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  • mambaland

    https://www.forbes.com/sites/darrenheitner/2018/02/14/former-investment-darlings-draftkings-and-fanduel-are-struggling-to-grow/#575f34b6269e

  • XxHeisenbergxX

    @Lathum said...

    This is an amazingly naive and short sighted take.

    I have often said in these discussions I want to know what % of customers redeposit, and that it is likely a small amount. I used to work in insurance, and the amount of policies sold isn’t really an important number, its the number of polices retained. You have to keep the same customers coming back, and to do that you have to at least give them the perception the game is beatable.

    When you have sharks, lineup sellers, lineup trains, etc…then throw in the late scratches and nonsensical things like roof leaks and the shitty way the sites handled it, it’s not hard to see that the new/ average player would take their money elsewhere.

    Everyone wants to win the big one, but a huge number of DFS players are doing it for entertainment, and when they blow through those entertainment dollars without actually having any fun, they will take those dollars elsewhere. Not redeposit and put in more work.

    Anyone who thinks these sites are too big to fail, and that there is too much money didn’t experience black Friday in online poker. You know the last time I won a tournament on pokerstars? 2011.

    I am probably the guy you would be looking for as far as info on the common general player. I was an easy 50.00 deposit player a week during the NFL season for the past couple of years. I hit for 3k one week because of the Houston/ Seattle game. It was actually my biggest score betting wise as far as flat bet, money line and also DFS. I knew Seattles defense was on the decline and I was waiting for a game to target. That happened to be the one. I immediately WD my funds and have been working with a 300.00 bankroll ever since which WAS roughly at 271.00 right now. (keep reading)
    I have become very uninterested in DFS since the price hikes in games where the big jackpot tourney are now 8.00 a game on DK some nights 10.00 per game…to rich for my blood I will play a few LU’s at the 4.00 level, but I stick to the 1.00 and .25 games now because I will not pay those entry fees. Ever since the price hikes I have been playing less and less. I like to play because I work 3rd shift and I like to watch the action on my phone. Its more cheap entertainment than anything. I have a good job and although I would love to hit big I know I wont. However I do like to be competitive. I find most nights its a struggle to even hit the cash line now. I have been fortunate enough that I get lucky once or twice a week to get a LU high enough to cover my entry fees for the week. But have yet to have a profit like I did in the week I mentioned above.

    Being a seasoned horse player I have learned bankroll management and there is one thing I have learned over the years the minute you go over your comfort level when it comes to gambling YOU WILL LOSE…and then you spend your nights or days not thinking straight and trying to get that money back which ends up in an ugly down hill spiral effect. The night of the roof leak I basically pissed away 18.00 now I know 18.00 is no big deal but what pissed me off is that my 18.00 went to players who were fortunate enough not to have any action in that game. Whether right or wrong way of thinking I don’t think that was fair and I am not here to debate it, but to me there is a big difference between me rostering AD and having him stub his toe in the 1st quarter and be out for the rest of the game (I deserve to lose) than to have a game just completely cancelled on me. But whatever..that left a bad taste in my mouth..that next day I WD the 260.00 I had left and it looks as if I will be losing the 11.00 this weekend in golf and honestly I will be done.

    I made a paypal account and I might try Yahoo, or maybe I will try Draft I don’t know. I think I speak for the average joe DFS sports fan where I just don’t give a shit enough and I am intelligent to know I cannot beat the game or I have a better chance at powerball than I do at winning a big tourney and I am ok with that. Regardless of the rules of DK or FD I feel I got fucked on roof leak night and whether my opinion is right or wrong I dont feel like giving them my money anymore.

  • Mheff31

    If you are a casual player I think you just need to decide if you enjoy the process of building the lineups and entertainment of following the lineup later that night. I treat this has an entertainment expense with the dream of winning life changing money. If you are expecting more than that this probably isn’t for you. All it takes is one limeup to win life changing money.

  • jmo26

    @Taterchipdip said...

    Whenever I have seen Jason Robins interviewed hes always positive and saying how he is looking forward to expand Draft KIngs in other countries.

    Come on man, what else is he gonna say? “Yeah, quite honestly, I think we’re hosed long-term — we’ve treated our customers like trash, and our brand personality is that of a dudebro that everyone wants to punch in the face.”

