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How to Set Up Affiliate Marketing Relationships for iGaming Success

Affiliate marketing has become one of the most valuable tools for companies to attract new users to their sites and, therefore, new players. In the iGaming industry, between 60% and 80% of all site users do so through affiliate marketing. To be able to apply affiliate marketing in your business, you need to know what it is and how it works.

Previously, we explained what affiliate marketing is and how it works. To refresh the concept, affiliate marketing involves promoting brands, products or services through third-party recommendations. This approach maximises results while minimising efforts. In this way, brands, companies or advertisers sell their products via affiliates, who in turn monetise their websites, blogs or social networks by earning commissions on each sale.

Key Components of Affiliate Marketing:

The advertiser: This is usually a company or brand, such as a bookmaker or online casino in the iGaming industry, aiming to attract new players by increasing traffic to their website.

The product or service: The element being promoted to boost sales. In iGaming, these are online casinos and bookmakers.

The affiliate: The intermediary recommending the product or service directly to users. Affiliates, who can be individuals or entities like influencers, bloggers, streamers, or review sites, must have a promotional channel and a positive public rating.They earn a performance-based commission from the advertiser, which can be calculated per traffic, click, user registration, first deposit, etc.

The channel: The medium through which the affiliate promotes the product or service to users.

Steps to Implement an Affiliate Marketing Strategy 

To sell, you must first attract. This is the premise on which the affiliate marketing strategy is based. Successfully applying these strategies requires work, time, and resources. While affiliate software platforms can help simplify the process and improve results,  here is a concise guide for those who want to implement the strategy independently. 

Once you have your online casino or bookmaker platform up and running, the next thing to do is to start getting players. To achieve this through affiliate marketing, you need to:

  1. Create an Affiliate Program. Develop a section on your website for those interested in promoting your business to sign up. This typically involves a form for prospective affiliates to fill out. Applications may be accepted automatically or require approval from the operator.
  2. Define Commissions. Establish how affiliates will be compensated. There are different ways of accounting for affiliate results: per click, per action (deposits, registration, number of bets), or per impression.
  3. Establish Payment Processes. Determine the methods, schedules, and procedures for making commission payments to affiliates.
  4. Segment Affiliates. Use tags to categorise affiliates by channel, geographic location, quality of leads, etc.
  5. Communicate Effectively. Build relationships with affiliates through regular communication. Start with the onboarding process, introduce them to the company, and consistently share valuable information.
  6. Track Performance. Monitor each affiliate’s actions and results using various tracking methods, such as postbacks, S2S, pixels, dynamic CTAs, or Google UTM links. This step is the most important because it is where each affiliate’s performance is evaluated. Therefore, it is advisable to use a tool that integrates multiple tracking methods.

Why You Should Build Relationships

Employing an affiliate marketing strategy is not about outsourcing a part of your marketing efforts to attract players to your online casino, bookmaker or online poker site. To be successful and achieve the desired results, the two parties involved in affiliate marketing must be united, communicate effectively and work in harmony.

Ideally, affiliates will spread the word and promote the brand with such conviction that users are compelled to try the website’s games or bets. The key to affiliates persuading their audience lies in motivation. With the right motivation, affiliates will become the best brand ambassadors.

Affiliate marketing is based on trust, positive feedback, and recommendations. For this chain to work correctly, the brand’s message must be consistently conveyed to affiliates. This is why having an Affiliate Manager on the team is advisable for building and maintaining solid relationships with each affiliate.

In addition to clear and constant communication between the parties, other factors must be worked on to grow the relationship with the affiliates and achieve the desired results. Here are some tips that will be very useful to you.

How to Set up Affiliate Marketing Relationships: 5 Tips

1. Analyse Your Current Standing

Knowing your current situation and your possibilities allows you to set clear goals and define what results you aim to achieve with affiliate marketing. Whether you are launching your online casino, a bookmaker looking to attract more bettors, or targeting users from other countries, your strategy needs to be tailored to your specific context. 

Clear goals not only guide your efforts but also facilitate effective communication of your affiliate marketing strategy.

2. Be an Active Brand

Accepting affiliates is just the beginning. As a brand, you need to set an example for affiliates and be proactive. Your online casino or sportsbook should generate promotional actions, create valuable and engaging content, and provide press releases for affiliates to share. Tailor terms and conditions for each affiliate based on the traffic they bring. 

For example, creating affiliate-specific bonuses or referral code promotions are excellent options for keeping affiliates active.

3. Maintain Regular and Clear Communication

Regular, transparent communication ensures fluidity between the operator and affiliate, building trust and a sense of belonging. Affiliates should feel valued for their contributions, not merely treated as another cog in the machine. 

Attending events and conferences is an excellent opportunity to strengthen relationships and improve communication. Given that much communication is virtual, having a presence at such events can be invaluable. 

On the other hand, clear communication helps clarify doubts and align objectives and expectations between parties.

4. Segment Affiliates for Better Tracking and Performance Measurement

Segmenting affiliates is essential for the success of the affiliate strategy and for having a sound relationship with each affiliate. Each affiliate’s contribution will vary, so it is beneficial to segment them based on geographic area, objectives, channels used, and performance

 Use different tags to organise and differentiate each affiliate. Pixel tagging or postbacks are used for casino listings or review pages, and dynamic CTAs are used for social networks such as TikTok to track user sources and evaluate affiliate performance.

If technical knowledge is a barrier, consider using affiliate platforms that handle these tasks efficiently

5. Ask Your Affiliates for Feedback

Affiliates are on the front lines, directly interacting with users and executing your company’s strategy. Knowing their opinions and having their feedback on what you are doing has considerable value for improving your affiliate strategy. It also generates a back-and-forth in communication that makes the relationship more human and fluid.

Use various methods to collect feedback from affiliates, such as general surveys, monthly forms, personal calls, or, as mentioned above, meetings at events or conferences. 

Importantly, act on the feedback received to show affiliates that their input is valued and impactful.

Conclusion

If you own an iGaming business, such as an online casino or a sportsbook, and you are looking for the best way to attract new players or more traffic to your website, affiliate marketing is a powerful option to consider.

This technique will allow you to achieve a much greater reach at a lower cost than other marketing strategies. Each affiliate joining your company will expand your reach to different audiences both nationally and internationally.

An affiliate strategy based on personal relationships requires more time and effort than traditional advertising. However, the quantity and loyalty of players you attract and the long-term benefits of a strong affiliate network make it a worthwhile investment.  By fostering these relationships, you can achieve sustainable success and significant growth for your iGaming business.

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