I have been a consistent advocate of Blue Ocean strategy for years and a blog post by the Blue Ocean Team shows how you can grow your business by focusing on non-customers. Rather than fighting with your competitors to split up the existing pie, by thinking about non-customers you have greater growth potential. The blog post shows three types of non-customers and by understanding them you can tailor your product, new products or marketing to meet their needs. Below are the three groups of non-customers and my thoughts on their relevance to the social casino industry.
Non-customers who occasionally purchase or play
The first group of non-customers who represent a potential market are those who sit on the edge of the market, they purchase minimally your industry’s offerings but are always looking and quick to move to an alternative. The Blue Ocean Team uses the Pret A Manger chainas an example, as they appealed to people who reluctantly bought fast food but were looking for an alternative.
The social casino ecosystem includes many of these non-customers. These include gamers who are ready to skip to another genre (hypercasual, match-3, etc) if they see an appealing ad or the 90 plus percent of players who will play but not monetize. There are first-tier noncustomers waiting to be swayed in every industry.
Non-customers who refuse to become customers
The second group of non-customers is people who know an industry exists but have rejected it. As the Blue Ocean Team writes, “they have consciously thought about and considered your offering and then rejected it. It might be because another offering meets their needs better, or it could be that they simply can’t afford your offering. A second-tier noncustomer will compare your offering with another offering, weighing the pros and cons of each….The fact that second-tier noncustomers considered your industry means that you are far closer to possibly capturing them than you realize. So you need to find out why second-tier noncustomers refuse to use the products or services of your industry.”
In the social casino space, there are three types of these non-customers. The first is real money casino players (either land based or online) who have decided to not to play a free to play offering. They could have passed because they are only playing for economic reasons or the games offered are not what they prefer. The second is male casino players who may have rejected social casino because they consider them too “pink.” The third group is people who have tried social slot games but did not like the slot mechanic.
Non-customers who have not considered your industry
This category of non-customers has never considered your industry as an option. These non-customers have not been targeted ever by any company in your industry. This group is important to consider as it represents the largest potential market to penetrate (by definition it is everyone else). Existing companies in your industry assume these peoples needs are satisfied better by other industries.
In the social casino space, these are people who do not know or care that social slots games exist. It can be gamblers, gamers (other genres) or even people who have not played a mobile game.
What non-customers mean for social casino
Non-customers are particularly important to social casino as the ecosystem has been growing consistently but through better monetization rather than an increase in customers. If the industry is going to continue growing or if you want to gain market share, appealing to non-customers is the best option. First, you can tailor a product appeal to people who play but do not monetize or play rarely. Second, you can build a product for people who have churned, tried social casino games but left. Finally, you can build a social casino product for people who the industry has never targeted.
While the successful companies will come up with concepts internally and not rely on this blog to provide the answers, the key will be creating social casino products that do not simply replicate the existing games. That means looking at mechanics other than slots. Is also means creating an environment that is not targeting 40+ women. To successfully turn non-customers into customers, the parameters of the products also must shift.
- While many companies look at their competitors and try to grow by building a better product for existing customers, the biggest opportunity exists in appealing to non-customers.
- There are three types of non-customers: those who occasionally purchase or play, those who have rejected the current offerings and those who have not considered your industry.
- If social casino is going to continue growing or if you want to gain market share, appealing to non-customers is the best option. First, you can tailor a product appeal to people who play but do not monetize or play rarely. Second, you can build a product for people who have churned, tried social casino games but left. Finally, you can build a social casino product for people who the industry has never targeted.