    Of course he’s going to say he’s optimistic. He probably loves dudebro’s.

    But I suspect that eventually all these poor decisions are going to cost them (my concern is it won’t really matter, because they’ll ultimately get bought out for a kajillion dollars anyways).

    I’m not saying there isn’t growth potential, I think there is. I’m just saying many of the current and past issues stem from the fact that DK and FD lack the foresight to make wise decisions that are best for themselves and the industry long-term.

  • madmanjayWV

    @mike291md said...

    several

    That brought back some fond memories from years ago on FANDUEL with a guy names Eyes0fBlue — it was like that every single day in MLB in the GPPs it seemed…

    You know — back when FANDUEL used to show how MANY WINS per sport each user had — it was utterly amazing how time and time and time and time again —- these guys with 0-1-2-3 four-5 wins, etc…would take down the top prize or top 2-3 spots in MLB GPPs…

    SOB — was trying to quote this post — mike291md 1 day ago
    Another issue — lack of transparency. — about the 0.3% owned guy nameless guy winning GPPs

  • tbird05

    @Mheff31 said...

    If you are a casual player I think you just need to decide if you enjoy the process of building the lineups and entertainment of following the lineup later that night. I treat this has an entertainment expense with the dream of winning life changing money. If you are expecting more than that this probably isn’t for you. All it takes is one limeup to win life changing money.

    you can’t expect top finish top 3 in fields that are 70k-100k…even the pros can’t. I did it 2015 and almost went 2 years without doing it again. I still enjoy building lineups and sweating it.

  • Shadetree42

    @jjwd said...

    Not sure this makes sense to me… new people turn 18 every day. Overall, these threads always turn too dark imo. People got screwed with online poker, i understand that. But I think people get too negative with DFS issues. It’s easy to complain, there are a lot of things to complain about, but this attitude can sometimes hamper any potential brainstorming. The tight pricing solution is interesting to me, I wish there were more discussion about that.

    I’m not complaining for the sake of complaining. I’m simply offering the view of an online gambling vet who is fairly new to DFS. I would like to get into DFS seriously, but the intentional mispricing makes it incredibly boring to me. I’ve bet on sports every day for the past 25 years, and spent countless houtrs building predictive models. Yet I cannot quite find the intellectual intrigue with DFS. In sports betting, I know I am always facing sharp lines; that’s what makes it interesting. If I could only bet on sports by entering contests against other bettors and picking against arbitrarily skewed lines, I’d pass.

    It’s entirely possible I’m a true outlier, but I wonder if there are more people out there like me than some think.

  • IGrift

    I just play a ton of H2H’s. I’m not good enough to beat the big games (and I’m well of aware of that fact), so I just look to play head to heads against similarly skilled players.

    I spend about an hour on my lineup, get enough action for a meaningful sweat and I’m not completely boned if I get a late scratch.

    DFS has been a lot more fun once I stopped trying for the big prizes.

  • AlexSonty

    • 440

      RG Overall Ranking

    • Blogger of the Month

    @mike291md said...

    The payout systems continue to to be too top-heavy. Demanding top 5-10 finishes and leaving the rest with an insubstantial reward will weigh on even “the good player” over time.

    DK and FD both have cheap $100k contests every night that pay $5k to 1st and spread out pretty well. I don’t know why this is constantly ignored.

  • tbird05

    @AlexSonty said...

    DK and FD both have cheap $100k contests every night that pay $5k to 1st and spread out pretty well. I don’t know why this is constantly ignored.

    the DK NBA sharpshooter….it’s a 20 max too. Love it.

  • jjwd

    @Lathum said...

    You don’t think DFS had/ has legal issues?

    They almost went broke trying to get legalized, now are cash poor, and still have uphill battles in several states

    Straw man argument on your part here… obviously DFS has had issues, but I was replying to your overly-recycled comparison of black friday and DFS. The banks aren’t going to shut down DFS, and DFS is specifically legal in many places.

  • jjwd

    @Lathum said...

    Do you really think there is an army of kids turning 18 waiting to deposit their life savings into dfs?

