NFL Betting Picks – Marketing Case Study

One of my favorite things about being in the IM/Affiliate Marketing Industry is that I get to met a lot of great people throughout the industry. With that, I also have the pleasure of getting to dive into the sites of friends of mine (Without Pissing Them Off) – So last week I had a conversation with my good buddy Kevin, who owns one of the leading NFL Betting Picks websites where he give his picks throughout the NFL season. Of course he does this for other sports as well, and he is becoming very well known because his picks are right a high percentage of the time.

So since we have Kevin’s permission, I wanted to take a close look at his NFL Betting site and show our members what they can learn from the design and setup of his site. Please be sure and ask questions and give us some comments at the end of this article. 

NFL Betting Website – Case Study

Initial Impression & Design

Right off the bat you can see Kevin has made a custom video, which is displayed at the top of his site. While the video is clean and professional, it also conveys some of Kevin’s easy going attitude. In the video he explains a little about himself, why he made the site, and most importantly what YOU (The Visitor) can get out of the website.

He also encourages people to signup to his Email Newsletter in the video, and with the graphic that points to the email sign up area. This is VERY important, he tells his visitors exactly what to do, so there is no confusion, and no room for error. He wants his visitors to signup to his mailing list, and he tells them what to do and why.

While this may seem like a no-brainer, you’d be amazed how many people land on a web page, and have no idea what to do from there. So telling your visitors exactly what you want them to do is an important thing to do. 

Simple Tips – If you aren’t sure if you are being clear enough on your landing pages. Try one of these ideas:

1. Ask yourself, would my mothers/father/etc know what they are supposed to do?

2. Ask a Few Random friends to sit down and check out your page, and see if they can figure it out.

Building  The Trust of your Visitors

Right on the home page of the website, you can see 2011 NFL Seasons Picks Overall, and you can see he had a great season making picks. You Can also see he explains how his picking system works, and a nice “about us” section where he explains why he made the site. Most important, he let’s the visitor know that he (Kevin) can help them make money betting on the NFL this year.

So just on the home page you can see:

1. What the Site is about

2. Kevin’s Pick History (which is impressive)

3. How he makes his picks (His System)

4. Who Kevin is, and why he made the website

These may seem like simple/small details, but overall it builds trust between his visitor and him. In the gambling industry it’s crucial that you establish some connection between you and your visitors. One the easiest ways to do that is to tell them a little about yourself. Because before anyone will put faith in you, your site, or in this case your picks.You must gain their trust somehow.

Email Marketing

You can tell just from looking at the NFL Betting site, Kevin wants people to signup to his email list. We have been over Email Marketing Tactics Several times here on Marketing Drone, and it’s one of the most under used marketing and sales tactics in affiliate Marketing. But thankfully Kevin knows what he needs to do, and he know that just getting people signed up to his mailing list is only half the battle.

Kevin’s email marketing strategy is a text book example of what you should be doing with your mailing list. So let’s take a closer look at what he’s doing, and why it is so effective.

Walking Your Signs Through the Process

As I mentioned above, getting people signed up to your list isn’t where your work ends, it’s where the real work begins. After a person signs up to Kevin’s list, you get taken to a custom “Thank You” page where he lists step by step what he wants you to do next.  (see below)

Online Marketing Tips

Pretty hard for a person to screw that up right?

After they confirm they want to be on the list, then a Welcome Message hits their inbox. Here is exactly what it looks like:

Hey Randy,

Welcome – you are now signed up to receive my free NFL picks. I hope to help you win a lot of money this NFL season. More information about the 2012 NFL season will be available soon (August 23rd, 2012 most likely). In the meantime you can add this email to your “safe sender” list to make sure you receive an update when I release more information on my NFL picks.

May the winners be yours, 

So far so good right? He has walked us right through what to do from the moment we landed on his website. No guess work, no surprises, no complications.

Stay In Touch – But Don’t SPAM

A lot of webmasters are good at setting up an email submission form, and collecting emails. But most webmaster have no idea what to do from there, or they are just too lazy to do it . I’ve been guilt of this myself, for years I collected emails from visitors, and I rarely sent out broadcasts or updates.

If  you wait too long to “re-connect” with your email list people, they will forget who you are, why they signed up, and think you are just some crappy spammer. So it’s crucial that you keep frequent communication with your email lists, of course you don’t want to over do it, but you want to stay in touch.

As you can see so far, Kevin is doing a great job of:

1. Telling his visitors what he wants them to do, and what in it for them (Free Picks/Making Money)

2. Ensuring they get added to his list properly, and his emails won’t end up in the spam box (He tells them to add his email to their safe sender list) and walks them step by step through the process

3. He has Auto Follow up emails ready to go – A Welcome Email telling them what to expect

Following Up – Social Media 

I thought Kevin’s second email was a great touch, and again this is another lesson everyone can learn. His second email is asking his new subscribers to subscriber to his Facebook Fan page. So now not only does he get to interact with them on his email lists, he gets a second chance using social media. Here is his email:

Hey Randy,

I’ve created a Facebook page and would really appreciate (if you
have an account at Facebook) if you could “like” my page.

