XFL 2.0: The latest pro football league goes all in on gambling
Source: Social Blade
The Signal: The XFL made its triumphant return over the weekend after a nearly 20-year break. Founded by Vince McMahon, the 8-team professional football league played one season in 2001 before closing shop. To make the second go-around stick, McMahon expects to spend $500m over the league’s first 3 years.
The league’s relaunch is leaning heavily on two trends that didn’t exist during the original incarnation — social media and widely legalized sports betting.
As of Monday, the XFL’s Instagram account had 381k followers, with more than half joining since December (including a notable post-Super Bowl spike). The first two games — which were broadcast last weekend on ABC, ESPN, and Fox — led to another big spike. General interest will surely rise through the league’s championship game in late April.
The Opportunity: The big opportunity around the XFL this time involves sports betting. The league will serve as a test lab for gambling and related content that other leagues will be watching closely.
Gambling innovations include announcers openly talking about bets, bet odds displayed on the screen of the game and — in a VSiN / iHeartRadio partnership — a dedicated broadcast with betting experts (“Betcast”) covering the game purely through a gambling lens.
There are a few ways you can jump right into the action :
- Crack the betting code: With almost no gameplay history to speak of, one oddsmaker says it “won’t be until at least week 3” when sportsbook can get a handle on betting. For anyone closely watching the games, this creates an evergreen opportunity to “figure” out the betting landscape. Online betting platforms like FanDuel and Draftkings will have 6-figure prizes.
- Get in on game day: Another opportunity is to capitalize on game day, whether through selling merchandise or F&B and other services. The cities with a team are Dallas (Renegades), DC (Defenders), Houston (Roughnecks), LA (Wildcats), NY (Guardians), Seattle (Dragons), St. Louis (Battlehawks) and Tampa Bay (Vipers). Here is the 12-week XFL schedule.
- Create social media content: Become an XFL personality by providing great social content, through meme-ing game clips or providing betting commentary. Notable Twitter accounts to follow are: @XFL2020, @XFLNewsHub, @FanDuel, @DraftKings, @DFS_Tom, @DarrenRovell, @JoeFortenbaugh, @BFawkesESPN, @AlexMcKinnonXFL, and the Barstool Sports team (e.g., @PFTCommenter, @StoolPresidente).
- Other ideas: In a recent Trends article, we cover some other gambling opportunities that are adjacent to the sportsbook:
- Social gaming apps: Betting platforms for non-serious gamblers such as Betcha, which aims to replicate the social aspect of work pools with leaderboards and badges for the best winning streak.
- Audience development: Identify and build communities of customers new to gambling, whether that’s through a publication or retail-oriented gambling analytics tool.
- Gambling cessation & regulation: With new and larger audiences, casinos will also need more assistance in detecting problematic gamblers. Similarly, they’ll need geofencing and related technology that ensures the only people allowed to make bets are located in the proper geographical area.
Available exclusively to Trends subscribers
Understand upcoming market trends, receive our premium weekly report, access our database of research, and network with the smartest people we know
7 Day Trial
Join Trends now for $1!
Already a member? Log In.
Hear from our members:
Co-Founder / Udemy
Founder / Author of "Free PR"
Co-Founder / Vungle
What do you get with Trends:
The most powerful business peer group
Connect with thousands of the world’s most successful entrepreneurs, executives and insiders. Collectively, Trends members have companies with tens of billions in revenue.
They say you’re the average of the 5 people you spend most of your time with. Are you surrounding yourself with the right people? You are now.
Weekly Case Studies
Curated stories from the business world
Dive into the success stories of companies around the world and discover how they achieved.
In-depth trends analysis & monitoring
Discover what’s trending before it goes viral
Don’t press snooze on this opportunity: sleep supplements
The signal: As meditation becomes mainstream, people may be surprised to find that searches for sleep apps double their meditation counterpart. As people invest in getting a better night’s rest, there’s opportunity abound, including physical products like weighted blankets or premium PJs, supplements, popular insomnia drugs having their patents expire, companies paying their employees to sleep better, marketing for sleep specialists, or online sleep education (ex: sleep apnea test has 27k searches per month).
The alternative milk market is getting frothy
The signal: As more people wave goodbye to dairy, alternative milk is slowly taking over; it has already cornered 13% of the market. With the exception of soy milk, all of the alt-milks have been on the up, with some of the newer entrants including hemp milk and pea milk. Other alt-products are getting attention, including cashew cheese, with 18100 searches per month.
Capitalizing on the Airpods market, making more money than Shopify
The signal: Since killing the headphone jack, Apple has graced the world with AirPods, which did an estimated 60m units in 2019. That means AirPods alone are bringing in approx ~$10b in revenue, more than Twitter, Shopify, or Spotify, to name a few popular tech giants. Opportunity lies in Apple opening up SiriOS or the wave of iPhone accessories (including cases, cleaning kits, hooks, and keychains) which have shown “hockey stick” growth alongside their hardware predecessor.
Leading experts share their knowledge
Attend exclusive lectures from experts in the industry and stay in the know
7 Day Trial
Join Trends now for $1!