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Hitting for six

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Hitting for six-cricket
Photo Source: mattcurrill.com

 

Tom Wardman, Business Development Executive at Independent Content Services, offers affiliates advice about how to use content to drive engagement during the Cricket World Cup

 

The Cricket World Cup got underway last week and is expected to attract a global audience in the billions between now and its conclusion in the middle of July.

For online sportsbook operators, it is a huge opportunity to engage new punters while re-engaging existing customers with generous promotions and a great range of odds and markets.

Indeed, it has been reported that 34% of tickets purchased for the tournament have been done so by people who have never attended a cricket match before.

This presents tremendous upsides for affiliates who can use their skills as content creators to engage new cricket fans and push them towards the sportsbooks they are partnered with.

But to succeed, affiliates must put in place a clear plan of action and a detailed strategy to be sure they are targeting the right audience with the right content.

Let’s consider the audience that affiliates should be targeting during the Cricket World Cup.

The tournament has a global audience but is particularly big in India, where the sport is a national obsession. But with online sports betting largely illegal, affiliates must focus elsewhere.

This means tailoring content to meet the needs and expectations of fans and bettors in markets such as the UK, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa where online betting is more widely available.

The good news for affiliates is that English is the standard language in these countries, so translation is not so much of a concern for content created around the tournament.

But what sort of content should affiliates be creating, and how can they use content to ensure that punters signed-up during the World Cup continue to engage with their sites afterwards?

It is important for affiliates to understand that they are not just competing with other affiliates, but also the major sports media brands, some of whom also offer sports betting.

Content must therefore go beyond general news stories and include things like match previews and reviews, player analysis, interviews, stats and data.

More feature-based pieces are also popular, including top tens (scores, best LBWs, comebacks, etc) as well as input from pundits and former players.

While most of this content will take the written form, affiliates should also create and publish audio and video content as this can unlock even higher levels of engagement. These are particularly good to share on social media.

Take audio, for example. Affiliates can partner with content providers to offer live, ball-by-ball match commentaries that their readers can listen to.

This allows readers and potential punters to stay engaged with the tournament if they are unable to attend in person or watch it on TV.

Broadcasts can also be tailored to individual affiliates to include calls to action that encourage listeners to sign up with particular sports betting brands.

For example, “England are now 2/1 to beat Pakistan. Sign up now at Sportsbook Operator A and receive a free bet.”

In addition to radio, affiliates can provide audio blast score updates, analysis bulletins and even podcasts. All of this can be done very cost-effectively.

It is really about helping the audience remain engaged with the Cricket World Cup via the affiliate site wherever they are, whatever they are doing.

They may not bet all of the time, but with regular calls to action built into audio content, when they are ready to sign-up to a sportsbook and bet, they are more likely to do so via the affiliate.

Affiliates wanting to offer something truly exciting should also plan for video content as this allows them to leverage the phenomenon of second screening and also the power of social media.

Content providers such as ICS offer cost-effective video in the form of match previews and reviews, video blasts and score updates, plus Gillette Soccer Saturday style shows.

Again, this content can be tailored to individual affiliates and include bespoke calls to action that drive viewers back to their sites and to the sportsbook brands they work with.

The other great thing about video content is that it is sharable across social media, and delivers high levels of engagement. This in turn drives brand awareness among new audiences.

Of course, the real challenge for affiliates is ensuring any new players remain engaged after the Cricket World Cup – this is often easier said than done.

But content is a powerful retention tool. Once the tournament is over, affiliates should put together a content plan for the Indian Premier League and the Big Bash League as well as the Ashes.

The key thing to remember here is that 50-over cricket is different to 20-over or Test cricket, and you can’t always assume there is a mutual interest.

But so long as the quality and variety of the content is on point, and ensures that players remain connected to the affiliate’s brand, there are plenty of opportunities for retention.

The Cricket World Cup is one of the largest sports tournaments in the world, and smart affiliates that prioritise content will be hitting for six now and throughout the year.

Affiliate Success

Three-peat for the King Billy Affiliate Program at the SBC Awards!

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Three-peat for the King Billy Affiliate Program at the SBC Awards!

 

We should know by now that King Billy Casino was bound to be in the limelight for one more time. True to the words of the great Brazilian writer Paulo Coelho “Everything that happens once can never happen again. But everything that happens twice will surely happen a third time.”, King Billy does it for the third time in a row.

