GPWA Times Magazine - Issue 58 - February 2024

Five iGaming Affiliate Strategies Join GPWA Page 69 FEBRUARY 2024 Nurturing Affiliate Relationships Free Access to Unlock the LatAm Market Scale Up Your Business

Seas of change Welcome to Issue 58 of the GPWA Times Magazine, the inaugural edition for 2024! In keeping with our tradition spanning over a decade, we are excited to kick off the New Year by participating in ICE London and iGB Affiliate London. Of course, this will be the final year that these two pivotal events will be held at ExCeL in the great city of London since both will shift to Barcelona beginning in 2025. In this issue, we interview two key executives from Clarion Gaming – Stuart Hunter and Naomi Barton – who discuss the details of the transition for not only ICE and iGB Affiliate, but also iGB L!VE, which moves from Amsterdam to London starting next year. Also in this issue, regular contributor LeeAnn Johnstone from Affiverse returns with some practical techniques you can employ in order to grow and expand your iGaming affiliate operation. In addition, iGaming industry veteran Connie Burstin compares the relationship between affiliate managers and affiliates to the dating game and has advice on how to foster those partnerships, while Latin American consultant Samantha Asensi explains how affiliates should and could penetrate the evolving LatAm market. Elsewhere in the following pages you can explore our regular features, including an insightful Q&A with a very unique GPWA member, a vibrant photo gallery from SiGMA Europe, which took place in Malta last November, new rankings from, and the latest addition to our APCW Wall of Shame. If you’re attending the London events, please drop by the GPWA stand and say hello. For those not yet subscribed, remember that our magazine is free! Simply visit Here’s to a fantastic 2024! Michael Corfman SUBSCRIPTIONS For a FREE subscription to the GPWA Times Magazine, visit ADVERTISING To advertise in the GPWA Times Magazine, please e-mail: Copyright © 2024 by the GPWA. All rights reserved. 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 Editor: Dan Ippolito Designers: George Choi Zoran Maksimovic´ LETTER FROM THE DIRECTOR Photo by Sergii Figurnyi / Shutterstock 4


24 Departments 4 Letter from the Director • 8 By the Numbers • 10 Quotables • 12 GPWA Poll • 14 From the Forums 38 Photo Gallery • 52 GPWA Seals • 56 iGaming Directory Rankings • 58 Affiliate Interview Series 66 Sponsors • 68 APCW Wall of Shame • 70 Event Calendar ​The Affiliate Marketing Matchmaker Establishing lasting success in iGaming affiliate relationships involves some essential steps, much akin to the nuances of the dating process. 18 Charting New Horizons Clarion Gaming’s Stuart Hunter and Naomi Barton delve into the strategic reasoning and intricate decision-making involved in the relocation of ICE London, iGB Affiliate, and iGB L!VE. 46 TABLE OF CONTENTS Fast Track Your Affiliate Success Abandon the allure of “get rich quick” schemes and adopt these five strategies to propel your iGaming affiliate business. Strategizing for Success in LatAm iGaming affiliate marketing veteran Samantha Asensi provides key tactics for taking advantage of the blossoming Latin American market. 30 6


BY THE NUMBERS $4 billion The amount online casino gaming generated in taxes in the U.S. since its launch in 2013, despite being legal in just six states and available to less than 13% of adults in their home state, according to the American Gaming Association. 31% Percentage of the online gambling and sports betting gross gaming revenue that DraftKings secured in the U.S. as of 23 August in Q3 2023, surpassing FanDuel, which saw its market share decrease to 30%. $14.2 billion The amount of total iGaming wagers in Ontario in Q2 2023, more than doubling the $6.04 billion reported in Q2 2022. €1.5 billion The amount France’s illegal gambling market could be worth in 2023, which would represent more than 10% of total wagers in the country, according to French gambling regulator ANJ. €3 million The amount the Dutch Gambling Authority fined Entain-owned BetCity in November for anti-money laundering failures. €205.9 million The amount of online gambling revenue Portugal generated during a record-breaking Q2 2023, a 4.9% increase from the previous record set in Q1 2023. 75% The percentage of adults that are against an outright ban on betting in Ireland, according to a survey regarding the introduction of a new bill that would radically overhaul gambling in the country. 8

1.3 million The number of people in Germany who have a gambling disorder, with an additional 3.3 million showing signs of gambling addiction, according to a November report from the country’s Federal Drugs Commissioner Burkhard Blienert. 10.5 The number of years that Slovenian tennis official Marko Ducman was suspended by the International Tennis Integrity Agency in November for admitting to breaches of the Tennis Anti-Corruption Program. 5% The tax percentage online casino players in Georgia will pay when withdrawing their winnings starting in 2024, an increase from the previous 2%, according to Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili. $810,000 The amount Videoslots had to pay as a result of an early November sanction fee from the Swedish Gambling Authority for not taking sufficient measures to assess the risk of its activities being used for money laundering and terrorist financing. $883 million The amount Isle of Manbased Playtech offered to acquire 888 Holdings, the owner of William Hill, in July, before being rejected. 9

