Public Gaming International July/August 2023

35 PUBLIC GAMING INTERNATIONAL • JULY/AUGUST 2023 visibility at the checkout is paramount. Lottery studies have shown jackpot communication, via Jackpot Signs or networked Digital Signage, to be a critical part of successful in-lane programs. Carmanah is working with all solution providers to expand lottery retail networks and generate more revenue at the point of sale.” Jay concurred that alerting players to what is available is critical, no matter where the product is located. “I’ll go into a retailer that has always had lottery on the counter but now there’s something in front of it,” he said. “So we ask them ’how about we hang a 43” monitor over your counter and we’ll reload your digital screen every few months when new games are issued?’ Our big push is digital. Whether it’s our app, which is now the only place that players can find a play slip, or menu boards which can carry our important messages. It’s all about breaking through to players.” In D.C., the lottery is pushing out new vending machines and trying to provide players with as many digital options as possible. “Our new vending machines almost mimic the experience players have on their mobile devices, making it easy for the players to migrate from one channel to the other” Frank said. “To expand our player base, we believe we need to provide the player with choices, whether they are at home or in the store. Going cashless will also help. We need retailers to accept debit cards for lottery as they do with almost every other product. All these small changes will make a big difference as we try to attract players who have spent much of their lives online.” Burbank urged lotteries to get to know the people on the ground with lottery sales. “We’ve seen that when you actually walk a retailer through what is available to them, it makes a big difference,” he said. “The employees who work the counter tend to do everything a certain way – they balance a certain way, open the stores a certain way, close in a certain way. But as you move up the responsibility chain, you reach people who can impact change. Meet the corporate person in charge of lottery and talk with them, show them the sales reports and demonstrate how replenishing bins can drive sales. Then you can start working with them on the technology that will really improve lottery for them. Maybe it’s adding a vending machine or in-lane to a self-service area. What starts with a conversation can lead to important growth of your accounts. And that then results in an increase in lottery revenue.” Wrapping up the discussion, Justin pointed to the examples of companies in other industries who failed to follow trends and modernize, and are now just distant memories. “Look at Polaroid,” he said. “They were a leader in the point, click and shoot cameras with more than $3 billion in annual revenues in the early 90s. Then digital came around and by 2001, Polaroid had declared bankruptcy and sold off its assets. The bottom line is that change is difficult but as the retail environment continues to evolve quickly, lottery must change with it. We owe it to the good causes that we all support.” n "Houston, have you seen the latest issue of Public Gaming Magazine?"