From gamblers to recreational sports bettors to Sharps to investors, we’ve always maintained a focus on attracting and nurturing those individuals who view sports betting not as gambling, but as another investment vehicle to include in their investment portfolio among 401K, stocks, bonds, options, etc. Think about it. When you understand the financial markets as the NASDAQ and NYSE are influenced by uncontrollable factors such as big player moves, and price swings resulting from psychological and emotional factors, you’ve got to wonder how much data-driven insight can play a roll to win. But when you look at the sports market and compare the same influential factors the financial markets, you come to realize there is lower risk of external influence on the outcome to win. At the very lease, data-driven insight can play a huge influence in determining your profits and losses. Remember, you only need to win greater than 52.4% of the time win and profit. But that’s not what this post is about. This post is a breakdown of the $3 billion dollar sports betting market and the culture of the type of people who wager on sports; from your degenerate sports gambler, to your sports investor to you Sharps and more. You might find this an eye opened to which type of sports bettor you are, and the type of bettor or punter you desire to become from a shift in sport betting strategy. 10. The Addict This punter cannot sit and watch a game without laying down money on it. The natural adrenaline of rooting for your favorite team is not enough, and only money on the line will give him his hight. This guys is not that hardcore sports gambler, as ‘The Addict’ is probably betting on every single game he can afford at the online sportsbooks. But maybe you don’t bet at the books, but you can still fit into this category if you’re the laying it down on the fantasy football. If this sport bettor gets no ‘high’ or gain from watching a game other than bragging rights, then there is little interest to watch. But then again, a little wager does make it more interesting. 9. The Prick You know this guy. He tries to settle every frigging little thing with a wager. He’s strong in his opinion and tends to dominate others who fall to his whim. There is no win-win with this type of bettor has he’ll throw money on a game just for the sake to win and put you down. He’ll take the opposing team…regardless of odds, and somewhat of an overzealous contrarian. You may be this guy if you tend to decide a agreement with your wallet every time. Whether a direct bet on a rivalry matchup or taking the prop bets to fulfil his ego. Win or lose, he’ll follow up with a double or nothing, or an excuse for his loss ….followed up with another bet. However you slice it…its a lose-lose situation with this bettor. 8. The Analyst He’s a number cruncher. He’ll look at historical data, forecasting models and build his own Sports betting system. He’s a serious sports bettor, and if he figures our the formula and adheres to sound bankroll management, can become a serious player as a sports investor. This punter views the game as a number problem. He’ll look at the key numbers in NFL betting, or key statistics in handicapping MLB betting. He’ll always (video) trust the numbers, and never his gut. Only since the last 5 to 10 years we’ve seen an evolution in punters and handicappers approach to sports predictions and betting systems, all thanks to the web and plethora of data available. Its turned the edge in the David and Goliath battle between the sports bettor or handicapper versus the online sportsbooks. 7. The Sports Investor & Sharps For the sake of giving a general overview of the types of sports bettors, I’ve combined these the sports investor and Sharps profiles as there are a number of similar characteristics in their betting philosophy, but with the major difference between their betting frequency, and investment of time and money. But the primary similarity between the sports investor and Sharp is their philosophy of sports betting as an investment, and not gambling. The sports investor is the guy who takes a methodical approach to betting decisions. Unlike the recreational sports bettor, the sports investor separates emotions from his decision making. He makes his betting decisions from sound betting strategies mostly driven from data-driven betting systems, and a methodical approach to his bankroll management. The sports investor relies heavily on the numbers to influence his sports pick decisions. He’ll make his sports picks based on statistical analysis, combined with gaps in lines at the sports books. And like the Sharp, he’ll hold multiple sports book accounts where he’ll shop the lines to take advantage of miss-pricing. The sports investor and Sharp share similar views. They both believe in the numbers, not the gut for their picks. Similar to ‘The Analysts’, these guys rely heavily on the numbers – both game statistics and the bookie lines. But unlike the Analysts, the Sharp and in some cases the sports investor, may have direct or indirect insider information from their connections or the handicappers they rely on. The sports investor and Sharps seek value at the books, and take strong consideration towards leveraging the public opinion and apply contrarian betting strategies (and even an arbitrage betting strategy) The Sharp on one-hand will have his own advanced sports betting system, and make sports betting or investing a career. He invests heavily in time and money at the books to profit, knowing that he only needs to win over 52.4% of the time to profit long term. He doesn’t take to heart the short term losses, knowing a long term view on his investments pays off. The Sharp will typically stick to one or two sports only. And if he’s a heavy bettor, he may get preferential treatment at the bookies to shave a few points to his side. The sports investor however does not make betting a career, and diversifies his sports investing to multiple sports from NFL to MLB to Euro football and Horses. The sports investor views the sports market as another investment vehicle, just as he likely invests in the equity markets. He will either self-manage his sports investments and subscribe to sports advisory services as handicappers or sports investment services to choose his sports picks. As an alternative, the sports investor also considers putting his bankroll with a sports investment management service to manage his bankroll to his risk tolerance levels and group strategy. In this