QUOTABLES QUOTABLES “The cost reduction actions announced today are both necessary and decisive. While it is never a desire to inform valued colleagues of redundancies, this puts us in a stronger position to secure long-term growth for Kindred across our locally regulated core markets.” —Nils Andén, Interim CEO of Kindred Group, after the company announced in December that it will exit the North American market. “We are committed to doing everything possible to help empower our industry to promote gambling as entertainment and enable our customers to enjoy our products and services responsibly.” —Marc Frank Pedersen, CEO of North America, Better Collective, after the Responsible Gambling Affiliate Association was created in November. “The trend is worrying. Our investigation shows the weakness of the current regulatory framework and how difficult it is to keep the unlicensed companies away.” —Hasse Lord Skarplöth, CEO of AB Trav och Galopp, the association of trotting sports for betting on horse races in Sweden, which reported in November a tenfold increase in web traffic to unlicensed gaming companies. “To effectively reduce gambling harm, consumer protection measures must exist across all forms of gambling, otherwise those at risk of harm will just move from one form of gambling to another less regulated type.” —Kai Cantwell, Responsible Wagering Australia CEO, after the Australian Senate approved legislation in December banning the use of credit cards for online gambling across the nation. 10

24-25 JUNE Sheraton Grand Tbilisi Metechi Palace, Tbilisi 18-20 JUNE Metro Toronto Convention Center, Toronto 5-7 MARCH Windsor Convention & Expo Center, Rio de Janeiro 21-23 MAY InterContinental Malta Brazil’s Senior Executive Betting & Gaming Event Canada’s Premier Gaming & Betting Event The Premier igaming & Sports Betting Conference for Georgia and Surrounding Regions 24-26 SEPTEMBER Feira Internacional De Lisboa, Lisbon The Greatest Show in Gaming OCTOBER 29-31 Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino, Miami Latin America’s Premier iGaming and Sports Betting Event The Future of Play MAY 7-9 Meadowlands Exposition Center, New Jersey The Leading iGaming & Sports Betting Event in North America SPONSORSHIP AND EXHIBITION OPPORTUNITIES ARE AVAILABLE – for enquiries please contact For more information please visit or scan the QR code

How Do You Redirect Visitors Back to Your Home Page? GPWA MEMBER POLL Recently on the GPWA Forums, a question was asked about the most effective strategy for directing visitors back to the homepage of a website: Is it better to have a clickable logo positioned at the top of each page, a button within the navigation tab, or a combination of both? Even though there’s a common belief that many visitors may not even be aware that a logo is clickable, the majority of respondents to our poll confirmed that they make use of both the logo and the navigation button. For more details regarding this poll and to view all of the feedback, visit Comments from GPWA members PaulEchere PRIVATE MEMBER Never really thought about it, to be honest. But so far, I’ve only had a logo that leads back to the home page. chaumi PRIVATE MEMBER Yeah, I’d say both is the logical approach. But if you’ve got the “home” menu item close(ish) to the logo, then you don’t really need the logo linking home, anyway. Mattbar PRIVATE MEMBER We have both the clickable logo and a home button to catch all. It is logical to click the logo, but lots of people don’t. 12 60%Both 5%Navigation Button Only 35%Clickable Logo Only

FROM THE FORUMS Do You Test for Copywriters AI Content? In an era dominated by technological advancements, the proliferation of AI content tools has become both a blessing and a curse. More and more, affiliate webmasters and editors are grappling with the challenge of distinguishing between human-crafted and AI-generated text submitted by their copywriters and freelancers. This was the subject in a recent GPWA Forum thread where “nvc” explained that he started to use the tool to determine if the content he was paying for leaned too heavily towards AI composition. This question prompted a dilemma that’s becoming all too common: How much trust can be placed in AI detection mechanisms, and what observations can be gleaned from their implementation? 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 #1 nvc 6 December 2023, 6:45 a.m. Public Member I recently started testing my copywriters for AI content and found that one of them uses too much AI. I am using the tool. Do you trust that tool and, if yes, what are your observations? I am not against AI, but don’t want to upload 100% AI content on my sites. Or if it is AI, I am not willing to pay for that service. What do you think? “ Reply With Quote 14 *This thread was edited for clarity and length. Illustrations by Golden Sikorka / Shutterstock and Macrovector / Shutterstock

