Online Poker Marketing Ideas
THE WEEKLY SHUFFLE, 2013-09-08, by TwoGunWith online poker seeming like a very mature industry, one might think that every effective marketing ideas has been explored....and perhaps it has. Here are a few ideas that haven't been explored that may rejuvenate interest in a poker site:
A Degenerate Iron Man Event
Most poker rooms, with the exception of PokerStars, have expanded into other gambling areas. For example, Party Poker has a casino as well as a large sportsbook since they merged with Bwin. Generally, poker sites utilize this as a cross-selling maneuver, meaning if they think a degenerate poker player is going to blow his money on non-poker gambling, they might as well take advantage of it.
However, how about they utilize non-poker games to form a sort of cross-breed tournament with poker, sports betting, and maybe even blackjack too? You could start a tournament with a set amount of chips and Round 1 may be a sports betting round. You can bet on a variety of contests in a day and see if you can increase your chip count. In Round 2, you play blackjack with perhaps a set bet range. You don't have to bet if you don't want to just like you don't have to bet on sports with the chips if you don't want to.
In the final round, you take whatever chips you have and play a standard poker tournament. Some players will have increased their chips a lot with the betting whereas others may have lost them. It would instill a new form of strategy in the game as well as excitement since it would be a multi-day affair.
Most importantly, it would be something that PokerStars doesn't do. Most poker sites seem to have given up to be more innovative than PokerStars, but alas here is something they can do that legitimately separates them and is a fun way for players to gamble.
A mascot isn't going to make or break a poker room, but it would be a fun marketing method. It would be a change from having pros endorse your site or some random celebrity being a spokesperson.
With the famous dogs playing poker picture, perhaps some sort of poker dog would be fun. Or they could go in the other direction and have a cat as their mascot. It would send a subliminal message to players that you may be playing against bad competition and hence it's easier to win at the site.
With 'donk' being such a popular word to describe bad players, a poker room could embrace a donkey as their mascot. They could show the donkey bad beating a player or spewing a lot of cash. The possibilities are endless and amusing!
A Poker "Survivor" Event
Most poker contests have a survivor aspect to it naturally. After all, whoever lasts the longest wins! The only difference between second place and last place is that the guy who got second managed to lose his chips later in the event.
However, imagine an event where players compete for a day. After half the field is eliminated, the players come back the second day. However, instead of having their current chip count, which is how most poker tournaments operate, they instead start over with the same amount of chips as everyone else who entered. Basically, there is no benefit to having a ton of chips; it is only a matter of surviving untiil the next day.
A lot of players would take issue since there's no real benefit to winning a lot earlier in the tournament; it's all just about not losing. To prevent over nittiness, the blinds would be very high initially. Players would likely start with just 20 big blinds and within a few rounds, the average stack would just be 6-7 big blinds.
This tournament idea likely would reduce the benefits of being a very skilled player and increase the variance. This can be good or bad, depending on how you look at it. Obvoiusly, the sharks would be upset, but casual players may be drawn to the event and have more interest in poker again in general.
The Weekly Shuffle is our Sunday column with our observations and commentary on the poker world. Have an idea for an article? Leave a suggestion on the feedback page.
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