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Published: Tuesday, 8/16/2011

Detroit casinos use social media to compete for gamblers


DETROIT — Detroit’s three casinos are using social media to compete for customers among themselves and nearby Caesars Windsor in Canada.

The casinos are sending messages about jackpots and promotions and responding to queries via Twitter and Facebook. One aim is to provide a new level of customer service in an increasingly competitive gambling market, The Detroit News reported Tuesday.

MotorCity Casino Hotel has more Twitter followers and Facebook fans than MGM Grand Detroit or Greektown Casino Hotel. MotorCity’s president and CEO Gregg Solomon said social media has become “a huge area of our efforts” in the past year and a half.

“People are looking for that instantaneous update about what’s going on where,” he said.

Greektown said social media is becoming a more important part of its marketing mix.

“We find this type of media to be a great way to listen and often to engage with all gaming customers,” said spokeswoman Lloryn Love.

MGM Grand has been using social media to interact with customers in recent years.

When Henry Balanon of Detroit tweeted that he was enjoying a night at MGM Grand, he didn’t expect the casino to take notice. But the casino’s social media team saw the message and responded, and left a lasting impression on the 29-year-old iPhone app developer.

“When we got back up to the room, we had cookies and treats and a handwritten note waiting for us,” he said. “This was like two years ago. It still sticks with me to this day.”

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