How to Engage the Next Generation of Sports Bettors

The next era of sports bettors from the millennial and Generation Z demographics is now at the gambling industry’s forefront. While there are clear advantages to this, there are also concerns that the next generation of bettors may neglect long-standing betting markets.

The team at Uplatform has a keen focus and interest in population-based factors and data and emphasizes that millennial and GenZ demographics are imperative to the gambling industry and its survival and development in the years to come.

This is a generation that is well-connected socially and financially savvy and is plugged into everything when it comes to the online world. Sports have always produced a social environment, whether at the park, at the bar, or on your couch with close friends. Sports betting has helped connect fans to the game in a new way, and it has helped build a strong community around predicting hundreds of outcomes inside of one contest.

Despite fewer Gen-Zers watching sports in general, the experiential and social aspects of sports betting are appealing to this generation. While Gen-Z is often characterized as being more fiscally conservative and less prone to discretionary spending, they are willing to take out their wallets for unique social experiences.

Focus On Trends

Our focus definitely should be on the new betting trends and habits of Gen Y and Gen Z, such as how they spend their excess cash and their online habits. According to research from the CivicScience study, Generation Z has a greater interest in innovative ways to bet, moving away from traditional methods of betting.

Considering the rife competition, plus the fact that 60% of people aged 25 and under have remained loyal to one brand once registered with the company, it’s critically important to provide these audiences with products that they will return to and with trending offers they can’t refuse.

How Can It Be Achieved?

FAST, LIGHT, MOBILE

Gen Z is a mobile-first generation. In the next few years, they will not only be the largest generation ever, but they’ll also be the largest generation in the workforce. Consequently, they’ll have more disposable income and influence global spending to an even greater extent.  And if you want to successfully reach Gen Z, you need to do it where they spend their time — on mobile phones.

So it’s undeniably beneficial to make the site fast, intuitive, and accessible supporting different mobile devices. Uplatform is well-equipped in this aspect and offers a range of user-friendly responsive templates. Their multi-device solution includes light web versions adapted to all devices, intuitive apps for iOS, Android, and Windows, and a solution for telegram betting. The latter (telegram sports betting) can also work for acquiring and engaging next-gen bettors, taking into account the social part of the GenZ and GenY behavior.

GenZ bettors value the opportunity to bet online from anywhere. We can see the tremendous benefit of mobile betting in these stats if we bear in mind that this group appreciates small, fast bets:

It is typical for desktop users to place large bets, but less often. In turn, Mobile betting is an absolute winner when it comes to the number of bets placed. Leading the way with 77.16% compared to desktops (22.64%). Betting from mobile devices is more frequent, but smaller, which perfectly matches the preferences of GenZ bettors. Fast betting on the go is an appealing prospect. Betting operators need to account for this if they want to deliver an appealing user experience and improve engagement of this demographic especially.

New generation, new verticals

Esports, which are expected to generate $2.55 billion in revenue by 2022, is exceptionally popular among younger generations. It’s no wonder, given that they were raised or born during the cyber boom, with computers and phones at their disposal 24/7. They are accustomed to playing games and are more connected with Esports than previous generations.

Based on Uplatform’s statistics – 94% of Esports bettors are younger than 30 y.o. Operators who are planning to work with this audience need to ensure that this betting vertical is catered for in terms of value and the variety of betting markets that are provided.

According to Uplatform, among the most popular Esports are CS:GO, Dota 2, and League of Legends – more than 91% of bets are made on these Esports. Also, bets on Age of Empires, Valorant, StarCraft II, and Quake are increasing in popularity. Factoring the popularity of Esports among GenZ has led the team Uplatform to curate one of the most competitive coverages of all the major Esports, along with more niche titles like Undercooked and Angry Birds, to appeal to broader audiences and encourage brand loyalty. Having a sportsbook with both popular and unique Esports, and a greater choice of betting types and markets, operators will have a comprehensive offering that is highly appealing to GenZ bettors.

Fantasy Sports, where virtual teams are comprised of proxies of real players competing professionally, is another captivating vertical for GenZ. For example, the Fantasy Premier League, which was founded in 2002, now has over 7 million players globally and is expanding every year. At a CAGR of 13.6 percent, the fantasy sports market is estimated to reach $43.35 billion in 2026.

Bets on fantasy sports are growing as fast as the fanbase of the fantasy sports and leagues, making this vertical a must-have for engaging next-gen bettors. There have been significant gains in the market mainly due to the increasing population of youth, the expansion of digital infrastructure, the availability of affordable smartphones, the increasing popularity of players in different sports, and the introduction of fantasy sports applications.

Innovative Offerings

Gen Z prefers betting with exciting elements of fun and entertainment rather than betting for instant profits. So, it is crucial to offer fresh, interactive, and unique ways to bet.

The mechanics of the betting site itself could be made more interesting by adding gamification elements. At Uplatform, we offer a wide range of different bonuses, including gamification. Before starting to gamify your service, it’s important to have a good understanding of who your players are to determine what kind of gamification elements to include.

If your brand is focused on social interaction with users, adding gamification with a social focus would be beneficial. For example, allow users to gain followers when placing bets and display how many people have made the same bet. A social chat for people who have placed the same bet is another social experience that is meaningful and beneficial to offer to Gen Z — these people already have something in common, which makes it easier to start a dialogue and relate, at the same time it creates a feeling of belonging to a community, which is very important for retaining users even when they are on a losing streak.

Some betting businesses make their players feel more accomplished by their covert reward mechanics, where they might get a better-personalized offer than the other person. It does have an element of unpredictability too, leaving people feeling special and good about themselves; like they earned this opportunity.

Looking Ahead

Reaching out to Gen-Z is, arguably, the existential problem facing sports brands today. If leagues and broadcasters are unable to adapt to new technologies and navigate changing consumer trends, they risk losing an entire generation of fans. And as zoomers form a more significant sector of the economy in advance of the largest wealth transfer, the stakes are only getting higher. Those who bemoan Gen-Z as being “unreachable” will inevitably lose out to those who strive to meet them where they are at. Although, the road to success is not a long one; betting sites can still prosper in the future by modifying their offerings with a flexible and inventive strategy that Uplatform is able to offer today.

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