iGaming 2023: Mind The Gap! Bridging The Divide Between Data and Player Engagement

The maturing iGaming market, although highly competitive, still offers a plethora of opportunities for growth. 

Many of these opportunities rely heavily on an operator’s ability to successfully interact and engage their customer base, at scale.

Leveraging the almost infinite amounts of real-time player data to make more informed decisions will be the key to a successful growth strategy for any brand.

So we spoke with Daniel Brookes, Chief Executive Officer for Rdentify to hear his thoughts on the best ways for operators to extract value from their data and, most importantly, how they can use it to keep player engagement levels at a maximum.

Operators collate a seemingly infinite amount of player data, but why is it so important to be able to react to the data in real time? How easy is this to do at scale?

“Great question. In this fiercely competitive industry, real-time responsiveness can make all the difference. Gambling customers crave quick responses to keep their gaming experience smooth and enjoyable. Reacting to their needs, whether it’s customer support, withdrawals, compliance, or marketing, can be the key to keeping them brand loyal.

“This is one of the main reasons we launched MindfulMate. As experts in the field of safer gambling tech we engage with operators frequently and they expressed a common industry frustration. Getting hold of customers requiring a Safer Gambling interaction can be challenging and time-consuming, creating a catch-22 situation where safeguarding is tricky, and customers can’t continue playing. 

“Our Responsible Gambling bot, MindfulMate, is the solution. When an operator’s alert indicates the need for an interaction, our fully customisable bot engages with customers right on-site while they actively get you the answers you need in a natural customer friendly way.

“In general, scaling and reacting to real-time data in any industry requires constant investment in R&D and infrastructure. However, the benefits are extremely tangible.”

Too often operators have a tendency to focus more on acquisition than retention. Why is it so important to be able to retain players sustainably? And what impact does it have on the lifetime player value?

“Well, I’ve been fortunate to work closely with operators and gained valuable insights. One crucial aspect that operators are well aware of is the high cost of customer acquisition. Once they have a good customer on board, it becomes essential to keep them loyal. Operators tell me that they heavily invest in various aspects, such as CRM, bonuses, top-notch customer support, an impressive array of games, and a user-friendly interface, all aimed at improving the customer’s lifetime value (LTV). 

“Retaining existing customers is not only more cost-effective but also opens opportunities for further investment in innovation.

“In today’s landscape, sustainable player retention holds equal importance for long-term success. Building and nurturing a loyal customer base significantly enhances lifetime player value. Retained players tend to be more engaged, leading to increased play frequency and higher LTV.

“With our solution, Rdentify Protect, we enable operators to identify customer insights from various communication channels, including live chat, email, bots, and telephone conversations. Our products are designed to identify markers of harm, allowing safer gambling teams to proactively address and review relevant customers.  

“For example, Telemate, one of our phone offerings, provides comprehensive transcript summaries and conversation topic information. Operators are now leveraging this data for quality assurance of customer service – and gaining valuable insights into customer satisfaction and pain points, ultimately driving service delivery improvements.”

Many businesses, especially in the iGaming industry, operate within data silos, creating a lack of visibility between key business units. How can operators avoid this going forward and ensure key departments are aligned?

“In the iGaming industry, I often come across a common issue: Data not being effectively shared among departments. Compliance teams lack access to customer conversations, while customer support teams can’t see payment data like withdrawals or KYC statuses. High-quality data integration is crucial as it saves time and empowers all aspects of the business, from executives understanding customer behaviour and value drivers, to operational staff staying up to date with customer needs.

“In my view, any new product or tech project should prioritise data integration. 

“Considering questions like what data will be obtained, how to access it, its value, and how it can be cross-referenced with different tools, is vital. Setting up a quality Data Warehouse with an efficient reporting overlay may require time and effort, but the payoff is worth it.

“To avoid data silos hindering decision-making and collaboration, operators must invest in integrated data management systems. Our Telemate and Rdentify Protect products offer comprehensive insights, bridging the gap among departments and ensuring seamless communication and alignment.

“Promoting a culture of data transparency and sharing is equally crucial. In today’s data-driven world, integrating information effectively can lead to a significant competitive advantage.”

Rdentify is a tech company that works within the iGaming industry, as well as many others. Drawing from your experience, are there any other sectors that are leading the way in compliance and risk management, and what can the iGaming industry learn from them?

“Several sectors, like finance and healthcare, have set high standards in compliance and risk management. They prioritise data security, customer privacy, and consumer welfare.

“In the financial industry, a notable development is the introduction of the Consumer Duty. It places importance on considering the diverse needs of the target market, including vulnerable individuals, at every customer touchpoint. This customer-centric approach, evident in websites, online portals, and telephone interactions, demonstrates the sector’s commitment to consumer welfare and responsible business practices. 

“The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has also provided a clear definition of vulnerable persons, reducing confusion and ensuring better protection for those who need it.

“In iGaming, we often discuss the concept of a single customer view. Healthcare providers worldwide have been securely sharing customer data for years through Electronic Health Records (EHRs), setting a precedent worth examining.

“The online payment industry boasts robust data protection measures and solid governance. Recently, I delivered a talk on responsible leadership within the iGaming sector, which received positive feedback. Emphasising what matters to us as individuals and business leaders allows us to cultivate a culture that aligns with our values. This resonates with stakeholders, employees, and customers, leading to enhanced goal alignment, investor confidence, employee retention, and a clearer brand message.”

Editors’ Note:

Daniel believes that the key to success with data collection and analysis is how it is shared within the business. Removing data silos and creating a singular customer view is essential for effective engagement at scale.

The growing importance of real-time interaction is not to be taken for granted either. 

Daniel was keen to highlight that this aspect of the user experience can really make all the difference. Players desire quick responses to keep their gaming experience smooth and enjoyable. Being able to react to their needs, whether it’s customer support, withdrawals, compliance, or marketing, can be the key to keeping customers brand loyal.

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