#2 PaulEchere 6 December 2023, 6:57 a.m. Private Member Guess there might be some truth in that kind of analysis, however, you likely can never know for sure, perhaps sometimes it might be a complete false positive. Imo, in most cases, random content writers picked up at places like Fiverr will always use AI tools to create at least (best case scenario) the carcass of your future post, or the entire post. In my experience, whenever I create content for someone else (and I think that’s a good practice in general), we agree on what degree of AI usage is acceptable. We also agree on the exact topics and discuss a potential draft candidate (when it’s ready) before submitting the final version. That’s how I see good paid content creation is done, though that would usually cost a bit more, of course. “ Reply With Quote #3 chaumi 6 December 2023, 10:09 a.m. Private Member If I use the best AI generation tool, I know to create an article, it will take: • Approx 30 mins to 1 hour to prepare the outline (dependent on topic) • Approx 15 mins to line it up and generate • At least 4 hours subsequent work - amending, adapting, improving. Maybe more. It will cost less than a dollar in creation cost. But obviously a lot more in time. But it’ll be good, and I’ll be happy with it. So, if your supplier is doing anything like that, then it sounds hugely reasonable. But I expect they’re not doing that. With the best tool I know, if they are just giving it a subject and hitting enter, and sending it to you without further editing, it will likely cost them less than a dollar. But still a bit of time setting it up, making sure it’s completed, looks reasonably OK with no totally obvious hallucinations or inaccuracies, getting it into a doc and sending it. Maybe 15-30 minutes. I haven’t used, but it is supposedly one of the better AI testers. I would imagine false positives are entirely possible with it. But personally, I don’t care what a tool says. And 1. I don’t think Google does either, 2. I don’t think users care, provided the information that’s being presented is useful, well-presented, and answers the query. I can pretty much guarantee that any purely AI-generated piece won’t (in the vast majority of cases) be good enough to meet those needs at the level of complexity and understanding necessary for most gambling-related topics. But a carefully engineered, edited, improved, enhanced piece? Yes. Knowing how to engineer, edit, improve, enhance is crucial. The AI won’t do it on its own. If you don’t know how to do that/don’t have the time, then it’s likely that “rubbish/bland/suboptimal” AI content will not be helping your site, or if it is then there’s a chance it won’t be helping at some point in future. Maybe the very near future. I will end by saying...everything I said is based on current status. I have little doubt that within a year, maybe two, there will be (close to) zero need for any human writer or editor. And the AI will be clever enough to out-write 99.9% of human writers with minimal to zero input, editing, and enhancement. But that’s the future. “ Reply With Quote #4 onlinebetdotcom 6 December 2023, 1:31 p.m. Public Member You should also test your content writers after you hire them. I’ve hired someone many months ago and their first two articles were amazing. The next three produced were as bad as if someone translated it three- or four-times using Google translate back into English. I think they copied other website content and used spinning tools. You always have to stay on top of your writers because they will cut corners if you allow them to. “ Reply With Quote 15

#5 Oliver Cooper 6 December 2023, 4:59 p.m. Public Member It all depends on how the copywriter processes the text from the AI. If he really did a great job of choosing the request and generating the correct information, then why not? “ Reply With Quote #6 Juan Roman 7 December 2023, 3:28 a.m. Private Member We have used quite a few of those tools and I can honestly say they are all very unreliable. Hope they will be perfected in the future, but, at the moment, they are very inconclusive. We go out of our way to check all the content we receive from our writers (in-house and freelancers) to ensure it is not only high quality but also 100% human, and yes, some writers do use AI, which we do not tolerate. But, at times, it is their word against yours as anti-AI tools cannot be trusted at all. The content editors nowadays really have their work cut out for them as they need to go by their feeling and evaluate whether the latest article matches that writer’s usual style or there is a possibility the writer may have used AI for parts of it. “ Reply With Quote FROM THE FORUMS #8 Strider1973 8 December 2023, 1:19 a.m. Private Member Times have changed. Just hire someone where you explicitly ask them to have AI write the text, and to proofread them. Agree on an hourly pay. The times of 2-3c/word articles are gone. AI can write better text. Cost to create a text have come down 10x. And sorry for all those professional translators - that’s like becoming a horse saddle maker 100 years ago. “ Reply With Quote #7 dannyx 7 December 2023, 12:28 p.m. Public Member This will not be topical in a few months, maybe longer, when AI will produce much better texts than a great writer. There are posts on GPWA from 2015, for example, but probably many others too, as many people wrote that Google Translator is weak and human translation will always be better. The result is that for 2023 translations on some language pairs are much better than a human translator. For all the people here, these are big changes, but think what they will be for, say, today’s 12-year-old who will enter this world in a few years. For him, the writing of texts by creators as well as translation by translators will be seen in the same way as for us the times of ancient Rome. “ Reply With Quote I have little doubt that within a year, maybe two, there will be (close to) zero need for any human writer or editor. And the AI will be clever enough to out-write 99.9% of human writers with minimal to zero input, editing, and enhancement. 16

