Scala, Alphameric Create Digital Signage Network for Increasing Gaming Revenue

LONDON, UK--Alphameric Solutions, a Scala Certified Partner in the U.K., has developed a dual-channel dynamic digital signage system promoting betting events in real time to customers both in-store and on the street to generate increased gaming revenue from existing and new customers.

Historically, betting shops in the U.K. were smoky and reasonably unattractive venues for all but the committed gambler, or “punter.” A combination of the Gambling Act 2005 and the UK-wide ban on smoking in retail establishments, which both went into effect in 2007, provided a reason for many betting brands to refresh their stores and make them more appealing to existing and potential customers.

One of the biggest barriers to engaging new customers in the past had been the storefronts, which traditionally were cluttered with hand-written signage, posters and other generic materials which lacked visual presence and a uniform, branded approach. Rarely could a passerby see into the shop which made it uninviting, and often information on upcoming events was inaccurate. Event-specific promotions would often not include any odds information and would rely on shop staff to manually update pricing. Consequently, prime marketing window space was underused, which had a direct effect on the bookmaker’s ability to bring in new customers off the street.

In order to widen customer reach and promote betting opportunities to the widest possible audience, Alphameric recognized that it was necessary for bookmakers to reach out and engage passersby more effectively and to enhance engagement with customers already in the shop.

Consequently, Alphameric developed a dynamic digital signage package to provide a more immediate, visually impactful and tailored solution to enhance the promotion of betting opportunities taking place “now and next” to existing and new customers and replace paper signage. The approach also offers bookmakers a broadcast sports news service and an ability for shop managers to upload their own marketing messages and promotions locally or remotely to their screens (via Alphamerics network operations center) to enhance local marketing and promotional support without the need for paper, posters or staff intervention.

“In today’s shopping environment, the ability to capture a customer’s attention is an important part of remaining competitive, and bookmakers can now take advantage of the same marketing tools used by other businesses,” said Clare Barber, director of marketing for Alphameric Solutions. “Digital signage is a highly flexible marketing tool providing major benefits over traditional posters used in the past. Up-to-the-minute targeted messaging content can be instantly updated with minimal effort, and the dynamic graphics, vibrant video and animated content deliver high-impact messaging to grab a customer's attention and influence their purchasing decisions.”

The physical components of the dual-channel network package are a 42-inch daylight-readable plasma screen installed into the storefront and an additional 42-inch plasma screen installed in the shop in a position that ensures store-wide coverage.

The storefront channel provides an attention-grabbing combination of real-time odds with appropriate high-impact visuals (animation and video) on selected events plus promotions for other games and services available inside.

The in-store channel provides a variant of the storefront channel, a key difference being the duration of the overall program and content items to take advantage of the fact that customers spend time in-store and have a longer viewing time than passersby. For example, sports news and marketing messages feature more heavily on the inside channel than on the storefront due to increased viewing time.

Alphameric partnered with Scala which provided both initial consultancy and the Scala5 Content Management System. Alphameric’s decision to use Scala was due to its ability to provide a centralized, managed solution from which Alphameric is able to offer its clients a full service from the display of bespoke odds to promotional content creation and management of content assets (images, video, text and odds data). For example, Scala5 is able to work with Alphameric’s ALBOS system to display odds information created by ALBOS and update them in real time.

The capability of the Scala software to interact with live data from Alphameric’s ALBOS system enables bookmakers to promote events and odds to punters in real time. This relationship provides exciting opportunities to use the screen network to promote betting via methods that use time to enforce a reason to play, including “countdowns,” “coming next” and other mechanisms where the placing of a bet may be related to the immediacy of the opportunity rather than a customer’s more traditional or planned betting habits.