How to Become a Bookie – Developing a Client Base

clientsThe life blood of any business is customers. Without customers you really do not have a business, just a product that sits on a shelf or a service that remains idle. The ultimate success of a business is the ability to develop a healthy and expanding customer base that repeatedly uses its products or services to generate a profit.

The primary reason why most businesses fail is a lack of proper planning. Sometimes they underestimate the amount of start-up money required to get a business off the ground, or overestimate the potential market for their products or services. A solid business plan will address the first issue and a creative marketing plan will address the second.

To become a bookmaker, you face the same challenges that anyone else starting a business does. You should have a solid business plan to address start-up costs and operating expenses, but given the type of service you provide, it is even more important to develop a marketing plan that utilizes all the available tools to developing a viable client base.

Given the nature of the sports wagering industry, you should always be completely aware of any legal restrictions that may exist on a local, state, and, federal basis as these will have a direct impact on your marketing efforts. For the purpose of this discussion, we will assume there are no existing restrictions in finding clients for your service.

The key to a successful marketing plan is diversity. There are a number of ways to attract a potential client to your services so you should employ as many of them as possible so you leave no stones unturned. You can break your marketing efforts down into two primary categories; the shotgun approach and the rifle approach.

The shotgun approach utilizes marketing techniques that are designed to reach a wide array of potential customers. These include media advertising, direct mail/email campaigns, and social media. All three have been proven effective at creating exposure for your services, but they also carry a cost that must be properly aligned with your marketing budget. You may not be able to afford a four-color full-page advertisement in an industry trade magazine, but for a relatively small start-up cost, you can start a sports information blog that uses social media such as Facebook and Twitter to build a following. This following can then be incorporated into am email campaign to keep your services top of mind. The key here is to use your expertise in sports wagering to provide some valuable information to the masses in an effort to mine some clients from your efforts.

The rifle approach utilizes much more narrow marketing techniques to starting and growing your client base. Most start-up businesses initially rely on family and friends to generate some quick returns and your bookmaking service should do the same. It is always best to pick the low-lying fruit first to help get things off the ground.

Once you have a small but loyal group of clients that are familiar and satisfied with your services, do not hesitate employ them as word-of-mouth marketing agents to help attract a wider base of customers. Most successful businesses, especially ones that offer a service, have built a good portion of their client base through referrals. To help jump-start this grassroots marketing effort, you should develop an incentive program for existing clients that rewards them for any new customers they may help to bring in. Just about every major sportsbook offers bonuses and incentives through a refer-a-friend program, so this should be a part of your growth strategy as well.

Another highly effective rifle technique is networking. This could be as formal as belonging to industry-related organizations or as casual as making frequent appearances anywhere sports fans may gather. The net result should always be the same; engaging people, on a one-on-one basis, that may have an interest in your services. This should never be a hard-sell, rather a simple education process that lets potential clients know the exact scope of the services you provide.