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Success Metrics

7% YoY growth in New Depositing Players

Record Net Gaming Revenue in August & October 2023

£66K in cost savings since launching the community


As Britain's biggest bingo brand, tombola was tasked with finding a way to engage with their players to help increase customer loyalty and brand awareness. While player attraction to the site wasn’t the problem, the team wanted to better understand how to increase average player revenue by evolving offerings based on the expectations of loyal players.  

From this, the Strategy and Insight team was created to transition the business from intuition-led to insight-led decision making by launching a customer insight community (Player Panel). This has allowed for research-based action and support across multiple teams from executives, product, marketing and customer service with a focus on delivering on the needs of the average player.

Program Goals:

  • Increase visibility into customer expectations and brand perceptions to lead business strategy & decision making
  • Support & inform campaign, product, advertising and promotion testing
  • Increase average player and net gaming revenue

Business Challenge

tombola has been successful at attracting players and achieving their unique daily player goals. However, to maintain their status as Britain's biggest bingo brand they needed to increase customer loyalty and brand affinity. “Player Closeness” became a core objective for the business.

tombola decided to build on the existing foundations of an active community between players and chat moderators to understand player feedback towards the business as a whole.


tombola launched a customer insight community, Player Panel, as a key part of its insight strategy. “It’s been a game-changer for ongoing feedback on the player experience, building a two-way relationship that drives a sense of community between players and the business,” says Jacob Murphy, Research Manager. 

Through the community, tombola’s research team has conducted a variety of activities to engage with players on a more personal level. These activities support multiple business units and decision-makers within tombola, including executives, product, marketing, and customer service.

Ask the Expert series

Utilizing Alida’s member hub feature, tombola launched a creative way to connect business leaders directly with the players in their panel. The “Ask the Expert” series is a live interactive Q&A where the tombola C-suite has a chance to answer questions and hear what is top of mind from their audience. With 1 in 3 members viewing the Q&A, this initiative has been an engagement driver with the discussion touching on a range of topics including game strategy, pre-buy, max stakes, promo times and deposit limits. 

It has also been a great way for key stakeholders to better understand the value of the community and how fast and easy it is to get feedback directly from players.

Campaign testing and development 

Player panel insights also support the marketing team by gathering feedback on advertising messaging and creative by using the Alida highlighter tool to heat-map the wording and sentiment that appeals most to players. 

When respondents shared that they want to see more player faces and voices in advertisements, tombola made adjustments. They introduced new safer gambling and winner TV advertisements, and changed voiceover talent for ads across England, Wales, and Scotland. tombola’s ads now lead the market in terms of appeal, consideration, and recall. 

App beta testing 

Through Player Panel member feedback, interested players raised their hands for beta testing opportunities via Google Play and TestFlight (iOS). After taking part in the test the Insights team followed up with a survey gauging initial reactions and asking them to rank the appeal of new game categories.

When feedback strongly showed the popularity of a personalised “for you” game category, tombola’s product team was able to respond quickly by building that new category into the live app.

Promotion testing

tombola’s research team gathers player feedback on promotions in the bingo market. They adopted a two-tier research strategy, first conducting quantitative analysis on promotions through, and then digging deeper through open-ended questions in the community platform. They learned which promotions, stakes, and prize types players prefer and why they feel that way.

Through the Player Panel, tombola learned that prize amounts for a certain promotional game category was way above expectations. With this insight, the team refocused resources from this promotion to new game releases, updates to existing programs and new ad partnerships.


Less than a year after establishing the Player Panel community, the Strategy & Insights team has saved £66k using the panel over other traditional research techniques. The member hub is also a key place for unmoderated player feedback and brand engagement with over 900 comments and 7,000 post views.

In a recent brand uplift study with advertising partner Mail Online, 63% of web visitors recalled a tombola ad. Leveraging messaging and campaign feedback from the panel the latest campaign saw the highest ever recall score from a previous 145 tested campaigns. In the month after the campaign, tombola witnessed 7% YoY growth in New Depositing Players and a record NGR month. In addition, the overall awareness of tombola via digital or “out of home” channels increased 7% helping to reduce reliance on TV advertising.

In addition, the Player Panel was also included as a key part of tombola’s nomination for “best customer service operator” at the 2023 EGR Awards. 

What’s next for the tombola team? The growth in internal demand for insights has led to additional headcount on the research team and they are excited for the upcoming launch of new Player Panels in Italy and Spain, the brand’s highest performing territories outside of the UK.

Hear from our Top Innovators of the Year from Alida Innovation Day 2023

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Alida is a Community Research platform that helps the world's biggest brands create highly engaged research communities to gather feedback that fuels better customer experiences and product innovation.