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Affiliate Interviews: Kajsa, CEO of Casinosverige.me

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Kajsa

Here is the latest affiliate success story starring Kajsa, who’s in the industry since 7 years already and manages Casinosverige.me a well known platform for all Scandinavian players.

GAV: First of all thank you for the opportunity Kajsa! Could you share with us your profile so our readers can get a better idea of who you are?

 

Name: Kajsa
Age: 32
Hometown: Varberg
Living in: Varberg
Favorite Food: Indian or a good steak
Must Read Book: There are so many!
Profession/Job title: CEO

 

 

 

 

 

GAV: Kajsa tell us and our readers as well a little bit about yourself. How did your career start in the industry? What was the key idea of developing this great online gambling site?

Kajsa: Well, I am an ordinary woman living on the west coast in Sweden. Since I was little I’ve always had a sense of business and a big interest in all kinds of sports and gambling. My career in this industry started about 6-7 years ago when i developed my first affiliate site about free bets on casino. Later on I moved  from just writing about free bets to create more comprehensive sites with reviews, promotion news and articles about the industry. Casinosverige.me was created back in 2013 and the goal was to give the visitors all information that is necessary when you want to start playing casino online. Also we try to answer all questions that a player might have in our FAQ since we know ourselves that there could be a lot of question marks when you haven’t played online before.

GAV: Since there are thousands and thousands of websites in this niche out there, where do you think Casinosverige.me stands now?

Kajsa: I think our site stands out well as the site has very good online visibility. We do our best to be profound when it comes to both reviews and articles. We want to provide our visitors everything they might ask for in a casino guide online. And hopefully we’ve achieved this goal even if we try to develop and become better every day. Also the site is very niched to the Swedish market which I guess gives some kind of safety for the Swedish people that are visiting the site. Another thing is that we are in constant contact with our visitors and always answer any questions they might have. We also provide support when there has been a problem between the player and the casino. Even in these cases when we’re not promoting the casino in question.

Casinosverige logo

GAV: How do you see the Scandinavian online gambling market/industry at this moment?

Kajsa: I see an expanding market but at the same time there are many question marks regarding a future regulation. The whole industry is waiting for a regulation where foreign companies can get licenses just like we’ve recently seen happen in both Britain and the Netherlands. But the market really has potential and there are more people playing online than ever before. Still there are much more to get and I think that we’ve only seen the beginning so it’s really going to be interesting to follow this market during the next years.

GAV: In your opinion what are the strong points of Casinosverige.me and what makes it stand out from the other Scandinavian niche websites/directories?

Kajsa: As I mentioned earlier in this interview we try to be as comprehensive as possible. There should be more to a good online casino guide than just a top list. So we try to provide our visitors with everything they might ask for in terms of articles, information about promotions, support, industry news, etc.

GAV: How did you start and most of all what bumps did you have to overcome at the beginning?

Kajsa: I started a site about free bets where I didn’t even had affiliate links in the beginning. I also wrote down my family’s horse racing tips so we all had a common platform for that. But I guess I first saw the potential of earning money when there was someone who wanted to buy a link on the site. At that time that was like magic happening right in front of me. I never could have guessed that there where ways to earn money that easily. Regarding bumps on the road I must say that I didn’t get any commission to talk about for 1 or 1,5 years. And to write on a daily basis could be pretty exhausting when you don’t get anything in return.

GAV: We have analyzed your website and found some great quality content. Are you writing it by yourself or do you have a team of people writing for you? How many casino reviews are there on your website? How about the your blog?

KajsaContent is something that I valued since day one in this industry. This is the single greatest part that I found most important for a website. For about four years I did all content myself but as the network of sites has grown and I have less time I’ve had to outsource some of the content writing to others. But I still write content on a daily basis and I think this is something that will never disappear from my work schedule. Regarding the daily blog posts I have a very talented content writer writing these posts filled with current promotions at online casinos. But sometimes we add articles about the industry in the blog and usually I write those articles myself as I have great insight in the gaming industry as an affiliate. At the moment we have over 50 reviews about different online casinos. These are written by both me and my content writer.