    Another straw man argument. I didn’t say there is an army waiting, I implied that there are always potential new users out there. Could be 21 year-olds, could be 23 year-olds, etc… you’re getting hung up on semantics and making elaborate guess-calculations about incoming users. Of course the sites need to do better in recruiting people, but again, I was merely replying to the guy who said “everyone who is remotely interested has already tried it”. That’s obvious exaggeration, doom and gloom, and it just muddies the water of any problem-solving conversation imo.

  • jmo26

    @AlexSonty said...

    DK and FD both have cheap $100k contests every night that pay $5k to 1st and spread out pretty well. I don’t know why this is constantly ignored.

    This isn’t ignored; most just wouldn’t consider these contests to be “spread out pretty well.”

  • depalma13

    @tbird05 said...

    you can’t expect top finish top 3 in fields that are 70k-100k…even the pros can’t. I did it 2015 and almost went 2 years without doing it again. I still enjoy building lineups and sweating it.

    I expect to finish in the top 3 every night. It rarely happens, but expect it every time I enter.

  • divusjulius

    • Blogger of the Month

    @jmo26 said...

    This isn’t ignored; most just wouldn’t consider these contests to be “spread out pretty well.”

    exactly, a min cash to low mid cash of $6 on a $4 does not an ecosystem support.

  • Shadetree42

    @jjwd said...

    Another straw man argument. I didn’t say there is an army waiting, I implied that there are always potential new users out there. Could be 21 year-olds, could be 23 year-olds, etc… you’re getting hung up on semantics and making elaborate guess-calculations about incoming users. Of course the sites need to do better in recruiting people, but again, I was merely replying to the guy who said “everyone who is remotely interested has already tried it”. That’s obvious exaggeration, doom and gloom, and it just muddies the water of any problem-solving conversation imo.

    Why, specifically, do you think there are a lot of people out there who have yet to try DFS, but would become high volume players if they did? The marketing saturation and incentive programs were a high as I have ever seen for any product a couple years so. If that didn’t spur people to try it, I’m having trouble envisioning what will. Are talking about a complete restructuring of the game format, or just a different marketing strategy?

  • jmo26

    @Shadetree42 said...

    Why, specifically, do you think there are a lot of people out there who have yet to try DFS, but would become high volume players if they did?

    A number of changes need to happen, marketing strategy is definitely one, but I’m not sure game format has to change (prize structure, however…) — I’d already begun playing on DK prior to their big marketing surge a few years back, but I can tell you that if anything, it would have turned me away. Even their more recent ads would have turned me away.
    A fair number of my friends have an interest in investment, and a lot are sports fans who do the season long stuff, but exactly none of them were converted from those ads. In fact, most were so turned off by this bro culture nonsense that they still won’t give daily fantasy a chance despite my repeated efforts (and despite the fact that I know they’d enjoy it).

    I realize you can’t make any legitimate conclusions just from my group of friends, but I do think a lot of people have been turned off from DFS due to a number of things unrelated to the game itself (i.e., stupid ads, increasing rake, garbage prize structures, legal concerns, lack of transparency, poor treatment of customers, mishandling of issues/scandals, focusing on attracting the lowest denominator, etc.).

    I know a lot will disagree with me, but I do think there’s a fairly significant untapped market of DFS players out there. I don’t think DK or FD have much hope in attracting them, however.

  • Srmustangs

    I know plenty of whales who are big sports bettors, trading floor types. The MAIN thing why 95% of them haven’t touched it is due to rake. Plain and simple. 10 percent rake equates to laying 125 in sports or 100 to win 80. If you have little to no edge at those prices you will never win. Boggles my mind why cash game rake is so high . Less rake there equals more churn and more play. Sites are clueless.

  • jjwd

    @Shadetree42 said...

    Why, specifically, do you think there are a lot of people out there who have yet to try DFS, but would become high volume players if they did? The marketing saturation and incentive programs were a high as I have ever seen for any product a couple years so. If that didn’t spur people to try it, I’m having trouble envisioning what will. Are talking about a complete restructuring of the game format, or just a different marketing strategy?

    Well, only a small fraction of fantasy football players have ever tried DFS. (NY Post article estimated 75m players in 2015… that’s just one lazy citation I dug up) The other thing is the poor management… which can always be changed. I’m not a business student… but obviously the sites could do way better with marketing and player friendliness. All it takes is a few changes at the top, or a new ownership group, etc. New sports betting laws may change the DFS landscape as well. I think what we have to hope is that all types of gambling become specifically legal everywhere, and more culturally accepted. With smart owners, DFS can figure out how to capitalize on that societal wave, which I think is inevitable.

