GPWA Times Magazine - Issue 57 - November 2023

Your Winning Playbook iGaming Affiliation in the US Join GPWA Page 69 NOVEMBER 2023 The Undervalued Secret of Online Casino Content Leveraging Business Intelligence Tools Photo Recaps from Amsterdam & Barcelona

A wave of momentum Greetings and welcome to the 57th edition of the GPWA Times Magazine! It has been a busy and productive year as we’ve enjoyed returning to a regular schedule of trade shows, reminding us that the iGaming affiliate industry remains as dynamic as ever as we enter the final quarter of 2023. It’s been inspiring to travel to London, Amsterdam and Barcelona to witness firsthand the remarkable energy and optimism permeating these shows. Many of them have recorded all-time attendance and exhibitor numbers, breathing new life into our community. Our next stop is Malta for SiGMA Europe 2023, where this issue will be distributed. We sincerely hope the content in this new edition will be a valuable compass for your affiliate business. Alongside our regular departments and member interviews, our cover story, penned by Erica Anderson from Paysafe’s Income Access, delves into the intricate, yet potentially rewarding, U.S. market, which has witnessed substantial growth and expansion over the past few years. Elsewhere, Matthew Showell from Snap Call Media points out the scarcity of high-quality content in the online casino space and elaborates on how affiliates can seize this opportunity. Also, John Wright from StatsDrone provides an insightful breakdown of a variety of business intelligence tools that should be in your arsenal. We also feature sports betting site rankings from and present photo galleries from two of the aforementioned shows – iGB L!ve in Amsterdam and the SBC Summit in Barcelona. Enjoy the new issue and we hope to see you in Malta! And don’t forget, a subscription to the GPWA Times Magazine is free. To ensure you don’t miss another issue, simply visit Michael Corfman SUBSCRIPTIONS For a FREE subscription to the GPWA Times Magazine, visit ADVERTISING To advertise in the GPWA Times Magazine, please e-mail: ISSN 1941-9872 (print) ISSN 2834-2348 (online) Executive Director: Michael Corfman Program Director: Anthony Telesca Program Manager: Nicole Sims Member Services: Richard Bard Nancy Troy Editor-in-Chief: Gary Trask Associate Editors: Dan Ippolito Jarrod LeBlanc Designers: George Choi Zoran Maksimovic´ LETTER FROM THE DIRECTOR 4 G P W A t i m e s . o r g

TABLE OF CONTENTS Departments 4 Letter from the Director • 8 By the Numbers • 10 Quotables • 12 GPWA Poll 14 From the Forums • 50 iGaming Directory Rankings • 52 Affiliate Interview Series • 62 Sponsors 64 Affiliate Manager Interview Series • 68 APCW Wall of Shame • 70 Events Calendar Online Casinos are Made for Prime Time The moment is now for affiliates to jump on the online casino content train, according to Snap Call Media CEO Matthew Showell, because this vehicle has all the ingredients: excitement, visual effects, and drama. iGB L!ve Amsterdam and SBC Summit Barcelona Photo Galleries If you missed out on attending iGB L!ve Amsterdam in July or SBC Summit Barcelona in September, don’t worry as we captured all of the behind-the-scenes excitement as record numbers of attendees packed the venues. Back to the Future with BI Even though business intelligence tools have been around for a long time, StatsDrone co-founder John Wright explains they can be utilized as much as SEO for affiliate marketing. 30 Unraveling the Intricacies of the US Market The American iGaming market has proven to be quite complex. Income Access VP of Marketing & Product Erica Anderson helps us navigate the inner workings. 20 38 24 44 G P W A t i m e s . o r g 6

100 SPEAKERS 70+ EXHIBITORS 2,000+ DELEGATES 5-7 MARCH 2024 WINDSOR BARRA HOTEL | RIO DE JANEIRO FOR MORE INFORMATION PLEASE VISIT SBCEVENTS.COM TIAGO GOMES Socio Ambiel Avogados THOMAS CARVALHAES Managing Director Vaidebob FELLIPE FRAGA Chief Business Officer EstrelaBet PAULA YOUNG Head of Commercial Activations & International Relations SAF Botafogo ANDRE GELFI Diretor-Presidente Instituto Brasileiro de Jogo Responsável (IBJR) XABIER MARIBONA CEO Grupo Retabet SPEAKER PREVIEW JOSÉ FRANCISCO MANSSUR Special Advisor to the Executive Secretary Ministry of Finance of Brazil LIANA BAZANELA Diretora Executiva de Marketing e Negócios Sport Club Internacional BRAZIL’S SENIOR EXECUTIVE BETTING & GAMING EVENT

BY THE NUMBERS €600 The new daily deposit limit for players in Spain in the proposed legislation from The Ministry of Consumer Affairs. 60% The percentage of Brazilians that placed an online sports bet during the six-month time frame of March-August 2023, according to Playtech’s Responsible Gambling: Consumer Insights and Trends in Latin America report. 77% The percentage of online sports bets in the U.S. that are made through the legal market, according to the American GamingAssociation, as compared to 44% in 2019. $6.1 billion The amount of money that Flutter Entertainment generated during H1 2023 with its U.S.-facing brand FanDuel, capturing 47%market share in the online sportsbook space and a 23% share of iCasino. €900 million The amount of income in gambling taxes generated for the Dutch government in 2022, almost doubling the amount from 2021. 88% The percentage of suspicious activity reports received by Germany’s Bailiwick of Guernsey’s Financial Intelligence Unit that were online gaming related. G P W A t i m e s . o r g 8