GAV: How do you manage to keep the content fresh and relevant on your website and blog, when a lot of fluffy and nonsense appear on the Internet non-stop?

Kajsa: We try to stay sharp and read all newsletters that are sent out to us on a weekly basis. By doing this we always have fresh information to provide our visitors with. Our visitors can expect us to have all the latest information when they enter our website. We also do our best to keep the top lists fresh and update when there is a change in a welcome offer or so.

GAV: We are more than sure that you receive messages from Affiliate Managers on a daily basis showcasing their best products. You of course select them by the brands they work with; but what are your thoughts on how a real Affiliate Manager-Affiliate relationship should be built?

Kajsa: This was definitely easier a couple of years ago when there weren’t so many different companies in this industry. Nowadays you can get up to 20 emails a day from different affiliate managers and to be honest it’s hard to find the time to answer them all. And therefor it’s also hard to build new relationships with affiliate managers these days. But I think the important thing is that both you and the affiliate manager shares the same value. For me I am looking for long-term partnerships and I expect the same from the affiliate manager. I won’t waste time on creating reviews and building content about a brand if it’s just for a month or two. Also it’s a give and take situation. Sometimes it’s hard to keep a nice tone when there’s so much stress all the time. And all brands wants the same: more publicity. And it’s impossible to give that to all brands out there so the affiliate manager needs to give something in return in terms of loyalty for the deal, information about ongoing promotions etc.

GAV: How do you see the future of the online casino/gambling industry? For instance, will it become a truly global phenomenon? What about the Scandinavian market’s future?

Kajsa: I see big potential for this industry as we’ve only seen the beginning yet. It’s going to be interesting to see what happens as the market is growing but at the same time there is a consolidation going on where bigger companies buy more and more affiliates and casinos. But it will surely become both a global and a Scandinavian phenomenon. And I think we will see more and more countries regulate the gaming industry like we’ve seen a couple of countries have done already.

GAV: Do you have any advise you would like to offer to newbies who are looking to venture into this great industry!?

Kajsa: Well, as long as you work hard and never give up anything can happen. Think positive, be optimistic and don’t care what others have to say about your dreams and goals. There is a lot more competition now than when I first started but still I think hard work always pays off. But don’t expect to earn money right away because then you’ll just end up getting disappointed.

GAV: Do you attend any iGaming/online casino conferences? If so, which one is your favorite and what is your most fun experience?

Kajsa: I’ve attended most of the conferences although I try to stay home sometimes as well. But I’ve been to both BAC, LAC and AAC and this year I am also attending Sigma in Malta. So far the affiliate conference in London was the best one since it had most to offer and was the biggest one.

GAV: What do you think the chances are for Eastern Europe to become a potential gaming hotspot in the future? Where do you think the region must improve upon?

Kajsa: From what I’ve understood the potential of online gambling in Eastern Europe is very good now that a legislation is in order. I’ve heard that many operators have received licenses in a very short period of time so obviously the interest is there from both the operator side and the player side. We can already see some bigger casinos targeting this market and if I had the knowledge and was better at foreign languages I would definitely create some affiliate sites targeting Eastern Europe.

GAV: Where would you like to travel in Eastern Europe?

Kajsa: I’ve actually only been to Bulgaria when it comes to Eastern Europe so most other countries would be a new experience for me! But I’ve heard there are great SPA treatments in Estonia so maybe that would be my first place to go.

GAV: Where you wouldn’t want to travel in Eastern Europe?

Kajsa: I don’t think there’s a country that I wouldn’t want to travel to but maybe Poland isn’t my first choice if I had to pick one country not to travel to.

GAV: How about a favorite celebrity, do you have one one?

Kajsa: That varies a lot actually. At the moment I can’t come up with one single favorite celebrity.

GAV: What is your opinion about the Gambling Affiliate Voice? 