  • SkateFiend

    @jmo26 said...

    A number of changes need to happen, marketing strategy is definitely one, but I’m not sure game format has to change (prize structure, however…) — I’d already begun playing on DK prior to their big marketing surge a few years back, but I can tell you that if anything, it would have turned me away. Even their more recent ads would have turned me away.
    A fair number of my friends have an interest in investment, and a lot are sports fans who do the season long stuff, but exactly none of them were converted from those ads. In fact, most were so turned off by this bro culture nonsense that they still won’t give daily fantasy a chance despite my repeated efforts (and despite the fact that I know they’d enjoy it).

    I realize you can’t make any legitimate conclusions just from my group of friends, but I do think a lot of people have been turned off from DFS due to a number of things unrelated to the game itself (i.e., stupid ads, increasing rake, garbage prize structures, legal concerns, lack of transparency, poor treatment of customers, mishandling of issues/scandals, focusing on attracting the lowest denominator, etc.).

    I know a lot will disagree with me, but I do think there’s a fairly significant untapped market of DFS players out there. I don’t think DK or FD have much hope in attracting them, however.

    I’m literally the only person who plays DFS in my circle. Season long fantasy (it’s declined since the early 2000’s) and March Madness brackets are still huge. My cousins who know nothing about sports would put money into that bracket pool because it’s become office culture and they want to be part of it.

    I think most young people are bandwagon sports fans and just don’t know enough about the sports to play DFS. DFS is not a social game like poker or even season long fantasy. You have to devote a decent amount of time to even min cash, everyday.

    There might be some untapped market in the North American sports fan community, but that’s probably about it. People aren’t going to learn 3 sports just to play DFS. If DK or FD could expand fully into places like Japan and Korea (baseball, video games) where recreational competition is a much bigger deal, they would strike gold, but that’s unlikely.

    They need smaller contests with better payouts to attract new customers or hold onto more casual players. I always thought the top 30% should win money in quarter games. So what if the top prize would be only like 10 bucks? Yahoo just introduced quarter games with the same 10 entry limit. That’s a casual friendly move, not like FD or DK whose quarter games come with all the long odds and armies of lineups from their typical big tournaments.

    All contests fill at DK and FD, but the players have to be a plurality of a niche (ish) market. Most of them probably feel obligated to play to make something out of their 50 dollar deposit, or are mildly addicted. If there’s not much room for future growth, even slight losses will start hitting these sites. Maybe another state will ban DFS or a sob story about addiction will makes rounds on the media. A little thing goes wrong here and there and they might feel the pinch.

  • jjwd

    @SkateFiend said...

    If DK or FD could expand fully into places like Japan and Korea (baseball, video games) where recreational competition is a much bigger deal, they would strike gold, but that’s unlikely.

    Awesome idea. Also it seems like the UK should be a good test market to figure out how/if sports betting and DFS could get along- I wonder how that’s going.

  • jmo26

    @SkateFiend said...

    There might be some untapped market in the North American sports fan community, but that’s probably about it.

    The North American sports fan community? …huh?

    I can agree that there might be a market for this in Japan or Korea for some company (also agree it wouldn’t be DK or FD), but we can agree to disagree on pretty much everything else.

  • SkateFiend

    @jmo26 said...

    The North American sports fan community? …huh?

    I can agree that there might be a market for this in Japan or Korea for some company (also agree it wouldn’t be DK or FD), but we can agree to disagree on pretty much everything else.

    I don’t think most sports fans are knowledgeable about sports to play DFS. Not unless they just play randomly for fun once in a while. When I join public season long leagues I usually finish in the top third in most of them.

    For all intents and purposes, the “untapped market” is limited to the fantasy circle. I expanded it to the NA sports scene to be more comprehensive. But no one really cares about American football outside of this country, and hockey (NHL) isn’t all that big in most non white parts of the world. I’m sure DK and FD would love to expand to Europe (premier league DFS), but I hear it’s just not catching on over there.

