Digital, Opinion Piece

William Hill bridges the gap between online gambling and social media

Written by: Liam

Last night’s shock exit of Russia (and, equally, Greece’s shock qualification) add to the evidence for why this summer’s European Championships are proving to be one of the most exciting and unpredictable international tournaments in recent years. Many viewers (including myself) have added to the excitement of the fixtures by placing a few bets, and it was through this that I discovered how social media integration has begun to be included within the website of one of Britain’s largest bookmakers.

Logging into my William Hill account, I noticed a new icon next to my account details on the main toolbar. Clicking on it brought me to my ‘Community Profile’ page, allowing me to add my name, a short biography and a profile picture.


I thought this was a nice personal feel that the bookmaker was offering, but it was the main function of this addition which really caught my attention. The community profiles includes the ability for ‘tipping’, with users offered the chance to give their personal opinion on who they are backing in different betting markets. It is this function which helps the site bridge the gap between online gambling and social media. A useful function of this profile feature is that I can follow other users who tend to have good tips, giving myself a feed of bets recommended by other online gamblers. This feature is not just limited to football, and extends to all markets available on the popular bookmaker’s site.

 

One main strength of this new social function is that users could now be encouraged to stick with just the one bookmaker. Previously, I have found myself switching between many different bookmaker’s websites, based on the odds or special markets they were offering. With the inclusion of a social profile and the building of a friend’s list, users may find themselves wanting to remain within their own personal community of betters who they have chosen to follow.

Users may also be encouraged to spend more money on the bookmaker’s website, based on tips from other reputable users. Although bookmaker sites constantly scream betting offers and tips, it’s not a terrible idea to question the ‘tips’ from the site who you’re actually handing your money to. That’s why a tip from another user, someone who is in the same boat as you who is looking for a great price, would appeal to gamblers more.

This new function, therefore, can be seen as William Hill’s website making a digital imitation of the traditional betting shop, allowing mini-communities of gamblers to be forged, and betters deciding whether to trust a friend’s tip which apparently ’cannot fail’.

Now, excuse me while I put a couple of bets on. I’ve got a sure-fire tip for the Germany game…

 

 

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2 Responses to “William Hill bridges the gap between online gambling and social media”

  1. On July 11, 2012 at 7:54 pm Terry Stevenson responded with... #

    Good idea, not sure if it’ll take off…

  2. On July 11, 2012 at 8:04 pm Matt responded with... #

    I’ve noticed this, never really used it though. just seems like anyone can give an opinion

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