Casino Marketing & Technology Conference Agenda
5:00 pm – 7:00 pm
Casino Marketing & Technology Conference Opening Night Reception
Wednesday, July 24, 2019
8:00 am – 5:00 pm
8:00 am – 5:00 pm
Expo Hall Open
8:00 am – 8:30 am
Continental Breakfast on Show Floor
8:30 am -9:15 am
Enabling Intuition in a Digital Age
As Casino Marketers are we posing the right questions around technology and innovation? And more importantly are we posing them as a society, economy, company, or individuals, and, what are our boundaries around technology?
A great casino marketer should want to be held accountable for their poor performance and conversely rewarded, for great performance. This requires certain uses of technologies, of course but let’s be careful to ensure we don’t stop seeing the guest experience through the eyes of the customer. Where does the guest stop wanting technology to be their touch point and start wanting a real human being to help them?
Most often we are not the first person a guest meets at our properties, but it is our responsibility to ensure we know our most loyal and valuable clients the deepest. We are the representatives and leaders of that segment of our guest population, and as marketers we should have a seat at the table and collaborate with leadership on the involvement of human vs machine when it comes to our guests’ touchpoints. This requires a level of balanced leadership that isn’t always easy to find.
Casey Cohen, Chief Marketing Officer, The Hippodrome Casino, London
9:15 am -9:45 am
Networking BreakSponsored by:
9:45 am - 10:45 am
Moving the Needle in Ultra-Competitive Markets
The continual expansion of gaming has created greater convenience for gamblers, whose wealth of choices create never-ending challenges for casino operators who must compete fiercely to attract players and grow their respective markets.
In this session we will brainstorm with operators working in competitive gaming markets and hear what can be done to win share without sacrificing profitability. The session will explore:
- Solutions to specific marketing challenges faced by operators in today’s competitive environment
- Research techniques to gain insights into your market
- Strategies that all operators can deploy to gain market share and realize durable revenue increases.
This session will conclude with audience Q&A and a list of takeaways for all attendees.
Craig Border, President, Marketing Results, Inc.
Mario Maesano, Senior Vice President, Marketing, Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City
Leila Pleasant, Senior Manager of Player Services, Muckleshoot Casino
Rikki Tanenbaum, Chief Marketing Officer, San Manuel Casino
Email Marketing Leadership Panel
As electronic communications continue to grow in importance for casino marketers, email remains the digital channel of choice for casino marketers. In this interactive session, you will hear from leading operators how they tackle email marketing issues that all of you are working on, including:
- Database management/customer acquisition
- How to increase open and click-through rates
- Improving deliverability/spam avoidance
- Customer retention
- Measurable ROI
Tino Magnatta, Host, GTRadio
Mike Donovan, Chief Marketing Officer & Senior Vice President, Ocean Casino Resort, Atlantic City
Chris Jenner, VP Email Marketing and Digital Strategy, Caesars Entertainment
Brian Uran, VP of Loyalty Marketing, Live! Casino & Hotel
10:45 am - 11:15 am
11:15 am - 12:00 pm
Slot Marketer Do’s and Don’ts
Effective slot marketing is central to the success of regional casinos and it’s an organizational effort. While marketers are ultimately responsible for the quality of player relationships, their success rides in no small part on the quality of their internal relationships, starting with the slot department. In this session, speakers who have spent their careers understanding the ins-and-outs of slot marketing will address topics such as:
- Techniques for better merchandising slots
- The real impact of free play on revenue
- How to build credibility with your Slot VP and upper management
- Seeing things through your players eyes
- Avoiding monotony (saying the same thing to the same players over and over)
- Coping with the Entitlement Cycle
- Risks that aren’t (and are) worth taking
Mary Loftness, Owner, Profitable Customers
Ivy is in the House, Now What?
After a successful debut in Vegas, Ivy, the 24-hour personal concierge chatbot, is starting to be embraced by regional casinos, who are drawn to the service’s multiple ways of improving the guest experience from checking in to checking out and plenty in between. Wifi codes, housekeeping inquiries, restaurant and entertainment queries; all of these and more can be handled by Ivy, freeing up the front desk to deliver higher levels of personalized service.
Topics to be covered in this session will include:
- How Ivy works.
- Internal resource and organizational requirements.
- Measuring the quality of guest interactions with Ivy and course correcting.
- Habits of highly successful Ivy users.
Brian Conley, Industry Specialist, VizExplorer
12:00 pm -1:30 pm
Lifetime Achievement Award Luncheon
Recipient: Robert Hamman, President and CEO, SCA Promotions
1:30 pm - 2:30 pm
An Interview with Tom Jenkin
Dennis Conrad Signature Session
Tom Jenkin began his gaming career as a fry cook at Harrah’s. He is now the Global President of Caesars Entertainment. If that is not interesting enough, Tom was also one of Dennis Conrad’s first managers and mentors in the gaming industry and Dennis has the honor of interviewing Tom in this Signature Session of the Casino Marketing and Technology Conference. Tom may finally explain why he didn’t fire Dennis decades ago.
