The Big Picture
Overcoming the hurdles to greater results: Product, Experience, Perception
From coast to coast, casino operators and Crown corporations individually struggle with big business issues, some market-specific and some common across the country — from a fixation on Millennials to issues such as unionization, data integrity breaches and building new casinos.
Along with these issues, we have observed three big-picture themes in our work as consultants:
1. Slot and table game products not evolving quickly enough
2. Getting the customer experience right
3. Inaccurate public perception
Today we are going to unpack the three key hurdles that are keeping the industry from growing at a faster pace: Product, experience and perception.
Are we there yet? Are we at the point of convergence between what the manufacturers are creating and what our markets need? Are we providing input? Are we blaming the regulatory environment? Are we innovating?
Over the last several years, market research in many provinces reveals that players want more play value for the money they are spending. Some translate that as better payouts, but what we find in the customer panels, focus groups and on-line surveys we conduct, is that many players — typically higher-frequency, lower-betting customers — often want more time on device. As an industry we don’t do ourselves any favours when we provide slot machines to our customers that have high volatility, max bet and high denominations and the outcome is that players lose their money faster. While the short-term gain is higher slot floor hold, the longer-term loss, of course, is a decrease in customer satisfaction, which has a lag measure of less customer spend.
We are also fixated on getting a younger demographic in the door with the right food and beverage and entertainment, with the hope that they will play on the casino floor. But we have to face facts: Much of the younger demographic doesn’t want to, and never will, play slot machines.