There is no doubt that the online gambling sector of the Scandinavian region drives large volumes of players and the quality in term of wager value is the most increased in the industry. However this also means that the competition is harsh among affiliates that are looking to attract the players and drive them towards partner brands. The story of David Hjelmström, founder at Betting.se, is quite interesting and it gives us an inside scope of what is happening in the online gambling affiliate industry of the Scandinavian region.
David is the 3rd affiliate which will fly for free to SiGMA(Summit of iGaming, Malta). You to can benefit of this promotion, just be sharing your story as David did. Read more details here: https://gamblingaffiliatevoice.com/share-story-us-get-free-flight-sigma-limited-offer-first-40-affiliates/
Without any further side details, I give you the interview with David Hjelmström.
GAV: First, we would like to thank you for the opportunity to interview such a highly appreciated professional of the industry. Could you fill out the short form below so our readers can imagine your profile?
- Name: David Hjelmström
- Age: 21
- Hometown: Gothenburg
- Living in: Gothenburg of course, where else.
- Favorite Food: Meatballs with mashed potatoes and lingonberries
- Must Read Book: Svenska miljardärer (Swedish billionaires)
GAV: Tell us a bit about yourself, we want to know who David really is, the main person behind Betting.se. Where were you born? What was the key idea of developing this great website?
David: I were born just outside Gothenburg city where I lived for a long time and then moved into central Gothenburg later on. In high school I meet my future colleague. We started to bet on football and ice hockey games before we had the age with our parent’s IDs. It continued and we were thinking, someone has to make money on this. So we started our first affiliate site, betexpert.se. Since then we have built a lot of casino and sports affiliate sites with varying quality. With betting.se, we wanted to invest properly on a website that really stands out.
GAV: Since there are thousands of sports betting review websites out there, and the Scandinavian market is quite ruff, where do you think Betting.se stands now?
David: I think we make a serious impact on the Swedish market out with our new site Betting.se. It just got launched and in the next couple of months and on EM we will already play a big role.
GAV: What are the strong points of the website and what makes it stand out from the niche websites? We can certainly say it jumps out of the routine websites…the design is really appealing.
David: I think Betting.se is standing out with our daily Betting tips and our own build odds checker. We are also in the work with filming video reviews that will stand out. The design is not a normal WordPress theme. Bettting.se design is built from the grown by my amazing Colleague.
GAV: What were the bumps on your road when you got started and how did you overcome them?
David: The first and biggest bump so far is the domain Betting.se. We had a tough work getting in touch with the owner that just had the domain but no website on it. After some dealing about the price, the domain where ours. If you don´t give up and continue to fight you will overcome everything with a bit of luck and timing.
GAV: We have browsed your website and found some high quality content. Are you writing it by yourself or you have a team of people writing your editorials?
David: We have an in-house team that writes most of our editorials. But of course I cannot get my fingers across from writing my own articles.
GAV: How do you keep the content fresh and devoid of clutter when a lot of fluff and nonsense appear on the Internet on a daily basis?
David: There is for sure a lot of fluff and nonsense on the internet but I don´t think it affect us on a bad way. We get our information on official websites. One of our content manager is also an old hockey player and knows people in the biggest league in Sweden and also NHL. There we get some unique content for sure.
GAV: We are sure that you receive daily messages from Affiliate Managers showcasing their products. You of course select them by the brands they work with; but what are your thoughts on how Affiliate Manager-Affiliate relationships should be built?
David: Yes, we get a lot of emails from affiliate managers that wants to work with us. There is always a balance between the brand and the person in self. We also search around and ask people if they are a trusted affiliate program. It is easier to work together if you have a personally relationship with people. Therefore, it is perfect to eat dinners on conferences or just drink a water together on the conference.
GAV: How do you see the future of the gambling industry? For instance, will it become a truly global phenomenon in the near future?
David: I think the gambling industry will continue grow for a long time. It is still a lot of people that are interesting of gambling but has not taken the step yet. It will undulate but continue grow for a long time. But the margin will be smaller in the future with game taxes and more competition.
