As lottery jackpots soar, a new study explores player motivations for gaming.

March 28, 2023
It’s no secret that gaming has become a part of everyday life. Anyone keeping up with the news has seen that record-setting lottery jackpots have become commonplace. In fact, most of the largest payouts in history have been in recent years, including 2022’s $2 billion prize claimed in California. But it’s not just the lottery. Casinos are booming also. Both Nevada and Ohio saw record casino sales in 2022. Chicago and New York are planning new metropolitan casino experiences. Texas and other states are expanding their casino laws. What is motivating players and these trends? A new study for Leger finds that convenience tops the list of factors that motivate gaming with players.

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For most types of gaming, convenience is king.

In the past year, 85% of American adults have participated in gaming. Convenience is a key motivator in most gaming, but not all.
Scratch lottery and lottery draw players have two of the three top reasons to play in common: time spent and convenience with one very important difference drawing players to one type versus the other. Among scratch lottery players top reasons for playing are convenience, entertainment and time spent. Lottery draw player top reasons are for regular play, convenience and time spent.

Half of lottery players also are casino players. This is good news for professionals in the gaming industry. There is clear interest for new and easy ways to enjoy gaming. For gaming professionals, knowing how your type of betting maximizes percent of play is important.
What does “convenience” mean in the modern gaming landscape? This is an area of opportunity for gaming professionals to explore to make gaming even more relevant in daily life.

Take for example a recent story from the Michigan State Lottery. A 44-year-old woman was having a really bad day at work. She admits that to take a break and “relax”, she began scrolling through the different games conveniently through her lottery app.  As a distraction, she played several spins on a game. She ultimately won $100,000.

Certainly, convenience is apparent now more than ever in online and app play. But it’s also evident in how gaming is becoming more interwoven with non-gaming behaviors for a more convenient and fun lifestyle. For example, The New York Gaming Commission has indicated that non-gaming amenities are very much a part of their plans for more casinos in the state of New York. Resort themes with planned outdoor spaces, concerts/sports and dining are all a part of making gaming more convenient for players at new casino complexes.

Spending on gaming varies by generation.

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While convenience is a dominate factor of what drives game play, spend varies by generation. For example,

  • Gen X heaviest spend is for lottery, sports betting and online gambling.
  • By contrast, Millennials heaviest spend is in social/online gaming and casino play.

There are variations in spend vs. drivers of play. For example, regular play drives heavy spending in lottery draw gaming but scratch off players are most interested in being entertained and convenience. With this in mind, gaming professionals should align their products and services based on a segmentation strategy that meets the motivations of each segment of players.

Leger’s “Player Value Index” offers insight to the future of game play.

In Leger’s new 2023 Player Value Gaming Study, nine factors were studied as a “Player Value Index” for each generation of gamers and for various segments of gaming spend. The findings of the study deliver insight into how each segment may be influenced to play in the future. You can also see full player profiles by types of game play and by generation. You will learn the similarities and differences between each profile, and you can see the findings for all generations and levels of spend.

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