#13 NoDepositCasinos 11 December 2023, 10:50 p.m. Public Member How much do you consider “too much AI”? AI testers are not completely reliable and generate many false positives (like everything else, I suppose they will improve over time), and a lower AI content percentage increases the likelihood of errors. To answer your question, I do not verify that every article from the writers I work with is free from AI-generated content. I only check if something seems off. From my perspective, if I use AI tools, I don’t see why to criticize someone else who does the same as long as the work meets the quality criteria. I am paying for a finished article with certain characteristics, and (in my case) the method the person used to create it is not one of them. “ End of Thread #9 Mattbar 8 December 2023, 4:31 a.m. Private Member I check for AI content, but the tools are not great and there are false positives. Many of my writers have been working for me for 5-10 years and they very much know what I want and they deliver. It wouldn’t be worth their while to copy AI in content, but, of course, I don’t mind them using it for research as part of many research tools. That said I am checking content to be on the safe side but I would not accuse a writer before seeing several positive results and reading the text myself comparing with older work. I would need to be absolutely certain before accusing a writer that has worked for us for 5 years of using AI content. To date I have not yet had an issue with this. Another point is we actively try to produce content that AI couldn’t or would really struggle with. AI is getting better all the time, so it is a constantly changing landscape. But, for now, I am happy that the regular writers we use are all above board – so, yes, I trust the writers. “ Reply With Quote #10 Giorgos Manousos 8 December 2023, 6:53 a.m. Public Member I try to write the text for our project myself, but sometimes I give this mission to other writers because of workload. After receiving their works, I check the text for AI content percentage. Most often it is minimal, but even if the figure is 30% - 50% I can still accept the text if it is well written and fully discloses the topic. As for, sometimes I check articles that I write myself through it. Sometimes it shows 20% - 30% AI in my texts, although I didn’t use them. I think this is because AI learns from such texts that experts write themselves and tries to repeat it. I wouldn’t say that using AI is very bad, but if you give a task to a person who just generates text with AI and gives it to you and you pay for it, it’s a bad situation. Then you should change the rate or do the generation yourself (it will save your budget). “ Reply With Quote #12 Randy Ray 8 December 2023, 11:43 a.m. Public Member I haven’t found an AI tool that recognizes human-written content versus AI-written content with any kind of reliability. That shouldn’t be the bar, anyway. I’ve met plenty of human “writers” who couldn’t write as well as ChatGPT. But I generally want stuff better than ChatGPT produces, anyway. It’s not hard to spot AI-written content after spending a little time with these tools and recognizing how these robots write stuff. “ Reply With Quote #11 DanHorvat 8 December 2023, 8:45 a.m. Private Member I suppose people who are worried about AI shouldn’t use AI to check for AI, but instead get a human to have a look at it. It doesn’t matter if the copy was written by a human who can’t write, or by AI. If it looks “meh” then it’s useless either way. If you’re reading a good casino review or a good slot review, you’ll know it. I’d say this situation is forcing content writers to either up their game, or go flip burgers. “ Reply With Quote 17

Illustrations by Surf Ink / Shutterstock 18

By Lee-Ann Johnstone Ditch the “get rich quick” s cs threamt e eg si easntdh ae tmwbi rl la chee ltph pe sr oe pf ievl e your iGaming affiliate business toward champion status Fast Track Affiliate SuccessYour 19

1. Open Your Communication Channels Let’s start with the basics. For you to make meaningful revenue as an affiliate, you have to ensure that you’re making yourself available to potential affiliate managers. It might sound obvious but one of the biggest pain points affiliate managers seem to be constantly facing is how to contact a potential site owner, start a conversation and get a deal done. By all means, you decide how you prefer to be contacted (most affiliates will set themselves up with an email address dedicated to their business and a Skype or telegram chat for quick questions and answers) but, whatever you choose, make sure you check that means of communication throughout the day because the early bird catches the worm in iGaming and budgets get spent fast! You snooze, you lose in this game. Be approachable, set your boundaries and make sure the brands you want to work with know how to get in touch with you! Often, affiliate managers will have offers and promotions aligned to your content and, if they can’t get a hold of you, then not only are you missing out on the opportunity to generate more revenue, but you’re also passing up the chance to build a stronger relationship with the brands that you’re promoting. 2. Don’t Rely on Your Website Go out and make great connections with traffic sellers and budget owners! With gaming terms among the most competitive and expensive ways to drive iGaming traffic, the importance of attracting visitors to your website through conventional methods has never been more pronounced. Considering the decline of first-party data and cookies, becoming a multi-channel traffic owner is more vital than ever. SEO yields the most rewarding results with bigger budgets. If your goal is to invest in traffic growth through paid means, it’s essential to note that keywords centered around gambling are currently at their highest cost. So, look elsewhere. FAST TRACK YOUR AFFILIATE SUCCESS ecoming a successful affiliate doesn’t just “happen.” To quote poker legend Stu Ungar, “You become a champion the moment you start thinking, behaving, and strategizing like one.” If we translate that into the world of affiliate marketing, then we can safely say that your business is not going to suddenly expand without putting in the hard work that will create the building blocks for growth. It may well be that you’ve started to generate some regular customer conversions and have started to attract that elusive online revenue stream that so many gurus tell you is ripe for the taking. You may begin to have thoughts about quitting that day job to become a full-time affiliate and “live the dream.” In this article, we’ll examine different ways to take yourself from being a part-time affiliate generating some revenue to a place where you can start thinking about using your affiliate income as a meaningful part of your monthly take-home pay. 20

