The journey continues, and we strive to bring you all, and I mean all of the inspirational stories out there. We have recently come across an interesting brand, which is based in the Scandinavian market. It’s called Rebel Penguin – interesting name, you can find out why they’ve chose it in the interview – and is founded by Jonas Warrer. So, without any further delays, here goes our interview with Jonas Warrer.
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?
Jonas: Thanks – I am thrilled by the opportunity to share my experience and story with the iGaming community.
- Name: Jonas Warrer
- Age: 37
- Hometown: Copenhagen
- Living in: Copenhagen
- Favorite Food: Seafood
- Must Read Book: The Old Man and The Sea
GAV: Tell us a bit about yourself, we want to know who Jonas Warrer Petersen really is, the main person behind the Rebel Penguin brand and its websites. Where were you born? What was the key idea of developing this large brand which covers every aspect of the Scandinavian gambling market?
Jonas: It all started when I was studying in New York. The big sites covering American sports impressed me (e.g. espn.com and sportsline.com) and I wanted to do their counterpart in Europe. It seems a bit naïve looking back but I reckon you have to aim for the stars.
GAV: I must say that I’m impressed with your flagship product Live Goals, where do you think your websites stand at this point?
Jonas: We have spent quite some time on usability, content and making pages all responsive. Overall I am quite satisfied with our websites within these aspects. Our key theme right now is making things stable and (more) scalable. Within sports things are so event driven so everything happens in peaks which you really need to be able to cope with.
GAV: What are the strong points of the website and what makes it stand out from the niche websites, beside its already gained credibility?
Jonas: It has to be simplicity and responsiveness. A lot of our competitors – and especially the big ones – have not updated their website nor design in the last several years. We have tried to take a less-is-more approach when designing the website. As over 60% of our traffic now comes from mobile you really have to optimize for all devices; a key aspect here is trying to focus on what is need-to-have and what is-to-have. If you try to include everything and target everybody – at least in my experience – you end up with a product nobody really thinks is amazing.
GAV: What were the bumps on your road when you got started and how did you overcome them?
Jonas: Building a business model around banners is dead (or you really need high numbers of traffic). The biggest bump on the road definitely was to understand how to convert users into customers. I can highly recommend the book “Don’t make me think” by Steve Krug if you are starting out online. Focusing on the user sounds so simple but you often get entangled in doing things you personally think are awesome – whereas the users really don’t care. Kill your darlings!
GAV: Why Rebel Penguin? It’s seems to be a catchy and interesting name.
Jonas: Penguins are true survivors; they survive in the coldest and harshest climates on earth where they can often be the only animals there. I would be proud to manage a business with these qualities and that’s why the penguin name came up. Everybody has to be a bit of a rebel – haha – so the name sort of wrote itself when we started out.
GAV: We have browsed your websites and found some high quality content. Are you writing it by yourself or you have a team of people writing the reviews? How many reviews are there on your website?
Jonas: We have two full-time journalists working in the team. They wire a lot of reviews and previews – both focusing on events and sportsbooks/casinos. We also have a bigger team of freelancers focusing on their local language. Content needs to be unique – otherwise don’t bother to do it.
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?
Jonas: Trust and stability! If you want your business to grow you need to optimize and optimize. In my experience you only get the opportunity to do this if you work in a stable relationship with a handful of Affiliate Managers. Landing pages, calls-to-action, key claims etc. – there are so many opportunities to improve things as you move down the conversion funnel. My best advice is to focus on that – rather than hunting short-term enhanced deals or promos in the iGaming industry. Trust is the oil that makes this process run smoothly. Be honest and assume that your Affiliate Manager is equally intelligent as you. I have seen too many newbies trying to outsmart their Affiliate Manager – which I really believe is a killer for your business.
GAV: How do you see the future of the gambling industry? For instance, will it become a truly global phenomenon in the near future?
Jonas: I think we will see more and more countries regulate online gambling. Like with everything else online the entire world is becoming the local market place. Gambling might be restricted in e.g. the US – but people find a way around. The young can’t understand why you ever would go to a betting shop to gamble. As the older generations are replaced the pressure will intensify on the countries that are trying to restrict online gambling.
GAV: Can you name one change that you want to see in the sportsbetting affiliate ecosystem?
Jonas: More transparency and more trust between affiliates and operators. We would all benefit.
GAV: What advise you would like to offer to the new affiliates who are looking to venture into this great industry?
Jonas: Nothing beats hard work. Attend all the conferences and events in iGaming when starting out and share your ideas with people. Nearly all people like to share their experience – utilize that. There are so many opportunities in iGaming – and such high growth – so don’t be afraid of people copying your ideas. People are already stuck in their own fantastic idea that they want to realize.
