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Meet Chris Evans, Business Development Manager of Bitcoin Gambling Guide

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Chris probably needs no introduction to some of our readers, but just in case you still haven’t heard about him you must know that his BDM of the Bitcoin Gambling Guide, he’s continuously helping the the cryptocurrency community but also the online gambling industry!

GAV: Hi Chris, thank you for answering our questions we really appreciate it knowing that you’re pretty busy. For start please share your profile with us so our readers can get a better idea of who you are!

Name: Chris Evans
Age:37
Hometown: Sydney
Living in: Sydney
Favorite Food:Thai (Who doesn’t love a good green curry)
Must Read Book:TED Talks
Profession/Job title: Business Development Manager for www.bitcoingg.com

GAV: Tell us and our readers a bit about yourself! How did your career start in the industry? What determined you to engage in this activity and start working at Bitcoin Gambling Guide?

Chris: Well, I’m born and raised in Sydney, but it was on a business trip to London in early 2012 with my team in DHL, that my career in the bitcoin casino industry firmly had a seed planted.  I was amazed to see how developed the online betting bitcoin industry was – although in reality it was at that point still in its infancy – and a friend gave me my first 3 bitcoins to use. I trialed the crypotcurrency, won and lost, all the while looking for an opportunity to get my teeth into.  This is when I approached the idea of Bitcoin Gambling Guide to see if I could make it work and spread the word.  Bitcoingg is still a project that I’m learning from everyday, and I’m in a perfect position to speak with platform providers, bitcoin casino brands, managers and CEO’s.  The industry is constantly evolving and I know we have a great product and service to offer – i couldn’t be happier that I made the move to this industry.

GAV: Could you tell us a bit about the Bitcoin and after that about Bitcoingg.com?  What are the strong points of the website and what makes it stand out from the other Bitcoin websites?

Chris: Bitcoin for me is not the future, but the present, its the new way to pay and get paid without the need for unnecessary exchange rate, and credit card fees, plus what really interests me is the technology. Bitcoin is a perfect match for gambling which is backed up by the variety of bitcoin casinos and bitcoin sportsbooks now available. The two industries seem to be growing together very well.
Bitcoingg.com is the main source of information today and here are some of the highlights:

  • We have over 600 reviews of games,platforms, brands, people, technologies and more
  • A complaint system for players to raise their concern which then goes directly through to the brand.
  • A review and ranking system which culminates in the brands being awared the BGG Certificate of Trust – Examples can be seen in footers of mbitcasino.com and bitstarz.com
  • An advertising agreement with an external agency that has all the connection sin all of the right places
  • Many returning readers that also signup to our mailing list
  • External writers from around the globe with more languages currently being added
  • Social media presence across all platforms
  • My team has lots of knowledge and experience, we are open minded and welcome cooperation’s 

Bitcoingg.com is not another review site but a one stop shop for bitcoin gambling.

bitcoingg.com Logo

 

GAV: How did you start and what bumps did you have to overcome?

Chris: I started with a very small site plan, basic design and no traffic, actually from scratch.  It was my intention to always focus on the player providing good information, updated reviews and a ranking/complaints system.  This small seed has grown into a site that is trusted by players and brands alike, with now thousands of pages of information.

GAV: We have surfed your website and found some really good quality content. Are you writing it by yourself or you have a team writing for you? How many casinos do you have on your website?

Chris: We have over 400 bitcoin casinos, 100 bitcoin poker rooms, around 50 bitcoin sportsbetting sites plus many more besides – on average we add 8 – 10 a week.  More than that we review slot games, software providers, and technologies which are related to the bitcoin industry, this happens by publishing news daily.  I write myself, but of course I also have more writers on staff along with a whole host of external journalists wanting to share their experiences with bitcoin and bitcoin gambling.

GAV: How hard is it for you to keep the content fresh and relevant on your website, when a lot of fluff and nonsense appear on the Internet on a daily basis?chris evans

Chris: Myself and my writers are players and bitcoin fans.  We read, we check, we investigate, we learn and after that we write.  We are also lucky to receive lots of information from partners, customers, and industry professionals.

GAV: We are pretty sure that you receive many messages from Affiliate Managers on a daily basis showcasing their best products. What are your thoughts on how Affiliate Manager-Affiliate relationships should be built?

Chris: I do not deal with affiliate managers as my focus is purely on the content and what value can I add for the players, I left all of that side of the business to an external marketing company to take care of.

GAV: How do you see the future of the online casinos and the Bitcoins? For instance, will it become a truly global phenomenon?

Chris: This only requires a short answer – these two sectors are a perfect match which is proven daily by the amount of new bitcoin casino brands constantly coming into the industry.

GAV: Can you name one change that you want to see in the Bitcoin ecosystem?

Chris:Yes, I want it to be easier to use and more accessible. For people already using bitcoin, it’s easy for us to buy, sell, and trade, but unfortunately for 8 out of 10 people in the western world they still do not know how to use it. We need to offer better education on the subject.

GAV: What would be your advise to the new affiliates who are looking to venture into Bitcoin?

Chris: New affiliates need to find a niche as the market is already full for the main sports and games. For example there is missing information in golf and F1, so if an affiliate knows these subjects then they should concentrate there as it would be a great niche. It’s the same with specific markets like Latin America which is still developing and Australia which has great potential.

GAV: How do you see the Central and Eastern European affiliate market, do you think that this region is somehow overlooked by brands that are not applying for licenses, etc. ?

Chris: I do not see this as an area that is overlooked personally, like my answer above, it’s all about finding your niche.

GAV: Since SIGMA is almost here, we would like to ask your opinion on these event, are you guys attending these conferences or are you going to be in Malta? How about the London Affiliate Conference?

Chris: I like going to conferences but unfortunately time is never on my side. Luckily this is where my external journalists come to the fore, but i am hoping to make it to LAC in London next year.
GAV: have you got a favorite celebrity and if you’d have to a pick a destination in Eastern Europe, where would you travel?

Chris: Celebrity wise in the bitcoin space, then I would say Roger Ver due to the way he handles the bitcoin industry. Eastern Europe – probably Romania.
GAV: Where you wouldn’t want to travel?

Chris: I’m ready to visit anyplace with good wine 🙂

GAV: What is your opinion about the GamblingAffiliateVoice.com?

Chris: I love the site and I believe in the added value of talking to the marketers is great for the community.

GAV: Thank you very much Chris it was a pleasure talking to you, we wish Bitcoin Gambling Guide all the best!

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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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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