With the gambling industry around the world becoming more and more competitive, operators must explore as many avenues as possible to keep customers coming back.

During a presentation at SBC Summit Barcelona, Anastasiya Tsikhanava, Business Development Manager at SOFTSWISS, explained why retention is the strategy for success for any operator looking to stand out in the global market space.

Tsikhanava described retention as the “main factor for the lifetime value of the player” which can be managed by “creating a special bond between the player and the product”.

To show the importance of a retention strategy, SOFTSWISS split the player base of one of its clients in half to demonstrate how its jackpot system can help influence engagement and retention.

On a screen, Tsikhanava provided a data table which showed how SOFTSWISS had impacted a client’s player numbers with and without a retention strategy. 

Acquisition without a retention strategy can drop from 100 per cent to just three per cent after a 12-month period. With a retention strategy, on the other hand, acquisition numbers will still naturally decline, but will eventually plateau to around 30 per cent after a period between 12 to 18 months.

“The segmentation of the player is the most important thing when you know your customer”

Tsikhanava then highlighted specific strategies that can help operators with their retention, including bringing additional value to players, reducing participation barriers and providing product reminders.

She said: “We brought additional value to the player. The player plays the same routine. He has more benefits in the same routine of games he used to have with additional winnings in the game.

“We reduce all barriers. We made it so simple to participate in our jackpot campaigns. No extra fees, no extra signings, just a simple way for the player.

“We remind clients about the players, about our product. We create events – daily basis, happy hours, daily quests, weekly drops – we create these events when we engage with them regularly to bring them to our brand.”

Tsikhanava also spotlighted strategies such as segmenting players, increasing task frequency and providing additional promotions as ways in which clients can boost their retention potential.

“We segment the players. The segmentation of the player is the most important thing when you know your customer. You can create your campaigns and analyse your segment of players and make it more fun for them. Make it a unique experience for them,” she continued.

“We all know that we can use promotion and marketing for extra benefits and acquiring players. We can tell that creating a jackpot campaign creates an additional promotion for your brand, which helps with the acquisition itself.”

“You can plan all your investments. You can plan how fast you’re going to see a return”

Regarding factors for successful retention strategies, Tsikhanava split this into four sections – content, service, VIP experience and bonuses.

She noted that content has to be updated, creative and answer the demand for the geographic region, while services must be at the highest level possible – easy, creative and engaging.

VIP experience must be a “tailor-made, one-to-one experience”, while bonuses must be influenced by a client’s long-term and short-term strategy for retention.

Tsikhanava concluded that with the right retention strategy, businesses can plan for their roadmap with much more ease and better predict their growth.

“You can plan all your investments. You can plan how fast you’re going to see a return. You can create a one-to-one customer experience and you can predict the business growth for your project.”