This exclusive One on One Executive Interview will deal candidly with a number of topics: how a casino industry leader views the marketing function and how that has changed over the years; what the current gaming industry trends are and what the future will look like in 20 years; what role great customer service still plays in a successful casino operation; what the best way now is for a gaming manager to carve out his or her career path in the industry; and much, much more.
Look for this “Lifetime of Learning” session to be much like a fireside chat between two longtime friends (without the brandy or hot chocolate). Candor will be in abundance. Common sense will rule. There will be much that is strategic, historical and future looking. And the whole hour interview with this Captain of Industry will be, well, just plain fascinating.
Dennis Conrad, President Emeritus, Raving Consulting Company
Tom Jenkin, Global President, Caesars Entertainment
2:30 pm - 3:00 pm
3:00 pm - 3:45 pm
Operationalizing Your Brand
Market saturation, consolidations and the ever-increasing competition for the entertainment dollar makes it increasingly difficult for any one company to sustain product leadership over time and to differentiate its brand on product features or performance alone. A definitive brand identity expressed through guest touchpoints and experiences can help build long-term guest relationships and maintain higher profit margins. But how do you go from tagline to culture. In this session we’ll talk about the opportunity is to move from talking about values to embracing them in order to drive brand performance and how operators are looking beyond ad campaigns and how their brands are the business.
Julia Carcamo, President & Chief Brand Strategist, J Carcamo & Associates
Mobile Loyalty - Shared Experiences with Casino Operators
This panel of casino operators will discuss why they are leveraging the mobile marketing channel for their casino and how they are building loyalty in the new digital age. In today’s digital environment, a few questions are: "How do I integrate a mobile solution into my casino marketing plan?" and “How can I optimize my mobile app to provide the best customer experience!" The answer to those questions is by integrating your app with all your casino and non-gaming systems: player tracking, kiosk, lodging, dining, ticketing, social casino, real money gaming, sports betting, virtual players card, cashless play, and even valet. Join us as we speak with operators who’ve integrated mobile apps with their property systems about the challenges they’ve faced, the progress they’ve made, and what’s coming in the future.
Joe Tingson, Vice President of Customer Experience & Strategy, Joingo
3:45 pm - 4:15 pm
4:15 pm - 5:00 pm
Making Your Brand Reputation Management Strategy More Proactive
Reputation management is so much more than responding to a negative review or feedback. Now more than ever, search results, earned media and social media are a core part of a casino's reputation. Learn how to move away from reactively managing the brand to proactively influencing how and what people are saying about your casino. We’ll outline how to navigate negative reviews and crisis situations without damaging the brand reputation. In this session, hear real-life examples of how Gila River Hotels & Casinos Chief Marketing Officer lead a team to develop a strong, positive brand reputation strategy through proactive brand initiatives, even when faced with potentially brand-harming situations.
Cost-Effective Ways to Build Online Visibility, Boost Conversions & Optimize Digital Channels
From choosing the right keywords and website tools to actionable content and digital advertising strategies, the latest digital marketing techniques can take your online visibility and results to the next level. You’ll leave this session with knowledge and tips to maximize your visibility on Google, YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, Maps, and other high-growth online channels fast. Learn how successful casino brands are leveraging new digital marketing techniques to gain an edge in highly competitive gaming markets, such as:
- Adapting to recent Google and Facebook updates to position your digital strategy ahead of the evolving algorithms
- Performing a quick, simple and action-oriented digital channel audit to prioritize strategies
- Discovering digital Quick Wins by removing the complex and focusing on speed and efficiency to reach desired outcomes – fast
- Learning how to create online buyer personas to identify the most targeted digital tactics to reach them
- Optimizing website conversion funnels, including SEO, UX, video content, CRO, and analytics
Thursday, July 25, 2019
8:00 am – 4:00 pm
8:30 am - 9:45 am
Romero Awards Breakfast
Toby O’Brien, Casino Marketing Consultant
9:30 am – 1:45 pm
Expo Hall Open
9:45 am - 10:45 am
Video Marketing: Navigating Your Options on Social Media
Video is the fastest growing online marketing medium and options abound on social media. Platforms such as Twitter, YouTube, Facebook, and Instagram differ in terms of reach, end-user demographics, production requirements, duration, etc. Topics to be addressed in this session include:
- When to use social media video
- Methodologies by platform
- Making one video that can be used on all platforms
- Effective captions, animations and slide shows
- In-house requirements (equipment and people)
- Examples of successful social video marketing
Mark Astone, Strategic Raving Partner, Branding, Advertising and Media Services; CEO, Catalyst Marketing Company
Robert Christensen, Marketing Social Media Manager, Tulalip Resort Casino
Holly O'Brien, Vice President of Marketing & Advertising, Golden Nugget Las Vegas
Josh Williams, Director of Client Services, Catalyst Marketing Company
Getting the Most Out of Your Slot System
Marketers tend to have a love/hate relationship with their slot system, and the system they hate most is typically the one they own. But what if all the major systems do pretty much the same functions, then what? Building more productive relationships with vendors is possible, investing in re-training can pay off and trading one system for another is a $5 to $10 million expense that might not always be the right idea. In this session, you will hear from two industry experts who have spent a lifetime getting to know the ins-and-outs of slot systems and have done the heavy lifting that all marketers can do to leverage their full potential.
