DraftKings clawed its way to the top of the multimillion-dollar daily fantasy sports industry by maximizing the most visceral appeal of its product — the chance to win large sums of money in a single day. That potentially making any sporting event, regardless of its participants, one of keen interest.
That seductive quality has enticed plenty of sports fans — approximately 10 million of them according to co-founder Matt Kalish — to at least give DraftKings’ daily fantasy sports (DFS) offerings a try at one point or another.
The company kickstarted a new era when DraftKings Sportsbook officially went live Aug. 6. Being the new kid on the block brings plenty of challenges; managing to capture the same level of engagement with the sports betting customer as they do with those on the DFS side is one of the bigger ones.
Spicing up conventional sports betting
Traditional sports betting can be a notably more “static” product than DFS on the surface. Many traditional wagers hinge on end-of-game outcomes. And many bettors may only have action on a handful of contests on, say, a typical NFL Sunday. Conversely, the DFS player could potentially have a stake to some degree in every game being played if they’ve created enough lineups.
Not averse to thinking outside the box, DraftKings Sportsbook has multiple features that allow bettors to have many skins in the game during the game. These are in addition to the conventional array of tried-and-true sports betting options, including:
However, they’ve also literally made every “event within the event” potentially mean something by making all of them wagerable.
Every point in tennis. Every play in a football game. Shoot, every pitch in a baseball game. They all have odds assigned within DraftKings Sportsbook, allowing you to plunk some money down on, say, whether Tom Brady’s next pass successfully finds its target or falls incomplete.
For example, DraftKings Sportsbook offered in-play golf bets on every hole for Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy during the PGA Championship. Bettors could watch live action of those featured players on the PGA Championship app and bet on every shot on the DraftKings Sportsbook app, with the odds changing on the fly.
Having that kind of in-play action certainly helps glue a fair share of eyeballs to a game, not to mention the DraftKings Sportsbook app. And while, admittedly, DK is far from the only operator offering in-game betting (it’s already big in Europe), there’s another innovative feature they can actually claim all their own for the moment — a revolutionary “live ticket” system.
Think sports betting meets day trading, in the purest sense. Except, in this case, you won’t hear a chaotic cacophony of “buy!” and “sell!” — the action all takes place over a matter of seconds within the serenity of a bettor’s smartphone or mobile device.
Simply put, any open bet on DraftKings Sportsbook — even those that fully hinge on end results — can be assigned a value based on what’s happening as the contest unfolds.
In DraftKings Sportsbook, you can monitor that potential value of your wager — which fluctuates as lines adjust for in-game events — and jump off at any point in time you feel is particularly advantageous. A click on the Cash Out button that appears on every open betting ticket is all it takes.
The live ticketing system even applies if you have suddenly second thoughts about taking a stake in multiple games. In other words, you can jump off a parlay just as easily as you can a single-game ticket.
DraftKings Sportsbook becomes the first to offer the live ticket system in the United States, and it’s a feature that could certainly help it carve out a niche in what is already a crowded online sports betting market in New Jersey. The fact that bettors can take advantage of the price they locked in when they opened their betting ticket — particularly when there’s a drastic change in circumstances, such as injury to a key player — is likely to appeal to a sizable segment of the customer base.