Sports betting has grown tremendously over the past couple of years. In 2022, sports betting launched in four US states, New York, Kansas, Maine, and Massachusetts. According to an article by pewresearch.org, sports betting is now legal in some capacity in 35 US states and the District of Columbia.
With the growing popularity and accessibility across many US states, it’s easier than ever to place wagers on your favorite sports teams. Understandably, the majority of marketing efforts conducted by national sportsbooks over the past couple of years have targeted men. However, 2022 has seen a dramatic rise in the use of sportsbooks among female sports fans.
A look at the numbers
Data collected during a survey of 6,034 US adults conducted by Pew Research Center concluded that 24% of US males have wagered on sports in some capacity in the past 12 months. The survey reported that 15% of US females have wagered in the past year. While men still represent the majority of sports betting users, the data reflects steady growth among female sports fans.
Global Gaming Expo
During the Global Gaming Expo in Las Vegas earlier this month, Siska Concannon, Co-Founder and Chief Marketing Officer of Affiliated Sports Fans, described her first experience at a sportsbook.
“When I was younger, I used to go to the weekend sportsbook on the Strip, and it was horrible … It was dark, there were all these angry men, and it was horrible … It certainly wasn’t a place for someone that wants to understand and learn and feel like they can be taken seriously. So, there’s also a cultural somewhat challenge for women. That’s why online, I believe strongly, that that’s going to win,” said Concannon.
During the Global Gaming Expo, which took place between October 10th – 13th, the growing popularity of sports betting among females was a prominent topic among panel discussions. One of those panels included Concannon, Lauren Westerfield, Vice President of Online Gaming at Casino Queen, Marissa Coleman, VP of Business Development at Gaming Society, and Meghan Chayka, Co-Founder and Co-CEO at Stathletes.
Rise of women using sports betting apps
During the panel discussion, the four industry experts attributed the growth of women wagering on sports to an increase in education and marketing. The panel criticized lazy marketing efforts from sportsbooks in the past, referencing pink jersey promotions as one example of such efforts.
” … we’re having companies that are looking at the demographic and creating content, having analysts that speak to these smart, savvy, educated women fans … we’re seeing this demographic now being taken seriously, as it should be,” said Meghan Chayka.
Female sports betting up 115% in 2022
During the panel discussion, Lauren Westerfield reported that there are 4.6 million active female sports bettors in 2022, an increase of 115% compared to last year. Although male users of sportsbooks still exceed female users by 250%, the rate of men using sportsbooks only grew by 63% during the past year.
FanDuel added more female players than any other sportsbook company in the last year. According to a survey by Global Wireless Solutions (GWS), the sports betting brand added 1.7 million users in 2021. DraftKings was second overall, with 900,000 new female users added last year.
Sports betting journalist Mike Seely commented on the growth, stating, “It doesn’t surprise me that there’s more growth among women just because, historically, there have been fewer women who wagered on sports, so now that they have access to that, it’s natural that the percentage growth is going to be higher than men because the male market was more mature.”
“We still have a long way to go,” said Siska Concannon, Co-Founder and Chief Marketing Officer of Affiliated Sports Fans.
“But there’s a significant growth rate in women that is over double the growth rate last year that is compared to men. It’s a great story, but we certainly have a long way to go.
“I do think it’s a responsibility of the operators and the industry that supports it to be really, really aware of how we center and how we drive the message and how we build the products and how we support the industry,” said Concannon.
Mac Daniel is a Michigan native and freelance writer for PlayOnlineCasino and PlayOnlineSportsBetting. He has experience writing about a wide variety of topics, including healthcare, tourism, non-profit organizations, and most recently casino and sportsbetting news. To check out more of his work, visit: playonlinemichigan.com