Online gambling operators have endured strict regulations over the years. No other industry is facing such hurdles to advertise, and the topic is heavily debated across the world.
In recent years some of these regulations have been revised and loosened in some countries like the UK. Yet each country holds different laws and regulations on gambling advertisements. In the US, each state can also differ in rules based upon the same laws. The measures are in place to uphold the safe and responsible gambling ethos the industry is dedicated to encouraging.
Online gambling operators have had to think outside of the box for many years and have come up with many ways to advertise their products online. Below we will explore what regulations a gambling operator may face in advertising.
Restrictions in Place for Web Marketing
The laws and restrictions on web marketing for online gambling are dense. Plus, they are often dependent on the locality you wish to campaign from and the audience.
Search engines like Google now allow advertising under a strict set of rules. Social media sites are also beginning to loosen their strict policies. In general, the principal regulations for creating advertising content relate to the safety of the potential players.
Making 'puffery' claims is highly frowned upon and will see your advert being rejected. A puffery claim means to exaggerate the truth and mislead people into believing unrealistic things. Adding a statement such as 'Become a millionaire today!' sells people false fantasies and counts as false advertising.
Another absolute “no-no” is advertising to attract a young audience. This includes using minors in the advert and targeting a mainly minor community of online users. It is forbidden to campaign on sites aimed at children and to use actors who look under the age of 25.
Furthermore, the advert cannot target a specific audience of people. Nor can it exploit any cultural beliefs even if the content is tied to a theme like 'luck.'
Most regulatory codes also state that a responsible gambling message must be visible on all advertised content. To advertise through Google, you must apply for certification and adhere to strict rules. No advert will be published where the central theme is winning real money or prizes. All content should instead be aimed at entertainment. As an example of how things should be, you can find a list of compliant casino sites here.
The Future of Online Gambling Digital Marketing Strategy
Social media sites are invaluable platforms for all industries to advertise. They reach a global audience with little effort. Sites like Twitter and Facebook use age-screening software to allow age-appropriate advertising to reach its users. Online casinos are taking advantage of these platforms because they enable that extra layer of security. They also provide many other benefits to advertising campaigns.
Gambling operators in the US still have a long way to go to advertise freely across all platforms. With the UK taking the leap in lifting its regulations, the US may learn from its approach and adapt its stance in the future. For now, web marketing remains the best option for US operators.