In an op-ed for iGaming Business earlier this month, we took the opportunity to speak with marketing experts from Nigerian brands Surebet247 and LionsBet. In the piece, stakeholders explored the employment of marketing strategies for local operators and ways of tapping into the growing Nigerian iGaming market by leveraging technology and elevating consumer experience.
A Unique Market
A key objective for any brand pursuing a greater market share is a nuanced understanding of what distinguishes Nigeria from the rest of sub-Saharan Africa.
That knowledge is applicable to regulation, responsible gambling policies, smartphone adoption, telecommunications, banking options and more. Similar to the US iGaming market, Africa’s whole is comprised of many individual parts that need to be viewed as such to ensure credible analysis.
Bacha points out that a strategy tailored for Nigeria should segment users based on criteria such as their level of brand engagement, while also employing a marketing mix that acknowledges aspects of daily life.
“Digital marketing is key here. We use highly sophisticated tools to reach relevant demographics through different digital marketing channels, including demand-side platforms (DSPs), ad exchange, programmatic advertising, social media, blogs and e-magazines,” Bacha says. “Nigerians also spend a big chunk of their day driving, because of long distances between work hubs and residential areas. This creates a need for engagement through radio advertising, as it corresponds to a part of their daily life.”
According to Loaiza, this is another instance where brand reputation is key to building a sustainable customer base. “In this case, you need to build that brand awareness and positive perception before you try to approach the player base. Consider their preferences too, as they’re not all interested in the same categories and channels,” he says.
Although an emerging market, Loaiza emphasises that Nigerian customer expectations should not be undervalued. “Nigerians are part of a hyper-fast-growing market, which leads to a fast-paced environment as well. In other words, there’s little patience for errors and delays. This is also in-line with the years of scam tactics that put everyone on extra alert.”
Emerging Mobile Market
A recent report from GSMA, entitled “Spotlight on Nigeria: Delivering a Digital Future”, shows that mobile penetration within Nigeria is currently around 49% with 97.5 million unique subscribers. Both numbers are expected to increase significantly in the years ahead.
According to Bacha, LionsBet has been focused on mobile’s growing influence since day one. “Smartphones and tablets are cheaper, smaller and more portable than traditional PCs and laptops. This means that people who previously were not able to be online are no longer restricted by financial, geographical or technological barriers.”
Loaiza is similarly invested in the growth of the mobile market and what shape it will take. “Personally, I’m a big PWA (progressive web app) believer for this market, but nevertheless, it should be a mobile first approach,” he says. “A mobile-friendly site, maybe even an app and Opera lite functionality. Think low bandwidth, lack of data and patchy WiFi hot-spots.”
Through a culturally informed approach that also takes into consideration the need for responsible gambling practices, Nigeria could feasibly realise its full growth potential and outpace every other sub-Saharan market. As evidenced by the stakeholder quotes, the strategic considerations are many as brands seek to expand their player base through a blend of marketing initiatives, customer care and technological awareness.
Many questions remain unanswered regarding the future of iGaming in Nigeria, something which makes it all the more captivating.
Now that you’ve had a chance to read the full article, tell us what you think in the comments section below.
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