Better than the Bonus?

Surasanji

Dormant account
Joined
Dec 19, 2011
Location
Israel
I, personally, don't like match bonuses and such.

Between wagering requirements, max-cashouts (on some), stickiness and sometimes ridiculous terms and conditions. I feel they cause more issues than they solve.

I understand the reason behind them, you have to get people into the casino.. And you can't use the B&M tricks of free drinks, comped rooms or other such things to keep your players happy and feeling genuinely appreciated.

But what's better? What would work better? I'm seeing a lot of reward programs all over the internet and I want to know what the members here think would be best.

I want to hear it all. The ideal, the just a little better, and even things you'd think would be the wrong direction to go.

I feel that the players are the lifeblood of the casino, and the current state of 'Bonus Culture' can easily be turned into something much better for everyone. Happy players. Happy Casinos. More fun for all.
 

Slotster!

I predict a riot.
Joined
Oct 17, 2004
Location
Location, Location!
I've had all sorts of cool stuff sent to me over the years.

Tickets, hampers, sports stuff blah blah blah..

Intercasino sent me an iPod once.

The good online outfits know their customers and know what they like.

Between wagering requirements, max-cashouts (on some), stickiness and sometimes ridiculous terms and conditions. I feel they cause more issues than they solve.

This is where 32RED win hands down. Lost count of the amount of times I've got an email or a message or something just saying "Hey, there's some completely free money in your account - enjoy!".

That's it, no nonsense - no messing about. Just how it should be.

To answer your question therefore, lets do away with the 'loyalty' type programmes; Tier 1, Tier 2, Bronze, Silver, Gold blah blah blah to infinity... That's what comp points are for.

Know your customer base and reward the good ones appropriately (and regularly :D)
 

SlotMonster

Twitch Streamer - Affiliate
webmeister
Joined
Apr 2, 2007
Location
Belarus
I have few ideas and would like to share it with you, but a bit later :)
 

Surasanji

Dormant account
Joined
Dec 19, 2011
Location
Israel
This is where 32RED win hands down. Lost count of the amount of times I've got an email or a message or something just saying "Hey, there's some completely free money in your account - enjoy!".

That's it, no nonsense - no messing about. Just how it should be.

To answer your question therefore, lets do away with the 'loyalty' type programmes; Tier 1, Tier 2, Bronze, Silver, Gold blah blah blah to infinity... That's what comp points are for.

Know your customer base and reward the good ones appropriately (and regularly :D)

Who doesn't love cold hard cash?! :D
I agree. Whatever 'loyalty reward' you receive should not be subject to any further terms.

Its supposed to be a gift, right?!

I have few ideas and would like to share it with you, but a bit later :)

Awesome. I look forward to it. I'm not really sure why, but the more I read and learn about this industry, the more I'm interested in learning more about it! :D

Keep 'em coming, guys!
 

PaaskeDenmark

Always think positive
webmeister
PABnoaccred
CAG
Joined
Nov 24, 2008
Location
UnKnown
I had a very nice surprise at Club Gold Casino. Yesterday I received email from the Manager, because I was not so happy with their 100% insurance promotion. They had been running this all January.
Also I knew it was given as a bonus.

I found out wagering was 55x. Which I felt was quite high.

But instead the manager contacted me. And said I have now manually deposited the 100% insurance bonus as cash. And no wagering requirements all free for you to use however you want. :lolup:

£155 was sitting in my account. Very pleased with service here. That is top customer service from them.
They deserve to get lots of more kudos in here. :cool:

Furthermore the promotion terms clearly stated it was only for deposits of £25 and above. But all my deposits in January was credited even the £15 and £20 I had made earlier on in month.

That I decided to play with them and lost it all in end, is a different story :rolleyes: My own mistake. They were free for me to withdraw.
But I think you want to show some loyalty towards casino when they are very generous and do something like this.
 

vinylweatherman

You type well loads
Joined
Oct 14, 2004
Location
United Kingdom
Most problems are caused by aggressive SUBs, and result in casinos having to apply complicated terms, and then go as far as they can to hide the "smallprint" so that it does not put off new players from playing with the advertised offer. After this, loyalty is often poorly rewarded. The impression is that operators have accepted that players are unlikely to stay loyal with all the other competing SUBs on offer, so don't allocate much of their marketing budget to retention. The result is a self fulfilling prophesy, with the lack of loyalty being seen as proof that players like to move on, when in fact the moving on is a result of the feeling among players that loyalty is not something that operators are particularly interested in.

