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Best Practice

Outdoor advertising helps overcome times of crisis

Casino Lugano is centrally located directly at Lago di Lugano and is one of the top Swiss casinos. In 2020, it had to close for three months due to the Covid-19 pandemic. When it reopened, Casino Lugano took advantage of the strong impact of outdoor advertising.

A success: With a digital and analog outdoor advertising campaign "Let's play everything, but not with our health", the desired target group was informed about the reopening as well as the security measures of Casino Lugano and encouraged to visit. A humorous campaign in a playing card motif with protective masks and gloves attracted a lot of attention. "The decline in visitor frequencies was significantly reduced thanks to the outdoor advertising campaign," says Gianmaria Frapolli, Director of Casino Lugano. The comparison with the direct, local competition (see chart below) shows: Outdoor advertising helps even in times of crisis.

  • Humorous implementation generated attention and encouraged to visit the casino.

  • Direct comparison of competitors shows the successful impact of outdoor advertising. (See graphic: Visitor frequency development in Lugano sank less low than in Mendrisio.)

  • Decrease in visitor frequencies could be reduced.

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Unfortunately, Casinò Lugano had to close its doors because of the COVID-19 pandemic during the first lockdown in 2020. How did it deal with this situation?

Casinò Lugano had to close its doors from March to June 2020, in compliance with regulations issued by Switzerland’s Federal Office of Public Health. But closing to the public didn’t mean everything ground to a halt, as the casino’s projects were able to continue thanks to the commitment of the entire team. We developed a range of activities, such as the new online gambling platform ‘Swiss4win’, which launched in March 2021. And we made numerous infrastructure changes to our building, while also greatly expanding our range of games. We want to ensure that what we offer our customers is completely up to date and innovative.

 

What was the goal of your outdoor advertising campaign?

Among the main goals of the outdoor advertising campaign, which we created while the casino was closed, was communicating the reopening of the casino, as well as the safety measures, which apply to employees and players alike. Complying with COVID-19 safety provisions was and is a given with us, and remains our highest priority. That’s the idea behind the outdoor advertising campaign: ‘Let’s all keep playing, but not with our health’. The campaign featured the King, Queen and Jack from playing cards, but with masks, protective gloves and disinfectant – our new daily essentials. The three playing card figures were shown either individually or all together, depending on the channel, and were an excellent way of communicating with the public and with our own employees.

 

What results did you see from the outdoor advertising campaign, and would you use this medium again in the future?

The campaign ‘Let’s all keep playing, but not with our health’ reached 696,000 people. For Casinò Lugano, the goal of the advertising campaign was never economic; instead, we wanted to raise awareness of the importance of sticking to the safety provisions. The decline in visitor numbers we experienced after the reopening in early June was understandable, given concern about public health safety measures. The out of home campaign we ran was a great help in stemming that decline in visitors. Plans for the future? Always giving our best by creating advertising campaigns to inspire people.

Gianmaria Frapolli, Director des Casinos Lugano

Gianmaria Frapolli, Director, Casinò Lugano

Source: Schweizer Casino Verband, 2020

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