AU$100 million The amount that the New SouthWales government is proposing to spend to help reduce gambling harm across the Australian state. 18% The reinstated taxrate in Ukraine applied to the gross gaming revenue of onlinecasinos, which had previously been abolished due to martial law. $41.3 million The amount of money that was exploited from Australian-Curaçaoan online casino in September 2023 after unauthorized transfers were made from a number of its hot wallets, according to the FBI. 56.4% The percentage that the net profit for Polish sports betting operator STSHolding grew in 1H 2023, coinciding with its acquisition by Entain. kr10,000 The amount a Twitch streamerwas fined by the Danish gambling regulator Spillemyndigheden, after it was discovered that the individual advertised gambling services without the appropriate permission. 9 G P W A t i m e s . o r g

QUOTABLES Q U O T A B L E S “It’s as simple as this: people should not be betting with money they do not have. The Australian Government remains committed to protecting Australians from gambling harms. Legislating a ban on the use of credit cards for online gambling will help to protect vulnerable Australians and their loved ones.” —Hon. Michelle Rowland, Minister for Communications, after a ban on using credit cards for online gambling was proposed in September “Our research shows gamblingmarketing during Premier League weekends is inescapable. Football fans are bombardedwith gamblingmarketing through various channels, making it a normal part of football consumption.” —Dr. Raffaello Rossi, Lecturer in Marketing at the University of Bristol Business School in the U.K., following a study that monitored live televised coverage, sports programming, sports news radio, and social media over the weekend of 11-14 August “The belief that amonopolymodel is essential for safer gambling does not alignwith the current European trend. Nearly every other European country has implemented some formof licensing system, successfully prioritizing player safetywithin a regulatory framework that provides clear rules for companies to follow.” —Maarten Haijer, Secretary General of the European Gaming and Betting Association, after the EGBA encouraged Norway to transition from a monopoly system to a licensing model for online gambling “Iwould bet this deal gets terminated in three years for a lack ofmarket share. It’ll be too expensive for PENN if they’re seeing the projectedmarket share gains [or lack thereof ].” —David VanEgmond, founder and CEO of Bettor Capital and former EVP of strategy at Barstool Sports and FanDuel, regarding the PENN Entertainment ESPN Bet alliance G P W A t i m e s . o r g 10

Do You Use Banners on Your Sites? GPWA MEMBER POLL Are banners still relevant on affiliate websites today, or have they become outdated and ineffective? GPWA member “dannyx” went to our forums with this query recently, adding that he has always been an opponent and has never used a single banner on any site, but was experimenting with using one. We used the question as a weekly poll question asking members if they still incorporated banners into their website design, or if they thought they have become outdated and ineffective in capturing audience attention. As seen below, the response from the GPWA membership gave a slight edge to the pro contingent, with both sides providing compelling comments to support their position. For more details regarding this poll and to view all of the feedback, visit Comments from GPWA members The Gooner PRIVATE MEMBER Given the rigmarole many jurisdictions have for exact wording of offers, I find it useful to have a banner that spells things out exactly as the client / partner wants it to be displayed . . . So, I am OK with banners with moving parts. I am OK with large banners, as long as they offer facts and details. NoDepositCasinos PUBLIC MEMBER I stopped using banners. I found them distracting, and their click-through rate was low and still decreasing. AVC-Invest PRIVATE MEMBER Yes, I use banners also. But I’m not as keen on them as I used to be. I think they can cause an issue with the look and feel of a website. G P W A t i m e s . o r g 12 38%No 48%Yes 14%Mixed (some sites, yes, some sites, no)

FROM THE FORUMS The of In the ever-evolving world of online casinos, the debate over search engine optimization (SEO) and Exact Match Domains (EMDs) continues to spark curiosity and controversy. Do unique domain names like “casino-xx” or “online-casino-yy” still hold the power to influence SEO rankings? That was the question posed by GPWA member “CASINO GOD” in a recent forum post, and his fellow members were more than happy to weigh in on this age-old question and share their insights into the perpetually changing landscape of search engine optimization. Excerpts of the thread are below, but to view the thread in its entirety, visit To read thousands of other forum posts like this one, plus industry news and complete archives of our weekly GPWA newsletters and GPWA Times Magazine, please visit *This thread was edited for clarity and length. G P W A t i m e s . o r g 14 Domain Impact on Names SEO