Any new incentive would need to be designed such that complicated terms are not needed. There are many ways to achieve this, but operators need to allocate a big enough budget to the retentions team, otherwise the offerings are derisory, and do not compete well with the SUB model.

The rewards points scheme is something, but the rewards are tiny compared with the deposit bonuses being offered, and often progress to higher levels is not rewarded as much as the advertising would suggest. I have wagered my way to the top of many such tiered schemes, and in most cases have found there to have been little or no point in terms of any extras that I had expected based on the advertising.

The tournament systems found in many softwares offer another way to share a fixed amount among players, and this could be done by having different tournaments for different loyalty tiers, with them being true freeroll events like 32Red offer. The prizes could be cash, and the pool could be based on how much players from that tier have wagered at the casino between runnings of the tournament.

For high rollers, wager challenge events can be run, but the prizes have been very poor recently for such events, and I hardly ever bother.

For all players, an insurance based bonus could be used, which is a percentage back on losses over a given period. It should come with NO restrictions on how it can be played, just a basic WR. The percentage would be such that "abusive play" on this insurance free chip does NOT present an overall +EV opportunity for clever players.

The loyalty points scheme could also be better, currently 0.1% of wagers, and in many cases even less.

Any new scheme should be put through the "advantage player test" before being released, and this may involve getting someone from the player side onto their marketing team. Their job will be to "crack" the promo as best they can, and if they succeed, the promo does not go live, but instead gets redesigned and retested. A second major cause of bonus problems is players being better at math than the marketing team, and then taking the promotion for all it's worth. Failure to properly evaluate the risk sometimes leads to embarrassment and bad publicity for operators (Betfair;) ), and can have long lasting negative consequences.
 

baldidiot

Full Member
webmeister
Joined
Oct 1, 2010
Location
London
I think the post-wager bonuses such as the ones at Virgin, Sky and many other wagerworks sites are the way of the future. No weird game exclusions, no max cashouts etc.. - you just play with your own cash and when you've wagered enough (on permitted games) you get the bonus as cash.
 

PaaskeDenmark

Always think positive
webmeister
PABnoaccred
CAG
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Nov 24, 2008
Location
UnKnown
Don't even dare to mention Sky !!! i expect you to remove that in your post :eek:
 

Surasanji

Dormant account
Joined
Dec 19, 2011
Location
Israel
I think the post-wager bonuses such as the ones at Virgin, Sky and many other wagerworks sites are the way of the future. No weird game exclusions, no max cashouts etc.. - you just play with your own cash and when you've wagered enough (on permitted games) you get the bonus as cash.

Interesting- I don't play on Virgin or Sky, and haven't yet run into a post-wager bonus.


I do get why the Match Deposits work though, Internet Casinos are able to take a far larger 'slice' of the economic community. You don't have to dress up, even, to enter those casinos :p

So, it kind of makes sense for low-rollers who want to have a bit more betting power. More betting power tends to mean a better statistical chance of a cashout- Particularly with slot machines. And the match bonuses do help with that- if removed from the rest of the requirements, at least.

I've seen a number of very interesting ideas so far.

I particularly liked VWM's idea of letting certain players try bonuses before a wider level of acceptance- I imagine, however, it take a rather special player to do such.

At the same time- there are a /lot/ of Pay for Play online services (MMOs and such) that allow players to step up as Admin in various regards- usually as 'storytellers' or 'player helpers' of some type.

Thing is- in this case? You'd need a /quality/ person, I think, to allow that. Or quality people. And certainly, were it me in charge of such- I'd offer /something/ to my super loyal player who's helping the casinos make such a system.

So far it sounds like Cash is King...
 

vinylweatherman

You type well loads
Joined
Oct 14, 2004
Location
United Kingdom
Don't even dare to mention Sky !!! i expect you to remove that in your post :eek:

I find the mention of "Virgin" far more offensive, given that my umpteenth internet disconnetion of the week made me take a trip downstairs to yet again reset my "always on" cable broadband connection:mad:


Interesting- I don't play on Virgin or Sky, and haven't yet run into a post-wager bonus.


