Millennials. Gen Z. We’ve all heard these generational labels tossed around (with conflicting views on each one). But the reality is, these two generations are the demographics that most businesses need to focus on to stay relevant and profitable. Spanning the ages of 26-41, and 10-25, respectively, Millennials and Gen Z have disposable income, are becoming increasingly affluent, and have very clear ideas of what they like and don’t like.
For the casino industry, whose demographics have long skewed older, this is a whole new frontier, and many operators may be unsure how to attract these younger potential players. At Acres, we believe there are ways the industry can reinvigorate itself and meet the demands of today’s (and tomorrow’s) players. Keep reading for our tips!
Nothing stays the same forever
For most brick and mortar casinos, slot machines have been their bread and butter. For decades, slot machines have sometimes occupied more than 80 percent of floor space—and for good reason. According to the Center for Gaming Research at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, the hold advantage of slot machines ranges from 5 percent to 10 percent. As a result, slot machines typically account for approximately 80 percent of casino gaming revenue. This was a great bet for casinos to make but as demographics have shifted, so too has the need for new blood on the casino floor. In a recent study led by Game Changing Technologies, 70 percent of slot revenues are from players over the age of 55, with players between the ages of 60 and 70 representing the largest share of slot revenues. And the younger crowd? Well, players between the ages of 20 and 30 represent the smallest share of revenue.
So what can operators do to attract, engage, and retain a younger crowd? Here are a few thoughts.
Introduce new genres of gaming technology
While skill-based games are still in their infancy compared to traditional slots, they have been a hot topic of discussion for some time, and show potential for a huge upside. But their adoption has not yet taken off at scale. Skill-based games could create a whole new line of business for casinos while also solving for how to attract underserved markets – like Millennials and Gen Z. The key concept here is reconsidering tried and true tactics and understanding what type of gaming is appealing to a younger demographic.
Leverage big data
If you follow Acres, you know we love data and believe it’s the lynchpin for casinos to take the leap into the future. And savvy customers like Millennials and Gen Z also know and understand the power of data so operators can use this to their advantage. Physical casinos use tactics such as loyalty cards which allows them to collect a treasure trove of information on their players such as how much they’re spending, winning or losing streaks, and other behaviors. Online casinos also use big data software to collect demographic information and to understand how people are playing games. All of this data can be used to create targeted marketing campaigns to attract a younger crowd and better understand their behavior to create a gambling experience that keeps them coming back. Our Foundation platform makes data collection easy by delivering real-time data which allows for a more exciting and customizable player experience.
Bring the games to them
Imagine you’re 26 years old and on vacation in Vegas. You’ve gone shopping, enjoyed a show, and now you’re lounging by the pool with a drink. This could be the perfect time to play a quick round of roulette or a hand of blackjack. But you don’t want to lose your poolside spot. Instead, you whip out your phone and start betting right there. For a brick and mortar casino, introducing mobile gaming could be a great way to attract and engage younger players who are visiting a casino for the entire experience – not just gambling. And since Millennials and Gen Z are rarely without their mobile devices, you’ll have a captive audience ready to play.
Integrate VR and the metaverse
Both physical and online casinos could benefit from integrating increasingly popular technology such as virtual reality and the metaverse. Younger crowds are often at the forefront of new tech adoption and including these elements in the casino experience could be a great way to draw them in. While not many gamblers own a VR headset today, the global virtual reality market is expected to reach $34 billion by 2023. With that kind of forecast, casinos should take note and develop methods for integrating this technology for more realistic experiences for online users and to keep players coming to physical casinos.
Adapt or die
The casino industry has remained largely unchanged for many years. However, the time is quickly arriving (or it’s already here!) where casinos will have to adapt and be nimble to stay relevant and profitable. The future is here – and it’s young. By integrating new technology and understanding the needs of Millennials and Gen Z, operators can keep the good times rolling.
Since 1972, the Acres name has been synonymous with groundbreaking casino technology and we’re on a mission to reinvigorate an industry that is struggling to meet consumer demands. Learn more about our technology on our website or contact us for a chat.