Frequent gamblers’ perceptions of the role of gambling marketing in their behaviour: An interpretative phenomenological analysis

Scott Houghton*, Georgia Punton, Emma Casey, Andrew Mcneill, Mark Moss

*Corresponding author for this work

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2 Citations (Scopus)
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This study explored how frequent gamblers perceive gambling marketing and the role they feel it has in their gambling behaviour. Ten frequent gamblers participated in semi-structured interviews oriented around their experiences of gambling marketing. An interpretative phenomenological analysis of the data led to three overarching themes: exploiting gambling marketing for personal gain; gambling marketing as a test of self-control; and safer gambling messages marketing perceived as ineffective. These themes encapsulated participants’ views of gambling marketing as something they could take advantage of to increase their own gambling success. Marketing was also perceived as a test of self-control among self-identified experienced gamblers, although identified as a risk to those who are considered more vulnerable. Finally, safer gambling messages included within marketing was considered ineffective due to perceived insincerity and being seen as an ‘afterthought’ by marketers. In support of previous research, the current investigation highlights concerning narratives around self-control and perceived risk, as encapsulated within gambling marketing, and these are evident in the perceptions of frequent gamblers. Given gamblers’ perceived lack of effectiveness of current safer gambling messages within marketing, future research should explore new avenues for safer gambling promotion.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0287393
Number of pages17
JournalPLoS One
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 16 Jun 2023

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