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How to get the first hundred iGaming affiliates for your business (without wasting money).

Last updated Jul 20, 2023
Jul 20, 2023 iGaming

What is affiliate marketing and how it works

Gambling affiliates can help increase your brand’s visibility by promoting offers to potential customers. They drive traffic to online casinos and sports betting sites and get paid in the form of a commission.

1. CPA Deal

This is the type of deal where the affiliate is paid for a specific action taken by the customer. For example, you can pay $20 per signup or $200 for each new depositing customer.

Note: You reduce your own risk by paying for actions that are closer to your goal – sales. For example, it’s more risky to pay for signups than for new depositing customers.

2. Revenue share Deal

The more your casino makes, the more you pay to your affiliates, which is only fair. This deal represents a lasting partnership.

Typically, affiliates receive between 25% and 45% of the earnings generated by players. For example, if a player bets $100,000 and loses it all, you pay an affiliate $45,000 in commissions. Each active affiliate receives their commissions for a lifetime for each referred customer.

3. Hybrid Deal

This means paying smaller percentage of the revenue share mixed with a CPA payment. For example, instead of $100 CPA or 40% revenue share, they could take a combination of $50 CPA and 25% revenue share.

online casino affiliate earnings

Why are gambling affiliates so valuable?

This is one of the best ways to increase the revenue and profit of your iGaming business because:

  • It allows to reduce the risks associated with building marketing teams and having large budgets. Affiliates are responsible for attracting customers and receive a commission for each new customer they refer to you.
  • Increase the number of traffic and customers exponentially by recruiting more affiliates.
  • Affiliates can give you a lot of insight because they already know everything about their market and clients. This way casino owners can avoid costly mistakes because they can learn from someone who has experience in the industry.
  • Reduce the time it takes to make money. You don’t have to test dozens of campaigns and deal with Google or social media algorithms. Affiliates can bring you hundreds of customers in a short period of time.
casino affiliate marketing

Casino sites that focus mainly on affiliates make up to 90% of their revenue this way.

Think about that!

Gambling affiliates can generate forty-five million dollars for every fifty million in revenue your business generates!

Is it easy to attract iGaming affiliates?

Your affiliate relationships will determine how far you can grow your business! At some level!

You need to do a good job of recruiting affiliates and maintaining relationships.

Otherwise they will leave!

This is definitely more complicated than it sounds!

Affiliates are interested in long-term relationships, but they also know that they can switch a casino if they don’t feel valued enough.

It’s not enough to just pay your affiliates for every customer they bring on board.

It’s your job to make sure that every customer you acquire stays with you longer, because that’s how everyone can make more money.

A good customer relationship management system can help with this. You can find more information in this article.

Customer retention allows them to get a big chunk of money after the first sale is made. Experienced affiliates know that they can make five times more money with revenue share deals than with CPA if casino has all the systems in order.

It’s always more expensive to attract a new customer to your casino than to sell to an existing one. If you do a good job on the latter, it willll bring more money for your affiliates and your casino.

gambling affiliates

Is it wise to make affiliate marketing a part of your online casino growth strategy?

That depends on your long-term marketing strategy and budget.

If you don’t have a marketing team and a big budget, this is the only option.

SEO, PPC marketing, influencers, brand ambassadors – they all require an upfront investment that you may not have at the beginning.

Many online casinos, including industry leaders, rely on affiliates to attract the bulk of their customers.

That’s what affiliate programs are for.

As you grow, you can consider setting up booths at iGaming events.

casino affiliate earnings

Depending on how your casino grows, your strategies for attracting affiliates will change.

Proven ways to attract iGaming affiliates to your business

1. Use the strongest search term on Google and start digging

Search forums, social media groups and Telegram chats to find places where affiliates hang out.

Reach out to them one by one and just ask for their opinion on the deal! Be persuasive and see if you can give them what they want!

It’s a tough numbers game and initially the odds aren’t on your side, but it’s also a cost-effective way to get your first affiliates.

Ask questions!

A good tactic is to ask what gambling affiliate programs they participate in and what they particularly like.

Check what traffic they have to make sure it fits your business.

If you’re looking for Mexican traffic and affiliate works mainly with European audience, it may not be a good fit.

After talking to several affiliates and introducing them to your casino, you’ll know what offers they like which will help to position your business properly.

You will learn a lot!

  • What regions they focus on, what live casino games their audience prefers, and whether they like sports betting offers as well.
  • Which online slots work in this particular market, which affiliate programs they have tried, and what they liked (or didn’t like).

