I usually don’t mind anyone challenging my marketing credentials. After 40 years in the gaming business, I feel pretty secure in my skills and knowledge.
But if someone tries to tell me that I don’t know what I’m talking about when it comes to the culture, operations or marketing of craps… well, I do admit to getting a little testy.
I guess that’s what 10 years of dealing and supervising the game, nearly 20 years of consulting on it and over 40 years of playing it, have done: It makes me feel like a true expert on the craps experience.
I realize that too few of you would agree with me on that, or would at least be thinking, “Who cares?” Well I care. And I’m tired of seeing the proud and glorious casino game of “dice” having its reputation tarnished by complexity, misunderstanding, inefficiencies and plain old “bad attitudes.”
So I’m going to do something about it that I rarely do—I’m going to give you some free, comprehensive craps consulting advice (my business development vice president hates when I do this). So here you go, some straight talk on craps:
1. Your craps game is too expensive. I’m not referring here to high minimum bets or large game buy-in requirements. I’m referring to all of those craps bets with the huge house advantage (aka “the sucker bets”). Their high-house rake, along with the rapid speed of the game (usually), makes for deadly erosion of playing time at the dice table.
2. You don’t pace the craps game right for the maximum combination of efficiency and player experience. You let slow players (string betters, dice setters, newbies, etc.) slow the game down and you let “in a hurry” dealers speed the game up and run over players and their betting patterns because they want to go home, the craps boss wants the “dice in the air,” a craps player has ticked them off or they just aren’t paying attention.
3. You don’t know how to teach or sell the game of craps. Don’t believe me? Go up to any craps table and ask any dealer “How do you play this game?” I guarantee you’ll get a response that is confusing, erroneous, inadequate or disinterested (and sometimes all of these).
4. You don’t welcome new players to the game (see #3 above). In fact, truth be told, you don’t do a very good job of welcoming old players to the game.
5. Your craps dealers BS too much with each other and the dice supervisors and too little with the dice players. Think your players like coming into a party to which they weren’t invited?
6. Your dice dealers get jaded over time. That is evidenced in robotic movements, lack of “good luck” wishes, flat attitudes, phony smiles or short and curt conversations with craps players.
7. You scold dice players too much.“Hands off the table!” “Throw the dice to the end!” “No late bets!” “Keep the dice over the table!” “Set your drink down!” Yes, you have rules and protocols at your craps tables, but you don’t have to be a dictator in enforcing them.
8. You are missing an opportunity with Millennials and the game of craps. The game is social, fast-paced, intriguing, plus usually provides as many drinks as a “20 something” could want. I currently see quite a few Millennials playing (or at least trying) craps, but very few are embraced as new players. This needs to change; maybe it might save you from buying “skill-based” games and building nightclubs.
9. You don’t celebrate enough with your dice players. Heck, every dice roll could be a celebration opportunity, if you weren’t worried about how much the craps game is winning or losing, if someone might be trying a “controlled dice shot” or if a dealer is due for their break.
So there you have it—my free consulting report. My free consulting “advice” would be “Do something about it.” You have a great business development opportunity with the game of craps and the industry as a whole is “leaving millions on the (craps) table.”
I’d be glad to help. That part is not quite free.