GPWA Times Magazine - Issue 4 - April 2008

Affiliate Manager Interview Series | GPWA TIMES 39 LawrenceWilson | PlayShare What distinguishes your Casi- noShare, Grand Mondial and PokerShare brands from the rest of the market? The compa- ny is relatively new, so I think the main things that make it stand out from the crowd are a willingness to push the bound- aries and an unfailing drive to succeed. What are your target markets for each property? What are the player demographics at each site? We do not reserve specific brands for specific markets, so all are geared for a worldwide audience. We do localize, however, and offer full-language English, French, German, Italian, Spanish and Japanese products. In a nut- shell, we see CasinoShare and PokerShare being “fun” and “youthful” brands, while Grand Mondial is the more elegant and sophisticated brand. It’s a good mix. In addition to revenue share and CPA, you offer a Hybrid CPA/rev share program. What is that? And why are you offer- ing it? A hybrid affiliate com- mission deal is one where af- filiates earn both a CPA and a percentage of the revenue gen- erated by the player. Although both the CPA and the revenue share percentage are less than the standalone versions, it does allow the affiliate to earn some instant ROI with the CPA, as well as to reap the long-term benefits of the traditional rev- enue share model. We pride ourselves on our ability, and willingness, to strike unique deals with affiliates, and are not tied down to the offerings on our Web sites. How did you get started in this business? Quite by accident, actually. After leaving univer- sity, I had to get a job, any job. The job I got just happened to be in the online gambling in- dustry, and the rest is history! What do your brands do differ- ently that helps with conver- sions? Through constant anal- ysis of Web site activity, player activity and affiliate feedback, we are able to quickly make small tweaks that make big differences. Exciting bonuses, including free play, free spins and generous loyalty programs, also help draw the new players in, and a solid retention strat- egy built on personalized ser- vice keeps them coming back. Localizing content and mar- keting is one of the keys to success these days. How does PlayShare help webmasters localize their marketing ef- forts? We are fortunate to have a really diverse affiliate management team, with spe- cialists in most of the major language markets (English, French, German, Italian, Span- ish and Japanese). The team works closely with the casino and poker management teams and affiliates alike, in order to ensure that the brands’ ef- ficacy in these markets is at an optimum level. With an innate knowledge of these markets and products, PlayShare Part- ners is at the forefront of the drive into new markets. What are your three keys to success for an affiliate? Pa- tience, perseverance and prin- ciples. How is the integration of Play- Share Affiliates and G3partner going? When do you expect it to be completed? What have been the greatest challenges in combining the companies? Unfortu- nately, the integration is taking longer than expected. Althoughwe have launched a “lite” PlayShare Partners Web site, allowing af- filiates to signup and/ or login to both pro- grams from one place, the fully integrated PlayShare Partners is still not ready. The primary reason for the delay is the complexities of seamlessly integrating two separate track- ing and reporting systems. It’s not a simple job, and we want the new program to be an in- dustry leader. Like eating at a great restaurant, although you tend to wait a little longer than usual, the result is worth the wait. What’s the first concert you at- tended in person? Paul Simon, Cape Town, 1992. What’s your favorite board game? I am a Trivial Pursuit monster. If you were casting a movie in which you played the lead role, who would you pick to play your romantic interest? Definitely my wife, Kate. Or maybe Scarlett Johansson. He’s hungry to succeed, and he’ll eat anything! *Due to space constraints, we could not print the interviews in their entirety. See the complete text on their profile pages at