The UK Gambling Commission has published the findings and recommendations that came out of their first co-creation workshop. The event was essentially a gathering of industry marketing shareholders, who shared their respective knowledge and experience in adjusting to the UK’s new advertising standards.
Hosted last month, the workshop gathered feedback from marketing leaders with regard to complying with new advertising requirements related to terms & conditions, promotions, and customer interactions. According to the UKGC, it has been a disruptive year for marketing teams that are still trying to adjust to the industry’s mandatory advertising ban on sports broadcasts.
Workshop objectives included the promotion of collaboration between stakeholders, providing external perspectives, driving cultural change, harmonising brand development with responsible advertising, and facilitating safer gambling strategies. Workshop participants also analysed the latest industry marketing research conducted by Ipsos MORI. The research looked at wagering advertising coverage as well as advertising exposure to young people and vulnerable individuals.
During the workshop, UK marketing agency INDICIA presented guidance on “developing successful, non-gambling customer-centric advertising campaigns.” A customer-centric approach to advertising is one that focuses on providing a positive customer experience. For their part, UK consumer research group 2CV provided external perspectives. They presented on their study, entitled “How Gambling Fits Into People’s Lives”.
The workshop group also discussed various approaches to socially responsible marketing ads. They shared ideas on balancing commercial and responsible messages, as well as understanding the impact of these messages on the audience. They particularly focused on such details as the content of gambling ads, the positioning and the impact of safer gambling messaging, and celebrity personalities in gambling ads.
Additionally, the group discussed challenges around creating content that will get the attention of people who may already be experiencing harm from gambling. Workshop participants agreed that authenticity is crucial when delivering a responsible message. They also agreed that besides authenticity in tone of voice and messaging, the visuals and imagery should also reflect a brand’s identity.
Attendees further looked at affiliate marketing and the challenge of ensuring that content is seen by the right audiences. Current solutions such as automated platforms were discussed. It was recognised that such solutions could help track where particular ads appear. Finally, the group worked to come up with recommendations on managing marketing teams, marketing design processes, and marketing evaluation.
Marketing within the gambling industry has recently come under close scrutiny. The World Cup, for one, saw a rise in complaints in 2018 around the volume of gambling advertisements. Most complaints were particularly focused on the amount of gambling advertisements reaching children. These complaints led the Gambling Commission to challenge the gambling industry to prioritise responsible gambling.
The whistle-to-whistle advertising ban prohibiting advertising during live sporting events was recognised as one of the positive outcomes of the UKGC’s challenge, and the co-creation workshop, which focused on challenges and opportunities in marketing and safer gambling, was meant to support the progress they’ve seen so far. In closing their update, the UKGC confirmed that it will maintain its marketing workshop event for the next year.