    So yeah, any new users would be limited to the USA and Canada. It’s probably not that big. It’s only going to catch on more if smaller fishes enjoy the product and some word of mouth gets out. These sites need better contests suited for more casual players. Anyone who tries do this for fun after watching some commercial will get wiped out pretty fast.

  • mike291md

    I think the real market is all the people that the sites lost because they never figured out a way to make GPP’s and Cash Games both fun and winnable. Hence, drawing customers back thinking they have a legitimate shot at making money. I think what happens most of the time, is the average customer, quickly realizes that this game is not very winnable and the odds of making money for various reasons are slim to none.

    Now on both sides of the average customer are those who love playing DFS despite wins and losses (most of the return player base) and those who have actually figured out how to make a profit off of DFS (very small % I assume). But, again, in the middle is a very deep portion of people who quickly just quit. That pool of people is likely a way larger number than any other type of player. The sites should be trying to figure out how to get that type of player back, in my opinion.

    You don’t even really need commercials to bring in people who never tried DFS. If you love sports, and you love fantasy, you are going to stumble upon DFS somehow via the internet or talking to people. But KEEPING a good portion of those people around is the meat and potatoes of keeping the business thriving, right?

    **Just to clarify, by winnable I don’t mean everyone wins, obviously. I mean figuring out way to pay decently for having a very good lineup. Not needing just a top 10 lineup. Lightening the amount of lineup buying, the amount of lineup trains, all that stuff that has driven the need for a near-perfect score up.

    The “Make Better Lineups” argument was never concrete. People ARE getting better and the game is getting tougher. That means it’s now up to the sites to adjust and find ways to keep tourneys clean, fun, and profitable for people. People are going to tire fast when the carrot is too small (low return value) and too far away (too tough to place).

  • jmo26

    @SkateFiend said...

    I don’t think most sports fans are knowledgeable about sports to play DFS. Not unless they just play randomly for fun once in a while. When I join public season long leagues I usually finish in the top third in most of them.

    For all intents and purposes, the “untapped market” is limited to the fantasy circle. I expanded it to the NA sports scene to be more comprehensive. But no one really cares about American football outside of this country, and hockey (NHL) isn’t all that big in most non white parts of the world. I’m sure DK and FD would love to expand to Europe (premier league DFS), but I hear it’s just not catching on over there.

    I suspect there’s some projection going on here. They’re not knowledgeable enough to play DFS, or not sharp enough to win GPPs? Sure most won’t be able to make any sort of living out of it, but of course they’re knowledgeable enough to play and enjoy it (how many sports fans do you know who don’t think they know everything? I know very few). Do you honestly think only the best and brightest play DFS?

    As for the untapped market, let’s just say you’re right about the fact that it’s limited to just those already playing season-long fantasy (of course it isn’t) — that’s still a pretty big market. You noted yourself how significant it is in an earlier post, and while a new company might have to enter the space to lure them in, I don’t think it’s impossible to think that more of them could be converted.

    And who says everyone has to play every sport? I certainly don’t.

  • tbird05

    @jmo26 said...

    I suspect there’s some projection going on here. They’re not knowledgeable enough to play DFS, or not sharp enough to win GPPs? Sure most won’t be able to make any sort of living out of it, but of course they’re knowledgeable enough to play and enjoy it (how many sports fans do you know who don’t think they know everything? I know very few). Do you honestly think only the best and brightest play DFS?

    As for the untapped market, let’s just say you’re right about the fact that it’s limited to just those already playing season-long fantasy (of course it isn’t) — that’s still a pretty big market. You noted yourself how significant it is in an earlier post, and while a new company might have to enter the space to lure them in, I don’t think it’s impossible to think that more of them could be converted.

    And who says everyone has to play every sport? I certainly don’t.

    I feel like the average joe can’t give it 100% when it comes to monitoring injury news/lineup changes an hour or two before lock. They are coming home from work and have to put dinner on the table for the family. There’s nothing the sites can do to help with that. It’s not their fault…

    I feel like it’s super important to be able to digest and process the last minute stuff with NBA. Agree or disagree?

    As far as ‘making it easier” to win gpp’s with 100k runners…idk about that. Can something truly be “profitable” if you take away more and more skill from the game?

    I don’t like the top heavy first place prize..but isn’t that what attracted the huge wave of customers to begin with? What happens when you take that away?

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