[UPDATE] Unfortunately, the Corona crisis has made us cancel all major events in 2020. Just use our calendar for your 2021 marketing campaigns in South America, since the events are definitely going to happen again.
Out of all these countries, Argentina, Mexico, Brazil, and Colombia are leading the online gambling and sports betting markets in Latin America and growing at a promising rate.
So, let’s target all these countries in the same way, yeah? NO. Each Latin American country has its own culture and Latin Spanish language usage, so it’d be very very wrong to target them with the same piece of promotional materials.
Before you target different online gambling and sports betting markets in Latin America and create content that resonates with the target locale, you need to have a great comprehension of culture, major holidays, and sports events in Latin America that might be useful for your marketing campaigns.
That’s why we have created the 2020 marketing calendar for the Latin America iGaming Industry.
(Just right click on the calendar images in the carousel to save them on your computer for future reference.)
1 Jan: New Year
This is the day to jumpstart a whole new year, and people are full of optimism and energy. If you want to be a forerunner of the iGaming industry, you certainly shouldn’t be left behind in 2019 with old promotion tricks. Reach out to your players/clients with positive messages along with a brand new set of deals for a brand new year.
If you play your marketing strategies right, you can be a part of your customers’ new year resolutions too!
6 Jan: Three Kings Day/ Epiphany/ Día de Los Reyes
Dia de Los Reyes (aka Epiphany) represents the day the Three Wise Men gave gifts to Jesus Christ. Christmas might be over for the rest of the world, but the tradition continues until the 6th of January for people in Latin America.
This day is usually celebrated by bringing gifts to children and making the famous roscón de reyes (rosca de reyes) bread, which is shaped like a wreath and has a small baby Jesus doll inside. The person who gets the slice with the doll must host a party for the next Día de la Candelaria.
Although it isn’t directly related to the online gambling industry, it is always a nice gesture to wish your customers and clients in Latin America on Día de Los Reyes.
One way to do a promotion around this would be a browser-based game where customers pick their slice, and if they choose the one with the baby Jesus doll, they will get free spins or a cash bonus.
14 Feb: Valentine’s Day
Valentine’s Day is a celebration of love between couples, families, friends, and even for oneself. It is such a widespread global craze that one would be a fool to not run any real-time marketing campaign for iGaming businesses.
While most companies are busy targeting couples with exclusive deals, some dare to be more creative and go after customers who are singles.
But don’t worry if your business is in the non-romantic industries such as online casinos and sportsbooks. You can still leverage this romantic atmosphere by running storytelling contests on social media, sending some thoughtful Valentine’s Day gifts to your customers, or create virtual poker tournaments for those who are spending their time alone on this day.
If you want to know more about Valentine Day Campaigns for the iGaming industry, head over to our article “Best Valentine’s Day 2020 Marketing Ideas for iGaming Companies.”
19 Feb: Sportsman’s Day (É Dia do Esportista no Brasil)
Did you know that, in Brazil, there is a dedicated day to honor sportsmanship? That’s right! Dia do Esportista (or Sportsman’s day in English) is celebrated on February 19th to encourage, raise awareness and honor the practice of sport for a much healthier lifestyle.
Sportsman’s Day was originally created from Article 54 of Zico Law (Law 8672, July 6, 1993), which stated that the 19th of February would be designated as Sportsman’s Day. However, “Pelé Law” or “free pass Law” (Law 9615, March 24, 1998) repealed the Zico Law and established June 23rd as Sports Day, which coincides with the World Olympic Sports Day.
Regardless of this date change, Brazilians continue to celebrate the Sportsman’s Day on the 19th of February. Online sportsbooks can leverage this opportunity by creating informative content that promotes the health benefits of playing sports and the reasons why people should participate in different types of sports.
20, 27 Feb – 2020 Recopa Sudamericana
Played since 1989, Recopa Sudamericana is an annual football match between the CONMEBOL Libertadores champion and the CONMEBOL Sudamericana champion of the previous season. It is played on a home-and-away two-legged basis, with the Copa Libertadores champions hosting the second leg.
For this year, team Flamengo (Brazil, the Copa Libertadores champion), will be playing against team Independiente del Valle (Ecuador, the 2019 Copa Sudamericana champion) on 20th and 27th February at Estadio Olímpico Atahualpa, Quito, and Maracanã, Rio de Janeiro, respectively.
Whole Month – Carnival (Carnaval)
While the whole world is over-hyped with Valentine’s Day marketing campaigns in February, for Latin Americans, February means the month of Carnival, or Carnaval as some would call it.