GAV: Who is your favorite celebrity?
Jonas: That’s a tricky one. It’s boring I know but the first person to think of is really Bill Gates. I am impressed by how he is using his personal wealth – and connections to other wealthy people – to make a better world. It would be so easy for him to sit back and enjoy but instead he chose to get involved in making a better world. I love the process towards making things better. Hope is just a very strong feeling and motivator.
GAV: If you would just open your YouTube search bar, what would you search for?
Jonas: The Strokes – One Way Trigger. It’s manic and crazy. Great for working. 🙂
GAV: Back to work. Do you attend any iGaming conferences? If so, which one is your favorite and what is your most fun experience?
Jonas: London, Amsterdam and Berlin are all great conferences to go to. I attend all of them. I really like clubbing with Affiliate Managers after a long day of meetings. The opportunity to talk outside of the work setting creates a stronger relationship which makes things much more fun. Personally having a great relationship with the people I do business with motivates me. Going crazy in Felix Club in Berlin with bet365 is just one of those great moments that I think is so unique to this industry. You get the chance to work hard – and the chance to party hard. 🙂
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?
Jonas: In my mind most things here depend on lawmakers adapting to the new world. Eastern Europe is very much online and very much likes to gamble. Lawmakers should adapt to that and give people the freedom to decide what they want to spend their money on rather than trying to confine them to an old regime of control and boundaries.
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?
Jonas: A country like Ukraine is so vast and so full of history and culture. I would love to find myself stuck out there just meeting the locals without a bigger plan for what should happen. My country – Denmark – is just tiny compared to the vast landscapes in Eastern Europe. I would love to experience the “endless” landscapes out there. Favorite destination has to be Greece – how can you not love a country where everything is going so slow and relaxed. They are really miles apart from traditional Scandinavian efficiency – I love that part – they got life figured out.
GAV: Where you wouldn’t want to travel in Eastern Europe?
Jonas: It’s probably best advised to stay away from some Russian borders right now, but I don’t have any no-go areas.
GAV: What is your opinion about EEG/GAV (Eastern European Gaming – eegaming.org)/Gambling Affiliate Voice – gamblingaffiliatevoice.com?
Jonas: I think it’s awesome that eegaming.org focuses on the Eastern and Central European markets as they hold the potential for future growth in iGaming. I would very much side with perfecting the Affiliate – Affiliate Manager relationship so cheers for the good work guys. Keep it up.
AffiliateINSIDER hosts first-of-its-kind Business Coaching Workshop at AIBootcamp with George Swift , Bigger Brighter Bolder
Celebrated UK entrepreneur business coach George Swift will host an exclusive ‘Elevate and Thrive’ Affiliate Business Coaching Workshop at March’s AffiliateINSIDER Bootcamp, the first time such an initiative has ever been offered at an igaming affiliate event.
Held at Under the Bridge, a unique and stylish venue positioned underneath Chelsea’s Stamford Bridge Stadium, the two-day event on 21-22 March has been designed to help igaming affiliates growth hack and gain expert digital knowledge for driving traffic to their sites.
Swift, who runs business coaching group Bigger, Brighter, Bolder (BBB), will ensure affiliate entrepreneurs focus on their individual journey in obtaining business success and have the right business mindset to drive revenue growth.
The workshop is built around the ‘hero’s journey’ – a powerful metaphor for the journey to business success. While learning tools and tactics is essential, equally important for success is having the right business mindset.
Business coaches can be an invaluable resource when it comes to bolstering your business model, with the International Coach Federation suggesting they can increase
profit margins by an average of 46%. Further research has demonstrated a 570% return on initial investment in coaching.
This coaching session is not only unique to the AffiliateINSIDER Bootcamp conference, it is the first time an affiliate event will host a dedicated business coaching workshop.
Curated by AI founder and CEO Lee-Ann Johnstone, the event boasts a full two-day agenda of digital expert speakers, an experts mentor panel and several opportunities to make new introductions, giving attendees the chance to grow their business network.
“We are delighted to be hosting the first curated affiliate business coaching workshop for iGaming affiliates at Bootcamp this year. Affiliates who are looking to growth hack their business will certainly get the digital insights they need to get ahead of the curve and we’ll help them build a stronger entrepreneurial mindset to support their business success,” Johnstone explained.
Swift added: “I believe entrepreneurism is the greatest vocation on earth and offers an unprecedented opportunity to those that step up to its calling. However, that opportunity comes at a price: it’s hard work, challenging and can be very lonely.
“Whilst every journey is unique, there are commonalities we all share and those are what I will be sharing on the day. I’m really excited to be part of the AffiliateINSIDER Bootcamp and I’m looking forward to sharing the Entrepreneurial Journey of Success with all present.”
