Bingo & Women: A Match Made in Heaven?By Angelica Malin
Stereotyping is still commonplace in modern society, despite many different sectors making strong moves away from the practice.
It certainly remains prevalent in gaming, with very clear divides between the things that are viewed as being activities for men against those that are seen as the sole preserve of women.
A perfect example of this is undoubtedly online bingo, with this iconic game generally pigeon-holed as something that only females play.
Read on as we take a closer at online bingo and assess whether it is fair to suggest that it is a game purely for women.
Online bingo – a 21st century phenomenon
The latest figures published by the UK Gambling Commission show that playing online bingo generates huge revenues for gambling operators.
The gross gambling yield for remote (online) bingo was £198 million from October 2018 to September 2019, a 12.5% increase from the previous reporting period.
Studies have shown that around 3.5m people play bingo online, with women making up three-quarters of that tally.
While that clearly makes it a popular game for women, the fact that more than one million men play online bingo shows it is unfair to categorise it as merely an activity for females.
Understanding the social aspect
While other types of gaming such as poker and blackjack are quite intense, bingo is a game that has a more relaxing feel to it.
The land-based version is very much a social pursuit, where people get together for a night out with bingo there as an almost secondary activity.
Online operators have sought to replicate that feeling by creating a welcoming environment in which players can enjoy the game.
The social aspect is one of the main reasons that women find it appealing, as it provides them with entertainment in a non-pressurised arena.
The branding and marketing angle
Many goods and services are advertised in ways that makes them more attractive to a specific gender – in essence, blue for boys, pink for girls.
Fragrances are a great example of this, with aftershaves branded to be strong and rugged, while perfumes are soft and delicate.
This type of tactic has been adopted by bingo sites, with many adopting marketing techniques that make the game seem very feminine.
Advertisements for bingo generally feature women, thus sending the message that the game is solely an activity for females.
Bingo & Women – The Final Word
With over one million men playing bingo, it is wrong to categorise the game as something that both sexes can’t enjoy.
However, the fact that 75% of the people who play the game online are women, does show that they find it a hugely entertaining activity.
The opportunity to meet up with friends and family with bingo as the anchor sets it apart from other types of gaming and drives more women towards the game.
The imbalance between the number of men and women playing bingo is unlikely to change, but the game is certainly an activity that can be enjoyed by everyone.