The 15th edition of Casino Marketing & Technology Conference, held in July at Caesars Palace, offered operators a chance to take stock of the full range of marketing solutions that are available to them. From the two-track digital and traditional marketing main educational program and 42 marketing-focused exhibitors, to pre-show workshops such as Raving’s popular Host Development Conference and a new addition, MEET, Mobile Experience and Engagement Training, the casino industry’s first-ever mobile technology conference led by Darren Withers, there was something for every marketer.

There were also two prestigious awards. First, The Casino Marketing & Technology Lifetime Achievement Award went to Claudia Winkler, president, GHI Solutions, who just might know how databases, systems and marketing interact better than anyone in the business. Winkler was recognized for her many accomplishments, starting with her tenure at Harrah’s, where her hands-on work in the database trenches helped serve as a catalyst for the launch of the original Total Gold card, the initiative that would come to reshape the industry as Total Rewards. From there; she went on to hold key marketing jobs at a broad range of companies such as Comstock Casino, Lady Luck, Station Casinos and Boyd Gaming, before setting out on her own. Her consulting firm has helped open properties such as the Wynn, SLS, and Station Casino Kanas City (now a Pinnacle property) and has led innumerable system selections and project upgrades for commercial and tribal casinos nationwide.

The annual Romero Awards breakfast was held on the concluding day of the conference. Named after casino marketing pioneer and author John Romero, the Romero Awards honor those gaming operators who best fulfill the spirit of Romero’s more than 45-year crusade for effective, measurable and accountable casino marketing expenditures. Over 120 entries were submitted and judged by the panel of casino marketing experts.

A complete list of the winners follows:

Casino Floor Promotion—Large Casino
Diamond Romero Award:

• YARD SALE, Wind Creek Montgomery Casino & Hotel, Montgomery, Ala.

Gold Romero Awards:
• $100,000 MOTHER’S DAY GIVEAWAY, Snoqualmie Casino, Snoqualmie, Wash.
• $100,000 PUNCH TO WIN, Rivers Casino, Pittsburgh, Pa.
• $500,000 PYRAMID, Rivers Casino, Pittsburgh, Pa.
• BLING-O DE MAYO, Oaklawn Jockey Club, Hot Springs, Ark.
• MI AMOR, Soboba Casino, San Jacinto, Calif.
• THANKS-A-LATTE, Soboba Casino, San Jacinto, Calif.
• THE CARD, Gila River Hotels & Casinos, Chandler, Ariz.
• WINOPOLY, Wind Creek Montgomery Casino & Hotel, Montgomery, Ala.

Silver Romero Awards:
• BOOTLEGGERS BALL, Wind Creek Casino and Hotel Wetumpka, Wetumpka, Ala.
• MAKE IT A MASERATI, Wind Creek Casino and Hotel Wetumpka, Wetumpka, Ala.
• PENGUINS PASSPORT GIVEAWAY, Rivers Casino, Pittsburgh, Pa.
• RED LIGHTNING, FireKeepers Casino Hotel, Battle Creek, Mich.

Casino Floor Promotion—Small/Midsize Casino
Gold Romero Awards:
• CELEBRATING OUR CUSTOMERS, Casinos of Winnipeg, Winnipeg, MB, Canada
• MOTOR MADNESS 200,000 MOTORHOME GIVEAWAY, Baldini’s Casino, Sparks, Nev.

Silver Romero Awards:
• $200,000 CUPIDS CASH, Route 66 Casino Hotel, Albuquerque, N.M.
• AREA 66, Route 66 Casino Hotel, Albuquerque, N.M.
• CANADA’S BIRTHDAY CELEBRATION 150, Casinos of Winnipeg, Winnipeg, MB, Canada
• LEARN TO PLAY LIVE GAMES, Gold Eagle Casino, North Battleford, SK, Canada
• SANTA’S TOY-OTA BOX, Route 66 Casino Hotel, Albuquerque, N.M.

Community Relations—Large Casino
Diamond Romero Award:
• UNCLAIMED JACKPOTS, Gila River Hotels & Casinos, Chandler, Ariz.

Gold Romero Award:
• ARIZONA DIAMONDBACKS & GILA RIVER HOTELS & CASINOS - A WINNING TEAM, Gila River Hotels & Casinos, Chandler, Ariz.

Silver Romero Award:
• ADDED BENEFITS, Gila River Hotels & Casinos, Chandler, Ariz.

