Keeping a heritage brand fresh. Exclusive interview with Betsoft Gaming chief marketing officer Renata Banyar
BETSOFT GAMING has a proud heritage in the iGaming industry due to the longevity of its brand and the strength of its slots’ offering. However, all reputations need to be maintained.
Through innovation, originality and consistent delivery, Betsoft has recently overseen the creation and application of a raft of initiatives, including the successful delivery of new products, building a cohesive online identity and positively reinforcing the company culture and brand.
How does Betsoft maintain its position within the industry after 16 years in business?
Consistency in quality releases and always putting the client first are the mainstays of our success.
We have a long standing reputation for powerful, story-led releases with signature features, all delivered with humour and panache and so we set ourselves a high bar. Quality over quantity has always been the ethos. However, innovations including expanded feature buy-in mechanics, win multiplier features and screen orientation analysis/ implementation in addition to greater volatility and higher RTP, have given players a whole new set of reasons to choose Betsoft’s releases. Many releases have signature mechanics, such as a base game that switches into the second screen once a feature is triggered. That ‘getting a surprise experience’ feeling appeals to everyone. Mr Macau and Stacked have some of the best examples of this.
From the operational side, improved customer service standards and continuous measurement and review of KPIs have led to further innovation in product delivery and high staff morale. A revised process for onboarding clients and ensuring that the partnership is efficiently run, mutually beneficial and hugely professional has been implemented.
This has also meant that the services Betsoft provides have improved substantially: nowhere is this more visible than through the redesigned Client Area. With a working title of ‘Designed and made for you’, the client is kept firmly at the centre of things. The new Client Area delivers a highly efficient and user-friendly portal for all the assets that clients need to access regularly, including demos, artpacks and documentation. Everything that will simplify, speed up and generally make life easier and projects flow more smoothly is in one, easy to access space.
Betsoft is an entertainment business first. Our clients and players come to us for great gameplay. Our outstanding graphics, humour, compelling narratives and characterisation in our content – which make series such as the ‘Take ‘ and ‘Pop’ games, and sequels such as Return to Paris successful – are the highly visible elements.
Conversely, Gemini Joker released in May this year has been hugely successful since release due to its new twist on a classic style fruit slot. The Double Joker Wilds bring free Respins and a magic multiplier creates big win opportunities. The inclusion of a Multiplier Wheel to further increase winning potential is also a hark back to the classic TV series. A random multiplier of 2x to 10x plus 1,700x Max Bet offers potentially big wins.
Very light deployment and fast loading times mean the game is especially mobile friendly. This style of play, complete with a wide betting range, appeals across the board. The animations are evocative of the best fruit slots but the signature humour and wit in the design take the game to a new level and we are seeing phenomenal player engagement levels.
Furthermore, we constantly innovate. Content is designed around seasonal events, influenced by social media memes or films, books, games and everything or anything that our designers believe they can make into a successful Betsoft game.
Signing a significant number of new partnerships clearly indicates that Betsoft has not just understood what players and operators want but is pre-empting trends and creating demand.
How have players’ needs and requirements changed recently?
Player bases are changing across the field. More women are playing slots and this is having an impact – especially as there are more women working in iGaming nowadays; different cultures and languages need to be taken into consideration in game design; different regions and countries are all now accessing online casinos and bringing a new dimension to gaming.
Research and client feedback are essential. We use in depth analysis of market and competitor data; comparison sites analysis; feedback and Focus Groups; and commissioned research. Constantly collecting data and understanding the research is imperative to stay ahead.
What impact have these changes had on content?
In terms of differences in our games, the storylines are more universally inclusive for character representation to reflect current cultural mores. We have more female characters and more diverse narratives. We took risks in the early days – Alien Fruit for example in 2015’s It Came from Venus was quite unique – and we still continue to push boundaries.
Another significant change would have to be in the volatility of the games. More new clients with no previous exposure to slots are playing alongside the High Rollers; so we offer a greater mix with a wider betting range to appeal to both styles of risk and play. Book of Helios – a recent release – has very high volatility and a potentially massive payout with a max bet of 20,168.4. However, the betting range is deliberately kept broad so risk can be easily managed.
Players are looking for a number of things from games: theme; graphics, features and win potential are all important but the overall experience is key. Experiential gaming and gamification keep players both engaged and loyal.
What does gamification mean for Betsoft?
We know many players love enhanced gamification and extra win potential so we launched our in-game promo tool Take the Prize earlier this year to offer a random fortune wheel with cash prizes or bonuses in the qualifying games throughout any promotion. Prize winning spins can be triggered at any point in the game and from any game in our portfolio.
It is also a customisable tool which gives in-game experiences with real-time notifications, instant rewards and a highly inventive UI experience. As it is a visually high impact product, Take the Prize is especially mobile friendly and of course, it is also compatible across all devices.
Take the Prize was the first product to be launched. While each tool works effortlessly on a standalone basis, all the promotion tools can be combined simultaneously on the qualifying games and across the same promotion and timeframe, leading to substantial wins and massively exciting gameplay.
What is next for Betsoft 2022?
We have a number of new releases in production. Book of Helios was released in late June and Wilds of Fortune will be launched on the 28th of July. A new Red Dragon game, Winds of Wealth, is scheduled for an August release and there are plenty more sequels and new themes coming.
We are also developing more enhancement and gamification tools following the launch of Take the Prize. Based on this new tool, we have been able to launch a fantastic, ten day, “Take the Prize Mystery Drops” promotion with a significant number of our casino clients. Players choose one of 27 titles from Betsoft’s award- winning portfolio and are instantly in line for immersive play, big wins and the best gamification tools.
The line-up of qualifying games in the Promotion included both flagship games and new releases. With smash hits such as Take the Bank, Stacked, Return to Paris, Gemini Joker the uplift in bets wagered as well as new player sign ups were impressive.
Client events are a key way of connecting and we recently hosted the Betsoft Summer Special complete with gin bar and live music. This was such a fantastic event that we have scheduled more to come throughout the rest of the year.
We are also in the middle of redesigning our website. This is a big project which we can’t wait to unveil later in the summer. A very busy time with lots of exciting things happening, so a normal Betsoft year really.