15 G P W A t i m e s . o r g #1 CASINO GOD 8 August 2023, 8:05 a.m. Private Member Regarding domains, do any of you have unique domain names that evoke thoughts of casinos, like “casino-xx” or “online-casino-yy?” I’m especially interested in hearing from those who have had success with SEO. Does the domain name genuinely aid in SEO? Alternatively, for those of you achieving good results without unique domain names, could you share what has been beneficial in your experience, within what you’re comfortable revealing? “ Reply With Quote #2 chaumi 8 August 2023, 6:19 p.m. Private Member I saw a test (carried out by a highly respected source) a couple of years back that showed/ proved that an exact match domain (or a domain with keywords in it) performed better that one without (on the same subject, and with equally strong on-point content and structure, links etc.). Indeed, that test also showed that a hyphenated keyword domain also performed better than (the same) one without hyphens. Whether that’s still the case, only someone that’s done it recently will know. And then, whether it’s the same tomorrow or the day after is anyone’s guess (because the algorithms can change daily, or in one hit in a major update). There’s some obvious logic to this. Keywords in a URL tell (in addition to the on-page content and other markers) a search engine what the page is about. So, theoretically, if you have, there is a boost (of some sort, impossible to quantify) that tells the SE it’s about online casino. You then build a page, now that tells a marker it’s about “online casino bonuses.” What real value that boost has is questionable (and certainly that would only have any real value as an addition to on-page content that talked with authority about ‘online casino bonuses’), but it’s very likely still an added positive in the eyes of an algorithm (as well, potentially, as a user’s/searchers eyes). Would it then have an advantage of any sort over online-casino-bonuses if the content/SE signals were equally strong on both? Very likely not, I’d suggest. When the algorithm has enough info to know what the page is about, it knows what the page is about. You will hear from EMD supporters and those that have a totally different view. I think there have been other threads in the past debating the same question. Very difficult to prove either way, too many other factors can influence performance. The EMD lovers (personally, I am one) will always believe they have extra value, the naysayers will always argue against it. Both will have examples that support their belief, but (I think) it would be daft for either one to stand up and say (with any degree of certitude) that the opposing view to theirs is wrong. “ Reply With Quote #3 universal4 8 August 2023, 6:33 p.m. Forum Administrator Good research, chaumi. I agree doing such tests are very difficult based on some of the following. Were they using the same keyword? Were the domains/ sites created the same day? Did they have backlinks from the exact same sources and pages, even if both sites had good and strong content? If the content was not 100% duplicated (obviously you would not want that), (obviously you would not want that) one of them might have had a little better content. Agree that having keywords in the domain can and likely does help a small amount, as long as many other factors are covered. I do think that when it comes to getting a start, online-casino.fake is on a little better footing then xyzxyzxyz.fake. Interesting about the hyphens, since some folks will jump up and down and say that is the worst thing you can do in a name. And you are correct, we have discussed this quite a number of times over the years. “ Reply With Quote

FROM THE FORUMS 16 #5 PaulEchere 9 August 2023, 6:27 a.m. Private Member Just one thing to add about EMDs (in addition to the things already mentioned): It’s important to keep in mind that you can really have just one key word in your main domain name. While ranking well for one KW may be beneficial, you definitely aren’t creating your website for the sake of one KW (unless you are, that might also be an appropriate approach depending on your goals). Betting everything on being successful with an EMD’s main KW might not be worth it, unless it comes at a low cost. “ Reply With Quote #6 dannyx 10 August 2023, 10:55 a.m. Public Member EMD does not exclude the branded side. EMD is also a brand. Nothing prevents you from running branding, such as space theme or hundreds of others, or your own unique branded UX. Any domain will be for nothing if the site is weak. If the site is unique and great, it will do well in many different EMD or branded domains. Although to me this distinction is strange. Look at smaller businesses. You go for a walk and see an ice cream stand, often the signboard is simply ice cream and not Tropical Delights, at least you immediately know what is there. With a website even more so, because you can only see the address. Nowadays, there are so many super domain extensions that you can choose a super domain other than .com, .net and many other already obsolete extensions. “ Reply With Quote #4 robyroy 9 August 2023, 3:49 a.m. Private Member It is kind of risky to have an EMD if you have no strong experience in SEO, because it is really easy to over optimize your main keyword. In my experience, it’s more likely to succeed with a strong optimized landing page than an EMD. So, forget EMDs. Find a brandable name and go for it! “ Reply With Quote #7 wonderpunter 12 August 2023, 2:59 a.m. Public Member It doesn’t really matter, it used to, but not anymore. You can be called outlook India and eat every affiliate site for breakfast even if your content is AI subpar. “ Reply With Quote It is kind of risky to have an EMD if you have no strong experience in SEO ... In my experience, it’s more likely to succeed with a strong optimized landing page than an EMD. So, forget EMDs. Find a brandable name and go for it!

