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4 Casino Lessons Every Property Needs to Learn from Last Night’s Super Bowl

WOW, what a game!  Well, at least for the first 12 seconds it was close!  But there were valuable casino lessons to be learned.

The first lesson casinos can draw from last night’s Super Bowl happened in less than 15 seconds.  When you make mistakes, your competition will make you pay for it.  Perhaps dearly, as the Broncos learned.  No matter how great a casino’s customer service training is, all it takes is one mental mistake and the property can find itself trying to crawl out of a hole.  For example, a bad snap and the Broncos were down 2 to 0 and that was as close as the game ever got.

Casino lessons can be learned from mistakes

Casino Lessons Can Be Gleaned from Broncos’ Super Bowl Mistakes. These Lessons Are An Opportunity.

Think about this for a second.  Those players practiced for months getting ready for the game.  The Broncos center and quarterback successfully snapped the ball hundreds of times this season.  The Broncos were the number one offense in the NFL and they didn’t get there by making foolish mistakes.

But casinos make foolish mistakes like that all the time.  I know you do great casino customer service training, but all it takes is an associate that is a little off and the guest is headed to a competitor.

The second lesson involved the Super Bowl’s huge television audience.  It’s estimated nearly 110 million people watched the game.  How do you think the Broncos center feels after he made a mistake like that with millions watching?

Casinos may not realize it, but the world is watching them, too.  Most of the time, when a casino employee makes a mistake, only a couple of people see it.  And in the old days, a guest would tell five to seven people about the bad experience.  But today, guests use social media and casino review sites to blast the casino and tell the world about the poor gaming experience they had.

Casinos get regularly “Yelp’ed” by guests.  The guest can have a bad experience and, within moments, they plaster their experience on Yelp and Google+.  The really bad news about this is these so-called reviews are posted for the world to see for YEARS.  Sure, the Broncos center feels bad and he knows millions of people watched his mistake, but it’s all over by next season.  Unless he plays in the Super Bowl again, it will probably never be mentioned again.

But potential casino guests will see these negative customer reviews for as long as the review site thinks they’re relevant and that can be years.  So when a prospective guest types in your city’s name and the word “casino,” the reviews could just show up.

It’s important to know that 46 percent of people use review sites as a place to vent their frustrations.  Google may see value in reviews and use these rants as a way to decide your casino’s search rankings.

Here’s lesson three – the more mistakes you share with the world, the harder it is to win.  The Broncos suffered interceptions and fumbles and allowed kicks to be returned for touchdowns.  Hey, we all make mistakes, but when your mistakes are big and the competition sees them, they will take advantage of the situation.

Some casinos now have social media specialists who comment on reviews guests post and follow up.  The problem is once the ball has been intercepted and returned for a TD, it doesn’t do the team much good to explain what should have been done and how much you care.

Don’t get me wrong, I think having people answering comments and replying quickly is important.  The problem is these social media experts are doing it after the fact.  Casinos need to know about a guest’s issue before they post it online.  That creates time for service recovery.  And it’s terrible for the world to read about the problem for the next few years.

I wanted the Broncos to win, but they made too many mistakes and when you’re up against a competitive team like the Seahawks, you can’t expect to survive under those circumstances.  Many casinos have formidable competition and they can’t get by with making service mistakes, no matter how good the casino thinks it’s service may be.

Lesson four involved real-time customer feedback.  Casinos need a real-time platform to collect guest feedback so they can correct issues and share POSITIVE reviews with sites such as Yelp, TripAdvisor and Google+.  It’s bad enough knowing that potential guests will see your casino’s terrible reviews.  It’s even worse to know that Google now uses reviews as one of the ways it decides how to rank websites.  Your casino needs to be proactive when it comes to collecting real-time guest feedback and generating good reviews.  The technology exists to make it easy for customers to share their thoughts and concerns with casinos.  Your mistakes don’t have to be aired nationally first.

Learn from last night’s Super Bowl mistakes.  Don’t let competitors pound your casino like the Seahawks did the Broncos.

Marty Baird

BUSINESS INQUIRIES FOR ROBINSON & ASSOCIATES, INC.:
Lydia Baird
lbaird@raresults.com