Is Your Favorite Celeb On A Gambling Advert? Here’s Why

  • Popular celebrities are signing up in droves to advertise online casinos and poker rooms
  • Fun quiz – test your knowledge
  • Teens say TV adverts make gambling ‘look fun’
Usain Bolt Pokerstars
Many celebrities, such as Usain Bolt, feature in sponsorship deals with gambling companies

Using celebrities to draw in the crowd

It makes perfect sense for gambling operators to use celebrities for endorsements on the pitch or at the poker table, but these days you’re far more likely to see them on your TV or in a magazine advertising your favorite online gambling sites. From the chance to meet Ronaldo in the chatroom, or your favorite quiz queen from The Chase while playing bingo, celebrities are given an ambassador position with the pure aim of advertising their sponsor.

Between 2014 and 2017, gambling firms’ TV advertising spend increased from $202m per annum to $305m.

Great advertising

Celebrities have one thing in common with major gambling companies. They both strive for success. Thanks to their popularity and fame, stars are usually followed by thousands, if not millions of fans around the globe. This makes them targets for huge gambling brands.

Some of the world’s most popular gambling companies offer sponsorship deals worth millions to celebrities willing to advertise them.  Football stars or famous television reporters and presenters are all participants in these well-paid campaigns.

With mobile betting sites such as PokerStars claiming they are “one of the most popular online poker rooms in the world” they need to sign celebrities in order to maintain or increase their standing in the current industry. Such world-famous ambassadors even participate in several tournaments at the popular poker room.

PokerStars even signed sporting legend the runner Usain Bolt as one of its ambassadors. He is known as the fastest man on the planet and a world record holder to boot.

Do you know which celebrities have advertised for these gambling companies?

Test your knowledge – we’ve made our own quiz, answers at the bottom of the page. No peeking!

  1. Which retired rugby player with royal connections signed up to support Betway Sportsbook?
  2. Which Spanish striker has been a PokerStars ambassador?
  3. Which famous actor is more likely to be found on a bet365 advert these days?

Gambling companies compete to have the best

BetVictor Sportsbook is one of the most popular online bookmakers in the UK. However, unsatisfied with its position it aims to expand even further and become an industry leader. In order to do this, BetVictor signed a contract with legendary, world-famous English soccer player Michael Owen. His purpose is to make the sportsbook more famous and popular.

One of BetVictor’s greatest competitors of is Betway. Betway has signed a contract with Sarah Stirk, a famous television presenter for Sky News in the UK. Combined with Mike Tindall and Simon Hughes, they form part of the ambassador team.

You might know Tindall better as the retired rugby player who married into the British royal family. Hughes was a cricket player who turned to journalism after his sporting career. He is also known as The Analyst.

Another big name to partner with celebrities is Party Poker, an industry leader in the online poker rooms universe. It signed a contract with Mike Sexton., the legendary poker player who was inducted into the Poker Hall of Fame in 2009.

Gambling companies making huge sums

The latest figures from the UK Gambling Commission showed gambling companies made $18.8bn for the year ending March 2018, to which online gambling contributed $7bn on betting, with $2.6bn of this being sports bets.

With little product differentiation and low brand loyalty, not to mention the regulation of advertising, it’s understandable that the competition is very fierce.

Online gamblers continue to battle for “share of wallet”, as operators invest substantial marketing budgets to attract bettors via their favorite sports and celebrities.

Unsurprisingly then, between 2014 and 2017, gambling firms’ TV advertising spend increased from $202m per annum to $305m.

Teens say ads make gambling ‘look fun’

The operators continue to tap into a largely younger audience. In a recent survey, six in 10 teens said commercials from firms such as Paddy Power and Bet365 made gambling “look fun”. And 49% of the 1,000 youngsters – aged 14 to 18 – said the ads made betting appear like a good way to make money.



Did you get those celebrities right? Answers below:


1) Mike Tindall

2) Cristiano Ronaldo

3) Ray Winstone


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