They are celebrated across different countries in Latin America for five days straight, each having a meaningful tradition of its own. But it doesn’t matter where you celebrate them, they are always filled with vibrant colors, lively music, and dances. It isn’t even an exaggeration to say that they are the iconic representation of the diverse Latin American culture.
For iGaming companies who want to target iGaming players in Latin America, it is important to know popular Carnival festivals that are celebrated across the region for more precise localization.
- Rio Carnival, Brazil (21 – 26 Feb)
- Salvador de Bahia Carnival, Brazil (21 – 26 Feb)
- São Paulo Carnival, Brazil (12 – 16 Feb)
- Recife & Olinda Carnival, Brazil (21 – 25 Feb)
- Barranquilla Carnival, Colombia (12 – 16 Feb)
- La Diablada Carnival, Oruro, Bolivia (13 – 16 Feb)
- Montevideo Carnival, Uruguay (23 Jan – 8 Feb)
- El Callao Carnival, Venezuela (11 – 16 Feb)
- Encarnación Carnival, Paraguay (25 Jan – 22 Feb)
- Carnival Gualeguaychú, Argentina (11 Jan – 1 Mar, Every Sat)
- Veracruz Carnival, Mexico (19 – 25 Feb)
- La Vega Carnival, Dominican Republic (2 Feb – 1 Mar)
- Las Tablas Carnival, Panama (22 – 25 Feb)
- Carnaval Mazateco, Guatemala (22 – 29 Feb)
24 Feb – 1 Mar: Tennis – 2020 Chile Open
Coinciding with the Carnivals that are going to take place all over Latin America is the 2020 Chile Open. This tournament is taking place from 24th February to 1st March, and it is also the first time Chile will be hosting an ATP Tour tournament since 2014. The total prize money on offer at the Chile Open is $604,010, which is almost a 10% increase from last year’s Brasil Open.
With great players, supportive fans, and even better prize money on the table, this 2020 Chile Open is a major sports event in Latin America that you shouldn’t miss out on.
08 Mar: Women’s Day
In this male-dominated iGaming world, the participation of women in online gambling activities is still less than men and should be promoted more often. According to a survey conducted by the Gambling Commission UK, 17% of the female respondents participated in online gambling in 2019, whereas, it is 25% for the male counterpart.
Giving away extra slot spins or exclusive bonuses for women on this International Women’s Day is a good way to attract female iGaming players in Latin America.
Even in the sports industry, a lot of talented female players aren’t getting enough media spotlight that they deserve. Sportsbooks can address this issue, and perhaps create content to highlight the top female players and celebrate their achievements for this upcoming International Women’s Day.
Apart from these ideas, it is also the perfect day to promote gender equality in the Latin American workforce. According to the global gender gap index, Brazil ranks 92nd out of 153 countries, whereas Paraguay and Guatemala are ranked at 100 and 113, respectively. Your iGaming company can be a role model brand that brings such gender gap issues in Latin America to attention and pave the road towards gender equality together with Latin American women.
9 – 14 Mar: 2019-2020 Basketball Champions League Americas BCLA Americas Finals
Freshly founded in 2019, BCLA is regarded as the highest tier premier league in the Americas (excluding USA and Canada). It was officially launched by FIBA (Fédération Internationale de Basketball) in September 2019 and replaced the FIBA Americas League, which was once considered the premier intercontinental basketball league on the continent.
The competition consists of twelve teams from Argentina, Brazil, Uruguay, Mexico, Chile, and Nicaragua) that have to qualify through their national leagues. The winner of the Basketball Champions League Americas will also advance to the FIBA Intercontinental Cup. This brand-new basketball competition started off in October 2018, and the finals matches are scheduled for March 9 – 14, 2020.
15 Mar: World’s Consumer Right Day
15th March marks the World Consumer Rights Day, which raises global awareness about consumer rights and needs. The rapid growth of the Internet, mobile phones, and other digital technologies have created both opportunities and challenges for millions of consumers around the world.
In the iGaming industry, where players have to trust their money with online casinos and sportsbooks, it is crucial that operators have transparency with data security and privacy, T&Cs, payouts, and game rules.
Miscommunication or lack of such information from iGaming companies can be upsetting for so many players. Especially if you are new to the Latin America iGaming market, it is important to build trust from players from the region.
Therefore, celebrating World’s Consumer Right Day as an iGaming business is a chance to showcase that the rights of all players are respected and protected.