Build a footprint on other sites. Position yourself where budget owners, advertisers, and lead generation professionals are. Conduct tests on costs and conversions, then bring the results back to them, requesting not only a modest budget but also a bit more of your time. Social platforms like X (formerly Twitter) are an obvious choice here. Places like Quora and Reddit are also full of people needing support and answers to questions that you can help with. Take some time out of your day to set up a decent profile and offer value-driven responses to the questions you find there. Responses of “Agreed” or “Nice Post!” won’t cut it. Instead, look to give away 90% of your most valuable knowledge for free - and bring people to your own channels to get paid for the other 10%. You’ll find that, over time, you’ll build up a decent following of people who trust what you have to say and are more than happy to check out your website and your offers. They will follow you or subscribe to your newsletter for similar, valuable content. Build relationships with the budget owners at the brands that suit these audiences, get out to conferences and build person-to-person rapport. This industry is built on relationships. Learn to foster them. Doing this early in your affiliate career will really help you stand out in the long term. 3. Be Data-Driven With Your Content Social media platforms shouldn’t just be seen as a place to interact with other people’s posts. They’re a great place to test out your own ideas for content. Affiliates are so often told that “the riches are in the niches” but how do you go about finding those niches? Traditionally, that would mean doing your own research, but ultimately going with your gut and waiting months, or perhaps years, to see if that gut feeling was right. Today, though, the quick feedback loops of social media mean that ideas can be validated in mere hours. If you have an idea for a new niche, make some posts about it and see how your audience reacts. For every comment, like or retweet you get, there are probably another 10 people who felt the same but didn’t interact. Even if you’re not looking for new niches, throwing up data points and seeing what resonates is a great way of informing you of your content strategy. By getting quick feedback, you don’t have to waste time writing up long-form blog posts that no one wants to read. This industry is built on relationships. Learn to foster them. Doing this early in your affiliate career will really help you stand out in the long term. 21

4. Take Responsibility If your affiliate business needs to grow to new heights, you need to know it inside out -- and that includes the way it operates with your suppliers and partners. ALWAYS read the fine print of any agreement you’ve signed up for, and not just affiliate partnerships, but any third-party supplier that you use for things such as your newsletter. In these days of GDPR and CCPA, claiming ignorance is not an option, regardless of how big you may or may not be. An infringement of GDPR alone comes with a minimum fine of €10 million and, if a fine of that size doesn’t kill your business, then you’re reading the wrong article. Take the time to find out what your responsibilities are as an affiliate and what advertising responsibilities your partners expect. If you’re not happy with the division of responsibility, then look to promote elsewhere. Outside of that, there are other areas you can take responsibility for - chief among them is knowing how your business is performing. For example, use the “What, Which, Where, Why” method: FAST TRACK YOUR AFFILIATE SUCCESS Take the time to find out what your responsibilities are as an affiliate and what advertising responsibilities your partners expect. If you’re not happy with the division of responsibility, then look to promote elsewhere. 22

• What conversion rates are you seeing across your affiliate partners? • Which pieces of content are generating the most clicks? • Where are those clicks coming from? • Why do you think some are converting better than others? This is all valuable information that you can use in a transparent conversation with your affiliate manager. Remember, affiliate managers do well when you do well, so it’s in their best interest to maximize the success of your relationship. The more information you can give them, the better. Maybe social media generates more clicks than your website during March Madness, so a sponsorship of your X account makes more sense during those three weeks than a sponsored post on your website Perhaps you’re seeing a landing page for a particular slot game convert well and you’re thinking of running a promo across a dedicated newsletter. In this case, the affiliate manager of your highest converting brand might be able to offer you a unique bonus, a branded landing page, up-front sponsorship of your newsletter - or all three. Whichever route you go down, be transparent about the levels of traffic that you can currently provide to an affiliate program and where you think you can get to in 12 months with their help. Being able to talk about your goals and objectives doesn’t require a slide deck, but it is remarkably effective at building a relationship with your affiliate manager about what is needed to get to a shared goal. 5. BUrnadnedr sPtearncde pYtoi uo nr The affiliate market has never been more competitive – heading into 2024 it’s valued at $19.2 billion with that number expected to increase to $39.9 billion by 2030. But the rewards have never been greater either, so give yourself the chance to succeed. Everything you do, everything you post, the way you act is a reflection of you and the company that you’re trying to grow. Realize that being an affiliate isn’t a get-rich-quick scheme. If it was, anyone would be able to do it. Begin each day with the mentality that you’re going to push things forward by at least one step in a way that you’re proud of. By all means, use new technology such as ChatGPT to gain an edge, but don’t start getting lazy - it’s great for research, but it has been known to have problems with some of the facts that it references. Absolutely use AI for content ideas, but be wary about cutting corners and posting an 800-word blog post without checking it. Whether you like it or not, everything that you post (on your website, on social media, anywhere) is attributed to you and your affiliate brand. Do your research, and don’t post stuff that you don’t totally stand behind. To quote another poker legend, Phil Ivey, “The difference between good and exceptional is the standard you set for yourself.” Set it high and your affiliate business will continue to grow. With over two decades of digital marketing and affiliate performance experience earned within the E-commerce/ retail, Fintech and iGaming industry, Lee-Ann Johnstone is a veteran and influencer in the industry, having started her career in this space in the early 2000s. She’s the host of The Affiliate Marketing Podcast and she created Affiverse, an award-winning performance and affiliate marketing agency and media company based in the U.K. In addition, she runs a unique 12-week Mastermind for Affiliate Program Managers: Affiliate Manager Performance Program (AMPP), providing on-thejob coaching and support for advertisers and brands who want to run performance marketing programs in-house. Visit: to find out more about how Lee-Ann and her team are helping the world do affiliate marketing better. 23