I do get why the Match Deposits work though, Internet Casinos are able to take a far larger 'slice' of the economic community. You don't have to dress up, even, to enter those casinos :p

So, it kind of makes sense for low-rollers who want to have a bit more betting power. More betting power tends to mean a better statistical chance of a cashout- Particularly with slot machines. And the match bonuses do help with that- if removed from the rest of the requirements, at least.

I've seen a number of very interesting ideas so far.

I particularly liked VWM's idea of letting certain players try bonuses before a wider level of acceptance- I imagine, however, it take a rather special player to do such.

At the same time- there are a /lot/ of Pay for Play online services (MMOs and such) that allow players to step up as Admin in various regards- usually as 'storytellers' or 'player helpers' of some type.

Thing is- in this case? You'd need a /quality/ person, I think, to allow that. Or quality people. And certainly, were it me in charge of such- I'd offer /something/ to my super loyal player who's helping the casinos make such a system.

So far it sounds like Cash is King...

I was thinking more of these players being employed by the casino on an ad-hoc basis to look at the terms from the point of view of an advantage player looking for a loophole or mistake that might lead the the promo being "cracked" by the better players when it went live.

Take the Betfair fiasco. 5 senior managers signed off on the "happy hour" promo before it went live. It was massively "cracked" almost straight away, and in a short space of time, the information became so widespread that it was "done" overnight by an army of advantage players on what I believe was the second time they ran it.

It didn't take those players long to spot the potential for an exploit, and the key was the "unlimited" nature of the bonus, which was compounded by the very obviously +EV nature of the WR. A quirk in their set up allowed a "rinse and repeat" tactic to be employed, which gave even modest depositors unlimited leverage because they were able to get another bonus by moving the cleared funds to the sportsbook, and straight back to the casino again, where the software saw it as a fresh deposit and credited the bonus again. This would NEVER have been possible in a stand alone casino, as the system would have seen the process as a "reversal" rather than a deposit, and would not have credited the bonus again.

Had they employed an advantage player, and told them to "do your best to crack this", they would have found out they were heading for an imminent disaster, and not released the promo.

Often, it is subsequent runs of a promo that leads to a problem. The first time, players have only just seen it, and while some will figure it out, by the time they share the information on the internet, the promo is over. If a potential problem is not seen, and the promo is run again, many more players know how to beat it, and many will have a go.

I was able to repeatedly "crack" the Jackpot Factory promos, but I would often tell the VIP team how I had done it, and they admitted that I was one of a "select few" who had spotted it. The next time a similar promo was run, it had been tweaked based on my earlier "crack", and feedback.

They used to award scoreboard points based purely on depositing and playing it through once. No matter how much more a player played, they could advance no further. The "crack" was "bleedin' obvious". Deposit 20K from Neteller, play it through at least 1x, withdraw and get it flushed. This could be repeated every 1 to 2 days in order to top the scoreboard. I told them that the structure of scoring encouraged this churning of deposits, and that it would be better off making wagering the prime driver of the scores. Their promos were steadily tweaked in this direction, and now all JF scoreboard promos score wagering, and win/loss on the day. They also weight scoring so that 100 credits played on slots is worth much more than 100 credits played on Blackjack.

The other "crack" was their extra points for a payout of 500 credits or more per game per day. The "crack" being to cover all options on games like Roulette, Craps, etc so that whatever happened, the payout would be over 500, but at the lowest possible risk and variance. The strategy was more cost effective (and quicker) than playing 1000 credits on slots. This is what is now replaced by the points based on the day's net win or loss.

The main problem in asking players for help is that the player might decide a "crack" they have spotted is too good to give up for the fee paid by the casino, and they might give the "good to go" to marketing, and then use what they have found out to beat the promo. The casino would have to offer enough to such players that it is in their best interests to be honest, and not use any loopholes for themselves. This usually means also banning the player from playing at the casino because of a potential conflict of interest, but this is not something many players would want to agree to. It is common for full time employees and their immediate family to be banned from playing at their own casino, but for them it is a job, and may not be a restriction that bothers them too much.
 

Surasanji

Dormant account
Joined
Dec 19, 2011
Location
Israel
Now I get it!

I was thinking more of these players being employed by the casino on an ad-hoc basis to look at the terms from the point of view of an advantage player looking for a loophole or mistake that might lead the the promo being "cracked" by the better players when it went live.

