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Why does casino mgmt make such stupid decisons?

Discussion in 'Comps' started by nostresshere, Jul 7, 2012.

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  1. nostresshere

    nostresshere Mr. Anti Debit Card

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    Been thinking about this after watching postings here. This is NOT about Resort Fees, though they fall into a similar category.

    I am thinking about the different rates that MGM slots pay in comp points earned. I believe this is done because the casino has to pay a "royalty/fee" to somebody for these machines. Fine. They want to recover their cost. Understood.

    By changing the comp points earned, they piss off loyal customers. Counter productive for intent of their players program. The change has very little financial impact - especially for those that do not even use all their points.

    But, if they changed the house hold/payout by the same amount, nobody would really complain. Or just reduce some those high payouts. Make it less obvious and keep customers happy.

    Just silly decisions.

    Not unlike a recent shopping trip. We had picked out three items and said we would pick them up. Guy says they are at the warehouse and it is $20 per item for us to pick them up, or $100 to be delivered. I balk. And we then walk when they will not budge. I would have easily paid $20 more for each item in the first place, but no way in hell was I going to pay them money for me to go pick it up. Why do people do this?
     
  2. Bruinfan1

    Bruinfan1 Tourist

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    Not disagreeing, just a couple of quick thoughts:

    1. Assuming your "loyal player" knows and recognizes the difference in points played, that player would then know which machines "pay" better points and can choose to play the machine they like, or the machine that "pays" better. Isn't that choice something the casinos want to encourage? Kinda like burying merchant credit card fees in prices - the merchant would love to expose that expense and get people using debit or cash, but isn't allowed and has to eat some of the cost and pass along most of the cost to price-sensitive customers. Same with any marketing fees for licensed games.

    2. Presumably the reason the store you mentioned below charges a warehouse fee is presumably to advertise "low low prices" on items that are in-stock; with transparent fees for things that cost the store to provide. So it's a marketing decision - might be a bad one, but it's what they chose. Casinos are also marketing their slot payouts...but I doubt even most "loyal players" feel they know the slot payouts of Vegas casinos, and if they did probably still don't choose their casino based on that? If casinos are varying points paid instead of their machine payouts in order to advertise a "competitive" payout...aren't they doing a terrible job of marketing?

    Question for you - choose to ignore if it's personal. Would you prefer your state's sales tax rate be buried in the price, or charged at the cashier for you to see?
     
  3. JosieCat

    JosieCat VIP Whale

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    I have to disagree. I think they would rather that we not know at all. Unless I just can't find it, they no longer have the statement about the specifics of earning tier credits on the web-site.

    I don't really have a problem with them doing it on the themed machines - the problem I have is how they sneak in machines that are clearly NOT specialty machines - a $3 Pinball machine??? But I've learned - I now check every machine I play.

    But, I think that the average player doesn't pay attention to this at all. I know I never paid attention to that kind of thing until I started to participate in forums like this.
     
  4. y2mulder

    y2mulder Low-Roller

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    Thats the massive problem with this whole slot strategy. It's something that the regulars will notice, and the casual player wont know, or even care about. Yet your "base players" are the ones you do NOT want to screw with....as you will lose much more in the long run if they walk away.

    Not posting which ones have the lower comp rate is the real crime. I dont know how they think thats even fair.
     
  5. nostresshere

    nostresshere Mr. Anti Debit Card

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    Sales tax - really would not matter to me. No matter which shirt I buy in that store, they all have the same 8%. Imagine if some shirts had 6%, some were 9%, etc.

    Back to the slots and players club. They should be upfront and tell you that for every $3 you play, you get 1 point. Or whatever it is. What a simple easy way for customers to understand a program.

    We should not have to make decisions about playing one machine vs another based on loyalty programs. Or even try to figure out which ones are which. Counter productive. Should not matter if the machines are reel, fancy screens, little payout, big payout, leased, owned, electricity hog, takes more or less floor space, etc.

    If a certain machine costs them more money, then change the payout. Don't put a "yeah, but" into your loyalty program. Simple stuff.
     
  6. Auggie

    Auggie Dovahkiin

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    The thing with all this slot club stuff is:

    -> It assumes people know about it
    -> It assumes people understand it
    -> It assumes people care about it

    You can look at how many people still play without a slot club card... or how many people play 6:5 blackjack when there is a 3:2 game fifteen feet away.

    People just don't know about this stuff, or if they do they don't care or don't understand it.

    The classic example of this is: all this is really about MLife changing their program last year so that certain machines now earn session points slower than other machines... however both Club Grazie and Total Rewards have been doing that for ten years AND on top of that some of the most vocal against MLife changing their program like this are still strong supporters of the other programs.
     
  7. Bruinfan1

    Bruinfan1 Tourist

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    I agree. But the casino would have an incentive to play with the points if the payout was more important to their players than the points. And the few players who might notice the different pointers and even fewer who care would be collateral damage of that decision.

    What I don't get is that casinos never seem to market their payout rates, certainly not at the machine level. So why not bury it in the payout and get it out the way? I get that more players would complain about different payout rates per machine than about points...but there's no transparency there now, right? So you're not hurting anything by hiding any add'n costs in the payout rates (that's your preference) and you gain by not messing with variable points.

    But if payout rates were important, and were more important to those core players than points, than you'd have your answer on why casinos make...decisions. :ssst:
     
  8. jgates8

    jgates8 VIP Whale

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    I've never encountered that at a CET casino Auggie? I know some pay bonus credits slower (Little Lucy?), but I have always earned 1 point for $5 on slots & 1 point for $10 on VP. I don't get too concerned about the bonus ones as I sometimes machine hop anyway & that prevents any good bonus earning.
     
