GPWA Times Magazine - Issue 54 - November 2022

Understanding Regulation Having a strong understanding of a market’s rules and regulations is always important, but as Ontario is a newly regulated market, that importance increases. While affiliates won’t need their own license to operate in Ontario, regulated operators are only permitted to work with affiliates who promote licensed brands. If an affiliate is also promoting offshore brands, or breaks other regulations outlined by the Ontarian government, the operator will almost certainly be fined. To thrive in the new Ontarian market, it’s essential for affiliates to only promote regulated brands. Affiliates need to closely follow the rules put forward by the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO), as operators will very likely reconsider deals with affiliates who cause them to incur fines. For both parties to be successful, they need to work together to ensure the regulations are being followed. For example, operators must only onboard players who are aged 19 and over and located in Ontario when they wager. Affiliates should therefore clearly include information on these restrictions on their webpages and ensure their content only targets users 19 and older. Strict Rules on Player Bonuses & Inducements One of the major differences in the Ontarian market compared to the majority of U.S. markets relates to how affiliates and operators can promote iGaming to their audiences. The use of any promotional inducements, like offering bonuses or promo codes to new users, is prohibited, unless operators inform their players of such offers through direct marketing after they’ve signed up. Given this difference to similar U.S. iGaming markets, even though affiliates may be working with the same operators in the U.S., for Ontario they’ll in fact need an updated marketing strategy. Given the large role bonuses tend to play when customers choose a gaming or sports betting program, this is a significant difference. Two Verticals in One In the U.S., as newly regulated iGaming markets have gone live, they have typically only regulated one vertical at a time, such as sports betting or casino. There are currently only a handful of American states that have regulated both the sportsbook and casino verticals. In contrast, Ontario has launched with both verticals fromDay 1, allowing affiliates to create iCasino as well as sports betting content. This gives affiliates the opportunity to market both sportsbook and casino for the Ontarian market, which becomes a major advantage for an affiliate who already promotes brands in both spaces. It also provides affiliates the ability to cross-sell users two products, by showcasing how users can play both sportsbook and casino at a single brand. Aswith any freshly regulatedmarket, affiliateswho move into thisnewspace will need tomake sure they create content that’s localized for the Ontarianmarket . . . Ontario has a rich sports culture, with multiple sports teams playing across a variety of their most populous cities . . . Therefore, affiliates need to look to createunique content that’s tailored to the local scene. MAPLE LEAF UNDER THE MICROSCOPE G P W A t i m e s . o r g 26