Gambling

Leading US Sportsbook Brands Scale Back Advertising Spend

Posted on: February 6, 2024, 09:04h. 

Last updated on: February 6, 2024, 09:04h.

FanDuel, DraftKings, and BetMGM, the three leading sportsbooks in the US, scaled back their advertising spends in 2023, as the emerging gaming market consolidates and the race to attract bettors calms.

sportsbook advertising spend US sports betting
A DraftKings Sportsbook digital ad above a New York City Subway stop. Sports betting ads remained prominent in the US in 2023, but leading sportsbooks cut back their overall spending. FanDuel, DraftKings, and BetMGM each spent less on sportsbook marketing than they did in 2022. (Image: Crain’s New York)

According to MediaRadar, an advertising research firm, the three sportsbook front-runners trimmed their advertising budgets last year. FanDuel’s media spending was down 17% from 2022. DraftKings spent 13% less money on ads, while BetMGM cut its advertising funds by 26%.

PrizePicks, a leading daily fantasy sports operator that differs from leaders DraftKings and FanDuel in that players compete against the house instead of other DFS players, continues to spend heavily on its marketing. PrizePicks more than quadrupled its advertising output finances.

Across television, social media, web, mobile, and traditional advertising like billboards and mailers, the four companies spent nearly $1 billion in 2023.

While still a major win for the media firms that facilitate the sports betting adverts, the spending total represented a 15% year-over-year drop. The spending does not include promotional marketing incentives provided to new customers or lures to retain bettors.

TV Spend Increases

While sportsbooks shaved some of their advertising war chests last year, FanDuel, DraftKings, and BetMGM saw reason to increase their television commercial funds.

In what’s a sign that legacy media continues to reign supreme, FanDuel set aside 18% more funds for television, with its budget rising to $157.7 million. DraftKings spent nearly $123 million on TV (up 23%), and BetMGM paid $45 (up 37%). PrizePicks spent about $30.5 million on television, a 413% increase for the fantasy sports operator that continues to gain market share in the DFS space.

In other categories, such as digital, print, and social, the sportsbooks reportedly spent fewer advertising dollars last year than they did in 2022.

Last year’s overall sports betting spending was propped up by significant bets made by DraftKings and FanDuel during Super Bowl LVII. The NFL title game saw FanDuel and DraftKings run several commercials. Paired with their cross-channel advertising campaigns that ran in conjunction with the primetime spots, the two sportsbooks reportedly spent $90 million alone on the big game.

This Sunday’s Super Bowl is expected to be scaled back in terms of sportsbook ads. The NFL says Super Bowl viewers will see a total of only three sports betting commercials.

FanDuel is back with another round of Rob Gronkowski’s “Kick of Destiny” where bettors can make a free pick on whether the future Hall of Fame tight end will make a 25-yard field goal kicked live. DraftKings is staying on the advertising sidelines for this year’s big game. BetMGM, however, is making a bet with a spot starring Tom Brady, Wayne Gretzky, and Vince Vaughn.

The cost of a 30-second Super Bowl commercial this year is roughly $7 million. Super Bowl LVIII kicks off this Sunday, Feb. 11, at 6:30 pm EST from Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas.

Record Betting

This Sunday’s Super Bowl will almost certainly be the most legally bet Super Bowl in NFL history. With sportsbooks regulated in almost 40 states, gaming analysts are forecasting $1.25 billion to be wagered lawfully on the Kansas City Chiefs versus the San Francisco 49ers. The 49ers are favored by 1.5 points and the over/under is at 47.5 points.

Despite claims by the US gaming industry that a legal environment would rid out underground bookies and offshore sportsbooks, rogue bets continue to outpace legal wagers.

The American Gaming Association expects over $23 billion in total to be wagered on Super Bowl LVIII. The money includes bets at legal sportsbooks, offshore platforms, bookies, between friends, and squares games among friends and coworkers.


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