Kajsa: Gambling Affiliate Voice is a great portal for affiliates in this special industry. We need more portals like this where affiliates can gather and get the best and most important information about the iGaming industry. I find many of the articles written very useful and I also like that you offer groups where affiliates can share their experience. I like the transparency and I would definitely recommend others to visit GAV regularly. I like that you offer affiliates a context in a world where it can become quit lonely to sit alone in front of your computer 12 hours a day.

Thank you very much for your answers Kajsa, we appreciate it! All the best to you and if you have some news or updates that you’d like to share with us feel free to contact us!

Affiliate Success

Exclusive Q&A with Jeton Kodia Co-Founder at Oddspedia

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Let’s start with a few words about yourself. Our readers love top executives talking about themselves.

My name is Jeton Kodia and I have been in the gambling business since 2009. I became an iGaming affiliate when I turned my hobby into my profession. Gambling is part of my life – I love betting, casino games, and poker. Additionally, with my first name Jeton, it was somehow destiny that I had to step into this industry. I am addicted to football, and I had to lose quite some bets on my favorite team until I learned that when you want to take betting seriously, you need to refrain from your emotional attachment to a particular team and turn your attention more to comparing the odds. Besides football and pro sports in general, I bet on pretty much anything with my friends. This ranges from prop bets about winning at Playstation games to whether my first child will be a boy or girl. There is always something going on in my life which we can bet on.

Now on to Oddspedia. What led to the founding of Oddspedia?

As I already hinted at before, I wanted to focus more on the odds at sports betting. Therefore, I teamed up with Jan, whom I know since we were 18 years old, and who is equally passionate for sports in general and football in particular. Together, we co-founded our company and website Oddspedia. The main goal of our company is to provide valuable, competitive and user-friendly services for sports betting fans, players and publishers. Since its inception and over the course of several years, Oddspedia established itself as one of the biggest international affiliates in the sports betting world.

Could you elaborate on the cutting edge that Oddspedia possesses? There are other companies that offer similar services. What makes Oddspedia “the number one sports companion” of punters?

The website aims to provide as much value to the user as possible, and the information is conveyed in a manner to ensure a great user experience. It starts with guaranteeing a reliable odds comparison – odds on Oddspedia are being scanned in real-time across more than eighty bookmakers to ensure that only the most up-to-date data is displayed. This is complemented by features not commonly found in competing websites, such as geolocation to show only relevant betting sites for the user, direct links to bookmakers’ betslips, full odds movement history and various betting tools. This is part of what makes Oddspedia one of the best sites for odds comparison. But as a matter of fact Oddspedia offers much more than that. The website has amazing sports coverage as well, providing livescore information on more than 30 different sports. Users can also explore sports statistics, bonuses and promotions, or read the latest news on their favourite leagues, teams and matches. All of this wrapped in an app-like web experience, with quick performance and a state-of-art modern design makes it easy for Oddspedia to stand out from its competitors.

You recently overhauled the Oddspedia website. What are the new features that have become user favorites?

In August Oddspedia had the biggest makeover yet with its relaunch. The new version was in development for more than a year, and enabled the development team to apply new tools and technical innovations that were simply not possible on the old site. Major front-end and back-end changes were done to improve the user experience, and the new UI provides much more natural and polished user flow. To ensure seamless operation, updates regarding back-end software, systems,  processing odds nodes, and new integrations are introduced almost on a day-to-day basis.

You have also launched widgets for webmasters and digital publishers which help them monetize their website through affiliate marketing? Tell us more about the widgets and process of monetizing.

One of the main issues from editors, publishers and affiliates is providing real time data to their customers. Is extremely hard to find a proper way to do it. The Oddspedia Widgets fill the gap between the sports data feeds and the operators.

For editors, the Oddspedia Widgets have been developed as a real “all-in one” solution. These tools can be implemented into any site by simply pasting their code, providing that site’s users with real time odds data. Publishers can benefit from the live information by not only providing their users an odds comparison widget for free, but they can include their affiliate link to the respective bookmaker. Clicks are simply shared on a 50/50 basis. The way the split works is that the widgets rotate with two links, one for the publisher and the other for Oddspedia which will be applied with equal chance.