17 Mar: Saint Patrick’s Day (St. Paddy’s Day, el Día de San Patricio)
Celebrated on 17th March is St. Patrick’s Day, which is a global celebration of the Irish culture. In Latin America, this particular day is celebrated to commemorate the Irish immigrants (San Patricios) who fought for the independence of Latin American republics, especially Mexico, Argentina, and Chile. Mexicans highly regarded these Irish men and women as war heroes and named several roads, plazas, and schools after them.
Mexico is also home to the biggest St. Patrick’s Day celebrations in Latin America, followed by Buenos Aires, Argentina. The festivities include rodeo events, bullfights, parades, folk dancing, and fireworks. That is why St. Patrick’s Day is an important festival for our 2020 marketing calendar for the Latin America iGaming Industry.
For the rest of the world, this festival won’t be complete without its green Leprechaun costumes, pints of beer, and of course, gold pots and shamrocks (leaf of a clover plant), which are best known as lucky charms for the international gambling scene.
And just like Guinness is strongly associated with this holiday, online casino promotions are too. Operators and developers can take this Irish spirit up a notch by creating localized blogs and social media posts for iGaming players in Latin America who might not be familiar with this celebration.
Educate your users first, and then offer irresistible bonuses, or extra spins for St. Patrick’s Day-themed slot games like Wish Upon A Leprechaun Megaways or Lucky Leprechaun Slots.
1 Apr: April Fools’ Day
Although April Fools’ Day didn’t originate from Latin America, we can’t deny that laughter is the best medicine for everyone in the world.
This holiday is also a good opportunity for businesses to show some sense of humor and creativity instead of putting on the usual “professional” image. Cracking a joke on social media or pulling some funny marketing stunts can be an effective way to build brand awareness and increase engagement.
Here is a good example from Google:
For online casinos and sportsbooks, perhaps this is a good time to offer promotions that are “too good to be true.” It’s a jackpot for customers who are adventurous enough to test whether it is true or not.
12 April: Easter
Easter is considered to be one of the most important events of the year in Latin America. It is also an essential part of the Holy Week (Semana Santa), which is celebrated from 5th to 12th April.
Although it is a religious holiday for Christians, Easter has many different real-time marketing campaign ideas for iGaming businesses. Software developers use hand-painted easter eggs and cute easter bunnies as mascots to design several slot games such as Easter Eggs by Play’n GO, and Lucky Easter by Red Tiger Gaming. So if you have those games or similar Easter-themed games featured on your website, why not dust them off and promote them during this holiday?
Here is another great idea for your Easter promotion. Let your customers search for eggs on your site or show a pop-up of a golden egg and customers have 2 seconds to click it. Give out bonuses to your winning customers or if there can only be a small number of winners, you can also send them on a special trip.
25 – 29 May: Hot Sales, Mexico
One exciting thing happening in May is called “Hot Sales Week,” which is created by The Mexican Online Sales Association (AMVO). It is claimed to be the biggest online sales event in Mexico, and it is fairly popular in Brazil, Argentina, Chile, and Colombia as well. In 2019, its total sales revenue from the campaign hit 11 billion Mexican Pesos – that’s more than €424 million generated in just five days!
Although it isn’t directly related to the online gambling industry, it is interesting to note that the revenue generated from online purchases by Latin American consumers is showing promising growth. This data, combined with the increasing availability of mobile technology and the internet in the region, could mean that there is a bright future waiting ahead for the online gambling and sports betting markets in Latin America.
12 Jun: Dia dos Namorados
Just like the entire planet celebrates love on Valentine’s Day, Brazilians do the same too. Except that they celebrate it on June 12th. Also known as “Lovers’ Day”, Dia dos Namorados is an equivalent of Valentine’s Day for Brazilians.
Since both Valentine’s Day and Dia dos Namorados are based on the theme of love, this is a fantastic opportunity for iGaming marketers to recycle their Valentine’s Day promotional materials, and localize them specifically for Brazilian audiences.
Jun 12 – Jul 12: Copa América (Argentina, Colombia)
Officially debuted in 1916, The Copa América is the oldest football competition of national teams in the world. The 2020 Copa América will be its 47th edition, and the participating national teams include Argentina, Australia, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Paraguay, Peru, Qatar, Uruguay, and Venezuela. Apart from these ten national teams, Australia and Qatar, who were the two previous winners of the AFC Asian Cup, will also participate in the 2020 Copa América.
Surprisingly, July doesn’t seem to have any major sales holidays in Latin America. But fewer holidays means fewer businesses to compete with, which also lets your business shine brighter in your customers’ eyes.
