BetOnNY, BetOnNY.com, and “Bet on NY” are all titles for a New York online casino legalization marketing campaign that residents of the Empire State are seeing. On Jan. 2, a 30-second “Bet on NY” commercial first appeared on YouTube. It directs viewers to BetOnNY.com. However, the cross-channel marketing campaign leaves out several important details.
Most importantly, the marketing campaign urging state residents to support legalizing New York online casino gambling omits any reference to an iGaming bill. On Jan. 8, state Sen. Joseph P. Addabbo Jr. told Bonus in an interview that he would introduce a 2024 online casino and lottery bill “in a couple of days.”
Perhaps not coincidentally, on Jan. 10, “Bet on NY” began getting more attention from online gambling industry insiders.
Viewers watch a commercial that tells them that New York is facing a budget deficit that could result in raised taxes or slashed public services. However, iGaming revenue could help solve that problem.
The ending shows the site’s URL as a voice actor says:
Let’s bring iGaming to New York.
Once on BetOnNY.com, visitors immediately see a form to site visitors that lets them know they can message their “elected officials” by filling it out.
However, the information on the site doesn’t link back to the commercial’s mention of the possibility of increased taxes or cut services. Instead, the first fact is about how legalizing online casino gambling could generate $1 billion in revenue. In other words, the commercial talks about what problems legalizing online casino gambling could solve for New Yorkers, but the site talks about online casino as a product.
BetOnNY Is a Start
Regardless, the marketing campaign by the Sports Betting Alliance is a beginning. It appears to be the first such iGaming effort in New York by the organization, whose members include BetMGM, DraftKings, Fanatics Sportsbook, and FanDuel. All four of those online gambling operators operate mobile sportsbooks in New York.
Plus, it responds to a comment made on Jan. 8 by Addabbo, D-Ozone Park. He told Bonus that he and state Assemblyman J. Gary Pretlow, D-Mount Vernon, can’t be the only ones advocating for iGaming legalization.
Addabbo said the same thing in 2023 when bills he and Pretlow introduced died because they weren’t included in the state budget in April.
So, Howard Glaser told Bonus on Jan. 10 that “BetOnNY” is a significant step.
Glaser, the global head of government affairs and legislative counsel at Light and Wonder (LNW), said to Bonus:
The gaming industry has a great story to tell about how iGaming revenue can fund education, housing or other critical needs in New York without raising taxes. And it’s just common sense to combat illegal internet gambling by regulating the market and capturing lost tax revenue. New York is leaving billions on the table by letting illegal markets thrive. Why not just tax it and regulate it? That’s a great message and I think you will see the industry be increasingly vocal in making the case.
Previously, “Bet on NY” was employed in an effort to legalize online sportsbooks. Mobile sports betting launched on Jan. 8, 2022.
Therefore, those social media accounts may need to be updated.
For instance, the most recent X post is:
From @Newsday Editorial Board: New York is losing tens or hundreds of millions of dollars a year as gamblers wager on sports legally in other states often driving to New Jersey to place wagers via smartphone. https://t.co/PftDgCFExh #BetonNY
— BetonNY (@BetonNewYork) March 12, 2020
More Possible Campaign Tweaks
An obvious change to the marketing campaign may be the inclusion of Addabbo and Pretlow’s online casino and lottery bill language once they introduce the measures.
However, BetOnNY.com’s opening paragraph includes a typo that could irk New Yorkers:
We can making iGaming a reality in New York, but elected officials need to know YOU care!
Marketing experts say first impressions about sites are important and visitors click off of “cheesy” or untrustworthy sites. So, grammar may matter here. Especially because about 40% of New York’s 20 million residents have at least a bachelor’s degree, according to 2022 US Census Bureau figures.
UPDATE: As of Jan. 11, the typo is fixed. It now reads “We can make …”
However, if BetOnNY.com visitors fill out the form that asks for their names, emails, and addresses, they will see the message their elected officials will receive from them if they click the “Take Action Now” submit button.
That message reads:
I am writing because I hope you will support the legalization of iGaming in New York in the coming legislative session.
This law will be a win-win for New York, giving consumers like me the freedom to place wagers online while also creating over $1 billion in tax revenue to benefit New York’s schools each year.
I strongly urge you to bet on New York and support iGaming!
Other than that, the only real hurdle may be attempting to rank in Google for “BetOnNY.” That’s because “betony” is already like a weed in search results. The flowering plant in the mint family has 3.8 million results, while “BetOnNY” has 152,000.