IFT Study Finds Player-Casino Loyalty Not Reliant On Gaming Activity
The multi-billion dollar global casino industry is growing at a rapid rate and casino operators are very keen on not just expanding their customer base but also maintaining a loyal customer base.
Macau – the biggest gambling hub in the world is home to some of the biggest and most popular casinos in the world as just about all of the top casino operators in the world have vested interests in the peninsula. Casino operators have always targeted Mainland China as Chinese gamblers have a reputation for spending huge sums of money at the table.
A recent study ‘Relationships between Tourism Experiences and Place Attachment in the Context of Casino Resorts‘ carried out by the Institute for Tourism Studies (IFT) provides interesting insight into what casino operators should be focusing on to develop loyalty amongst their patrons.
Gaming Activity Not A Key Factor
It would seem logical that people visiting a casino are interested in the selection and variety of casino games on offer. Many casino operators concentrate on building their gaming portfolio to offer their players variety and keep them coming back for more.
However the two IFT scholars who carried out this research have data collected from their survey which proves that gaming activity does not play a major role in building brand loyalty. The survey collected feedback from 500 Macau tourists who were mostly from China, Taiwan and Hong Kong.
The researchers published their findings and wrote
It is interesting to note that gaming was found to have no significant impact upon any dimension of place attachment, suggesting that casino-resort visitors’ participation in gaming did not affect their emotional bond with the place.
Non-Gaming Activity Helps With Loyalty
Casino operators will be interested to note that the survey results showed that customers, who had a positive emotional experience, felt a connection and felt pleasured by their time at the casino where likely to come back to the same casino because of how they felt and were treated.
The researchers suggested that casino operators should do more to develop non-gaming activities and create hedonic activities that helped facilitate a deeper bond between the integrated resort and the customer. This particular survey was only related to land based casinos and not online casinos.
It is interesting to note that the scholar’s findings correspond to what the Macau Government has been pushing for in the last couple of years and that is to get casino operators to stop concentrating on gaming alone and start developing more non-gaming activities for their visitors.