17 #8 nivlac10 28 August 2023, 4:46 a.m. Brand New Member EMD works, though it might not be as strong as it used to be. I suggest you can start by selecting a GEO of your liking, start researching the user behavior in SERPs. Like, Thai market is mostly using PromptPay, you may do an EMD like Prepare a good content and start working your way up within weeks! People say that SEO is a long-term game, but my recent projects have been getting a good amount of clicks within the first month. “ Reply With Quote #9 universal4 28 August 2023, 6:42 p.m. Forum Administrator Strongly suggest against using registered trademark names of others without written permission, as they can take the domain away from you at any time. “ Reply With Quote #10 onlinebetdotcom 28 August 2023, 8:07 p.m. Public Member Having a great domain maybe will do more for branding and trust, but that still has to be earned. You will always need great content and a solid means to be different and have a niche. “ Reply With Quote #12 carl2603GL 18 September 2023, 7:51 a.m. Private Member I have found Google is giving far less importance to keyword rich domains. I think the reason for this is that they are unfairly competitive; basically, if you get a domain name first or you monopolize the keyword rich domains in your industry, then you get boosted in rankings when really your rankings should depend on E-A-T principles and real efforts like proper link building with industry leaders on thematically related sites etc., not on a domain name. “ Reply With Quote #11 Eugene Rodionov 18 September 2023, 2:40 a.m. Public Member In my experience, having an EMD isn’t as essential as it once was. But if you have a very specific domain like “casino-xx” or “online-casino-yy,” it lets users and Google’s search algorithms recognize what your website is about right away. “ Reply With Quote The EMD lovers (personally, I am one) will always believe they have extra value, the naysayers will always argue against it. Both will have examples that support their belief, but (I think) it would be daft for either one to stand up and say (with any degree of certitude) that the opposing view to theirs is wrong. P W A t i m e s . o r g

FROM THE FORUMS #13 Malikbhai 19 September 2023, 6:16 a.m. Private Member EMDs work if you’re an actual brand name that sells services and products. And people around the internet link to you, write about you, media, press, etc. You have people opening up Reddit, Quora, Trustpilot threads about you and so on. Then on top of that, your content is up to the same level as the ones that are already ranking, OR, the search patterns from searchers on Google are so strong that their algos are forced to accept your EMD as an actual company. Then, and only then, will your EMD rank for the keyword, it’s made up of. For example, and don’t rank because of their keywords, but because they’re actual bookmakers that have millions of clients, and tens of thousands of links on the internet that prove that they SELL products/ services, and aren’t an informational site. And even then, it will have the same “smallish” level of boost in search as a high-quality country-TLD would. All in all, EMDs have no value for Google Search. Zilch. For increasing CTR, provided you’re ranking for a reasonably commercial term (highly unlikely for 99.9999% of the people that post on GPWA), maybe it can help a bit, though I don’t even believe in that. “ Reply With Quote #14 content 26 September 2023, 3:24 p.m. Public Member I’ve seen other SEOs on the internet claim that it has no effect. I found that not to be true. I rank #1 for my exact match domain name, and from nearly launch I was ranked near 1-2. And by exact match, it’s a new TLD, and the key phrase is completed by the gTLD ending(.comers will tell you it’s impossible, the gTLDs are bad for SEO and do not factor in to ranking or SEO). With that being said, my site is new, and the rest of the entire site is pretty much sandboxed for every other term/page. Heading into month three, I’m hoping that will change. The three-word long tail key phrase my domain is a match for is not searched nearly as often as I thought it does, though it gets a click hereand-there (so far pretty much the only clicks I get from Google) and impressions every day for both the exact match phrase and a synonym exact match. The first two words of the domain would be part of a lot of searches, so far has only blipped in the radar once for that one in 80th place, not significant at this point. And while the three-word long tail is low competition, my brand-new site ranked above multiple other longer established sites for the handful of other sites that have the exact match (including the word in my gTLD ending) in the page titles (most their home pages), before I even started building links. Whether it will mater in the long run for other searches involving the first two words of the domain is yet to be seen, so far not. “ Reply With Quote #15 Bennett Dawson 26 September 2023, 3:31 p.m. Public Member Using EMDs will always be an advantage. In fact, some of your non-anchor links can be counted as anchor links due to the presence of the keyword in the domain name. It works so far. “ Reply With Quote Having a great domain maybe will do more for branding and trust, but that still has to be earned. You will always need great content and a solid means to be different and have a niche. G P W A t i m e s . o r g 18

By Erica Anderson UN L O CK I NG T HE J ACK P O T : Erica Anderson from Income Access explores the challenges and evolving landscape of U.S. online gambling and how affiliates can take advantage Navigating the in the US World of iGaming Affiliation G P W A t i m e s . o r g 20