Community Relations—Midsize/Small Casino
Silver Romero Award:
• HEARTS OF REALITY PRE-PARTY CRUISE, Victory Casino Cruises, Port Canaveral, Fla.

Direct Mail Marketing—Large Casino
Diamond Romero Award:
• 2017 HOLIDAY GIFT PROGRAM, Fallsview Casino Resort, Niagara Falls, ON, Canada

Gold Romero Awards:
• MYSTERY MUTUEL VOUCHER, Oaklawn Jockey Club, Hot Springs, Ark.
• VIP MASQUERADE PARTY AT SEA, Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd., Miami, Fla.

Silver Romero Award:
• RACK UP REWARDS, Casinos of Winnipeg, Winnipeg, MB, Canada

Direct Mail Marketing—Small/Midsize Casino
Gold Romero Awards:
• JACKPOT PARTY & ULTIMATE JACKPOT PARTY, Lake of the Torches Resort Casino, Lac Du Flambeau, Wisc.
• VICTORY CASINO CRUISES 6TH ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION, Victory Casino Cruises, Port Canaveral, Fla.

Silver Romero Award:
• DOUBLE FREE PLAY, Lake of the Torches Resort Casino, Lac Du Flambeau, Wisc.

Electronic Marketing—Large Casino
Gold Romero Award:
• GROOVY GROUNDHOG GIVEAWAY, Oaklawn Jockey Club, Hot Springs, Ark.

Silver Romero Award:
• SUMMIT OR PLUMMET, Oaklawn Jockey Club, Hot Springs, Ark.

Online Marketing—Large Casino
Diamond Romero Award:
• A CELEBRATION OF WINNING MOMENTS: 2018 PLAYERS OF WIND CREEK CALENDAR, Wind Creek Hospitality, Atmore, Ala.

Silver Romero Awards:
• 12 DAYS OF GILA, Gila River Hotels & Casinos, Chandler, Ariz.
• WORLD OF WONKA GOLDEN TICKET PROMOTION, Rivers Casino, Pittsburgh, Pa.

Online Marketing—Small/Midsize Casino
Diamond Romero Award:
• 90’s PARTY HOSTED BY JOEY FATONE, Victory Casino Cruises, Port Canaveral, Fla.

Gold Romero Award:
• HIGHWAYMEN LIVE CONCERT SOCIAL CAMPAIGN, Prairie Band Casino & Resort, Mayetta, Kan.

VIP Promotions—Large Casino
Diamond Romero Awards:
• THE GLAM OF PANAM, Gila River Hotels & Casinos, Chandler, Ariz.
• THE MOST INTERESTING PROMOTION, Soboba Casino, San Jacinto, Calif.

Gold Romero Awards:
• NEW YEAR’S EVE ALL AROUND THE WORLD, Wind Creek Atmore, Atmore, Ala.
• OAKLAWN REWARDS LAUNCH, Oaklawn Jockey Club, Hot Springs, Ark.
• STILL DREAMING OF JEANNIE, Soboba Casino, San Jacinto, Calif.

Silver Romero Awards:
• ELITE WINE PAIRING EVENT, Oaklawn Jockey Club, Hot Springs, Ark.
• FUNNY BONES & FOOTBALL, Wind Creek Montgomery Casino & Hotel, Montgomery, Ala.
• HALLOWEEN HARVEST, Fallsview Casino Resort, Niagara Falls, ON, Canada
• S.S. SOBOBA, Soboba Casino , San Jacinto. Calif.
• SPA BLAST ELITE EVENT, Oaklawn Jockey Club, Hot Springs, Ark.
• UNDER THE SEA, Gila River Hotels & Casinos, Chandler, Ariz.

VIP Promotions—Small/Midsize Casino
Gold Romero Award:
• CROSS PROPERTY VIP WASTE MANAGEMENT PHOENIX OPEN OFFER, Harrah’s Ak-Chin, Maricopa, Ariz.

Silver Romero Awards:
• LUAU AT THE LAKE, Lake of the Torches Resort Casino, Lac Du Flambeau, Wisc.
• LUGGAGE CONTINUITY WITH TRAVELING MONEY, Black Oak Casino Resort, Tuolumne, Calif.
• VIP DINNER & SLEIGH RIDE, Gold Eagle Casino, North Battleford, SK, Canada