Infogol – Providing bet-compelling data to give customers the confidence to play

Infogol, a Timeform company and part of the Paddy Power Betfair Group, is sponsoring Betting on Football 2018, the fifth edition of the largest international football and betting trade conference at Stamford Bridge.

Ahead of the 20-23 March event, we spoke to Infogol’s Head of Content & Marketing Mark Powell-Bevan about what he is looking forward to at #bofcon2018, which innovation he expects to capture the most attention in 2018, and who he is backing to lift the World Cup trophy in Russia.

SBC: What are you looking forward to at Betting on Football?

MPB: One of the most exciting things about Betting on Football is having so many like-minded people in one place talking about current trends and opportunities in football and betting. I really look forward to listening to some of the great speakers that have been lined up for this year’s conference tracks, so I can apply the learnings to our products and services.

SBC: What are you promoting at Betting on Football?

MPB: Increasingly, we are seeing consumers put their trust in data. With that in mind, and the success that Timeform has had in producing value-added content for B2C and B2B customers, in 2017 we launched a new football product; Infogol.

Built on an in-house expected goals model, powered by Opta data and developed by Timeform, Infogol is a football analyst at your fingertips. Rather than analysing only the results of matches, which are there for everyone to see, the Infogol model measures underlying process – i.e. the number and quality of chances created and conceded – and uses that information to create predictive, bet-compelling data, content and visuals that give customers the confidence to place a bet.

We have already seen some strong numbers in terms of installs and stickiness with the Infogol app, but the product has been developed very much with the multichannel B2B market in mind and we are now able to deliver multi-language Infogol data and content via our new Global Sports API.

If you are looking for an exciting new product for World Cup 2018 and beyond, then please get in touch with one of the Infogol team at stand 13. To find out more about the data sets available, you can download the Infogol app.

SBC: What industry innovation will capture the most attention in 2018?

MPB: Personalisation has been a key driver of growth in the industry, but only a handful of operators have executed well. I think anything that puts power in the hands of the punter will do well through 2018. Betfair have recently launched Auto Cash Out on the Exchange, which will allow customers to choose the profit they would like to make head of the event, and I think that there will be a lot of take up of that during the World Cup.

I have also been impressed with the ‘Build A Bet’ product that has been used by Coral. Allowing customers to bet on player stats in matches means that those who really follow football rather than necessarily relying on some of the lazy narrative of the mainstream media can get an edge. I think this will be a growth area in 2018.

SBC: How can your company help to improve the customer experience ahead of the World Cup?

MPB: Expected Goals as a concept is still admittedly in its infancy in the mainstream. But there is undoubtedly growing interest and what Infogol does is display expected goals information in an easy-to-understand format. Thousands of data points go into the Infogol model and results are simulated millions of times, but that’s all distilled down into simple match previews and betting recommendations.

Also, as well as pre-match betting advice, we’re offering users an in-play experience through our Half-Time Team Talk, whereby we reassess all the markets based on pre-match expectations and the events of the first half to arrive at a new betting recommendation for the second half, to give punters a further interest in the match.

SBC: Who are you backing to win the tournament, and why?

MPB: Based on the Infogol model, the bookmakers look to have the head of the outright market just about spot on. The model suggests that Germany are the most likely winners, but we have found a bet for those who might want to play in the Group markets. Peru return to the World Cup finals after a 36-year absence and Denmark are their main rivals in Group C to join France in the knockout phase.

Denmark recorded an impressive per game expected goal difference (xGD) of 1.36 in qualifying, but that was achieved against much weaker opponents then Peru faced in Conmebol qualifying and our strength of schedule adjustments suggest that Peru may be underrated in the ‘to qualify from group’ betting at odds of 12/5.

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