How Bingo Operators are Targeting a New Breed of Bingo Players
The UK are a nation of bingo lovers — and who can blame them? It’s not just eyes down, look in and hope your numbers come up; it’s a chance to get together with your friends, have a chat, coffee and a laugh together (although in the halls themselves it’s still serious business and it’s not quite the place for laughing). There was a time when bingo was something of the domain of a more senior crowd, but that’s all changed now. Operators have restyled the game and adopted other approaches to draw in younger generations — and it’s working.
The new breed
Say the word ‘Bingo’ and a certain image leaps to mind: that of old ladies smoking in the bingo hall and sitting in the same chair each week, believing it will bring them good luck. There’s no denying that the game is still popular with senior citizens, especially women, but bingo has moved on a great deal from we’ve come to expect of it traditionally.
This is partially due to advances in technology, which have opened bingo up even more to the masses. Some bingo halls now have lounges where players can get something to eat or drink, relax and still follow the games, thanks to electronic tablets. The atmosphere is a little lighter — more like that of a pub or a club— and those who want to focus solely on the game can remain in the more silent hall.
One significant thing technology has done is help operators appeal to a younger crowd. This is in a digital age in which staying in is more common. The internet and mobile technology have made bingo more accessible for a generation that loves technology. A third of online bingo players fall in the 25 to 34 age bracket and 75% of these players are women. Online players are more likely, too, to classify themselves as extroverts, which turns the traditional view that bingo players are introverts on its head. More than half of online bingo players also tend to go with the flow, rather than be focused on sticking to the plan.
The fact that there are so many bingo operators online makes the game a player’s market, with operators all working hard to convince players to visit their websites and play bingo on them. As part of this, there are a variety of promotions out there to tempt the players through those online doors, which is where affiliate sites come in. You can find some of the best bingo bonuses online at recommended bingo affiliate sites like Bingoport, where you can compare promotions and get more out of your money and your bingo experience.
Part of the explosion in the popularity of bingo is down to the way that operators are marketing the game as one where it’s not just all about winning some money, but also about socialising and having fun while you’re playing. Take the Mecca bingo club in Nottingham, for instance. Instead of just marking off the numbers on your card, you can play rock ‘n’ roll bingo and tick off the tracks as you hear them.
Mecca bingo, Nottingham, doesn’t stop at bingo, though. They host a range of other nights that get people interacting with each other rather than sitting in a corner and tapping away on their phones. Nights can include anything from Elvis impersonators, to family games such as ‘Rock, Paper, Scissors’. There’s also the classic ‘How many marshmallows can I stuff in my mouth?’ contest. These nights bring a whole new level of entertainment and enjoyment to the venue, not to mention fresh enthusiasm for the game.
Another bingo operator adding a bit of spice to the game is Rebel Bingo, in north Camden, London. It’s more like a party in Ibiza than a game of bingo, but students and the younger generations are lapping it up. You get your cards at the door and then the party starts. There’s music and lights… lots of lights. There’s confetti and it gets loud in there. Players of traditional bingo wouldn’t be able to stand, so far is it removed from regular bingo.
This article does not necessarily reflect the opinions of the editors or management of EconoTimes.