Renamed Casino Marketing & Technology Conference, the event, which took place last month at Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, boasted a marketing-oriented technology conference track that covered topics such as electronic marketing, business intelligence, data analytics and social gaming. General sessions also featured a technology tint, as evidence by their titles: “Innovation, A Case Study for Change, Isle of Capri,” “When Marketing Meets IT” and “What’s New in Marketing Technology and How It’s Changing the World.”
This emphasis on marketing technology was also present on the events trade show floor, which attracted a large number of analytics and business intelligence suppliers. Below you will find a rundown of the latest news and products from some of these technology vendors.
San Diego, Calif.-based VizExplorer has had a lot of good news to report of late, starting with the fact two of its new products nabbed Top 20 Most Innovative Gaming Technology Product awards from Casino Journal. The first, hostViz, is a new evolution in player development that provides critical information to host managers and hosts to enable more effective player development and enhance a player’s overall experience. With hostViz, hosts and their player development managers now have a tool that allows them to create a clear contact management strategy aligned with the casino’s overall player development objectives. hostViz helps create road maps for identifying each customer to contact and what to offer them—in prioritized order, as determined by casino marketing management. Ultimately, the product allows hosts to be much more proactive in their interactions with customers. Instead of waiting for customers to enter the casino floor or constantly contacting them, hosts can interact strategically and in a way that entices customers with specific and targeted offers that boost sales performances and create incremental revenue.
The second winning product from VizExplorer was vizActionFactory, a sophisticated real-time rules engine that enables real-time action by allowing customer-facing events to be delivered through multiple channels. What is especially exciting is that the VizExplorer push/pull technology enables marketing events to be directly loaded into the gaming system. vizActionFactory can be applied to multiple products in the VizExplorer library, however the most innovative use occurs within its crmViz campaign management tool and hostViz player development tool. vizActionFactory triggers the generation of the offers (coupons, free plays, comps etc.) in crmViz and hostViz. These items can be used as mass communication and be sent to various places, such as e-mail, phone call or text. vizActionFactory also creates sophisticated records for campaigns, segments and offers, and allocates data against them.
In addition to exciting new products, VizExplorer also celebrated a number of key installations this past year. The most recent was Casino at Ocean Downs in Maryland, which purchased and implemented business and operational intelligence software aimed at improving campaign management and gaming-floor optimization.
“After an extensive market comparison we determined that the VizExplorer product suite offers a brand standard analytical solution for marketing, slot floor optimization and reporting that will serve our needs well,” said Joe Cavilla, general manager of Casino at Ocean Downs when the deal was announced in April. “Being in a highly competitive market, the VizExplorer products will really help us to better understand our players, their preferences and how to get the most out of our gaming floor.”
Earlier, VizExplorer announced a major software deal with Northern California-based Thunder Valley Casino Resort, which chose products to enhance its marketing and operational initiatives. Meanwhile, Laguna Development Corporation announced it had selected VizExplorer business intelligence software for its Route 66 Casino Hotel and Dancing Eagle Casino in Albuquerque and Casa Blanca, New Mexico. The properties implemented floorVizPlus and crmViz, VizExplorer’s gaming-floor optimization and marketing campaign management tools.
Stics, a San Diego, Calif.-based provider of predictive analytics designed to maximize gaming revenue, continued to promote its evolutionary SticsInsight with SticsViewer solution that brings the power of big data and predictive analysis to the desktop of casino marketers and managers.
According to company literature, with this comprehensive solution, casino marketing departments of all sizes can now direct player reinvestment dollars more effectively. SticsInsight helps casino marketing departments extract the full and real value from the data they are already collecting through the use of predictive analytics.
“After an extensive market comparison we determined that the VizExplorer product suite offers a brand standard analytical solution for marketing, slot floor optimization and reporting that will serve our needs well.”