Image by Dana.S / Shutterstock 21 G P W A t i m e s . o r g

Navigating the World of iGaming Affiliation in the US One of the greatest needs for affiliates right now is to ensure they have a modern site that provides consistently fresh content to entice users, and that rankswell in terms of SEO. When assessing affiliate sites in the U.S., amajor takeaway is that toomany of them have outdated designs. he U.S. has long been considered one of the most important emerging markets in the iGaming world, as it’s slowly becoming regulated with multiple new states and jurisdictions going live every year. As of mid-2023, the market was reporting revenues of $3 billion and BlueWeave Consulting forecasts it to reach $7.61 billion by 2028, demonstrating why the eyes of the iGaming industry have been upon it for so long. That doesn’t mean the U.S. market has been without its challenges, especially for affiliates. It can be tricky for affiliates to navigate the U.S. market, with each state and jurisdiction implementing its own regulatory framework, and some markets taking longer than expected to adopt regulations and open up for iGaming. With that in mind, and relying upon the expertise of the Income Access affiliate marketing team, let’s look at how the American iGaming market has grown and how affiliates can make the most of the opportunities. USMarket Overview While the overall U.S. iGaming space continues to grow and shows no signs of slowing down, the last year has been an interesting one. It stayed consistent in terms of regulatory progress with a handful of new states going live for online gaming in 2022. There are several states actively considering legislation to legalize iGaming, suggesting that the market very likely will be considerably larger within a few short years. The past year has been a particularly enlightening one from a marketing perspective. In certain markets that opened, operators overestimated on marketing budgets, with New York being a clear example of this. All the top brands were ready to battle for market share and invested significant spend in marketing, which led to exciting growth but rising costs as well. The balance has improved in New York and other states as operators adjust their marketing spend accordingly, and consider other channels. A big part of the recalibration of their marketing strategies has involved affiliate marketing, as the channel has proven to be a valuable way for brands to efficiently grow without overspending. Affiliate Best Practices for US iGaming As more and more operators are looking to affiliate marketing as a component of their U.S. strategy, it creates more potential for affiliates in the iGaming space as well, making it vital for them to keep up to date on best practices. With that in mind, one of the greatest needs for affiliates right now is to ensure they have a modern site that provides consistently fresh content to entice users, and that ranks well in terms of SEO. When assessing affiliate sites in the U.S., a major takeaway is that too many of them have outdated designs, which may lead users to conclude that the content isn’t relevant to them. Users visiting affiliate sites are also looking for up-to-date content, so affiliates should ensure they are consistently refreshing their sites with insightful blog posts, offers from operators, or other information that may be relevant to their target audience. Developing this kind of quality SEO content flow allows affiliates to organically grow their audience and increase retention rate. In terms of the content itself, another takeaway from reviewing affiliate sites is that a lot of the content is fairly similar. Differentiation is key here and though it’s typically mentioned as a focus for operators, it applies to affiliates too. Ones that can stand out with original content that offer different types of value to their audience have a strong chance of improving their SEO rank. However, best practices do not rest with affiliates alone. It is important for affiliates to work with operators who can provide affiliates with real-time reporting as part of their tracking solution. Affiliates who work with Income Access consistently mention real-time reporting to be a vital component of their partnership with us, as it allows them to optimize their campaigns in real-time and increase the amount of users they send to operator sites. G P W A t i m e s . o r g 22

Erica Anderson is VP Marketing & Product, Income Access at Paysafe. Her role includes a focus on developing the marketing and product strategy for the Income Access brand. With over a decade of industry experience, Anderson also oversees Income Access’ in-house affiliate management team, product team and its suite of digital marketing services. Asmore andmore operators are looking toaffiliate marketing as a component of their U.S. strategy, it creates more potential for affiliates in the iGaming space aswell, making it vital for themto keep up todate on best practices. When looking at the kind of deals that are popular for affiliates in the U.S., revenue share is not something that is regularly offered by operators, despite being commonplace in other markets globally. Hybrid deals have become more common in the U.S., but CPA deals remain the most popular. Affiliate Challenges andOpportunities With the U.S. being new to online gambling, one of the bigger difficulties facing affiliates is educating the market and earning consumer trust. This is a difficulty for everyone in the industry, as users are learning about all facets of iGaming – from the lingo, the different brands and products available, to where and how they are allowed to wager. Affiliates can look at this as an opportunity, as affiliate content is typically the first thing new users will read when looking for a brand to bet with. If they focus on education and creating trust with new users, affiliates are more likely to retain them as engaged members of their audience. On the topic of education, affiliates need to ensure they educate themselves constantly, as the U.S. is one of the most complex iGaming markets in terms of regulatory frameworks. Each state or jurisdiction has its own set of regulations, with some being easier for affiliates, while others may require licensing or have stricter advertising rules and restrictions. In fact, in recent months, we have seen a flurry of marketing and advertising restrictions proposed or promulgated in a number of U.S. states. Affiliates need to ensure they stay on top of all the latest regulatory developments, as even the slightest legal change can have a major impact on their promotional strategies, and potentially raise legal liability concerns. However, even the most efficient affiliates are only as good as the brands they promote, which has led to some having difficulty in this relatively young market. Some brands have limitations when compared to others in more mature markets, for example, by not offering mobile tracking to their affiliates to make real-time optimization to their campaigns or not giving them enough promotional offers to advertise to their audiences. Key Takeaways While being an affiliate in the burgeoning U.S. iGaming markets can be tricky to navigate, there’s also significant room for growth as well. If affiliates can educate their audiences on the value of online gambling in the U.S., it’ll benefit all parties and likely help other states to emulate the success and follow suit with regulation. In addition, despite there being fewer brands operating in the American market than in more mature jurisdictions such as Europe, the U.S. provides the opportunity for affiliates to work with some of the largest brands in iGaming. Despite its challenges, the U.S. remains arguably the emerging market with the greatest potential in the iGaming world, and thus, with the greatest opportunities for affiliates, with plenty of room left to grow. 23 G P W A t i m e s . o r g

The Secret Online Casino Content: to Acquiring and Retaining Players Images by DDevecee / Shutterstock G P W A t i m e s . o r g 24

By Matthew Showell While online casinos are a proven revenue driver, there is a remarkable dearth of quality content. Matthew Showell from Snap Call Media explains how affiliates can tap into this underserved market. 25 G P W A t i m e s . o r g