By Connie Burstin Ma f fui lci ha t lei kr ee l taht ieo dnas thi ni pgs gi na mt hee, cwuol rt il vd aot fi ni Gg a m i n g rl oenq gu-itreersms esvuecrcael scsr uf ocri ablostthe ppsa ri nt i eosr d e r t o b e a Matchm The Affiliate 24

RESEARCH PHASE: G ePt ot itne gn tt ioa Kl Pnaorwt nYeoru r Before reaching out, it’s very important to understand your potential affiliate, much like getting to know someone before asking them out on a date. Examine their online presence, understand their niche, and figure out what makes them unique. This knowledge empowers you to craft a compelling first move. If you are only provided with the name and contact information of a potential affiliate, inquire with your supervisor to obtain additional details, including their website address and the source of the information. It is important to know the “how” as it will help you when approaching a potential partner as they might ask “How did you get my information?” along the road of your approach. THE FIRST PITCH: Capturing Their Attention Just as in dating, your initial approach is vital in affiliate marketing. The way you communicate is essential. If you’re making contact through email, keep it concise and to the point. Just like potential partners don’t want to hear your life story on the first date, affiliates don’t want to be overwhelmed with so much information right away. If you have done your research properly, you will already know what to say to discover their attention. In some cases, it doesn’t need to be related to the business, it can be something completely different that you capture on your research that is unique to the potential affiliate and you might want to mention to capture their attention. Remember, stating that you’ve visited their site, and it looks great isn’t good enough. maker Marketing eflecting on my journey in the iGaming industry, I’ve come to recognize the striking similarities between the art of affiliate acquisition and the delicate steps involved in finding that perfect match. This connection stems from the basic principles of communication, understanding, and trust. Based on my experiences and how people connect, I’ve found important steps that resemble the stages of a growing relationship. Each step in this affiliate acquisition process, similar to the stages of a romantic journey, plays a vital role in establishing a foundation of trust, compatibility, and shared objectives. By examining these steps in detail, we can uncover the factors that contribute to fostering a strong and enduring relationship between affiliates and brands. Now, let’s review these important steps: Illustrations by Amanita Silvicora / Shutterstock 25

GETTING TO KNOW THEM: Building a Connection In both dating and affiliate marketing, building a connection is crucial. Learn more about your potential affiliate’s background, language, culture, country of residence, if they’re willing to share. As the conversation develops, you may discover common interests that create a genuine connection. The tone you use when approaching potential affiliates should align with the communication channel. If it’s through email, keep it short and respectful of their time. If you’re connecting via Skype, maintain a natural flow and avoid excessive self-praise. I remember talking to a potential affiliate about their location and it happened that they lived not very far from my house. That helped us form an immediate connection. UNDERSTANDING THEIR BUSINESS: Ensuring Compatibility To ensure you’re a good match, get to know their business. Explore their website traffic, target audience, etc. Similar to finding out your partner’s interests and hobbies to see if you’re compatible – like discovering your boyfriend is a vegetarian when you’re a meat lover – opposites can attract, after all! In this phase, you need to ask questions about their business to make sure that their traffic is suitable for your product, such as demographic, average spend and traffic. There are some tools that allow you to analyze the traffic that you can also use if you want to verify the information provided by the affiliate. Any information that you might need to know will allow you to decide if the traffic will be suitable for your brand and vice versa. ​THE AFFILIATE MARKETING MATCHMAKER 26

This also goes on the brand side as an affiliate might request a deal that is not on the commission structure or furthermore not under the affiliate budget. Keep in mind that you are aiming for a long-term relationship. The same applies when you are starting a relationship, no pushing or that relationship will be short lived. KEEPING PROMISES: Maintaining the Relationship Once you’ve agreed to work together, uphold your promises. Just as in dating, keeping your word is essential for a healthy relationship. After the agreement has been made, this is the time to truly show you live by all the promises and offerings you have made. It is very important that you keep your word even in the smallest detail. This is a big one. I’ve heard from affiliates that their affiliate managers hardly contact them after their sign up unless they are generating commissions. Otherwise, they are silent and find out when they get a newsletter about some changes like bonuses or links, which creates the feeling that the relationship has been forgotten. I think if I had a boyfriend or girlfriend who only contacted me when they felt like going out, I would also not be pleased, so it is important that the relationship is maintained on some of the compromises made from the beginning. Whether it’s reaching significant sign-ups, unique articles about your brand, or launching successful promotional campaigns, recognizing the efforts and contributions of your affiliates can strengthen the bond between both parties. THE PRODUCT INTRODUCTION: Sharing Your Story When the time is right, introduce your product, just like you’d open up about yourself when dating. Provide detailed information about your brand – the games, payment options, and the promotions that can be offered to their audience. This allows affiliates to assess compatibility. This is the part where you can talk more. Feel free to open up after you gain more information from the affiliate and elaborate more if you see that there is compatibility after learning from the previous phases. NEGOTIATING FOR THE FUTURE: Making It Official If there’s mutual interest, discuss the financial aspect. Determine how much money they can earn by promoting your product based on the traffic. Work together to find a deal that suits both parties. While aiming for a long-term partnership is great, remember that the relationship may evolve over time. Remember, you’re not the best until you prove it with results. Be yourself, as potential affiliates are constantly bombarded with offers. Being genuine and unique can help you stand out. This phase may not just be a one-time conversation since the affiliate might want to analyze your offer and understand better the terms involved with the offer. If that’s the case, no need to push to close the deal right away. 27

