On February 1, MGM Resorts officially introduced MGM Rewards, its new loyalty rewards program, which for the first time is connected to the company’s online sports betting app BetMGM, and also allows non-gaming members to join their gaming counterparts and earn a currency, MGM Rewards Points, redeemable for complimentary dining, entertainment, hotel stays, among other benefits.
The launch was followed by the release of record fourth quarter results, in which the company posted consolidated net revenues of $3.1 billion, an increase of 105% compared to the prior-year quarter. In January, the company announced that it would be investing $450 million more into BetMGM, its joint venture with Entain for iGaming and sports betting in the US. Following a record-breaking New York launch, the brand now expects to deliver net revenue from operations of over $1.3 billion from a prior $1 billion forecast in 2022. Now operational in 21 markets, the brand is the number 2 operator for sports betting and iGaming across the markets in which it operates, with a 24% market share for three months to November 2021.
In an exclusive interview with Yogonet, Anil Mansukhani, MGM Resorts’ Vice President of Loyalty Marketing, said the revamped loyalty program allows BetMGM users to redeem points for real-world experiences at MGM’s over 20 properties across the United States, and he believes this provides BetMGM Rewards members “a tremendous strategic advantage” versus its digitally native competitors. This new program will also provide the gaming giant “more targeted and personalized offers that incorporate all of our members’ gaming and non-gaming spend instead of only their slot play.”
Which factors have led to revamping MGM loyalty program at this particular moment and context?
As MGM Resorts continues to evolve its portfolio and grow its reach with brick and mortar resorts and also digitally with BetMGM, we knew it was a critical moment for us to also reimagine our loyalty program.
We listened to feedback from our guests and saw this as a great opportunity to enhance member benefits and earning potential as well as create a simpler, more streamlined experience across our many lines of business in both Las Vegas and our regional properties. Additionally, our research indicated that many guests didn’t always make the connection between M life and MGM Resorts. In rebranding to MGM Rewards, we are aligning our loyalty program more closely with our brand, making a direct connection to our resorts and encouraging members to take advantage of greater benefits across the entire portfolio.
MGM Rewards is officially LIVE! It’s time to enjoy a more rewarding experience with more ways to earn, more ways to redeem, and more exclusive benefits that you’ll only get at all 20+ MGM Resorts Destinations nationwide.
Get with the program: https://t.co/6Nqmu3oEae pic.twitter.com/1q62y1cIfD
— MGM Rewards (@MGMRewards) February 1, 2022
Which specific impact and added value do you expect to see, both in the short and long term?
In the shorter term, the relaunched MGM Rewards program allows members to immediately earn and redeem even more meaningful rewards and benefits than before. And with the addition of non-gaming earning benefits, we anticipate this will attract a new segment of guests who may not have participated in a strictly gaming loyalty program before. We expect to be able to better understand, attract, and retain higher value customers.
From a longer term perspective, we anticipate members will appreciate the consistency in earning across regions as they visit our various resorts throughout the country. And as legalized sports betting continues to pick up momentum throughout many states, we anticipate MGM Rewards will become a terrific benefit for BetMGM members as it rewards members with real-world experiences for their online play.
Which competitive advantages and resources is this bringing to your business?
We believe the enrichment of our program will allow us to develop more robust and meaningful relationships with all of our members whether they spend time in the casino or not. We recognize that the non-gaming guest has become a significant part of the equation in recent years and this allows them to experience all aspects of our resorts and be rewarded for their loyalty. Additionally, the new program streamlines earning across all regions and also rewards Platinum+ with air travel credit to Las Vegas, encouraging guests from other regions to explore new resorts and continue to earn on all of their spend.
How do you plan to leverage the integration between MGM Resorts’ property portfolio and BetMGM’s mobile platform? What new synergies and crossovers are you planning to drive from this?
As BetMGM continues to expand into new jurisdictions – and is already operational in 21 markets – the connectivity between our two programs is more important than ever before. BetMGM customers are automatically enrolled in MGM Rewards and will continue to earn MGM Rewards Tier Credits for their online sports betting and iGaming wagers. They will also continue to earn BETMGM Rewards Points, which can be redeemed for real-world experiences at our 20+ properties across the United State which we believe offers BetMGM Rewards members a tremendous strategic advantage vs. its digitally native competitors.
Additionally, the MGM Rewards Mastercard now allows cardholders to earn points on their BetMGM deposits which is a new feature of the program. This allows members to earn faster and be rewarded for their online play.
And which role will this have facing key sporting events like the Super Bowl, and/or booming markets like New York?
As BetMGM continues to expand into new markets, we will continue to identify meaningful ways to connect our programs together, but given MGM Resorts’ sports and entertainment portfolio of partners, MGM Rewards members have the ability to gain exclusive access to an unrivaled collection of premier sporting events.
How are you applying analytics to better enhance and customize the consumer experience, especially in terms of gaming and betting?
Now that MGM Rewards members will earn MGM Rewards Points for their table games play at all of our properties, we will be able to track a higher percentage of our members’ gaming activity that will give us a more holistic view of their value to MGM Resorts. We’ll be able to leverage this data and BetMGM gaming activity to provide more targeted and personalized offers that incorporate all of our members’ gaming and non-gaming spend instead of only their slot play.