Online Casino Content here’s a huge audience for casino and slots entertainment, even if it isn’t reflected in the content that big gambling brands are producing. Nowhere is this more evident than the regulated North American market. Turn on the TV, go to major betting brands’ YouTube channels, websites or online properties and all you see is sports. Even poker, sometimes left out of the U.S. iGaming conversation completely, enjoys more visibility when it comes to content. This is all hugely at odds with the fact that online casinos bring in a decisivemajority of revenue in jurisdictions where both online casino and online sports betting are legal. That said, slots and casino content is already flourishing in other parts of the world. If you know where to look, you can find it taking root in the U.S. and Canada as well. So, what are the obstacles that stand in the way of slots and casino entertainment becoming more popular and ultimately more useful for acquiring and retaining customers? Why Does Sports Betting Content Dominate? There are a handful of key reasons why sports betting dominates the content and entertainment landscape: Regulated online sports betting is much more widely available in the U.S. with more than 30 states allowing online sports betting and only six states offering regulated online casinos. In terms of total dollars, online sports betting is a bigger industry now compared to online casinos. Betting on sports is decidedly connected to professional sports, and the sprawling media and content infrastructure supporting it. People already understand sports content and are also familiar with team, athlete and celebrity sponsorships in the sports world. Most major betting brands offer casino and sports betting on the same app and under the same brand. When deciding what to focus on for YouTube, social media and other content campaigns, brands choose sports over casino-themed content. Casino vs. Sports: Revenue Comparison Looking at gambling as a whole in the U.S., slots alone account for over half of total commercial revenue. In Q2 2023, for example, slots as a gambling vertical brought in $8.89 billion of the total $16.01 billion in revenue, according to the American Gaming Association. When you look at online wagering, sports outpace online casinos overall, but that’s due to the number of markets it’s available in. To compare the two activities on more even footing we can look at jurisdictions where both are legal, like Ontario. Between 1 April and 30 June, 2023, $14 billion was in regulated online bets in the province. Of that, $11.6 billion came from online casino wagers, a staggering 83%, according to iGaming Ontario. Ontario reported similar numbers when it came to revenue, with $392 million of the $545 million in total gaming revenue coming from online casinos. That’s 72%. Casino players are highly valuable to operators and therefore valuable to affiliates. It’s no secret that customers who enter apps for sports betting end up wagering on casino games. What does seem to be a secret is how to appeal directly to the huge market of slots and casino players, at least when it comes to entertaining content. Affiliates Ahead of the Curve Affiliates are better than operators at making authentic slots and casino content, but many have also focused heavily on sports, especially in the U.S, and Canada. This is also the case for other content marketing activities, like media and influencer partnerships. It’s true that engaging sports content ideas and other kinds of marketing opportunities are easier to come by. In light of online casino’s relatively high revenue performance; however, and the general sentiment leaning toward more widespread regulation in the U.S. and Canada, casino content is worth investing in now. It’s no secret that customerswho enter apps for sports betting end up wagering on casino games. What does seem to be a secret is howto appeal directly to the hugemarket of slots and casino players, at least when it comes to entertaining content. G P W A t i m e s . o r g 26

How to Invest in Online Casino Content Casino-themed content spans entertainment, search and content marketing. Three of the formats making the biggest impact are: • Content creators filming real gambling action for YouTube, Twitch, Kick and a number of other social media platforms • SEO content on affiliate sites, including text, graphics and video, focusing on everything from editorial to transactional and informational topics • Brand channels on YouTube and social media created by affiliates, operators, game developers and other B2B and B2C companies Slots Influencers Pioneering Casino Entertainment Slots entertainment has been breaking through into the mainstream media and it’s mainly thanks to slots content creators. Stories like rapper Drake streaming online casino games and Twitch banning some slots content on the platform have revealed a big community of people who love watching people gamble. In the U.S., slot content creators mainly post on YouTube and film themselves playing slots and table games in real life at brickand-mortar casinos. There are even successful casino YouTube channels where people play at home for no money at all. BrianChristopher is arguably themost successful slots influencer in the U.S. A former aspiring actor, Christopher has over 1.6 million followers across his various slots-themed YouTube and social media channels. Christopher does game activations, live casino visits, casino cruises, has his own Brian Christopher-themed slot game and was recently featured in the Wall Street Journal. Christopher is becoming well known in North America, but there are hundreds of other casino content creators still largely flying below the radar. Operators and game developers are collaboratingmore andmore with slots content creators to drive acquisition plus brand and product awareness. Casino Content for Ranking Pages Writing and ranking casino pages is a craft all its own. It’s also constantly being impacted by innovations in content and updates to Google’s search algorithm. Google is putting more value on user experience, not just the accuracy and detail of the information but how it’s presented on pages as well. High-quality casino video as an SEO element on the page is becoming more common and well understood. Not only can it make a positive impact on metrics like time on page, it also makes pages more visible in SERPs by appearing as a thumbnail, in video carousels and in video search results. High-quality video presented with language and styling that resonates with casino players is a good option to enhance important evergreen pages. Having original video is a positive signal to Google that helps differentiate credible sources of valuable information from thin affiliate sites. It’s also a positive signal in terms of brand trust to potential customers using your website. Investing in Branded Content Channels Investing in original branded content on YouTube and social media is a common strategy for casino affiliates, operators and game studios. It’s also a long-term investment that is less directly linked to customer acquisition than other marketing channels, so it’s not for everyone. Online casino reviews, game tutorials, strategies and betting systems are some of the classic topics with high search volume. Brand channels offer operators and game developers the chance to show off their products and interact with their customers and the community. For affiliates, it’s a chance to find a content niche that provides real value to viewers and aligns with their website’s content and purpose. Here are some of the most popular reasons for investing in branded YouTube and social media channels: • Tap directly into search traffic on YouTube • Healthy YouTube and social media channels that are associated with your domain is a positive off-site signal to Google • Original content on YouTube and social media provides unique organic content for your website • YouTube and social media offer additional channels to share and drive traffic to website content • Video content is highly shareable and can generate organic backlinks to your domain as a source G P W A t i m e s . o r g 27