Excite those bored players by dropping a mid-year special campaign or rounding up the most-played games during the first half of the year and reignite the spark again. Since it’s winter south of the equator, your customers are staying at home, so they could be more receptive.
You can also use this time wisely to reflect on marketing data from the first six months, and use the learnings to plan ahead for the upcoming festivals and sports events in the second half of 2020.
15 Aug – 12 Sep: 2020 Americas Rugby Championship
Informally known as the “Americas’ Six Nations,” the 2020 Americas Rugby Championship will be the fifth series of this biggest rugby union competition of the Americas. It will be played over five consecutive weekends from the mid of August to the mid of September.
The competing teams include Argentina XV, Canada, United States, Uruguay, Brazil, and Chile. Argentina XV claimed the Americas Rugby Championship 2019 title last year, but will it be able to defend the championship this year as well?
For more information, check out the official schedule below:
Superclásico de las Américas
Superclásico de las Américas (also known as the Super classic of the Americas) is an annual football match between the national teams of Argentina and Brazil. It was founded in 2011 and has been played five times, with Brazil winning the four previous editions. However, the tables were turned as Messi scored the only goal of the game and won the trophy for team Argentina at King Saud University Stadium, Riyadh on 15th November 2019.
In 2011 and 2012, these games were alternately played over two legs; one leg in Brazil and one in Argentina. However, the game format changed in 2014, and the games are now played one-off at a neutral venue.
The 2020 match is said to take place in Brazil in October, but the exact dates are yet to be announced officially. It’s only a matter of time until we find out if team Argentina will continue to celebrate their victory this year as well.
31 Oct: Halloween
The month of October won’t be complete without its famous Halloween festival. This holiday is also perfectly in sync with so many online casino games that have characters ranging from zombies and mummies to fairies and dragons.
Since the ingredients are already there, all you have to do is to stir up some creative juice in that marketing cauldron for scary-good results!
2 Nov: Festival of Death (Día de los Muertos), Mexico
The festival of death – the day when people do not mourn for the loss of loved ones but express love and respect for them instead. Although this tradition originated in Mexico, it is celebrated all across Latin America with colorful marigolds, sugar skulls, vibrant costumes, Latino music, and of course, food.
These are all essential parts of this holiday, and they are so popular that these elements can be seen in several online casino games these days. Esqueleto Explosivo is a very good example here. So, if you have created or featured online slots inspired by the Festival of Death, this is your time to celebrate with your customers in Latin America!
7 Nov: Copa CONMEBOL Sudamericana Final
Some might even claim that Copa Sudamericana is South America’s equivalent of the Europa League. The final match will be played at the Estadio Mario Alberto Kempes in Córdoba, Argentina on 7th November. This is the 19th edition of the CONMEBOL Sudamericana, and the winner will earn the right to play against the winners of the 2020 Copa Libertadores in the 2021 Recopa Sudamericana. They will also automatically qualify for the 2021 Copa Libertadores group stage.
In 2019, Independiente del Valle overcame all odds to win their first Copa Sudamericana title after beating the Argentinian team Colón with 3 – 1.
21 Nov: 2020 Copa Libertadores Final, Rio de Janeiro
Just like Copa Sudamericana, the winners of this tournament will play against the winners of the 2020 Copa Sudamericana in the 2021 Recopa Sudamericana and advance straight to the 2021 Copa Libertadores group stage. But what makes this tournament even more exciting is that winners will also qualify for the 2020 FIFA Club World Cup in Qatar. The defending champion is a Brazilian team called Flamengo, and they participated in the 2019 FIFA Club World Cup for the first time in the club’s history.
26 Nov: Thanksgiving (Puerto Rico)
Thanksgiving might be a well-known American holiday, but one thing people might not know is that Puerto Rico adopted it when they became a U.S. Territory in the late 1800s. It is also called Día de Acción de Gracias in Puerto Rico, and families usually spend time together and have a special Thanksgiving dinner before going on a shopping spree for the next two days.
But for those players who would rather rest on a couch and test their luck at home, you can reward them with free bonuses and extra spins for their dedication.
27, 30 Nov: Black Friday and Cyber Monday
Black Friday and Cyber Monday are regarded as two of the biggest shopping days of the year. Although the idea behind both days originated in the U.S., this period is a worldwide shopping frenzy that even Latin Americans won’t be able to resist.
Black Friday used to be more focused on retails, but because of its unstoppable popularity, even major brands started to adopt this day to slash prices across the board. Cyber Monday, on the other hand, is the pure online version of Black Friday. According to Adobe Analytics, Cyber Monday mobile transactions generated $3.1 billion (€2.87 billion) with total online sales reaching a record of $9.4 billion (€8.7 billion) in 2019.
