Fresh on the heels of FanDuel’s rollout of a “Friends Mode” option that will allow for season-long play during NFL season, DraftKings recently announced the debut of Leagues, its own version of a break from the traditional daily model that caters to those who wish to play in leagues exclusive to other players that they invite.
Available for All DK Sports; Easy to Operate
As per the announcement, DraftKings users will be able to create private leagues for any of the 10 sports that the site offers. Users will have the ability to post contests of any prize amount (including free) and also decide how the winners will split the entry fees, providing them with a measure of control similar to that of a traditional season-long league commissioner.
A “Reocurring Contest” mode will enable the easy recreation of the league each Sunday during NFL season. The feature will also allow users to easily invite friends to join, whether those individuals are already users or not. Users will be able to add friends to Leagues at any time, and the site’s league leaderboards will keep track of all participants’ performances.
A current promotion for Leagues that ties in to NFL season offers a free $3 contest ticket for Week 1 of the 2016 season for the first 200,000 users that join a league. Leagues will be fully operational on both DK’s web and mobile platforms.
Strategic Timing/Aspects to Rollout
While the Leagues feature has many aspects that invoke thoughts of a traditional season-long fantasy product—such as the ability to appoint a commissioner, name a league, set the fees and prize pool and make the league private—the structure is still a daily, or in the case of the NFL, weekly, format.
However, the debut of Leagues, which has actually existed in a more rudimentary form for some time on the site but was never promoted heavily, is intentionally timed on a couple of fronts. For one, it is a direct response to FanDuel’s aforementioned Friends feature and second, it comes just prior to the industry’s most profitable time of year by far, NFL season.
The ability for users to invite non-DraftKings users to play in their leagues is also a strategic move that could certainly equate to a very cost-effective method of new customer acquisition for the site. By having new users try out the site in the phentermine “safe” environment of a league in which they play exclusively among friends, there would appear to be a much better chance of them eventually migrating to the more traditional large-pool daily contests.
Additionally, the emphasis on the social aspects of competing in a conventional “friends and family” league dovetails nicely with the industry’s previously stated intention of shifting the focus of their branding and advertisement to the non-monetary benefits of playing daily fantasy sports.