  9. nostresshere

    nostresshere Mr. Anti Debit Card

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    1) CET : For every $5 bet, you get one tier credit. Always there reward points based on machine, time played, etc. Exact factor not advertised, but not an issue to at least me. I know I always get the 1 to 5 deal. Plus bonus.


    2) Slot Payout: Show a player that can you the difference between a machine that is set at 91% and one at 92%. Answer - they look and appear to pay exactly the same. I may not like a 91% vs a 92% machine but I can not tell the difference.
     
  10. leo21

    leo21 VIP Whale

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    CET does penalize you for playing slots that are less profitable for them. But they penalize you on the rate you earn bonus points. If I decide to play Sex and the City and not an old game that happens to be really tight, I get to Platinum at the same pace because I will earn tier credits and base reward credits at the base schedule. The problem with MLife as I understand it is that playing SATC will not only hurt my comps, it will take longer to get to the same tier. And MLife is taking heat because the way they set up their system makes it more obvious to even the people who barely pay attention to this stuff as well as they people who are well invested in strategies to get to a higher tier.
     
  11. nostresshere

    nostresshere Mr. Anti Debit Card

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    And, not only do they piss off their good customers, but they piss off their staff too. They all have to listen to this crap, and few understand it. And even less can explain and defend it.

    Just stupid mgmt decisions no matter how you cut it.
     
  12. johnnytwofingers

    johnnytwofingers Low-Roller

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    I don't know if this is necessarily true, does anyone have any dependable data on what percentage of casino patrons are educated on odds, etc? The casino certainly has this information.

    Exactly. I know about it, but I can't be bothered enough to change my actions. On a trip to Vegas, I typically budget to lose about $4000 gambling. If there is a 6:5 table and a 3:2 table in close proximity, but the 6:5 table has scantily clad women (who are probably making ~$20 - 50/hr) dancing in front of my eyes, I will choose the table with dancing women.

    Again, I speculate that knowledgeable regulars are a much smaller portion of the overall pie than people here think. I absolutely loathe the corporatization of Vegas, but to imply that their actions are actually reducing their profits, to me seems like a very incorrect conclusion.
     
  13. y2mulder

    y2mulder Low-Roller

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    I don't know if this is necessarily true, does anyone have any dependable data on what percentage of casino patrons are educated on odds, etc? The casino certainly has this information.
    -----------------------

    The players don't have a clue. Thats why we get the "I earned 20,000 points 2 years ago, and this last trip got us 3,000" threads. They get whacked with the big stick after they get home and wonder what the hell happened. That "then" equals less express comps, and they don't get to their pretty new card as fast. They will never know WHY, but they know they got screwed somewhere.

    Look, I have screamed about this until I have gotten blue in the face. My bottom line is this.....If you wanna dump $100 into Monopoly slots at MGM, then get your ass whipped at 80% AND earn a whopping 10 tier credits (instead of the normal 50) with Mlife, because this slot is "prettier than the others".....then go for it. I will be playing at every other casino on the planet that doesn't do this shit.

    Why you would even give a dollar to a casino that screws you like that is beyond me. Have fun.
     
  14. MomtoCCC

    MomtoCCC Low-Roller

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    Is there a way to see which machines give you reduced credits? or do you just put your money in and see what the rate of credits are?
     
  15. leo21

    leo21 VIP Whale

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    No way to know in advance. According to the party line, it's only the themed games but people have reported seeing the reduced credits on non-themed games and that is what has added to the controversy.
     
  16. nostresshere

    nostresshere Mr. Anti Debit Card

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    Even that explanation (themed) is open to confusion. After all, just about every machine has a "theme" of some type. Some are obvious like "Sex and the City", but others are not.

    Again, just plain stupid.
     
  17. DK528

    DK528 Low-Roller

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    I'm pretty sure I've seen some sort of plaque on the "themed" slots saying its $10 per point. Not sure if they're always there but I've seen them on slots I did not expect to see them on.
     
  18. C0usineddie

    C0usineddie VIP Whale

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    New customers who dont know the rules and waste money are better then old customers who know how to game the system.

    If I owned the place, i would focus my advertising dollars and new customers.

    Some measure of loyalty will naturally take place, even charles manson still has followers. The rewards you get are just something to keep you interested. They money your loyalty spends goes to wooing new ones.

    Lots of people play without ever signing up for a card. lots of them do.
     
  19. Carol1113

    Carol1113 High-Roller

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    I do know atg the Bellagio the so called specialty machines do have a small metal plaque stating $10.00 per point.
    I think the whole idea is stupid and MGM should do away with it.
     
  20. Polemarch28

    Polemarch28 Tourist

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    Some people might forget - most of the strip is owned by two companies.

    When someone says, if you don't like X, you can "walk out the door", they may fail to grasp that there aren't many alternatives. Put simply, the major corporations can easily collude implicitly, without even talking to each other, just by virtue of the fact that they form an (almost) duopoly.

    The only real alternative is actually between Vegas and Not-Vegas. If you upset your customers to such an extent that their next vacation is to New York or Hawaii, not Las Vegas - not that they will switch from CET to Mlife.

    I do agree that the Vegas-based gaming corporations are woefully mismanaged - that seems to naturally happen when you have almost no competition. I do not, however, think it's hurting their wallet. If it were hurting their wallet, that might actually be the only way they'd bother to improve.
     
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