 Publishers will get real time sports data without any cost for them, at same time they offer that to their customers and readers.

The Covid-19 pandemic has affected the betting and gambling companies, especially the traditional forms of betting and gambling. It is not yet done yet. How have the lock-down and social distancing measures affected your business?

In every crisis there’s an opportunity. The coronavirus outbreak has had a devastating impact all over the world and on our daily lives, with many businesses in almost every industry feeling the pinch. That’s no different with the gambling industry, as most major sports were suspended in the first lockdown during spring time.

At Oddspedia we expected that the interest in sports will even grow bigger in times of social distancing and isolation. But with the vast majority of sports canceled we had to find a way to react to the situation. We focused on increasing our sports portfolio and cover almost any event going on worldwide. As crazy as it sounds, the matches from a Table Tennis tournament in Russia were checked over a million times on Oddspedia.

There are still positives that can emerge from the pandemic, with virtual sports and esports being one of them. Virtual Sports truly boomed in interest. Esports betting is a vertical in the industry that was already rising in popularity before the outbreak. But now, it’s well on its way to establish itself as a major offering for operators and affiliates, which is set to continue even after we come out the other side of virus lockdowns.

It has been seven years since Oddspedia was launched. Most of these times, you focused mainly on Europe, especially the German-speaking countries. You are now venturing in to South America. How has the user response so far from the Latin American countries, who certainly love their football? Any plans to start operations in Asia?

Our entry into the South American market has been very successful. The audience there is extremely passionate about sports and betting, and they show a great demand for our product. Of course, we provide local users with well-targeted information from local bookies in their native language. We began with the integration of Spanish and Portuguese languages for our product, then we structured our content to be as engaging as possible for local users. It’s no secret, that for users from Brazil, as well as for other Latin American countries, football is the most popular sport. So when entering our website, we meet users with the most interesting football matches from their local leagues. These are shown first and then followed by popular worldwide championships.

This personalized approach is very successful and we have good and stable traffic coming from these countries

Several Asian countries, like Japan for example, are very interesting for oddspedia, as well. However, we deem it highly important to find the right partner when entering a country like that. It is crucial to have the right partner who is fond of the language, can translate and adapt to the correct betting terminology, and possesses local SEO knowledge. We envision to grant sublicenses for oddspedia if the right company to partner with comes knocking on our door.

The technology is moving at an unimaginably high speed. How do you think artificial intelligence and machine learning would impact the betting industry, and specifically the odds comparison

Automation based on machine learning has been key within ecommerce for years and the igaming industry should apply insights gained in other sectors. Offering a personal user experience in a responsible environment comes from understanding and catering to each individual player’s needs from an entertainment point of view. AI is a type of software or hardware that learns – and it could be programmed to learn mostly about users and their behavior and utilize those insights to drive the developments of new, hyper-personalised gaming and internet betting experiences. The technology is being applied to learn our habits, our likes, and our relationship patterns. Online gaming is an industry that runs on data, such as results, stakes, percentages, odds, stats, and so on. All of these numbers are constantly crunched, calculated and analysed behind every major gaming platform. For this reason, ML is actually playing a growing influential role in the sector, changing the game for both online gaming businesses and their players

Finally, what would be your key advises to any new entrepreneurs starting something new in the gambling industry or affiliate marketing sector?

Don’t start something just on your own if you are a newbie. First, dip your foot in the water and gain some experience in the industry. I would recommend starting with a job at a bigger affiliate company or in affiliate marketing at an operator. If you are smart, you can learn a lot quickly and avoid a bunch of costly mistakes you might have made otherwise. In the next step, you can try out your own ideas. By then, you already have a sound understanding of the industry, which allows you to make even better products right from the beginning and the timeframe until you are able to realize a return on your investment is likely to be much shorter, as well.

