Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Twinspires Spends Some Money, But Is 2005 the Better Way?

I watched a little of the NBC coverage on Saturday; not because I wanted to, but because my ADW feed didn't just buffer like it was 1996, it functioned like it was 1986.

While watching that coverage I noticed the horseplaying information given was amazing Twinspires doing a heavy bit of advertising. This is smart business of course. They're using their strong brand and a network telecast seen by upwards of 15 million people to push their in-house product.

Not being privy to how many people signed up, but doing a little speculation, let's say the number of newbies - at Derby parties, watching alone at home or elsewhere - that were enticed to sign up and fund their account was formidable.

Let's also assume each single person deposited say $100 to try the service, and at Derby parties the hat got passed around to bet the big race, resulting in even a bigger bankroll.

Then let's assume that each person bet their bankrolls during the day - like normal bettors did - and churned some, but ended up betting someone other than Justify, losing everything.

Leaving aside the signup bonus, which is always a good idea with newbies, what do most of these new players with balances at $0 do now?

I'd imagine most don't reload until the next Derby, if at all.

Now, what if we roll back the clock to 2005. In that year there were a plethora of small ADW's that were the first to offer daily rebates. These rebates went to everyone, including small players. They're a takeout reduction, but they're given back as cash not in the regular session but in the next betting session.

On Sunday morning thousands of emails would go out telling these newbies that they lost everything yesterday, but their rebate came out to $47, or $82, or $24 and that money is sitting there to be rebet.

How many of those newbies return? Since it's free money I bet almost every one of them does.

When signal fees were lower and handle was moving forward, this is the way it used to be out there in ADW land. No matter how big or small of a player you were, you got something back and what you did get back, you rebet. How much was rebet in the aggregate was solely based on the effective takeout rate (e.g. with 7% rebates you'd roll over the bankroll about 7 times, at 20% it was less than 5).

It's not like that anymore. Now the business seems to sell the sizzle; they're selling money to be rebet into a carryover pool which bribes bettors with their own money, (with the small guy usually chum on these days anyway), or they're selling something tangential to get you back. 

I sincerely hope Twinspires and other ADW's have landed tons of new customers over Derby weekend. Our big events are important to bring fresh blood into the betting ecosystem. But bringing in new bettors isn't the end of the journey, it's the beginning. What you do with them next is what's vital to the future of the sport.

Have a great Wednesday everyone.

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