10:45 am - 11:15 am
11:15 am - 12:00 pm
How to Sell Your CFO (Or at Least Have a Fighting Chance)
Casino marketers have no shortage of creative ideas but when it comes to lining up what they consider to be the necessary resources, the conversation moves upstairs, typically to the CFO’s office. The resulting reality check tests your ability to sell your ideas, but if you don’t come prepared you might not even get to that point. In this session, Steve Neely, who spent many years in casino marketing roles jousting with CFOs before taking a GM job (where such encounters occur with even greater frequency) will engage in real-life discussions with his former CFO, the goal being to show what lines of reasoning resonate and which fall flat. Topics to be covered will include:
- Advertising doesn’t work (no, really, it does).
- What does this new technology do that your existing toys don’t do?
- Qualitative vs. quantitative arguments.-Staffing: Don’t you have enough people already?
- Show me the ROI.
Deana Scott, Raving CEO
12:00 pm - 1:45 pm
Lunch on the Tradeshow Floor
1:45 pm -2:30 pm
The Marketing of You
BI, slot marketing, player reinvestment, understanding gaming and non-gaming systems, data science, analytics, advertising, promotions, social media marketing, mobile solutions…there are no shortage of career paths for today’s casino marketer. But what makes sense for you and how do you stay on the right side of technological change? These are big questions for one individual, but, fortunately, you don’t have to go it alone. In this session, longtime casino marketers who have been in your shoes and continue to successfully navigate their own careers and assist in the development of team members and casino clients will tackle these issues addressing topics such as:
- Identifying your niche
- Building feedback loops that increase learning
- Getting recognized for your expertise
- Creating durable internal and external networks
- Serving others
Julia Carcamo, President & Chief Brand Strategist, J Carcamo & Associates
Lance Evans, SVP Sports Marketing & Sponsorships, MGM Resorts International
Benjamin Farber, President, Bristol Associates, Inc. Gaye Gullo, Principal, Gaye Gullo Consulting, LLC Amy Hunter, COO and Managing Partner, Simmons Group
2:30 pm -2:45 pm
2:45 pm - 3:30 pm
Journey Mapping for Optimal Guest Engagement
Guest experience continues to grow in the reason customers choose you or your competition as the place they will spend the majority of their gambling budget. So, it becomes more important than ever for us to understand the customer journey and the key touch points that influence their decision to visit. Service can be your unique and differentiating factor, and journey mapping can enlighten your efforts at capturing those customers time and time again. Session participants will take part in an individual journey mapping exercise so that they can gain insight of how mapping and understanding their customer’s journey can lead to overall improvement in loyalty, positive word of mouth, and the overall experience.
Jim White, Chief Experience Officer, Jim White Advantage
How Bandwidth Issues are Wrecking the Customer Experience and What You Can Do About It
As consumers and casino operators alike turn increasingly to web-based sources of entertainment, communications and operational solutions, casino technology infrastructures are getting hit with a triple whammy of wi-fi consumption, and the results can be alarming. The implications for networks and customer-facing issues such as service and on-site marketing are profound when messaging that is supposed to be instantaneous takes up to 25 minutes to arrive. With sports betting and a new wave of mobile marketing either here or just around the corner, what can casinos do to address bandwidth issues and what role should marketers play in the discussion?
Jason Yeghiayan, Independent Project Manager
Mike Essig, Ph.D., Director of IT, Tropicana Las Vegas
3:30 pm -3:45 pm
3:45 pm - 4:30 pm
The Early Returns on Sports Betting
Eight states now offer legal sports betting and the number could approach 20 by year’s end. As a new and sought after amenity, sports betting has proven to be an important source of incremental revenue for regional casinos. In this session, you will hear what marketers on the leading edge of this category of business have learned. Topics to be covered will include an assessment of the overall business impact of sports betting; do’s and don’ts in the launch phase; an overviews of player behaviors; customer demographics and best practices in sports betting marketing.
Charles Anderer, Executive Editor, Casino Journal
Max Bichsel, US Director, Kambi US
Scott Hanson, Corporate Vice President Gaming Grand Casino Mille Lacs | Grand Casino Hinckley Luisa Woods, VP Marketing, Gaming and Entertainment, Delaware North
The Power of Music
Musical entertainment has long been a centerpiece of casino entertainment and its hold has only strengthened with time. Love of music is one of the few points of commonality in an increasingly fragmented and distracted culture. It not only drives people to your property for specific events, it can help define exactly who you are. In this session, you will hear music and marketing success stories and how properties are finding new ways to add quality of the guest experience in myriad ways and even boost employee satisfaction by leveraging the full power of music.
Justin Shank, Raving Partner, Social Gaming and Marketing
Ryan Frohberg, Chief Marketing Officer, Casino Del Sol
Nathan Green, Vice President, New Level Radio
Kell Houston, Senior Raving Partner, Gaming Entertainment; Owner/President, Houston Productions