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5 Ways to Win With your Betting App during the World Cup 2022

Sports betting app marketers: billions of fans will be following this gaming-changing event. Now is the time for you to put your biggest and best campaigns into action, using mobile marketing to win big. Accelerate your success with these five state-of-the-art suggestions.

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With a total of 64 matches across eight venues, and over 800,000 tickets sold, the FIFA World Cup 2022 is scheduled to take place in Qatar between November 20th and December 18th, with billions of fans following the event on television, social media – and mobile.  

Download the guide: Mobile Marketing 101

For betting app marketers, this tournament provides an incredible opportunity to reach an already hyper-engaged audience at an unprecedentedly large scale. Now is the time to put your most significant and best campaign ideas into action, using mobile marketing to score big.  

Take some suggestions from Optimove gaming experts on how to start thinking about winning the mobile marketing game this winter. 

#1 – Leverage in-app messaging 

For many betting apps today, in-app messaging that delivers valuable, relevant content is a crucial part of a successful mobile marketing strategy as it helps reach fans at the perfect moment, steers them toward key actions, and deepens player engagement. 

In preparation for your World Cup campaign activities, you’ll want to segment your audience so you can reach each fan with a personalized in-app message when they’re most likely to engage.  

For example, if you’ve got a customer in-app who (, data tells you), hasn’t yet placed a bet on any World Cup games, there’s your ideal opportunity to reach them with an offer or reward! Try a free first bet to predict the number of match goals, or predict the first player to score bonus, or bet boosts, payout offers, tournaments, deposit offers… you get the idea. 

Or perhaps you have a segment of users who spend a lot of time in your app prior to a match but abandon a match bet every time they approach transaction finalization? In this case, you can send an in-app message with an offer that compels them to return to complete their transaction (similar to reengaging cart abandonment in retail apps). 

And what about players in different countries? If a fan’s country team is playing, segmented in-app targeting will enable you to reach them with content and offers that take them even deeper into your app. Promotions such as discounted betting on their country’s matches, competitions for match tickets (if fans are in Qatar), or signed team kits, are always well received… keeping fans engaged, and increasing the likelihood of customer spend. 

#2 – Boost your reach on social networks 

When it comes to big sporting events, fans across the globe use social media to connect with each other in real-time, sharing, celebrating (and commiserating!), and by default, creating and participating in an authentic fan community that can – and often does – consist of hundreds of thousands.  

Combining this level of engagement, participation and patriotism often mean betting app marketers have a unique opportunity to reach a vast hyper-engaged fan base that would require far greater effort at any other time.  

When it comes to social, what you’ll need to focus on is being a valuable, trustworthy source of great content, while at the same time providing up-to-date, compelling information about your offering.   

There are a ton of ways you can expand your reach and increase audience engagement on your betting app using social media during the World Cup season. Run a daily World Cup match results competition on your social channels that links directly to your app where participants can place free bets, invite users to connect with other fans in-app and review and discuss in-game statistics and post-match analysis. For fans actually present at matches, run a competition where they can upload their best match selfies, with the winning shot bagging five free bets on the next match for instance. Just make sure it’s ultra-shareable, and the rest will follow suit! 

#3 – Get useful with Push 

Sports events are social events, and for World Cup 2022 fans, the smartphone is their indispensable line of communication with like-minded fans, friends, and the brands they’ve decided are worth connecting with during the event.  

For traveling fans, your betting app has an unmissable opportunity to be exceptionally usefulthrough the humble push notification. There’s an insatiable appetite for all kinds of information at events such as the World Cup because fans are in a new, unfamiliar country and environment, and they’re actively seeking out assistance – all the better if they can find it in your betting app. 

Segmentation is your friend here – so when customers touch down on the tarmac at Qatar, you can reach them with a timely, personalized push message that welcomes with a whole raft of useful information that’s going to bring them back to your app time and again. Directions to the various World Cup venues, language tips, and key phrases (“Goal!”), stadium information, recommended food and drink venues, and city guides; here’s the chance to provide that crucial valuable, trustworthy content at the perfect moment.  

Once bettors are engaged, comes the time to deliver your offers. For example, if a fan is oin your app looking for directions to a certain venue, you might serve them with a free bet on the matches being played there. Or if fans are looking at match information, you could run a competition for that user segment which gives them the opportunity to win a pair of signed football boots by the team that’ll be playing.  

Beyond travel support, personalized push notifications are the perfect way to deliver real-time match updates, breaking news announcements, player news, and match predictions.  

