How Should We Be Looking at Our Data RIGHT NOW?

Q&A with Raving CEO Deana Scott (DS) and Trevor Taylor, Raving Partner — Gaming Operations, Data-Driven Marketing & Analytics

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Read the transcript below or watch the video above:

Deana: Today I am speaking with one of my favorite people, Trevor Taylor. He is our gaming operations and data driven marketing and analytics guru. What I love about working with you, Trevor and why I love having you on our team, is that the answer is always, “We can find it. We can fix it.” I don’t think I’ve ever known you not to find a diamond in the rough, no matter what data you look into.

Trevor: You’re right. I think there’s always little pockets of incremental revenue or, incremental expense reductions that are out there. I think we get in a cycle where we’re just showing up and doing our day to day job. And sometimes, you know, we gotta’ take our eye off a ball to focus on a different ball. And with our team, our philosophy is we’ll take care of the keeping the eye on the ball and the data. Cause there’s always pockets. There are always pockets of revenue that we can find you.

Deana: And that was, pre-COVID. But right now here we are a couple years later, and things have changed. Can you give me an idea how you’re looking at the data differently?

Trevor: Just in smaller bites. I think that trend data used to have a meaning, or it used to have a definition. You know, typical at the C-suite level or the senior management level with most of our clients is that we would look at month over month or quarter over quarter or year over year performance. We all have our daily operating report or our daily revenue report. We always have the number of days this month versus the exact same number of day, same month last year. We have been doing this for 10, 20, 30 years where we’re evaluating these trends, but these trends were macro trends because the playing field was level and pretty much the same (give or take a few cap X improvements or a few structural amenity improvements).

We’re the same property we were a year ago. We all know COVID changed this. COVID changed everything in terms of player behaviors. We can’t look at the data that we’re ingesting now based on player performance, on the gaming floor today and analyze it versus last month, because even versus last month, significant changes are taking place.

So when you ask , “How do we evaluate for our clients?” I think our, our team and our pH is to condense the look-back. So what happened 60 days ago on a Tuesday versus 30 days ago on a Tuesday, and then look at it as to how it’s happening on a Tuesday, the last couple of weeks. So instead of looking at long term trends, we just have more of a microscopic view on trends today are 30 days, 60 days or less.

Deana: So what I hear you saying, Trevor is no more “set it and forget it,” which we never should have been doing anyway.

Trevor: Right, the set it and forget it mentality. I mean, in order to optimize it, we’ve got to take a look at it much, much, much more frequently. You know, we all get busy on our day to day tasks. You know, we’re running promotions, we’re running media advertising, we’re running, promotions means primaries, secondaries, tertiary. COVID taught us that the player behaviors were changing so frequently. We have players that have increased their ADT, two, three, four X and we have a lot of capacity restraints. And so we had to, we had to get the gaming floor full of the players. We had to yield the gaming floor. So setting it and forgetting it. I mean, if, if that’s your mentality, I think it’s time to reevaluate that, look at more microscopic trends what’s happening recently, get in there, delve in to it. And that’s what we do. I mean, that’s what we love to do, and that’s what we do very successfully for quite a few clients.

Deana: So is there a trend specifically, in kind of reevaluating, how you’re looking at things that you’ve seen that you’re, you’re seeing, um, performance changes and maybe one little nugget that people should really be looking at?

Trevor: I think that, we are all tired of the safety messaging. I think that a lot of people want to move on from that but what we are seeing, in some of intercept surveys and, and in some of the interactions that we have with the guests, whether it’s VIP focus groups or what have you, is that it’s still on their mind. I don’t think it’s time to completely take your eye off the ball in terms of the guest experience. The guests do still require that they feel safe. I think, a lot of the guests, like I said earlier, their ADTs are just off the charts.

Everyone has an entertainment budget, but they couldn’t go play golf, they couldn’t go bowling. They couldn’t go to a local movie theater. And so a lot of casinos saw incredible lift in revenues because it was the the only game in town. One of the things that we’re seeing now, and this is back to that recency look, is that reinvestment levels from let’s just say a free play issuance perspectives. Let’s just say we’re talking a direct digital or a direct marketing campaign. And we set an optimized reinvestment percentage and we go to market with that reinvestment percentage. We need to be looking at it much more frequently than just every month, because one of the things we’re seeing with a lot of our clients is a lot of that government money is gone. So people we’ve been awarded based upon their performance a quarter ago, two quarters ago when they had that influx of income. And now that influx of income is gone. So we’re seeing them normalize and go back to pre COVID playing values. And so you’re reinvestment needs to adjust. If you’re reinvesting different by tier it’s time to look at the people that are tier  that are migrating downward and calibrate their reinvestment, and that’s going to save you money.

Deana:  Thank you Trevor. For those of you, who’d like to hear more from Trevor or any more operational insights, go to or and for some of the best insights you’ll find in the industry!