Click here to “like” my NFL facebook page…

If you don’t have a Facebook account don’t worry about it!

Thanks and talk soon,

Simple and Clean – Kevin is doing everything right in his approach, and we can all learn something from what he’s doing.

The Art of the Sale

You may be wondering where Kevin’s sales pitch is, and it happens in his 4th email. But it’s not a pushy “Hey signup here because it’s awesome” type sales pitch.  It’s subtle and very effective. Here is his initial sales pitch:

Hey Randy,

I am constantly emailed about which sportsbooks I recommend.

As you probably know sportsbooks all offer different lines and it
is basically a MUST to have your bankroll spread out amongst a
couple sportsbooks if you are serious about winning money.

Would you bet on the Packers -7.5 if you knew you could get
them -7 for the same price at another betting site? That can be
the difference in making some money this NFL season!

Below are my top rated sportsbooks… (non US – best lines, highest limits) (non US – best underdog lines) (US accepted – 15+ years in existence) (US accepted – most trusted) (US accepted – great lines, easy deposits) (US accepted – easy credit card deposits)

So as you can see, this is a great sales pitch that isn’t forceful. People who get this email can check out the sites he recomends, and even keep the email for reference later. Of course there are more emails to come, as well as updated picks on his site. As he mentioned on his site, some Sports Picks are ONLY for email subscribers, so he creates value and an incentive to signing up and being a part of his list.

Here are the Important Stats for NFL Betting

  • The header form with the video converts at 4.6% unique visits to opt-ins
  • The in page opt-in forms convert at around 3.4%, and Kevin split tested that with a button saying “continue” converting at 3.4% – He Tested another button saying get Instant Access converting at 3.1%
  • Popup domination pop up converts at 3.9%
  • He Gets a 40% open rate with the weekly NFL picks newsletter – Most Likely because people are expecting the emails to come every week and enjoy reading them weekly – (This is a key stat, staying in contact, and staying on a schedule people can rely on is extremely important
  • He gets an average of 4 unsubscribes per wee on average with a 1500 list
These are decent numbers overall, and as I’ve mentioned before once you know these stats, you can easily split test new things and see what performs best

What We Can Learn

A site and system like what Kevin has is only made possible by trust, testing, and solid results. Kevin is very clear and open about himself, his background, and the point of his website. On top of that, he allows his visitors/members to see exactly who Kevin is. There is no mystery, no hustle, no bullsh$t.

That should be the goal of every webmaster reading this. People are taught to be skeptical of the Internet, I know I caution my kids about the dangers of scumbags, scams, and spyware constantly. Kevin’s approach is open and honest, and most of all very transparent. He’s struck a nice balance of simple  yet effective design, and he gains the visitors trust right off the bat.

The Email Marketing aspect of Kevin’s site is awesome from a marketing stand point. It’s simple, and effective. Kevin has been in the game a long time, and his site didn’t get awesome overnight, it took some testing, trial &error, and more testing. But once he found the correct balance, he refined his strategy into a well oiled cash machine.

So I’ll end this case study here, and once again I want to thank Kevin for allowing up to dig into his site. Within 2 years Kevin’s site has become one of the most popular NFL Betting Sites in the world. Now, everyone can see exactly why :)

About Randy

Hi, I'm Randy and I've been working in the online marketing industry for close to 10 years now. I'm not the smartest guy around, but I push myself to learn something new everyday, and I try and surround myself with great people.

I love playing poker, spending time with my family, and I'm a serious SEO/Marketing geek. Please leave a comment because I love to hear people's opinions.

  • Doovde

    Interesting article but it’s missing some pretty crucial info and that’s how well Kevin’s email responder series works in terms of actually making money!

    How well does the 4th email convert and how well do following tips emails convert? If they aren’t working then the whole funnel is pointless.

    • Kevin

      I don’t have individual tracking for the follow up email promoting the sportsbooks, but that isn’t my main goal anyway. My goal is to convert them into paying for the tips, and that is done with sending out daily broadcasts with winning picks. If I’m sending out winning picks I’m often getting lots of paid clients.

      The facebook follow up converts pretty good as far as I can tell.

      I will just say that without getting people on my list I would be making very little money with these type of sites.

      • randylayman

        Great info Kevin, and thanks again for allowing me to dig into your information!

  • randylayman

    Right I agree, that info is crusial, and what I can say about it is that it is working, and there are additional followup emails of course. But Kevin was hesitant about sharing exact conversion rates of everything. I was happy to get what I got out of him :)

    But, from the numbers I saw, they were effective, and he is constantly testing new things to increase conversion.