Clearly, I misunderstood to begin with! Thank you for the further explanation! :thumbsup:

It sounds a little (okay, almost exactly) like how a lot of companies will hire 'Security Experts' (Ex-Hackers) to knock about their networks to find security holes. Its not a bad idea- and clearly such players would not be allowed to play at the casino in question. They'd be employees at that point. :)

That would help fix bonuses, certainly- but that doesn't change the fact I rather dislike them and want something a /lot/ better for everyone involved.

I still feel like VIP levels based on 'something' would make sense. I think Wagering, over deposits- or perhaps an average of the two over the lifetime of your play at a particular casino. That would, I figure, eventually create a happy medium between low-rollers and high-rollers.

I was looking at the experience here on the Forum, actually- just hanging out, looking at it. I'm almost curious if something like that couldn't be somehow evolved into a system to awards based on positive interaction with the Casino...

But how to define positive in that situation... Hrm.
 

Realitybitez

Full Member
Joined
Oct 28, 2011
Location
New Zealand
I like the way the Fortune Lounge Group do it.

When you get your bonus, regardless weather you meet wagering terms or whatever you are allowed to withdrawal from your cash balance. You do loose your bonus but sometimes its better that way:cool:

eg: A few weeks ago, I was playing on some casino, had only put in about $30 and got a good hit straight way. Won $300 on some game, cant remember what now :p but because I hadnt met the wagering requirements of the bonus, couldn't withdrawal. So played through till I met the wagering requirements, however in the process, lost it all:oops:

So I do like the policy some casinos have, of one being able to withdrawl from their cash balance anytime they want regardless whether wagering requirements have been met or not:thumbsup:
 

Realitybitez

Full Member
Joined
Oct 28, 2011
Location
New Zealand
I find the mention of "Virgin" far more offensive, given that my umpteenth internet disconnetion of the week made me take a trip downstairs to yet again reset my "always on" cable broadband connection:mad:




I was thinking more of these players being employed by the casino on an ad-hoc basis to look at the terms from the point of view of an advantage player looking for a loophole or mistake that might lead the the promo being "cracked" by the better players when it went live.

Take the Betfair fiasco. 5 senior managers signed off on the "happy hour" promo before it went live. It was massively "cracked" almost straight away, and in a short space of time, the information became so widespread that it was "done" overnight by an army of advantage players on what I believe was the second time they ran it.

It didn't take those players long to spot the potential for an exploit, and the key was the "unlimited" nature of the bonus, which was compounded by the very obviously +EV nature of the WR. A quirk in their set up allowed a "rinse and repeat" tactic to be employed, which gave even modest depositors unlimited leverage because they were able to get another bonus by moving the cleared funds to the sportsbook, and straight back to the casino again, where the software saw it as a fresh deposit and credited the bonus again. This would NEVER have been possible in a stand alone casino, as the system would have seen the process as a "reversal" rather than a deposit, and would not have credited the bonus again.

Had they employed an advantage player, and told them to "do your best to crack this", they would have found out they were heading for an imminent disaster, and not released the promo.

Often, it is subsequent runs of a promo that leads to a problem. The first time, players have only just seen it, and while some will figure it out, by the time they share the information on the internet, the promo is over. If a potential problem is not seen, and the promo is run again, many more players know how to beat it, and many will have a go.

I was able to repeatedly "crack" the Jackpot Factory promos, but I would often tell the VIP team how I had done it, and they admitted that I was one of a "select few" who had spotted it. The next time a similar promo was run, it had been tweaked based on my earlier "crack", and feedback.

They used to award scoreboard points based purely on depositing and playing it through once. No matter how much more a player played, they could advance no further. The "crack" was "bleedin' obvious". Deposit 20K from Neteller, play it through at least 1x, withdraw and get it flushed. This could be repeated every 1 to 2 days in order to top the scoreboard. I told them that the structure of scoring encouraged this churning of deposits, and that it would be better off making wagering the prime driver of the scores. Their promos were steadily tweaked in this direction, and now all JF scoreboard promos score wagering, and win/loss on the day. They also weight scoring so that 100 credits played on slots is worth much more than 100 credits played on Blackjack.

The other "crack" was their extra points for a payout of 500 credits or more per game per day. The "crack" being to cover all options on games like Roulette, Craps, etc so that whatever happened, the payout would be over 500, but at the lowest possible risk and variance. The strategy was more cost effective (and quicker) than playing 1000 credits on slots. This is what is now replaced by the points based on the day's net win or loss.