ESTABLISHING TRUST: Cultivating Mutual Reliability In affiliate marketing, establishing trust with potential partners is crucial for a fruitful collaboration. Transparency regarding your brand’s values, ethics, and objectives is vital in building credibility. Likewise, showcasing your commitment to maintaining a longterm partnership can foster a sense of reliability, encouraging affiliates to invest their time and resources in your brand with more confidence. DEMONSTRATING FLEXIBILITY: Adjusting to Partner Preferences Just as understanding your partner’s preferences is essential in a relationship, demonstrating flexibility in affiliate marketing can be an asset and a niche characterization for your brand. Adapting to your potential affiliate’s preferred communication style, promotion strategies, and operational preferences can signal your willingness to accommodate their needs. This flexibility not only fosters a more harmonious collaboration but also demonstrates your commitment to mutual growth and success. PROVIDING ONGOING SUPPORT: Nurturing the Relationship Consistent support and guidance play a vital role in developing a partnership in the world of affiliate marketing. Providing affiliates with the necessary tools, resources, and assistance they need to effectively promote your brand can strengthen their confidence in your program. ​THE AFFILIATE MARKETING MATCHMAKER Like dating, the journey of acquiring affiliates is defined by mutual respect, flexibility, and a dedication to nurturing a long-lasting partnership founded on trust and honesty. 28

Whether it’s through offering comprehensive marketing materials, real-time analytics, or prompt troubleshooting, ensuring that your affiliates feel supported and valued can foster a sense of loyalty and dedication to the mutual cause. EMPHASIZING TRANSPARENCY: Honesty in Expectations Transparency about your brand’s expectations and anticipated outcomes is essential for setting a strong foundation in affiliate relationships. Clearly outlining the terms of the partnership, and the expected deliverables can prevent misunderstandings and create a more collaborative environment. Encouraging open discussions about potential challenges from both sides can contribute to a more realistic and aligned approach, paving the way for a smoother and more productive collaboration. It’s always good to be transparent and upfront so that potential affiliates that took you some time to sign up don’t get lost because some important information was not told at the beginning during the sign-up process. CELEBRATING MILESTONES: Recognizing Achievements Acknowledging and celebrating their achievements through the affiliate partnership can foster a sense of accomplishment and motivation. Whether it’s reaching significant sign-ups, unique articles about your brand, or launching successful promotional campaigns, recognizing the efforts and contributions of your affiliates can strengthen the bond between both parties. Again, the same as when just starting to date, it is always good to hear how good we look when going out for dinner or any other compliments. The similarities between the process of acquiring affiliates and the phases of a relationship highlight the significance of clear communication, patience, and a genuine understanding of each other’s requirements. Like dating, the journey of acquiring affiliates is defined by mutual respect, flexibility, and a dedication to nurturing a long-lasting partnership founded on trust and honesty. Approaching affiliate marketing with attention, dedication, and a focus on finding the right fit showcases not only effective networking skills but also the enduring principles of building successful relationships. By adopting these principles, affiliate managers can skillfully navigate the challenges of the field and form long-lasting partnerships that endure. Originally from Peru and currently living in Canada, Connie Burstin started her iGaming industry career in 1997 when she was hired by a casino software company. She eventually went on to build one of the first casino affiliate programs in 1999, which led her to found The Affiliate Agency, specializing in the needs of operators to recruit and manage their affiliate programs. In addition, she provides comprehensive services to affiliates, including translations, localization, and SEO content creation. Her agency has become a benchmark in the field of affiliate marketing, offering customized and effective solutions to clients worldwide. 29

By Samantha Asensi imG aa rmk ei nt ign ag f ef ixl ipaet er t St aarmg eatnetdhaapApsr oena cshi sehs af or er sb r e a k i n g into this rapidly expanding market Illustrations by Pyty / Shutterstock and Macrovector / Shutterstock 30