GAV: Can you name one change that you want to see in the sports betting affiliate ecosystem?
David: I would like more transparency for affiliates. I think it is important that the affiliates know exactly how their players behaves and what they think is good and not. It will help the player value.
GAV: What advise you would like to offer to the new affiliates who are looking to venture into this great industry?
David: When we started in 2013 we felt a bit late. I think it is really hard to venture into the business at the moment. But with tough work, everything is possible but it will take a lot of time and efforts.
GAV: Who is your favorite celebrity?
David: Henrik Lundqvist
GAV: If you would just open your YouTube search bar, what would you search for?
David: I would search for my favorite hockey team, Frölunda
GAV: Back to work. Do you attend any iGaming conferences? If so, which one is your favorite and what is your most fun experience?
David: I have attended to all iGaming conferences since I started in the business. The conference I get most out of is London. The most fun experience has to be in a conference in Barcelona for three years ago. Me and my colleague had a meeting with a new brand we had not yet met. We got along well and flied to Madrid the day after to watch El Clásico.
GAV: What is your opinion overall about affiliate conferences such as SiGMA?
David: I like SIGMA a lot. The location of SiGMA is great. It is good for the gaming people outside Malta and also easy for the people how lives on the island. It is nice to come and visit the companies in their headquarters.
GAV: How do you rate the chances of Eastern Europe becoming potential gaming hotspot of the future? Where do you think the region must improve upon?
David: I think the chances are good. I don´t see why it should not be a gaming hotspot. I think the region has improved a lot the last five years.
GAV: Alright, here comes the fun part…., where would you like to travel in Eastern Europe, some part of the region maybe that you haven’t visited yet and favorite destination around the world.
David: I would like to visit Klaipéda in Lithuania. I have never been to Lithuania so I think that would be a nice experience. My favorite destination, I have to say Las Vegas.
GAV: Where you wouldn’t want to travel in Eastern Europe?
David: I would like to travel to all countries 🙂
GAV: What is your opinion about GAV (Gambling Affiliate Voice – gamblingaffiliatevoice.com)?
David: The Gambling affiliate voice is useful for us. We look for certified affiliate programs and also read the articles about the industry.
Ad Fraud and Affiliate Marketing Strategies: How Online Gaming Companies Can Transform Their ROI
By: Richard Metcalf, Global VP, Sports Betting & Online Gaming, TrafficGuard
Betting companies can adopt cutting-edge technology and offer the very best odds, but amplifying your brand is still difficult in a saturated industry. As a result of relaxing regulations, international players can break into an increasing number of new markets but reaching local target audiences can be a challenge. For these businesses, affiliate marketing is a vital channel in driving new user acquisition and some of the largest sportsbooks like Paddy Power and DraftKings are among those utilising the strategy.
With competition fierce, businesses are in a constant battle to keep costs low. Cost-per-thousand (CPT) payment models for traditional TV advertisements are progress towards paying for performance, but vendors still cannot guarantee that exposure will translate to depositing customers. Affiliate marketing provides a cost-efficient, low-risk alternative because businesses pay for conversions only.
But with money to be made, affiliate advertising fraud is rife and affiliate partners are likely delivering invalid engagement. If betting companies are looking to expand their user base and market amongst big players, they must improve their visibility over affiliate partners’ traffic.
Tracking Affiliate Activity
From smaller players to large conglomerates, there’s an exciting opportunity for betting companies to establish their presence across global markets. In the US especially, rapid legalisation across multiple states has turned betting into a million-dollar industry and created a profitable opportunity for overseas operators to move into the new market.
However, marketing globally can be expensive and driving brand awareness in a new location is often time-consuming and resource-heavy. With affiliate marketing, betting companies can create a network of partners from across the globe and easily access international audiences. This strategy is also much more efficient and expansive than physical marketing methods as it removes the difficulties that are tied to building a target audience from scratch.
