GPWA Times Magazine - Issue 29 - July 2014

2014WSOP (WorldSeriesofPoker) (Nev.&N.J.)—Caesarsgoesall-in This year’s World Series of Poker (WSOP) offered Caesars Interactive an opportunity to showcase its online brand in bothNevada andNew Jersey. Andmake nomistake; with the iconic event being in Las Vegas, Caesars took full advantage of theopportunity. Leading up to the world’s most iconic and well-known poker tournament series, Caesars announced several initiatives it was undertaking to integrate their online brand into themonth-long land-based tournament series.Hereare just a few: • Informingall non-residentsondocumentation required – Prior to the start of the 2014WSOP, Caesarsdidamediablitz and also contactedplayersdirectly to inform themonwhat documentation theywouldneed tobringwith them inorder toplayonlinewhile inNevada.With somanypoker players in town, itwouldbe a shamenot to encourage them to take theonlinebrand for a test drive. • Onlinedepositsandwithdrawals liveat the cages –Still plaguedbybanking issueswhen trying todeposit and withdrawonline, players inNevada are able todeposit and withdraw into andout of theirWSOP.com accountsdirectly at the casino cages. Formanyplayers, thismade theonline experiencemuch simpler andmore enjoyable. • Satellites, satellitesandmoresatellites –Asexpected, the numberofonlinesatelliteeventsofferedonNevada’sWSOP.com propertywasenormous.On July5alone, aMainEventScramble guaranteed25seats to theWSOPMainEvent. • A “GrindRoom” for onlineplayers –TheWSOPhas set up a “GrindRoom” at theRioAll SuiteHotel&Casino— the site of theWSOP— for playerswishing toplayonlineversus on the real felt. The room comes equippedwith all the amenities anonlinepoker playerwould expect andneed. In addition to this, theWSOPhas evengone so far as to allowmobile devices at the live tables for onlineplaybetweenhands, although it shouldbenoted that players arenot allowed to play in anonlinehandwhile involved inoneon the felt. New Jersey’sWSOP.com iterationwasalsonot shywhen it came to taking advantage of the hype andbuzz surrounding the 2014 WSOP.New Jerseyplayerswho couldnotmake the cross-coun- try trip to play live inNevadawere treated to the site’s second championship series, which featured 15 tournaments and over $550,000 inguaranteedprizepools. Needless to say, the 2014WSOP is certainly one for the record books, and the first ever to see a concerted effort to bridge the gapbetween theworlds of land-based andonlinepoker. And while Lesniak may have initially been critical of the new online casinos for not fully embracing the traditionalmarketing methods of land-based casinos, the poker sites and land-based poker rooms certainlyhave it figuredout. WithWSOP.com live and regulated in two states, itwas expect- ed that itsNevada andNew Jersey brandswould have a heavy marketing presence leading up to and during the 2014WSOP. And while not quite there yet, the New Jersey online casinos are starting to experimentwithmore crossover promotions and comps to the land-based casinos. Bridging the gap between brick-and-mortar gaming and online gamingwill undoubtedly take time. Butwith the relatively close proximity of most of New Jersey's players toAtlantic City, we should expect to seemore andmore promotionswhere players are being rewarded for online play with hotel stays and other various comps from the land-based casinos. ................................................................................ JeremyEnke is the CEOof Poker Affiliate Listings. He has spentmore than 10 years in the poker affiliate market, with anoverallmissionof helping affiliate marketers reach their full potential andbecome more successful. 47 Bridging the gapbetween regulated land-based andonline casinos

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