Why Sports Betting Platforms are Turning to Celebrity and Influencer Endorsements

Campaigns around sports gambling are dominating social media platforms

Since the Supreme Court’s overturning of the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act in 2018, 30 states have since legalized sports gambling with New York being one of the more recently legalized states. In doing so, sports-books recognized New York as one of the largest new populations to target in getting the public to join their wagering apps, and took several different approaches in looking to capture this new share of the market. While many books took a promotional approach by creating incentives for placing your first bet (such as awarding them credit to bet with), advertising efforts surrounding this industry have exploded since New York’s legalization this past January.

While the industry first looked to promote their brands through television advertising for awareness and to encourage new users, a deal between Sportradar and Adomni in late 2021 reinvented the way these books could market to the public. The deal allowed for books when showing an advertisement in the middle of a sports game to include live betting odds for the game being shown, at that exact point in the game. Here, books changed their way of advertising not solely to acquire new users, but to further promote active users to consider betting on the game they’re currently watching.

The most popular advertisement utilizing the live odds feature is by bet365, which is led by celebrity actor Aaron Paul (known largely from Breaking Bad). Here, he poses the question “Why aren’t you on the world’s greatest sports-book?” in which he then dives into the live-betting features where he shows the live odds for that particular game.

Aaron Paul’s commercial with bet365

While the use of Aaron Paul was extremely effective in generating buzz for bet365 advertisements, other sports-books have utilized celebrity endorsements as well. Sites such as BetMGM have Jamie Foxx while Caesar’s Sportsbook uses J.B. Smoove and Halle Berry, however several books have begun shifting to marketing through social media influencers as well.

Brands in all industries have recognized the impact influencers can have on raising brand’s awareness and creating loyal customers, as top influencers generally have a very engaged audience. Sportsbooks is no exception to this, with FanDuel leading the charge in signing Pat McAfee. McAfee is a retired NFL punter, who since has become much more famous for his past relationship with Barstool and his podcast where Pat analyzes sports in a unique way that you won’t hear anywhere else.

Since the legalization of online wagering, users have taken to their social media to post their bets in hopes of sharing their “winning picks” with their followers, which has led to a new genre of influencers. TikTok has been arguably the most dominant platform with these influencers, as @bookitwithtrent has quickly rose to over 340k followers through sharing his daily bets, despite losing almost every one. As ironic as it may seem, whoever Trent bets on somehow loses, which has led to people coining him the “Fade God”. PrizePicks recognized this opportunity and immediately partnered with him, as Trent is just one of the many avid sports fans turned gambling influencers.

DraftKings took a very unique influencer approach in promoting their book however, through partnering with the Official Grillmaster of the Buffalo Bills Jack Mancuso (@chefcuso). Cuso’s content differs much from that of McAfee and Trent’s videos, as Jack’s page is populated with delicious grilling videos with a comedic twist to his dishes, however is an avid sports fan as well as is his audience.

Jack Mancuso (@chefcuso) posts a TikTok in partnership with DraftKings

With the next few weeks of sports being filled with the ending of March Madness, NBA and NHL playoff races finishing up their regular seasons, as well as with the unexpected trades occurring in the NFL offseason, be prepared to see more sports book influencer campaigns.

To book a celebrity or influencer for your next campaign, contact The Digital Renegades via email at renegade@celebexperts.com