Whether you are an iGaming affiliate, operator, or provider, if you have been secretly planning some jaw-dropping deals, these days are the best time to unleash them.
Nov – Dec: The 127th Argentine Polo Open Championship (Campeonato Argentino Abierto de Polo)
An addition to the exciting football games happening in November is the legendary Argentine Polo Open Championship (Campeonato Argentino Abierto de Polo). It is the fifth-oldest polo competition in the world and considered as the most important interclub international polo championship to date. Since 1893, this spectacular event has taken place annually at the Campo Argentino de Polo of Palermo, Buenos Aires.
If we talk about sports in Argentina, Polo might not be the first thing that would come to mind. In fact, Argentina is known as the “Mecca of Polo,” and the standard of polo in Argentina is widely regarded as the best in the world. What’s more interesting is that seven out of ten best polo players in the world are from Argentina alone.
With such a high reputation in hand, the 127th Argentine Polo Open Championship is definitely one of the most important sports events for online bookies who want to target the Argentinian sports betting market.
25 – 31 December: Christmas Holidays
December is the joyful season of holidays, and it is also the time when Mexican workers receive an annual benefit called Aguinaldo. In Brazil, employees are also entitled to receive an extra paycheck between November and December. With extra money in their pockets and free time to spare, this is a good chance for operators and sportsbooks to convince users to participate in online poker tournaments or bet on your websites.
Other South American Football Cups
Apart from the major sports events in Latin America that are mentioned above, here are a few more important football matches that are worth mentioning in this article.
- 8, 22 Mar: Copa México
- 18 Feb – 7 May: CONCACAF Champions League
- 31 May: 2020 Copa de la Superliga Argentina
- 4 – 7 Jun: CONCACAF Nations League Final
- 16 Sep: Copa do Brasil Final
- 5, 12 Nov: Copa Colombia Final
- Mid-Dec: Copa Argentina
Wrapping it up
Before we conclude our 2020 marketing calendar for the Latin America iGaming Industry, here is a compiled list of all the major holidays and sports events in Latin America:
- 1 Jan: New Year
- 6 Jan: Three Kings Day/ Epiphany/ Día de Los Reyes
- 14 Feb: Valentine’s Day
- 19 Feb: Sportsman’s Day (É Dia do Esportista no Brasil)
- 20, 27 Feb: 2020 Recopa Sudamericana
- February Whole Month – Carnival (Carnaval)
- 24 Feb – 1 Mar: Tennis – 2020 Chile Open
- 08 Mar: Women’s Day
- 9 – 14 Mar: 2019-2020 Basketball Champions League Americas BCLA Americas Finals
- 15 Mar: World’s Consumer Right Day
- 17 Mar: Saint Patrick’s Day (St. Paddy’s Day, el Día de San Patricio)
- 1 Apr: April Fools’ Day
- 12 Apr: Easter
- 25 – 29 May: Hot Sales, Mexico
- 12 Jun – Dia dos Namorados
- Jun 12 – Jul 12 (Argentina, Colombia) – Copa América
- 15 Aug – 12 Sep: 2020 Americas Rugby Championship
- October: Superclásico de las Américas
- 31 Oct: Halloween
- 2 Nov: Festival of Death (Día de los Muertos), Mexico
- 7 Nov: Copa CONMEBOL Sudamericana Final
- 21 Nov: 2020 Copa Libertadores Final, Rio de Janeiro
- 26 Nov: Thanksgiving (Puerto Rico)
- 27, 30 Nov: Black Friday and Cyber Monday
- Nov – Dec: The 127th Argentine Polo Open Championship (Campeonato Argentino Abierto de Polo)
- 25 – 31 December: Christmas Holidays
Now that you have the dates of major holidays and sports events in Latin America to use as your advantage, plan relevant content and marketing materials early to create successful iGaming marketing campaigns for Latin America. Last but not least, don’t forget to pay attention to the linguistic differences between each Latin American country, for even more precise localization. It is all about creating the right content at the right time for the right audience.
And remember to check the dates again for your 2021 iGaming marketing ideas for Latin America. The dates might change but the opportunities stay the same.
How did you like May Thawdar Oo’s blog post “2020 Latin America Marketing Calendar for iGaming Businesses”? Let us know in the comments if you have anything to add, have another content idea for iGaming blog posts, or just want to say “hello.” 🙂