So, after being shortlisted at the prestigious iGB Awards (and from there, winning it all), being shortlisted again at the prestigious EGR Awards, the King Billy Affiliate Program has now also been shortlisted at the prestigious SBC Awards (event to be held on December 3). Moreover, the operator is also on the SBC Awards short list for Casino Rising Star.

We asked the mastermind behind this tremendous streak, Ruslan Legenzov, King Billy Head of Affiliates to share his feelings with us and a few words about this new distinction. He was, understandably, in a state of euphoria:

“This is beyond our wildest dreams! To complete the “Big 3” of the industry’s annual biggest awards shows, by being short-listed in each and every one of them fills us all with immense pride. At King Billy Casino, we set out with a single goal in mind: to move beyond the commission and offer to our affiliates a program never seen before. We are happy that our effort is recognized by both judges and Affiliates!”

The SBC Awards, now in its 6th year, recognize the achievements of operators, affiliates and suppliers from across all major disciplines including payments, marketing, platform providers and data. The Awards will be held at Battersea Evolution, in the heart of London, bringing together 700 gaming industry delegates.

King Billy Casino is a new generation online casino, available in 5 languages (English, German, Russian, Finnish and Norwegian and soon Japanese) with an impressive record in awards and an amazing variety of games providers and features. King Billy has built on creating a superb user experience focusing on the myth of King Billy and his Kingdom and treats all players with the specialness they deserve.

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Affiliate Success

First Georgia iGaming Affiliate Conference: What Was Discussed at the Event?

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First Georgia iGaming Affiliate Conference: What Was Discussed at the Event?

 

On October 18, Smile-Expo held the first Georgia iGaming Affiliate Conference in Tbilisi. The event was dedicated to the specific nature of online and offline gambling business operations, Georgian gambling market prospects, and casino promotion using affiliate marketing.

The conference brought together casino managers, affiliate network representatives, government officials, webmasters, arbitrage experts, SEO specialists, as well as gambling regulation and taxation professionals.

Speakers’ presentations

Sviatoslav Slaboshpitskiy, Head of SEO at Digital Choo (DC), spoke on the topic: The Art of War in SEO: How to Win the iGaming Niche. The speaker stressed that one should develop niche websites to achieve efficient results. At the same time, it is significant to analyze the response and to evolve resources showing the best performance. Sviatoslav also talked about the rules of SEO team building. The expert recommended entrusting the content creation to single-discipline specialists as well as developing checklists and tutorials for newcomers.

Dmitriy Makarov, CEO at Zlodei Advertising Agency, and Gleb Sanzharevsky, CMO at Zlodei, made a collaborative presentation dedicated to ad placement on YouTube and Twitch. They explained that promotion via influencers could increase conversion better than direct advertising. The experts stressed that user stories and popular memes made ads more fruitful.

Nikola Minkov, CEO at Serpact, examined the application of the so-called Featured Snippets, zero blocks in the search results. According to the speaker, Google provides users with such snippets in 40% of the queries. They allow online resources to generate organic traffic and enhance the click-through rate.

The audience was intrigued by Ketevan Bitskinashvili, Chief Financial Officer at the Ministry of Finance of Georgia. The speaker told them about the special features of the Georgian gambling market regulation. She mentioned that the cost of gambling permissions depended on a venue type, a target region, and a number of installed gambling machines. The same parameters affect tax rates.

Ms. Ketevan stated that Georgia had already issued 214 gambling licenses. 20 casinos are operating in the country now. 10 of them are located in Batumi and its suburbs, 6 in Tbilisi, and one each in Gudauri, Tskhaltubo, Kazbegi, and Sighnaghi.

Giorgi Gvenetadze from Adjarabet raised an issue of online casino customer acquisition. The speaker believes that the core feature of advertising banners used by Georgian casinos is the availability of luxury car images. Besides, promotion messages mostly appeal to senses of beauty, control, and simplicity.

Panel discussion

The conference featured a panel discussion titled ‘Offline and online casinos. Review of tools for the competition for user attention’. It involved:

Shota Amiranashvili, President of the Association of casinos in Adjara;

Levan Kavtaradze, Director of Gaming department at Pokermatch;

Giorgi Gvenetadze, Head of Product Marketing Department at Adjarabet;

Lavrentiy Gubin from Shangri La Casino, an invited guest.

