WSOP.com, Nevada’s second real-money online poker site to launch this year, is just over two months old. Competitor Ultimate Poker got a five-month head start by getting cards in the air, so to speak, back in April. Its launch was a bit subdued and relied on in-house advertising resources. WSOP.com, owned byCaesars Interactive Entertainment, is taking a more explosive approach in trying to sign up new players and take control of the online poker market. If you have a Total Rewards account, step foot in a Caesars hotel room, or even watch TV in the state of Nevada, Caesars is going to let you know about WSOP.com.
Online, Caesars is promoting WSOP.com through many of its own websites. WSOP.com staff are reaching out to gamblers elsewhere on the web and regularly post on poker message boards. Additionally, WSOP.com targets existing Total Rewards members with a rewards system that connects to their accounts. Although the levels don’t match up exactly, it is possible to advance your casino status through online play and vice versa. Credits earned online can also be converted to credits for use at Caesars properties.
Caesars hotels are pushing guests towards the new gaming site through the use of branded hotel items. Key cards and water bottles with new WSOP.com logos and slogans are provided to guests at check in. Inside our room during a recent stay at Harrah’s, we found that the ‘do not disturb’ sign had been replaced with a WSOP-branded version.
It’s the recent blitz of TV and radio advertisements, however, that has garnered the most attention. The campaign has been limited to areas where the site can legally operate so, if you’re outside of Nevada or New Jersey, you’re safe. The TV ads, which first premiered in Nevada during the season finale of Breaking Bad, seem to run continuously. Nevada residents can’t escape them and, if you turn on the TV in your Vegas hotel room, you will likely find Scotty Nguyen going all-in.