FanDuel on track to make betting more female friendly

From the C-Suite newsletter: The sportsbook is leaning on education and representation to bolster inclusivity.

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With online sports betting growing more popular with companies such as FanDuel, sports fans can get in on the action without leaving their homes.

But as it is at the racetrack, the presence of women pales in comparison to men’s – a gap that Alannah Della Vedova, FanDuel Canada’s director of content activation and brand, has set her sights to change. “Our goal is to encourage all sports fans to feel welcome and excited to experience sports in a different way with us,” she says. “We’re working hard to create more opportunity and growth in women’s sports betting both through our offerings and in the number of our consumers who are women.”

According to Della Vedova, approximately 15% of FanDuel’s players are women, and the company has seen strong month-over-month growth from April to June, based on its approach to help women feel more welcome. The company is relying on representation in leadership roles and listening to its audience’s needs to increase its female fanbase.

CanadianWomen.org reports that just over 30% of senior management-level occupations are held by women, and FanDuel aims to take responsibility in increasing that percentage. The company is creating more opportunities for women to take on leadership roles to increase its diversity and help target a female audience. “Representation and visibility are crucial,” says Della Vedova. “That’s why we’re committed to being vocal about our leader, CEO Amy Howe, and all the women who play a vital role here at FanDuel.”

Della Vedova says that the company’s main strategy is listening to its audience, and following through on strategies that can help women feel welcomed and represented in the sports betting space. “There are many ways we can narrow the gender gap in the sports betting industry, but the approach needs to be thoughtful. We must understand what types of changes need to happen and where FanDuel can use its resources to make the most impact,” says Della Vedova.

Della Vedova knows welcoming women into the sports betting industry won’t happen overnight, and she’s adamant about playing the long game. “Sports betting can be a new territory for many fans – men or women – so we continue to work on ways to encourage fans to be part of the exciting experiences we offer,” she says. “Our female fan base is something that will take time to develop, but we’re on the right track.”

FanDuel is also working on shifting attitudes towards stereotypical betting culture, citing that Responsible Gaming guidelines play a large role, ensuring that sports betters – and women especially – feel welcomed within the space, and that there’s a place for everyone.

“We’re committed to providing resources and support to all our consumers for more responsible fun, whether that be our Betting 101 Guide for further understanding of what types of bets can be placed, or responsible gaming tools such as deposit limits and loss limits. We take pride in putting the customer first to ensure they’re playing in an environment that they control.”

As the company continues to do its part to propel inclusivity to the forefront of the industry, it believes its league partnerships are what sets it apart from its competitors. Along with MLSE, NFL, NBA and NHL, FanDuel has also recently partnered with NFL to enhance Ontario’s passion for football. Della Vedova notes that being able to partner with leagues that women are already fans of gives FanDuel an opportunity to showcase the brand to a captive audience. “Our ability to be in the moment through our league and team deals, and our media partner TSN, allows us to develop a unique sports betting narrative,” says Della Vedova, while FanDuel’s odds makers provide statistical context to sports conversations and engage fans in a new way.

FanDuel has its sights set on increasing promotional choice, adding more variation in the types of lines offered and more innovative products for customers in the future. For example, the brand knows how important hockey is to Canadians, so future plans include creating enticing and engaging promotions that’ll speak to this passionate fanbase. According to Della Vedova, “Our team continues to create the safest, most exciting fan experience, while collaborating with our partners to enhance the sports experience. We’re excited to share all that we’ve been working on.”