WiGnnamineg Plan Crafting a for Latin America 31

hen I started my journey in affiliate marketing 20 years ago, I would have never imagined how much the industry would grow. Today, affiliate marketing is a vital source for new player acquisition in the iGaming space. One of the regions that affiliation is still in the process of becoming big and bold is Latin America. What makes the LatAm market unique? That’s simple! The opportunity to target a region with limitless potential. Latin America is almost twice the size of Europe. In fact, Brazil alone is home to 200 million people. The primary LatAm markets are Brazil, Colombia, Argentina, Chile and Peru, since they are more developed in terms of iGaming. Colombia has been a regulated market since 2016 and other regions will soon follow. If you are an iGaming affiliate considering targeting Latin America, I suggest you follow these important pinpoints and strategies: Topicalization Considering Spanish and Portuguese are the main languages in most LatAm countries, you must customize your content. If you are an SEO affiliate, make sure your content is suitable for the country you are targeting. Work with a local partner or hire a content manager located in that country. Consider some differences between the north and south of a region. For example, Brazil is the most promising in terms of affiliation, but there is a slight difference in the tone and other particularities throughout the country. The more topicalization, the more success you will have. Develop a strategic plan before diving in. Do your keyword research and follow it closely with intuition. Be smart and creative and do not follow the crowd. KYoYuCr: CKunsotwo m e r One of the big topics in LatAm is customer service. Why? Because they are still newbie players. They will have questions about bonuses, free bets, etc. Think twice and prepare yourself to provide quality and clear information. Ensure your information is well structured, and includes images, icons and bullet points. Have a solid Customer Relation Management (CRM) plan and keep your users warm with relevant news and promotions about a particular operator. Offer useful data. The average time between a player registering on a platform and making a first deposit can be up to three months (do not worry, it can be much earlier!) It’s important is to keep users motivated to visit your website and make return visits by providing relevant content. Do not make drastic changes to your website once it is launched. Update your content consistently and regularly add new and trusted bookmakers, but do not make wholesale changes to the look and feel of your website, as that can make the user feel lost. Become Educated, Not Aggressive One of the key factors for affiliation in LatAm is education, meaning you should create content that helps players learn something new and different. Make the perfect match between the cultures. Imagine yourself some time ago when gambling was still in its early days and some topics were trending: How to place a bet. How to use my bonus. Is this bookmaker trustworthy? Can I deposit through Pix? THE LATIN AMERICAN MARKET Develop a strategic plan before diving in. Do your keyword research and follow it closely with intuition. Be smart and creative and do not follow the crowd. 32

These are some examples of the simple questions your audience might ask. On top of that, answer questions about important topics by creating a Wiki, offering tutorial videos, and anything else that your resources allow. This will make a difference and at the same time if your content provides educational resources, you will be on the road to success! Find Your Niche Imagine a country with 200 million people. Do you think all of them have the same taste? Of course not! So, find your niche. What I mean by that is there might be a province in Brazil that is full of fans of a certain fútbol club, or perhaps they love another certain sport or team. This can be your entrance to engage that niche audience. It is more optimal to try and reach one million people consistently rather than 200 million sporadically. So, do your research and get as much information about the preferences of sports, tastes and different cultures and structure and create your site to reflect that audience. Moreover, if you can conduct short interviews about local sports that offer tips and strategies, that will be a win-win. Engage fans by creating a polls or raffles, so users can interact with your website and feel more engaged. Social Media Did you know that in Brazil internet penetration was 84.3% in 2023 with users spending an average of eight hours a day online, mostly on social media? The number of internet users in the country has been forecast to continuously increase between 2024 and 2028 by a total of 35.9 million users with Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, TikTok the most popular social media channels. Creating video content for the right channels for the optimal audience can be very effective. Latin America users love sports news and you can take advantage of that. Create memes, short In a significant turn of events, Brazil and Chile both announced pivotal legislative changes in December that could redefine the Latin American gaming landscape. Brazil’s Chamber of Deputies voted to approve Bill 3,626/2023, signaling the regulation of sports betting and reintroducing iGaming into the legislative framework. The approval, following a decisive vote on 21 December, sets the stage for comprehensive iGaming regulation in 2024. As this magazine went to press, the bill was being sent to the desk of President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, after undergoing significant amendments and opposition in the Senate. Most notably, the inclusion of iGaming was reinstated by the Chamber of Deputies despite the Senate’s prior removal. Other key points in the bill include a GGR capped at 12%, down from the proposed 18%, taxation on net winnings set once a year at 15%, and a requirement for licensees to pay an initial fee of up to BRL 30 million, granting operation rights for up to five brands. Meanwhile, Chile’s Chamber of Deputies embraced a bill to regulate iGaming, advancing the country toward a competitive online gaming market. The bill, which is headed to the Senate, grants extended powers to regulatory bodies such as the Superintendence of Casino Games, the Commission for the Financial Market, and the Internal Revenue Service. The bill introduces a unique GGR split, allocating 2% to support sports initiatives and there are strict measures against illegal operators, including advertising bans, banking restrictions, and ISP interventions. Also, online operators would be required to pay a CLP 64.2 million license fee, per platform. Legislative Leaps Brazil and Chile Set the Stage for iGaming Transformation 33