#4 – Proximity pays 

If you want to target your audience in places where they’re likely to congregate, both at World Cup events and at home – think stadiums, airports, town centers, sports retailers, etc. – then proximity marketing should undoubtedly be an essential element of your betting app’s go-to strategy. Optimove’ favorites? Geofencing and QR Codes. 

Geofencing utilizes fan smartphones to deliver promotions in real-time when they enter or leave a specific locational boundary. In the case of the World Cup, stadium venues are the obvious choice. Sending an SMS, push notifications, or in-app when your target segment enters or leaves that geographic boundary allows you to send winning promotional messages. 

So, you might want to ship a campaign that encourages fans to bet on the result of the game they’re attending, or to let fans know about in-venue photograph opportunities; “Hey, Dave – there’s an autograph signing going on at this location today – use this code to prioritize entry!”, or “Get your picture taken (at this location near you) with the World Cup trophy at 3pm today!”  

When it comes to QR codes, think about where your audience is likely to be (sportswear stores, sports venues, shopping malls, bars, Qatar Airport (of course!) and utilize these small black squares to capture an already engaged audience: 

  • Retail partners: coupons for discounted team merchandise (QR codes in-store at point-of-sale) 
  • Airports: QR codes on billboards  
  • Products – partnering with QSRs is the perfect marketing opportunity! Place QR codes on drinks containers, menus, food wrappers, and shopping bags to take fans straight to your app with compelling offers and promotions. 

Using Deferred Deep Links (more on these below) will take users straight to the relevant app store and, after download, on to your QR promotion – think competitions, free bets, fantasy league participation with big prizes, team kits, or signed footballs. As with all your marketing efforts, the trick is to engage new players with unmissable offers, so be creative!  

#5 – Make the most of deferred deep linking  

Deferred deep linking, as we’ve said before, is the magic sauce in every mobile marketer’s toolbox. It’s no different for sports betting apps, with DDLs offering an abundance of opportunities to capture a new audience ready to ride the World Cup wave (if you’re not already on board with DDLs, you can find out more here.) 

Use DDL during the World Cup to: 

  • Run referral campaigns. Using deferred deep links, you can create a World cup campaign focused on shipping push notifications to existing app users containing a DDL. Players could forward these links to friends via email or SMS, and when recipients click the CTA, they’re taken to the relevant app store, then directly to a personalized screen in your betting app. It’s there that you’ll detail new player promotions deep within the app, for example, “Hi Jack! Your football-crazy mate, Harry, has referred you to Acme Sports App. Sign up for free, and you’ll both receive 3 FREE BETS to use on first-round World Cup matches.” 
  • Run paid search campaigns. When your target audience searches for “live World Cup games,”  they’ll be served an ad for your betting app. After clicking on the CTA, the deferred deep link will take your potential customer to the relevant app store. Once installed, they’re automatically sent deep within the app to live game screenings where you can deploy various promotions via in-app messaging.  
  • Run social campaigns: your betting app might run an ad on Facebook to win an all-inclusive trip to the World Cup final. When a user clicks on the link and installs the app, the deferred deep link sends them directly to the screen in the app where they can participate in your competition. You could extend your reach even further by asking new customers to tag the ‘mates they’d bring along with them’ – and creating a nice little marketing loop that slowly grows your audience. 
  • And don’t forget email! Email enables tap-to-app engagement, making it an ultra-valuable channel for your World Cup 2022 marketing efforts. With robust deep linking, you can pull fans into valuable, engaging content, and activate promotions with a single tap. DDLs can bring fans back to your app with triggered, targeted campaigns that are activated by abandoned betting transactions on World Cup matches, straightforward betting promotions, competitions, and app event participation. Mostly, you’ll use email and DDLs to reengage lapsed users, so ensure email content is hyper-relevant, user-specific, and compelling enough to encourage click-through.  

A final word 

The excitement and anticipation around the World Cup will drive football fans to experiment with brands that focus on elevating their visibility over the coming months – including yours. As such, it’ll be vital for you to start your mobile marketing activities at least a couple of weeks before tournament kickoff and ensure you’re not leaving it until the event itself, when your competition is already reaping the rewards.  

The stakes are high, and betting brands and marketers have an unmissable chance this Winter to capitalize on savvy marketing efforts, succeeding with authenticity, compelling, personalized content, and timely delivery. Get excited, look to your data, and embrace the enormous opportunities coming your way.  

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Guy Leshno

Guy Leshno, a seasoned PR and Communications professional, with a successful track record in leading PR strategies and projects in emerging startups. With over a decade of experience, his expertise lies in blending creative ideation, analytics, and expert writing capabilities, driving brand awareness, and improving sales.