The study was led by Heather Wardle and used data from two surveys, one of 2,412 regular sports bettors and one of 730 people between the ages of 16 and 24.
It asked a number of questions, such as how frequently they gambled, whether they had seen gambling marketing, and whether they believed that gambling marketing had caused them to gamble in an “unplanned” manner.
More than 30% of regular sports bettors said that marketing had caused them to spend more on gambling in the past three months.
Affirmative responses were higher among the problem gamblers who were classified as problem gamblers by the Problem Gambling Severity Index (PGSI), as 85% of these people said that marketing had prompted them to spend.
The study was not able to prove that marketing contributes to problem gambling, but that the associations it found were concerning.
They said that their analyses were cross-sectional and couldn’t demonstrate causality between the gambling problems and the marketing that caused them. The prevalence and strength of such relationships in two separate populations shows that marketing most certainly plays a role in problem gambling, and there are harm-reduction implications regardless of whether this is an initiating role.
There was an association between those who said that marketing influenced their spending and those who said they had received direct marketing.
The study did not find an association between seeing more types of gambling marketing and the amount of money spent.
Gambling marketing should be restricted according to the findings of the study.
They said that a precautionary interpretation of the data suggests that restrictions on gambling marketing may be a positive harm- reduction measure.
The release of the study comes as the UK government considers a review of gambling laws. A ban on targeting free bets based on spend is one of the marketing restrictions that may be included in this review. It is expected that the ban on front-of-shirt sponsorship will be put in place by the league rather than by law.
31.2% of regular sports bettors said that marketing had caused them to spend more on gambling in the past three months, according to a University of Glasgow and Stirling study. The study found an association between those who said that marketing influenced their spend and those who said they had received direct marketing. Gambling marketing should be restricted, according to the study.