Experts said that primary advantages of land-based casinos included reach experience of the gaming process, expensive surroundings, and staff attentiveness. Virtual gambling platforms are lack of these aspects. Therefore, discussion participants think that offline gambling venues will never shift to the online space.

Speaking about the most in-demand gambling entertainments, specialists highlighted simple and user-friendly games like roulettes. Moreover, they noted that poker was becoming less popular because of the high buy-in. Currently, we can see a crypto casino trend, as such platforms ensure anonymity.

Participants also focused on the state regulation of the gambling market. According to them, countries failing to regulate the gambling business lose money that could go to the government budget as taxes. One more fact specified: gambling advertising bans give an impetus to look for new audience engagement channels.

Afterparty

The conference ended with a party. Guests, speakers, exhibitors, and sponsors were able to enjoy live music, Georgian sweets, beverages, and snacks. The afterparty allowed participants to communicate in a relaxed atmosphere and establish useful business contacts.

We express our gratitude to the Afterparty Sponsor, NOFLEAD gambling resource, helping to carry out the afterparty in an extremely comfortable environment.

Sponsors, exhibitors, and participants

Companies offering various iGaming goods and services introduced their solutions and services in the exhibition area. Event sponsors were exhibitors as well.

Badge and Bag Sponsor: Digital Choo, an international marketing agency with deep expertise in gaming.

Exhibition Area Sponsor: SoftGamings, a provider of advanced В2В solutions for online casinos.

Afterparty Sponsor: NOFLEAD, an online gambling resource aimed at both beginners and experienced gamblers.

Lanyard Sponsor: ZLODEI, an advertising agency with deep expertise in native advertising.

By the way, attendees were able to examine a stand by IBCCS TAX, an international company providing a wide range of fiduciary services.

Another event participant was Partners.io, an affiliate network for cryptocurrency gambling programs.

The Smile-Expo team expresses its gratitude to sponsors, speakers, and exhibitors for participation in the conference. We look forward to seeing you at the next events dedicated to gambling and affiliate marketing.

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Affiliate Success

What does “beyond the commission” mean for King Billy? A short list (at least) at the EGR Awards!

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What does “beyond the commission” mean for King Billy? A short list (at least) at the EGR Awards!

 

King Billy Casino has been making quite some noise with its Affiliate Program this year. The program has gained momentum and achieved wide recognition from Affiliates, both established and upcoming, which is something not to be taken lightly, given the, ahem, unpredictable mentality and demands of the Affiliate world.

According to King Billy, this is a program that promises to take the casino – affiliates relationship to a new, mythical level “beyond the commission”. You may wonder (as we did) what lands lie beyond the commission. Is the first stop Valhalla? El Dorado? Shangri La? Camelot? Mount Olympus?

Much closer actually: It is the luxurious Grosvenor House on London’s Park Lane, home of the 2019 EGR Awards. The King Billy Affiliates Program has been short-listed in the Affiliate Program Category and we asked Ruslan Legenzov, Head of Affiliates at King Billy Casino, to share his feelings with us.

The excitement never gets old! Congratulations to the whole department at King Billy, our “King’s Servants” who make this possible. Also, a big thanks to our Marketing and Creative Department for helping us move beyond the commission exactly the way our affiliates want.

Following our biggest distinction to date, the award at the 2019 iGB Awards, this is one more proof that we are doing something extremely well at King Billy Casino. Obviously, after being short-listed, we‘d like to go all the way, but we are well aware of the top level and the quality of all the nominees. So, see you at Grosvenor House and may the best operator win!”

The reputable EGR Operator Awards reward B2C operators for setting the standard in egaming excellence, with categories ranging from customer service to social responsibility, and recognizing achievements across all verticals. The 2019 Awards will take place on the evening of Thursday 24 October at Grosvenor House, London.

King Billy Casino is a new generation online casino, available in several languages (English, German, Russian, Finnish, Norwegian and soon Japanese) with an impressive record in awards and distinctions. The King Billy Affiliates Program has already won the 2019 iGB Awards Affiliate Program of the Year award.

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