Although affiliate marketing is a valuable marketing tool for increasing brand awareness and authenticity, affiliate management platforms aren’t prioritising fraud. The measures they put in place themselves are often basic and easy to get around and fraudsters can easily fly under the radar by taking advantage of the lack of protection. The nature of affiliate marketing means there is a disconnect between the promotion, analytics and payment, preventing companies from getting a holistic view of the fraud impacting them in addition to paying out for valueless traffic.
Affiliate fraud in the betting industry includes any deceitful action taken by a third party to exploit marketing techniques. This can include click fraud, where fake clicks are generated on ads to earn commission payments; or cookie stuffing, where fake cookies are placed on computers to hijack affiliate sales. Malicious affiliate ad programs do this so they can earn money from false clicks or sales and target high-investment marketing campaigns.
Research by Forrester revealed that 81% of advertisers include affiliate marketing as part of their marketing strategy. The growth of the market, paired with the increase in competition, is why many are turning to affiliate marketing. However, by being cost-effective through performance-based pay, there is an increased attraction from fraudsters. Sports betting companies are not well-equipped to address the problems they face with ad fraud.
Statista predicts affiliate marketing spending in the US alone will reach $8.2 billion by the end of 2022. With the vast amount of money involved, sports betting companies are a target for fraudsters.
Getting Instant Access
In order to prevent fraudulent traffic, betting companies must increase the visibility they have over affiliates. By keeping track of partners’ activity, including reviewing their demographics, reputation and quality of traffic, they can increase the quality of their affiliate partners.
Betting companies can do this using third-party technology that can indicate that affiliate scams are taking place in real-time to deliver the most reliable fraud protection. Intelligent software that uses behaviour analysis, such as machine learning, can track the volume of data required to deliver an accurate, instant analysis of which traffic is valid, invalid and fraudulent. Machine learning can identify granular details such as an unusually high number of clicks on an ad, or a high number of sales from a single IP address to confidently assess and deal with invalid traffic so the betting company doesn’t have to pay out.
With this data, operators gain the confidence to cross reference the engagement affiliates charge them for, prevent any partners from trying to outmanoeuvre them and safeguard their business against malicious activity. With more protection over advertising campaigns and a larger proportion of clicks coming from conversion-ready leads, companies can build cleaner audience groups from high-value affiliate partners.
Better Visibility, Better ROI
Reaching a market size of $231 billion in 2022, the sports betting industry is becoming increasingly attractive to international operators and fraudsters alike. If you’re running an affiliate marketing program, there’s a high chance you’re paying out for partners’ invalid traffic.
Only using the data your affiliate program partners declare means you’re at risk of being misled. Affiliate programs need to be monitored to avoid scams and program fraud. By understanding which affiliate partners are directing invalid traffic to their websites and charging a premium price for it, sportsbooks can optimise their pay-outs and exceed competitors’ efforts.
Vita Media Group wins Casino Affiliate of the Year Award at the EGR Operator Awards 2022
Vita Media Group, a Danish iGaming company, won the Casino Affiliate of the year award at the 2022 edition of the EGR Operator Awards held in London.
The Casino Affiliate of the Year Award is the first major award that Vita Media Group has won.
Vita Media Group’s CEO Jimmi Meilstrup believes this award comes as an appreciation from the iGaming world to all the employees in the company who are delivering extraordinary results every day.
“On behalf of everyone in our company, I am deeply grateful for this award which is the first large-scale award that we have won as a company. From day 1, we promised the iGaming world we are going to build this company on the principles of loyalty and trust. Through hard work, a lot of research, and indeed a great amount of quality traffic generated and delivered, we have excelled in casino affiliation. To everyone who chose Vita Media Group as a partner, thank you, and be sure to expect even better results from us in the future” commented Jimmi Meilstrup.
During the award night held in London on October 27 th , 2022, Vita Media Group was shortlisted 4 times in different categories:
• Affiliate of the year (Headline category)
• Casino Affiliate of the year
• In-house product for the in-house developed iGaming loyalty and reward platform Ekstrapoint.com
• Affiliate Program for the fast-growing developed affiliate program OMG Affiliates
In the Casino Affiliate of the year category, the judges from the EGR Operator Award were reviewing applications based on significant traffic, player numbers, ROI for operators, ability to build strong partner relationships, brand innovation and marketing, and player retention strategies.