The main problem in asking players for help is that the player might decide a "crack" they have spotted is too good to give up for the fee paid by the casino, and they might give the "good to go" to marketing, and then use what they have found out to beat the promo. The casino would have to offer enough to such players that it is in their best interests to be honest, and not use any loopholes for themselves. This usually means also banning the player from playing at the casino because of a potential conflict of interest, but this is not something many players would want to agree to. It is common for full time employees and their immediate family to be banned from playing at their own casino, but for them it is a job, and may not be a restriction that bothers them too much.

Thats a really idea for the casinos. To employ an advantage player to spot the hacks. :thumbsup: I dont think other advantage players would be too happy by the idea though:lolup:
 

chuchu59

gambling addict
PABnonaccred
CAG
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Joined
Sep 26, 2004
Location
SOMEWHERE IN ASIA
I think the post-wager bonuses such as the ones at Virgin, Sky and many other wagerworks sites are the way of the future. No weird game exclusions, no max cashouts etc.. - you just play with your own cash and when you've wagered enough (on permitted games) you get the bonus as cash.

Isnt this similar to comps at some casinos?
 

PaaskeDenmark

Always think positive
webmeister
PABnoaccred
CAG
Joined
Nov 24, 2008
Location
UnKnown
Isnt this similar to comps at some casinos?

Hmm I would say no. To give example.
It could be offer at Paddy Power. Stake £20 on new slot. And you get £10.
Means when you played £20 on that slot. You get £10 into your account with no strings attached.
Hope that makes sense ;)
 

Surasanji

Dormant account
Joined
Dec 19, 2011
Location
Israel
Bwha?

Hmm I would say no. To give example.
It could be offer at Paddy Power. Stake £20 on new slot. And you get £10.
Means when you played £20 on that slot. You get £10 into your account with no strings attached.
Hope that makes sense ;)

So, I would- just hypothetically speaking- go to the cashier/live help/bonus coupon page and say 'I'd like to wager a certain amount on your slots- 20 monies.' After you've wagered that 20 monies you'd get an additional 10 from the casino as bonus money. This money doesn't carry any other requirements because you pre-wagered?

The thing is, that if I deposit 20$ the minimum wagering to bust is 20$. Honestly, it sounds a lot more like a free chip to try again.

But maybe I'm not understanding it.
 

PaaskeDenmark

Always think positive
webmeister
PABnoaccred
CAG
Joined
Nov 24, 2008
Location
UnKnown
So, I would- just hypothetically speaking- go to the cashier/live help/bonus coupon page and say 'I'd like to wager a certain amount on your slots- 20 monies.' After you've wagered that 20 monies you'd get an additional 10 from the casino as bonus money. This money doesn't carry any other requirements because you pre-wagered?

The thing is, that if I deposit 20$ the minimum wagering to bust is 20$. Honestly, it sounds a lot more like a free chip to try again.

But maybe I'm not understanding it.

Hi no they deposit the money into your account as cash. Reason I mentioned no string attached.
Hope that makes sense :)

Its more like you could call it cash for "risk" betting. Because you spent £20 of your money on that slot. They then give you £10 cash.
But It was only a bad example. Let me find a proper example if I can and post it. To make it more clear for you ;)
 

135steward

Dormant account
Joined
Feb 6, 2012
Location
Midwestern USA
keep it simple

Bonuses are way too confusing, with way too many strings attached. Tell me up front what my payout is. I bet at a sportsbook that offers reduced juice, and when I have a few more bucks, I bet at their casino. Their "bonuses" are built directly into the payout. For example, if I hit red on American roulette, they pay 1.09x instead of 1:1. For normal roulette, it's 1.04x. No frustrating minimums or playthroughs. If that's part of your fun, God bless you. But I find calculating HE enough math for my gambling experience, without all the bonus confusion. To each their own, I guess.
 

SAunnyS72

On a Break
Joined
Dec 9, 2011
Location
Australia
I personally think Random Jackpot Hit in any/all forms of play. I know they have something like this in Jackpot Party but is only limited to Uk players (I think) ... As I couldn't play from oz. If the MGs would have that that would be an extra thrill every time you log in to your favorite casinos :)
 
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