Online Casino Content Matthew Showell is a content expert with more than 15 years in poker, casino and sports betting. As CEO of the growing B2B content company Snap Call Media, Showell helps affiliates and operators reach their goals with awesome iGaming content. • Original, high-quality video enhances brand trust by adding depth and authority to your brand image • Authentic-branded content channels are also powerful tools for brand reach, awareness and consideration. These goals are typically more important for operators and game developers although some affiliates are beginning to focus more on brand building and brand marketing Casino Content Compliance Another important factor in planning successful casino content is compliance. Different jurisdictions have unique rules about advertising gambling services. The same goes for different video and social media platforms. Regulating bodies create guidelines that are based around consumer protection. These typically include points like not appealing specifically to minors or other vulnerable populations, not relating gambling to luck, and generally focusing on responsible gambling practices. Additionally, specific platforms like YouTube have their own guidelines about gambling content and promoting gambling operators and affiliates. The bottom line is that understanding and complying with all the rules is an important part of protecting your investment in branded casino content channels. Online Casino Spreading, Casino Content Following It won’t happen overnight, but the general expectation is that more states will regulate online casinos in years to come. While investing in casino content channels now may seem geographically limited, it’s a longterm play that will position brands well as more states come online. Although less well understood, casino content works for the same reason sports content works. The game is exciting, visual and people are genuinely entertained by the drama and the characters. It’s going to be exciting to watch the next innovations in casino content and entertainment in the years to come. High-quality casino video as an SEO element on the page is becoming more common and well understood. Not only can it make a positive impact on metrics like time on page, it alsomakes pages more visible in SERPs by appearing as a thumbnail, in video carousels and in video search results. G P W A t i m e s . o r g 28

By John Wright Actionable tips and advice on how business intelligence tools can increase traffic, boost conversions, and grow your affiliate revenue Using BI iGaming Elevate yo to ur Game Affiliate G P W A t i m e s . o r g 30

I stands for “business intelligence” and the term has existed for more than 150 years. It first appeared in Richard Millar Devens’ Cyclopædia of Commercial and Business Anecdotes (1865). As seen below, Devens wrote how the banker Sir Henry Furnese profited from information gained before his competitors got it. Perhaps this was the first version of insider trading. The business intelligence market in 2023 is worth an estimated $29 billion and projected to reach $54 billion by 2030. According to other similar reports of global market size, Artificial Intelligence is set to grow to a $2 trillion market share by 2030. Three software tools that come to mind in the BI space are Tableau, Power BI and Looker Studio. Rest assured this article won’t focus on these heavy data visualization tools, although they are becoming something affiliates are using much more. The truth is, many BI tools have been around a long time and affiliates could have used them. They can cover these main categories: SEO tools Conversion Rate Optimization tools Data visualization tools AI tools 31 G P W A t i m e s . o r g

Using BI to Elevate Your iGaming Affiliate Game Best SEOTools for Affiliates Search engine optimization tools are everywhere, and the list I’m about to share is more my personal preferences than ones I have experience with. Now that I got that disclosure out of the way, are SEO tools really BI tools? Absolutely, we just think of them as SEO tools rather than pure data tools but the truth is, SEO tools have been some of the most original and sophisticated tools for business intelligence in affiliate marketing. Ahrefs Ahrefs is a very powerful tool. For those that don’t use or don’t like Ahrefs, on the other end of the spectrum you have Semrush as its main competitor. By far, the most useful feature I use is the ability to look up backlinks any site or competitor has. Pricing is in the $99 to $999/month range. Surfer SEO Content is a core part of SEO, and Surfer is an amazing tool that is more than just a content editor. Surfer will give you feedback on the number of times certain keywords and phrases should appear in your content to improve your ability to rank. It will also highlight whether you have too many or not enough headers in your content. For the purpose of writing this article, I did NOT use Surfer; however, if I had to publish this on my site, I would have definitely used it. If you want your casino reviews to rank, then you’ll want to put the title in the “content editor” and it will let you know how many keywords, phrases and titles you need to put in your document in order to have a better chance of ranking. Page Optimizer Pro This is a heavy technical tool, but it will likely educate you on why SEOs care about SEO metrics so much. They care because they all notice a direct correlation with specific data points and rankings. A cool feature is its free “On Page SEO Checker” that compares your page against top ranked competitors. An Ahrefs report on new affiliate site G P W A t i m e s . o r g 32

