David Carrion - PokerStars Marketing Director: The power of a positive advertising approach

David Carrion - PokerStars Marketing Director: The power of a positive advertising approach

Monday, April 16, 2018 Posted by Joseph Streeter
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PokerStars continually aims to grow the game of poker

With the growth of social media increasing the importance of producing memorable marketing content, it’s hard to argue that when it comes to advertising in the gambling sector, quality wins over quantity.

TotallyGaming caught up with David Carrion, Marketing Director at PokerStars, to discuss how the group continues to utilise both television airtime and social media presence to maximise its brand reach.

TotallyGaming.com: How can PokerStars utilise its tv adverts to appeal to wider audience?

David Carrion: TV advertising is just one channel with which to reach consumers. It has certain strengths, notably its wide reach which can help grow interest in the game of poker globally and increase our brand awareness. Consumers expect to see ads on TV and even be entertained by them. Nonetheless, the challenge is to tell stories that can appeal to wider audiences in a short amount of time - 15, 20 or 30 seconds. Hence it is important to segment the content so the creative and message carries through.

We aim to present poker as an accessible game that is fun, entertaining and challenging, often associating it with celebrities that strongly represent our brand value. It’s important to capture the attention of consumers with a message that resonates widely, igniting curiosity to try the game or to investigate further. We have also been highlighting that life is poker and poker is life in many ways.

In this omni channel world we live in, it’s very difficult to impact customers solely through TV, which is more about triggering an initial reaction that will take them to the next channel or so that next time they see us, wherever that may be, they recognise who we are.

TG: What type of platform is most beneficial to PokerStars? 

DC: Our aim is to grow the game of poker globally and so we want to be across all platforms to reach new audiences. Which platform is best  is one of those questions that depends on what you define as beneficial. For revenues? For ROI on advertisement spend? For customer acquisition cost? For engagement? There is not one single answer. The reality is we invest significant amounts in marketing across all platforms – from tv to digital to social to live events -  to try to generate interest in poker; our poker marketing spend is close to twice the poker revenues of our nearest competitor.

We do this because we want to bring new people to the game, not simply try to compete over an already existing pool of players, so the game can grow across the world over the long term. It really depends on what you determine as beneficial.

TG: How does PokerStars ensure its social media presence is fulfilled to maximum potential? 

DC: We tackle social media presence with a three-fold approach:

We listen to conversations, topics, brands, events, etc. to capture relevant topics, influencers, media outlets etc. to tap into the conversation if we see a fit, within our tone of voice. We do this on our organic owned social media channels across all platforms, including Snapchat, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube.

We distribute promotional and news-related content on our owned channels that users like to engage with on a regular basis to match our marketing calendar. This is tailored by country or region in the local language. We are also active in conversations generated in our channels.

We regularly have a paid presence on Social Media to push content that can help widen the category of poker, raise brand awareness and grow the upper funnel. Campaigns like #GameOn or the PokerStars Players No Limit Hold’em Championship can achieve this as they can attract new people to the game through the association with celebrities or by highlighting exciting new events with life-changing guarantees.

We have an extensive team of talented social media experts working across multiple markets, managing multiple social media accounts associated with our different engagement tools or services, including our news sites, live events, Twitch channel, our ambassadors, or PokerStars School online, as well as direct to regular PokerStars real estate.

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