case, the management company will simply take a percentage off the wins, or overall services. If they win, you win. 6. The Recreational Bettor The recreational sports bettor make up the majority of bettors and punters at the online sportsbooks. These guys wager for the entertainment value it offers. They’re not addicts, they’re not degenerate gamblers. They’ve heard and may apply some betting strategies, but they don’t follow a prudence in strategy. They know the importance of bankroll management, and apply it in some cases, but like most can easily be coerced away and fall to temptation to drop more than they should on a wager. The recreational sports bettor still connects emotion to the money. Losses hurt…and f*ck, we’re all human so ya it hurts. But the losses are gets these guys, and either get scared away for awhile, or will go heavy and break away from their bankroll strategy to make up for the losses. Sportsbooks love these guys. They work hard to make it fun to lose money, and entice them with all sorts of bonuses. And just when the recreational bettor has won, the sportsbooks will work hard to cross them over to the casino or online poker. But over time, the recreational sports bettor will go one of a few ways. A small few will become degenerate gamblers. Others will take sports betting more serious, educate themselves more on winning betting strategies (or why 90% of sports bettors lose) and evolve their perspective from an emotional mindset to an investment mindset, and subscribe to sports investment services like IntelligentBettingTips.com. Other recreational sports bettors will simply stay the course, or fall into one of the other sports betting personas in this post. 5. The Prop Master You’ve got to wonder if the Prop Masters are either gambling addicts, or get a similar high to betting as doing lines. The Prop Masters bet on everything else behind the games moneyline, over/under or ATS. These guys wager not just on intricacies of the game itself like if the Seahawks Russell Wilson will throw for 100 yards in the game, to the over/under on the coin toss. The Prop Master doesn’t stop at sports. He’ll bet on political elections, celebrity rehab remissions, whether Justin Beiber will be declared an addict before age of 30, and pretty anything that the sports books offer. These guys thrive on unconventional bets – which maybe just makes certain things in life a little more interesting. 4. The Lacky You don’t find many Lacky’s in North America other than Vegas and Atlantic City, but you sure as hell will in London and throughout Europe. The Lacky is the guys who loiters at the betting shop or at the track all day, but claims he earns income from some other job. These guys tend to get caught up with getting in the bad books of loan sharks and family, having borrowed wads of cash and only soon after losing it on a bet. He’s easy to spot as he’ll typically be in the same place every day, same clothes, and a rather homeless look and feel to him…but yet personable with a temper like a stick of dynamite if he’s losing his wager. There is not much difference between the Lacky and the degenerate gambler, other than he’s a known to the local community, and spends day at the betting shops. The degenerate gambler however is more invisible to the public eye, earns income from a job or career, but you’d likely never be able to spot him in the room. Some of the most well known sports players and ballers in football, soccer and basketball are/were degenerate gamblers – but you’d never see it among their lifestyle. 3. The Psychopath Not in the literal sense, but the psychopath bettor is the guy who just can’t say no to a bet. In the latter post I touched on this type of sports bettor. He’s that baller or high-profile guy, and even the neighbour next door, who just can’t say no to a bet. I call him the psychopath sports bettor as he’s felt the drug of adrenaline from winning, whether from past experiences as getting that girls number at the bar, the track meet, beating the guy at the stop light, or the adrenaline surge you get from skydiving. The psychopath gambler seeks that high and channels betting on sports betting. They can control the urge, but have a difficult time walking away from a bet as they’re chasing that hight. To these guys, betting on sports is simply an easy outlet, that’s accessible but damaging over time. 2. The Gambler A good online sportsbook will watch for betting patterns among other things in a customers account to flag someone as a degenerate gambler. The other books unfortunately milk these guys at whatever cost. The degenerate sports gambler is the guy who just cannot say no at whatever cost. He’s the guy who is about too, or has, lost it all. Between becoming financially broke and losing the wife and kids, he’ll soon evolve to The Lacky status. The sports gambler faces major losses in his bankroll, and somehow tends to win it all back at varying times. Each time, he says he’s done or thinks he’s figured it out and bets big again. If you believe in the laws of attraction – stay away from this guy. And if know someone who already fits the bill, do what you can to get him or her some help. 1. Richy Rich The 1%. You may have never met this guy, but you’ll either read about him or catch a documentary about him. Richy Rich is the sports bettor who throws money on a sports game just because he can. He takes little to no consideration in the numbers, and has no bankroll strategy (and why would he need it?). Ricky Rich can afford to lose, but doesn’t like. Why? Unless he earned his wealth from a silver spoon, he’s good at making money and takes it personal when he loses it. If you know this guy – good for you cause he’s got connections. If you don’t, try to make a connection. Not for the sake of betting on sports or selling him your sports predictions and picks, but he’s connected. Laws of attraction friends. Bonus: The Al Capones A recent European Union investigation found that 530 soccer matches from 2008-2011 were “suspicious,” meaning THEY WERE PROBABLY FIXED BY LARGE INTERNATIONAL CRIME SYNDICATES AKA DA MAWB. Mafias around the world might not be hanging out of Model-T Fords and shooting up bars with Tommy guns, but they sure as hell are doing very illegal things, namely laundering money and betting on sports for income. But since this is the mob and not just some weiner in Hollywood hunched over a computer making bets, they put a gun to some weiner’s head to come up with smart bets and then fix the matches.