GPWA Times Magazine - Issue 6 - September 2008

Affiliate Manager Interview Series 41 | GPWA Times Betfair’s betting exchange product is different froma typical bookmaker in that it allowsplayers tobet at odds set by each other rather than by a central agent. How does this approach help you as the affiliatemanager? As an af- filiate manager, Betfair’s business model helps me greatly as we actually want our customers to win. Consequently, we can work very closely with our affiliates. We strive to create a community of customers together with our affiliates. We can help educate them to become successful Bet- fair customers, meaning more revenue for our affiliates. Being an exchange makes us very differ- ent from the other bookmakers and this gives us an excellent edge in the market. Betfair has revolutionized sports betting, and this in turn has created a different kind of affiliate partnership, one where we can work together to attract customers whom we value and aim to please. Can you explain the Betfair Exchange Games brand and how it has been re- ceived by your players? The model is a combination of Casino and Poker Games while using our exchange principles – you have to try it for yourself! It is quite chal- lenging promoting it with affiliates due to the fact that it is a byproduct of games and exchange. When our customers un- derstand both Exchange, Casino and Pok- er, they tend to spend a lot of time using this particular product. Betfair seems to pride itself on being creative with its offerings. Are there any other unique brands in the mak- ing that you can tell us about? I have lost count by now, but these are great! We have engineering labs that are constantly working on developing new applications around our product offerings. These are aimed at increasing player value by pro- viding intuitive solutions to our players. We are the best at what we do, and our customers recognize and value that. Taikai is a new idea from the lovely peo- ple here at Betfair. You can participate in betting tournaments against other play- ers for cash or just for fun. How did you get started in the in- dustry? I started in 1998 working for Ladbrokes as a customer service advisor, mainly working on taking sports-related bets over the phone. Back in those days, Internet penetration within the gaming industry was relatively small and most business was conducted over the phone. I went on to work part time for VC (while studying in University in London). Later I joined Party Gaming, Mansion, and now Betfair. What do you like about the industry? I have to say that after discovering mar- keting related work in the gaming indus- try I began to enjoy my work. I met the infamous Michael Caselli while working in offline marketing back at and have been good friends with him ever since. I worked in customer services for over three years and that has helped me learn the basics, although the job was a real drag and I hated it. I also worked in content management, risk, payments, online/of- fline marketing, and now affiliates. The job comes naturally to me now and I enjoy going to work and performing work-relat- ed tasks. It isn’t a drag and that’s the best feeling about being in the industry. Do you gamble yourself? If so, what games do you like to play? Were you an online player before getting into the industry? I probably dropped quite a bit in online casinos – out of curiosity. I did win the staff competition to qualify for the final of WSOPE in 2007. Playing with world’s best poker elite was definitely an experience I will never for- get. I only lasted four hours during the competition; going out to a higher straight was very annoying! This was probably the 10th time I ever played poker, so I shall settle for it. If you could change places with any- body for one day, who would you choose and why? Hmm…that’s a tough one as I never thought of this before! Since we are talking about affiliates, I will have to say I would probably want to try being one of my super affiliates – just to feel the power of controlling the best por- tal placements and earning tons of cash each day. How about that?!? “Betfair has revolutionized sports betting, and this in turn has created a different kind of affiliate partnership, one where we can work together to attract customers whomwe value and aim to please.” EVGENY PAVLOV | Betfair Affiliate Program