—Joe Cavilla, GM, Casino at Ocean Downs
“For many years, through our proven SticsPredicts, Stics has empowered casino marketers to consistently improve results generated by their direct marketing campaigns,” said Christy Joiner-Congleton, president and CEO of Stics when the product was released last year. “We continue to do that with valued clients, and now we are excited to bring the power of big data and predictive analysis to any casino marketer’s desktop in an easy-to-use application. SticsInsight with SticsViewer is a solution that can provide a large return on investment (ROI) in as little as 90 days, and delivers many new marketing and operational benefits never before available to any size casino.”
- Combined with SticsViewer, anyone in the casino with the proper permissions and a PC is now able to:
- Identify players in the casino’s database who are most likely to return;
- Anticipate how many visits each player is likely to make over a given period;
- Employ robust predictive analytics without taxing in-house resources;
- Simultaneously integrate multiple data sources and formats;
- Dramatically increase the usefulness of information databases; and
- Make better informed business decisions.
Cupertino, Calif.-based Opticity provides a casino CRM solution that integrates data from player tracking, point of sales and hotel systems to provide a complete view of each customer’s play and reinvestment, as well as overall property performance and trends.
One of the company’s better-known product placements was with Biloxi, Miss.-based Treasure Bay Casino, which opted for Opticity’s data warehouse and customer relationship management service. Having already achieved strong growth in recent years, Treasure Bay is looking to Opticity to gain a competitive advantage that will position the property for continued success in an increasingly competitive market, according to information from the company’s website.
“When we saw Opticity we knew immediately it was what we’ve been missing. It combines data from several systems creating a complete view of our marketing efforts,” said Ryan Meister, director of marketing at Treasure Bay, at the time of the deal. “It gives us the answers we need to make decisions based on facts and cumulative player data.”
By providing this Marketing-Ready Data directly to managers, Opticity eliminates the need for expensive business intelligence programs, as well as the need for SQL queries and Excel heroics.
“We’re excited to provide our CRM solution to Treasure Bay, and confident they will see real benefits from joining their player tracking, hotel, POS and kiosk data together,” said Opticity CEO Adam Smithline. “When you mix Opticity’s self-service reporting and data analysis capabilities with Treasure Bay’s experienced and capable management team you have a recipe for success.”
BirchStreet, a Newport Beach, Calif.-based company that provides global enterprises with a complete procure-to-pay business solution deploying a SaaS model using cloud technology, celebrated a big placement win earlier this year with Baha Mar, which selected the company’s its procure-to-pay solution for all of the properties and entities inside the mega resort.
Baha Mar is a new luxury $3.5 billion resort complex, which consists of five hotels—Baha Mar Casino & Hotel, Rosewood at Baha Mar, Grand Hyatt at Baha Mar, Meliá at Baha Mar and SLS LUX at Baha Mar—and the Caribbean’s largest casino with table games and slots.
“When we saw Opticity we knew immediately it was what we’ve been missing. It combines data from several systems creating a complete view of our marketing efforts.”
—Ryan Meister, Director of Marketing, Treasure Bay Casino
According to company press materials, Baha Mar selected BirchStreet’s eProcurement, AP Automation, Inventory Control and Recipe Management modules for a comprehensive solution to meet all their operations objectives. Included in the platform are BirchStreet’s cutting edge tools, Advanced Workflow Approvals and Checkbook Drilldown. Integrations to each hotel’s ERP or accounting system and POS systems will also be deployed.
Due to all of the different ownerships and brands within Baha Mar, the resort created a “Shared Services” entity for this project. All of the hotels, casino, golf course, spa and restaurants will use the Shared Services to purchase their goods, ultimately to consolidate purchasing, gain better pricing and reduce freight charges to the island. Many of the business units will use Avendra, one of BirchStreet’s strategic partners and the largest supply chain and procurement services company in the hospitality sector.
Shared Services are emerging as a new trend in hospitality, as businesses look to reduce their costs and increase their bottom line. Procure-to-pay technology proves to be at the forefront of this trend for improving back-office processes and reducing operational costs.