The EGR Operator Awards, considered the Oscars in the iGaming industry, are organized by EGR Global, a leading publisher of online gaming B2B news, analyses, and research.
In 2021, Vita Media Group was shortlisted for the first time at the EGR Operator Awards in the Affiliate of the year category for affiliation services and the Rising Star category for its affiliate program OMG Affiliates.
Casino Guru establishes Awards Project to recognize greatest industry achievements
The Casino Guru Awards is the latest project by Casino Guru inspired by guiding the dialogue on consumer safety, and it reflects on the company’s ambition to acknowledge and reward achievement in the gambling industry, specifically in the sectors Casino Guru has contributed to –responsible gambling and consumer education. Casino Guru Awards is the result of this long-term commitment to making gambling safer, fairer, and more accountable for all participants.
Drawing on years of experience as the defining affiliate service in the industry, Casino Guru has transcended its core model to make global changes to the industry, including through its Global Self-Exclusion Initiative, Casino Guru Academy, Fair Gambling Codex, and other initiatives.
Now, the company is stepping up its responsibilities of a gambling industry custodian with the Casino Guru Awards which will celebrate the most committed operators in industry and the professionals who shape its future. The inaugural edition of the event is designed to raise awareness for the Awards and help the most deserving companies serve as good role models industrywide and reach a broader audience.
To participate, companies may nominate themselves through the end of November 2022. Casino Guru will also select worthwhile nominees that will be added to our list in a process that is fair, transparent, and above all else, distinguishes and focuses on merit. A shortlist will be announced in December2022with the official ceremony held online in February 2023. All decisions regarding the outcome of the event will be carried out by hand-picked judges.
Casino Guru Awards will feature judges from some of the biggest companies that are well-established names in the industry, including Kindred Group, Betsson, Gamban, Epic Risk Management, Gordon Moody, and more. The panel will include close to 15 external judges and five of Casino Guru’s own specialists.
Commenting on this project, Daniela Kianicová, PR & External relations Lead at Casino Guru, said: “Casino Guru Awards is a natural continuation of the efforts Casino Guru has put into making gambling safer, fairer, and more transparent for everyone. We worked on the Awards and the categories with the idea to emphasize on areas of the industry that are crucial to consumer safety and can always be improved on.
Our commitment to safer and responsible gambling is unflinching and I am honored to have the opportunity to work alongside the industry’s most distinct professionals to make gambling safer for players. It’s clear to me that Casino Guru Awards will be a benchmark for companies in the industry and a high accolade for any entity that wants to help write the gambling world of tomorrow.”
Casino Guru Awards will run in several categories which will focus on a mix of business achievements and consumer needs. The company feels strongly that achieving a level of excellence across these verticals will result in a better gambling industry for all. The categories include “The Fairest Bonus Policy,” which assesses the fairness of Bonus T&C’s and whether a bonus accounts for breaching applicable rules by accident, among other and equally important criteria.
“The Fairest General T&Cs” category will focus on how a casino’s T&Cs ensure that customers are protected and safeguarded and that they do not fall prey to predatory or hidden rules and details. In true Casino Guru spirit, “The Most Impactful Social Responsibility Initiative” will focus on those operators and companies who understand the importance of responsible gambling and problem gambling prevention.
There is a separate category that will independently assess “The Best Implementation of RG Tools” and “The Most Transparent Casino.” Another important category will be “The Most Effective Handling Complaints,” which is another area where the Casino Guru team feels improvements can be made, giving operators an incentive to operate in a clear and consumer-centric way. Casino Guru is experienced in this particular area having established the Casino Complaint Resolution Center which has thousands of closed cases already.
Last but not least, there is “The Voice of the People” which will be decided by the players, without any intervention. You may find out more about the Casino Guru Awards on the official page, including details about submitting a nomination, who the judges are, and what to expect in the months that lie ahead.
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