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Barcelona, 6th July 2018; The World Gaming Executive Summit (WGES) 2018 held in Barcelona drew to a close on Thursday 5 July after 3 days of intensive discussions around the global gaming industry. With a broad range of topics covered, the key areas that captured the attention of industry executives included: ongoing developments in regulation particularly across the US and Asia, Blockchain and its use in the industry, Artificial Intelligence (AI), advancements in technology, the ongoing importance of brand trust and best practices to drive customer engagement.
Super-Brands CEO and co-founder of Sportingbet South Africa, Cuan Chelin was asked to sit alongside heavyweights Katie Hemus, Industry Manager, Google and Maria Boelius, CEO of Cashmio on a panel discussion to discuss ‘Delivering Successful Brand Engagement Across Multiple Channels’.

Chelin opened by sharing some insights from a recent report KPMG released on ‘the future of retail’, “When we look at the significant insights and learnings of brand engagement there are a few strong themes coming through that can definitely be applied to the gaming industry,” said Chelin. “The art of forming an emotional or physiological bond between a consumer and brand is most certainly applicable here and when put into good practice can exponentially grow your brand.”


Chelin pointed out the first theme around the importance of Millenials who are the least engaged generation of customers. “Millennials are more likely to be actively disengaged and their engagement is HIGHLY dependent on technology, “ noted Chelin. The second theme Chelin affirmed was the significance of the conscious consumer, “In the age of authenticity we cannot underestimate the power of acting as a mindful brand. Current research shows that consumers will choose brands that act with integrity,  measuring this higher in importance than that of innovation or being unique. Think about this in your communications and marketing messages. It’s key to note though that this does not only affect the consumer side. As in the case of Gucci, the high-end fashion retailer who had to stop all fur products because they were struggling to attract the best talent to work for them.”


Chelin added that the third major theme in brand engagement is all around experience and how to make it personal, “Customer experience is more important than ever. In retail businesses the measure to compare has always been turnover per square meter. Now it’s experience per square meter.”

When questioned to delve deeper into Millennials as consumers and how to drive better engagement with them Chelin shared the following tips:

  1. Your brand is your promise. What do you stand for? Do you act consistently and are you authentic in your messaging and actions?
  2. Tell us your story and don’t use text. Give visuals and multimedia. If you want a consumer to be emotionally attached to your brand then help them feel it and believe it.
  3. Use influencers. Millennials are far more likely to trust influencers than advertisers.
  4. Listen to your customers, ask their opinion.
“Never underestimate the power of a conversation. As a business we are constantly gathering feedback through surveys, but no matter how big our businesses may become and how large our customer databases, the best insights often come from engaging with our customers directly. Every month before our management meetings, each of our executives choose two customers to chat to about their experience and engagement with our brands and each conversation yields invaluable insights in bettering our business,” ended Chelin.
Sportingbet is SA’s largest online sportsbook and keeping it there is no easy feat says Chelin, “Keeping our customers engaged is a constant focus within the business and we cannot emphasise enough the significance of ‘You ask, We listen’ when it comes to our punters. To stay at the top we are constantly evolving with the latest technology, in play games, cash out, price boosts, build-a-bet and enhanced accumulators all exclusively available through Sportingbet.” When asked about how they tackle the Millennials Chelin chuckled, “By having the very best mobile app in South Africa of course.”
With exciting new developments ahead in the gaming industry it’s clear that the only way to stay ahead is to embrace brand engagement as pivotal in the evolution of the customer experience.