almost all the brands carry their product in their name. I stopped counting brand names with “bet” in it.
Brands are like people. But if my friends would act like iGaming companies, I would try to lose them as quickly as possible. They would be almost identical and very boring.
I’ll give you a minute. Can you think of ten global top brands in the world that carry their products in their brand name? I don’t think you can. A brand is a combination of identity and values. You choose a name that fits that specific combination. A brand name that has a connection to the brand’s values would be best.
People do not have a relationship with products, bonuses, and free spins. People want to have a relationship with an identity; and they love values. This is how you create brand awareness, brand preference, and, ultimately, brand equity.
The iGaming industry is a relatively young industry and the market remains in flux. I bet most of the of largest companies will no longer be the largest in ten years from now. The iGaming industry will also face a shakeout.
Let’s compare it with the energy drink industry. When Red Bull first got started, there were many other startups in that industry. I will give you a nice bottle of champagne if you can name ten top international brands in that industry that still remain.
It won’t be long before the Dutch market opens up for online gaming companies. Don’t be a sheep and be exactly like everyone else. It will cost you; and your company will lose.
Erik Pas is an independent Creative Brand and Business Development Strategist.