For those who understand the business of the casino industry, it is often the packaging and presentation of the product that goes a long way. Casinos often have broad similarities, the same games, tables, and ways you can play. Hence, the onus is on casino providers to stick out from their competition, and one of the most effective ways of doing this is by providing the most exciting product. Football has long perfected this model, especially in England, where sports entertainment, drama, and the packaging of the English Premier League as a global sports entertainment brand have paid off colossal dividends for the teams that operate in England's top tier over the last 30 years.
The importance of selling a commodity as part of a bigger brand is something casinos in Las Vegas have mastered long before the English Premier League even existed in its current format. Viva Las Vegas doesn't just provide gamblers ample avenues to tend to their gambling needs; it has long been home to some of the world's greatest entertainers and shows, from huge boxing shows to legendary entertainers like Elvis. Selling the idea as part of a more extensive package was a genius move, and it's something that football shares with casinos.
For the majority of people, Las Vegas is associated with gambling. Many tourists understand that many more reasons and broader entertainment are usually available. Still, the main selling point is the luxury casinos that populate the world-famous strip. Selling the experience as part of a broader sports package, headlined by a big UFC or boxing match or performance from some of the world's most notable artists, has been a successful combination for decades. It has shielded Vegas casinos from losing so much custom to the meteoric rise of online casinos.
Given that online casinos are now so well established, yet Vegas continues to thrive, it shows the importance of offering tourists more than just a host of different gambling games like roulette, poker, slot machines, or blackjack. For players who would descend to Vegas just to gamble or play casino games, they may have moved over to the online casino experience instead, whereby they can play their games more conveniently, with no overhead costs associated with traveling to a physical casino. The selection of online gambling games dwarfs land-based casinos, and it's got an actual scope for growth as the world moves more toward mobile gambling and a mobile-centric world.
So even though many Vegas casinos are still doing reasonably well, despite the healthy competition, they will be wary of not giving up too much to their counterparts, and one way they successfully stay ahead is by offering the whole experience, which can't be replicated online.
Following the Vegas blueprint, Macau is a unique administrative region of China where gamblers can descend and play casino games. Known throughout the continent as a worthy competitor to Las Vegas in the West, Macau sees far more money pass through its casinos, which are a lot broader and grander than many people might realize - the Macau Grand Prix is a staple on the calendar for those looking to plan a trip there.
It still maintains many traditional historic buildings so that people can also celebrate Chinese New Year, which makes up part of a more extensive, more attractive package for tourists than simply going there to place a bet. It is similar to Monaco in this regard, a specialized gambling region that hosts a world-famous Grand Prix.
Given that football is the world's most popular sport, and the English Premier League is the world's most popular league, it's no surprise that it is littered with super-wealthy billionaire owners who are looking to sell the idea of a brand using the football team as the main focal point.
Let's look at Manchester City - a phenomenal football team on paper, which recently completed a historic treble. However, increasing portions of their business model now also emphasize expanding and improving the areas around the Etihad Stadium, turning the club into a true global footballing powerhouse to rival the likes of Real Madrid, Manchester United, and Barcelona, and providing a broader package. Hospitality tickets in the Premier League are huge business, and they often involve a day out at the ground, with a meal included, entertainment either before or after the game, and, in some instances, meeting the players.
If we draw this back to what we said about Las Vegas, you can see there's a clear crossover between providing the solid spine unique selling point - so in Vegas' case, it is gambling, and in Man City's case, it is the quality of the football on the pitch. Manchester City's European dominance continues to bolster the Premier League as one of the most valuable sports leagues anywhere in the world.
However, once we delve further into the commodities and the packages that are on offer, the overall sale becomes more lucrative for international tourists who want to get the most for their money, and this is a substantial similarity that combines the relationship between football and the world's most prominent gambling cities.