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Affiliate Announcements

Bojoko crowned Casino Affiliate of the Year 2020

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Bojoko crowned Casino Affiliate of the Year 2020

 

Online casino comparison site takes home its first EGR Operator Award off the back of a hugely successful year

 The party is continuing at Bojoko after the online gambling comparison site was named Casino Affiliate of the Year at the prestigious EGR Operator Awards 2020.

Bojoko fought off stiff competition from some of the biggest names in the affiliate industry, including Gambling.com Group, Catena Media and Blexr, to take home the trophy.

EGR judges said that Bojoko had showed “very strong growth” over the past three years having been the first to use the Airbnb and Trip Advisor model in the online casino sector.

The EGR judges said: “They continue to be innovative with a number of new features which has allowed them to grow to 26,000+ registered members.

“I really like the concept, it’s a true affiliate giving customers choice who to choose, growth looks decent and operators managing the page ensures compliance and cost control.

“It is a clever idea and model and shows good growth,” the judges added.

Bojoko allows online casino operators and game developers to create their own listing and tell their story through their own words, images and videos.

Bojoko members then rate and review online casinos and games based on the experience they receive, with Bojoko’s member base now standing at 26,000+.

Joonas Karhu, Chief Business Officer at Bojoko, said: “We are thrilled to have been named Casino Affiliate 2020 at the EGR Awards and for Bojoko to be recognised as a true leader in the space.

“The Covid-19 pandemic saw operators pivot to casino as part of efforts to mitigate the impact of the global sports blackout, making the casino comparison sector even more competitive than normal.

“The Bojoko team rose to this challenge and I am so pleased that their efforts have been recognised by EGR and its panel of esteemed judges.

“Our mission from day one has been to help players find the best casinos for them while also meeting the highest possible standards when it comes to responsible gambling and safe gaming.

“We continue to innovate and introduce new tools and features to help players filter and compare the 160+ casinos and 40+ game developers listed on Bojoko.

“We have ambitious plans for the coming 12 months, including expanding into the US market, and look forward to doing this with our first EGR award in the bag.”

 

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Affiliate Announcements

Karhu launches Professional Gambling Affiliates Association

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Karhu launches Professional Gambling Affiliates Association

 

Bojoko’s Chief Business Officer launches industry group with the aim of creating contractual security between affiliates and operators for the first time

Joonas Karhu, Chief Business Officer at Bojoko.com, has launched the Professional Gambling Affiliates Association (PGAA) to help improve the relationship between affiliates and operators and create contractual security for the first time.

Karhu formed the association after becoming concerned with the imbalance in the relationship between affiliates and operators. The PGAA will address this with affiliates coming together as one in order to push for contractual security and fair terms and conditions when promoting operator brands.

At present, there is no contractual security for affiliates who are forced to sign agreements that are one-sided and subject to change at any time. This can see life-time revenues slashed and fees increased with little to no notice.

This is not the case in other B2B industries and makes running an online gambling affiliate business incredibly difficult. Operating an organisation without a secured contract is unsustainable, making it impossible to invest in growth and putting jobs at risk.

The PGAA intends to create a contract that provides the security its members need to be able to promote operator brands now and moving forwards. The contract will be signed by PGAA members and their operator partners.

Bojoko will handle the initial communication between the PGAA and operators, and will also cover the legal cost associated with creating the PGAA contract. This includes any potential reviews or amendments required now and in the future.

Karhu is now calling on affiliates of all sizes to join the Professional Gambling Affiliates Association. Those interested in signing up can do so by requesting to join the dedicated Professional Gambling Affiliates LinkedIn Group here.

Joonas Karhu, Chief Business Officer at Bojoko, said: “The situation online gambling affiliates face is unprecedented when compared with other industries and sectors. Running a business without a secured contract is simply unsustainable and puts organisations and their employees at great risk.

“By creating the PGAA, I hope to be able to provide the contractual security that affiliates need to be able to promote operator brands and be confident that the players they send and the revenues they generate are secured over time.

“I am now calling on all affiliates to join the PGAA and for operators and other industry stakeholders to support the association and its mission to level the playing field for affiliates and to provide the contractual security they need and deserve.”

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