With the Olympics underway, Jason Ziernicki, Head of Audience, US Sports at XLMedia, has spoken about his views on the low impact the Games has with sports bettors.
Traditionally, Olympic sports betting has failed to generate much interest in the past; Ziernicki suspects “it’s a gamble” to consider the Summer Tokyo Olympics will take sportsbooks by storm this year.
“There's a hope that it will,” he exclusively tells Gambling Insider.
“I believe this is the first Olympic Games that we have had in the States with regulated sports betting. There is no previous comparison or baseline to work off. I think the storyline so far with the Tokyo Olympics brings a lot of concern, and when there is concern, most bettors will be hesitant.”
A recent report from the American Gaming Association stated that 20 million Americans are set to bet on this year's Olympic Games, and the interest in sports betting has in fact increased by 54%; however Ziernicki believes it still won’t be that promising a means to wagering.
“The Olympics do bring a lot of attractive promos to gaming - if someone wins a gold medal, they can give away free bets, or arrange typical promos which work for sure. But in general, I would be surprised if the sportsbooks are truly expecting big handle from the Olympics. I think they are probably pretty low in terms of expectations,” he explained.
“I think storylines are what tends to drive volume. If I was looking for something that could drive volume, it would be along the lines of seeing value.”
You can read the full interview with Ziernicki in September's issue of Trafficology.