KeywordCatcher This is a new keyword app that I’m testing out and thought I would at least give it a quick mention. The main standout feature here is the SERP analysis (Search Engine Results Pages). Keywords Everywhere For the record, I’ve never used this tool, but there is a good reason why I recommend it. In asking SEOs in forums as well as my podcast guests, Keywords Everywhere is a common tool that I hear SEOs suggest affiliates get comfortable with. The Chrome plugin has a 4.6 rating with over 1 million downloads. I have the plugin and I can see why people love it. 33 G P W A t i m e s . o r g

AI HeatMaps Want to do heat maps the fast way? Consider AI heat maps and use a service like Best CROTools for Affiliates Conversion rate optimization (CRO) is a powerful concept because in many cases, you have the potential to double the revenue or conversions with the same amount of traffic. I believe if more affiliates focused on CRO, it would not only do more than help their bottom line, but it would also help their SEO efforts. CRO has been, more or less, put into two types of buckets for tools: heat maps and A/B split testing tools. There are numerous A/B split testing tools out there, but I’m going to focus solely on the one tool I’ve been using for a decade: Hotjar. HeatmapswithHotjar Hotjar does more than just heat maps, but I’ll focus on its video recordings and heat maps that it offers for webmasters. If you ever wonder if your affiliate site could convert better, the best way to find out is by putting the Hotjar script on your site. Hotjar will provide two important insights after just a few weeks of data. 1. Recordings of your visitors and their user behavior 2. Heat maps and scrolling, showing conversion insights When you watch the recordings of your users, it won’t take long before you might realize if your site has a problem. Imagine writing a 2,000-word article and all your users see the page and consistently leave immediately. Google Analytics data might tell you this, but Hotjar will literally show you this reality. The heatmaps it offers can show if your users actually care to scroll your content and the likelihood of them engaging with any of your calls to action. Anytime I redesign a site, I like using the before and after comparisons to see if my designs have made improvements. Usually, they do but when they don’t, you need data to tell you something needs to be fixed. Which casino and betting affiliate sites are using Hotjar? If you find some of the top-ranking websites in iGaming, you’ll find some of these tools in the source code. Using BI to Elevate Your iGaming Affiliate Game G P W A t i m e s . o r g 34

John Wright has been in the iGaming industry since 2001 with experience running affiliate sites and affiliate coaching. He is the co-founder of StatsDrone, which makes data and CRM tools for affiliate marketers. custom SEO dashboards for your websites connecting your Google Analytics 4 and Google Search Console data. These SEO dashboards can save you a lot of time and help you identify the good, bad and the ugly when it happens. Looker Studio Looker Studio, formerly Google Data Studio, has one big advantage over everyone else, and being owned by Google is part of it. Connecting Google products means you can use Looker Studio for free. That is, you can create AI tools The only thing I’m going to share about AI tools is how I see others use them, including SEOs. People are not quite re-writing content using ChatGPT and publishing it, but rather they are using these types of tools to help accelerate their workflow. AI tools could be their own separate article, but understand that they will affect all of the other tools mentioned in this article. Use AI tools for content ideation when it comes to expanding upon your niches within iGaming. ChatGPT can help you discover popular content in niches like online casinos, that you may have overlooked. The Best Data Viz Tools Things are about to get very advanced, very quickly. I will briefly talk about the three most popular data visualization tools on the market: Tableau (acquired by Salesforce) / Looker Studio (acquired by Google) / Power BI (by Microsoft) There are probably one hundred more data visualization tools I could list, but these three get the most recognition and I’m going to zero in on two of them based on experience. Sorry, Power BI! Tableau I first started using Tableau over a year ago when I took Kevin Hartman’s ELVTR course on data visualization and analytics. I had no idea what type of data projects you could do with your own affiliate marketing data. The following is two years’ worth of data on a single affiliate program. Sheet 5 is a tree map chart that shows the days of the month that had the most clicks. Sheet 7 shows numerous KPIs broken down by days of the week. 35 G P W A t i m e s . o r g



iGB L!ve Amsterdam G P W A t i m e s . o r g The theme for iGB L!ve 2023 was “Another Level,” and it indeed reached it and then some during the 11-14 July iGaming industry expo, held at RAI Amsterdam. In fact, several records were broken during the four-day event. iGB L!ve attracted 7,229 unique attendees, a 44% increase from 2022. Not to mention, the number is a 54% increase from the last prepandemic conference in 2019. Plus, there was a record 14,500 on-site visits to the expo. In addition, 68% of attendees represented their organization’s decision-making team, with CEOs forming the largest visitors group, according to Clarion Gaming, which organized the event. While we’re all looking forward to next year’s expo, which takes place 16-19 July, let’s take a moment to check out the sights and smiles from this year’s event. iGB L!ve Amsterdam 38

39 G P W A t i m e s . o r g Images by Mihai_Andritoiu / Shutterstock

G P W A t i m e s . o r g 40 iGB L!ve Amsterdam

41 G P W A t i m e s . o r g From the Exhibition Floor