Number of UK Gambling Ads Jumps Six Fold

In the UK it’s no secret that online bingo operators spend big bucks on television advertisements. Most daytime commercial breaks include at least one ad for an internet bingo site. Some of the ads are extremely clever and are actually enjoyable unlike most commercials. In the past offshore bingo sites on the UK’s “white list” were allowed to advertise their services in the UK. Starting next year bingo operators will have to acquire a UK gaming license and pay a 15% point of consumption tax on all transactions. Currently they must pay a tax on advertising.

Recently UK media regulator Ofcom released figures that the number of gambling ads has increased by 600% since 2007. Ofcom said that in 2012 1.39 million ads for gaming sites were aired in the UK. In 2005 the figure was 90 thousand. In 2007, the year the gambling act took effect, there were the number rose to 234 thousand. Gambling ads as a percentage of all television ads went from 0.5% in 2005 to 4.1% in 2012. Some in the in the online bingo industry say the increase is natural since before 2007 the government banned gambling ads not related to the lottery and bingo halls.

Ofcom said that in 2012 38.3% of all gambling ads were for online bingo sites. Online bingo operators ran 532 thousand commercials in 2012, more than casino and poker ads combined. The timing of ads is very important and Ofcom’s figures showed that most online bingo and lottery ads were aired before 5 pm. Ofcom’s statistics also showed that 70% of all casino and poker ads were aired between 9 pm and 11 Pm. Online bingo operators air their ads on shows popular with women since over 80% of all online bingo players are women.
‘Impact’ (The number of time an ad has been viewed) figures released by Ofcom showed that in 2012 adults in the UK viewed 30.9 billion advertisements for online gambling operators. In 2006 the figure was 8 billion. Online bingo was at the top of the impact charts with 41.2% and lotteries came in second at 27.2%. The online gaming industry is outspending live casinos and bingo halls by a wide margin. Ads for brick and mortar casinos accounted for 1.3% of all gambling ads.

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