LeoVegas really is making dreams come true this Christmas
LeoVegas is giving away 5 nights under the Northern Lights!
It’s that festive time of year when our customers begin to dream of log fires, Christmas trees and dashing through the snow on a reindeer-drawn sleigh with mince pie crumbs in their laps. Well, good tidings are here as LeoVegas would like to spread the festive cheer by making two of these lucky customers’ dreams come true this New Year!
We will send two players and their plus ones to the Kakslauttanen Arctic Resort in Lapland on a once in a lifetime trip where they’ll sleep under the stars in glass roofed igloos – and may even see the Northern Lights flickering above while tucked up cosy and warm in a comfy bed as the snow falls around them.
This incredible trip also includes six activities which winners can choose themselves. These include a 4-hour husky safari, Aurora hunting on a horse drawn sleigh, visiting reindeer on a snowmobile or learning how to master Nordic skiing.
To be in with a chance of winning, new customers just need to deposit and wager 50 in the Live Casino or Casino (from 10/12/18 to 01/01/19) on any game to get one ticket into the raffle. The winners will then be drawn randomly on 2nd January.
A geo-targeted landing page promoting the campaign will be available by end of this week. Please contact your account manager or AffiliateTeam@leovegas.com for the media ID or if you have any queries. This campaign will be live in all markets except Italy from 10th December.
Leo really is making dreams come true this Christmas at LeoVegas!
The LeoVegas Affiliate Team
Affiliate Interviews: Steven Hubbard, of SweGaming and BettingLounge
This is our second interview with Swegaming. We are checking how they are doing right now.
GAV: Hi Steven, first off we’ve been talking with you before, around 2 years ago to be exact, and first wanted an update on what Swegaming and BettingLounge have been up to since then.
The last two years have been hectic for Swegaming as a company, and since I joined this year we’ve been ramping up our efforts towards the UK market with our site BettingLounge.
We’ve launched a completely new look and feel to the site while adding new sections including our popular betting tips. We have also added new functionality and content to help our visitors make the right decision when choosing which betting sites to use.
GAV: Could you tell us some quick facts about you?
Name: Steven Hubbard
Living in: Gothenburg
Favourite Food: Pizza
Must read book: Running: The Autobiography
Best dart player: Phil Taylor
GAV: Tell us more about yourself, we want to know exactly who Steven is, the product owner of Bettinglounge. How was it to move to a new country? How is it to work at a big affiliate company as Swegaming?
Well, I grew up in a small town in Norfolk, England. I spent most of my working life as a Lifeguard and Swimming teacher but decided to go travelling for a change.
There I met my Swedish girlfriend and moved to Gothenburg, where I met Andreas and David (founders of SweGaming AB). Moving to Sweden was a lot harder than the travelling I had done, but I had great support from my girlfriend and her family.
Working at SweGaming has been a wonderful opportunity to learn and develop new skills. They have a lot of valuable experience in the Swedish market and exciting ideas for the UK.
GAV: What would you say is the biggest competitive advantages for Bettinglounge? What makes Bettinglounge stand out from the crowd?
We are looking to change the affiliate industry by offering an honest, transparent and personal product. All while promoting safe and responsible gambling.
We have some really exciting long-term projects that I think will add a lot of value to BettingLounge, while continuing with our personal touch instead of hiding behind a brand name.
GAV: What is the biggest challenge for you as a product owner?
The need for constant innovation is the biggest challenge facing us. There are a massive number of affiliates in the UK, and we have to offer something special to stand out.
GAV: We have done some reading at your site and found out some really interesting betting tips, how can you know so much!?
Well, I am in no way a betting tipster or expert. But, I have been following sports, mainly football and darts for most of my life. Of course, you learn a lot from that over the years.
But, the most valuable information is gained by a bit of research. All of our tips are well researched with key stats and facts for the match. It is not a foolproof way of betting, but it will help in your decision making.
See our betting tips as a guide, or if you agree, of course, you are welcome to back them. But, remember to do so in a fun and responsible way.
GAV: Steven, who is your favourite model? Is it Zlatan or David Beckham?
Ah, that’s a tough one. Of course, David Beckham is my favourite model. I mean his boxers are not great, but what a man he is!
GAV: What betting tip has been your best in ROI?
The best betting tip so far has been a 12/1 win treble with Betway. Three away wins, Lincoln City, Leicester and Doncaster.
Although, Doncaster finished 3-2 and we had a nervy 7+ minutes of extra time that was not appreciated.
GAV: What is the best with TheGamblingAffiliateVoice?
The best thing is definitely to find new gaming conferences and read comprehensive articles . You are doing a great job writing about the conference Sigma on Malta. More affiliates and operators should definitely go to Sigma which is the best conference in my opinion.
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