The most important thing is that you build relationships.

Don’t pitch anyone too early.

Remember that people are focused on their problems, and if you present yourself as a “needy business owner” they’ll turn away from you.

First learn about their needs and what you can do to enrich their lives.

Affiliates like working with small programs, because of the service and special treatment.

2. Attend some conferences and get to know them personally

Affiliates like to travel to gain new insights and look for new casino affiliate programs.

This is the perfect opportunity for them to meet business owners in person, discuss deals and unwind.

Networking is a great chance for you to meet affiliates face-to-face.

Compared to the first option, here you can build a relationship right away. It’s a “talk less, do more” approach.

If you’ve done some research, you already know what they’re looking for. You can focus on building relationships instead of laying a foundation.

This is a field job and you can easily get distracted by a lot of things.

You need to figure out the best way to proceed to work with your target audience as quickly and effectively as possible.

Not everyone you talk to is a suitable affiliate partner. You will meet sales people, software developers, SEO specialists, and affiliate managers.

Note: Contact the affiliates you found online a week before the event. Ask them if they will be there and set up an appointment. This way you can build better relationships and close the deal faster.

All events are different and we recommend you focus on events that give you the opportunity to network. You can find a list of the top three events at the end of this post.

3. Get a booth and make sure affiliates come to you

Many online casino affiliate programs have booths. The fact that they spend money on this strategy proves that it works and that it’s worth it.

We don’t recommend this approach if you are just starting out for four main reasons:

  • You need to know what you are doing. It’s better to hire people from igaming industry who have a lot of experience with events to help you to create a well-established brand.
  • You need a decent marketing budget, because a booth can cost you 50,000 EUR and more just for construction. Add to that the cost of booth space, hostess service, drinks, food and merchandising, and your expenses can easily double.
  • You’ll also need sales staff to handle the visitors.
  • You need your own gambling affiliate program with a well-tested product to make it work.
gambling site affiliate programs

This tactic can be a slam dunk, but it can also fail miserably

Reputable brands have a booth at every event, because if you get it right, it can be a game changer for any online casino!

I would definitely recommend you do your own homework before using this strategy. If you choose the wrong type of event, you can burn hundreds of thousands of dollars faster than “money furnaces”.

Your work isn’t done until you have quite a few affiliates working with you

Your job isn’t to let them loose, but to manage your assets properly.

You need to evaluate their performance daily, recognize change, and not bury your head in the sand when things change. Especially with CPA affiliates.

If you notice that an affiliate’s performance is consistent and then sales drop, it’s your job to address that immediately. Contact affiliates and find out what has changed.

Renegotiate the terms immediately if the results don’t meet the KPIs to avoid big losses.

You need to keep working on attracting new affiliates

If you want to grow, this work never stops. Affiliates come and go, but few stay with you for many years.

Treat them like gold.

In the early stages of your business, it’s important to build trust. This will lead to more affiliates taking you seriously! If you’ve done everything right up to this point, you already have a good reputation.

Do affiliates like working with you?

Work on your brand awareness and brand trust. Once you’ve gained trust and multiple affiliate partners are working with you, selling is easy.

A well-positioned brand makes the difference between thousands of other “faceless” companies.

Your brand is what partners will think about you.

Work on your brand awareness and brand trust. Once you’ve gained trust and multiple affiliate partners are working with you, selling is easy.

A well-positioned brand makes the difference between thousands of other “faceless” companies.

Your brand is what partners will think about you.

gambling affiliate network

A brand that no one knows is almost as bad as a brand that no one trusts. Because no one cares if you’re trustworthy if no one knows about you!

  • Your brand must always deliver what it promises.
  • Affiliate partners need to know and feel that you care about them.
  • Your values must be what your partners are willing to stand for.

Affiliates don’t live in a vacuum. Information about your affiliate program will be shared in Facebook groups and in forums. Make sure your brand checks off all “three R’s” – reputation, reputation, reputation.

“It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it. If you think about that, you’ll do things differently.” Warren Buffett

Make sure your brand is known on the street, and do a good job of keeping it clean and fun to deal with.

The iGaming industry is small and everyone knows everyone. It’s easy to spot affiliate programs with bad reputations:

Be transparent, stay consistent and make your affiliates feel valuable.

Don’t advertise 45% revenue share just to to win a few deals and make endless deductions later.

Many affiliate programs fall for this scam and pay their affiliates two or three times less. Here is a good article about the reality of revenue share deals.

Professional affiliates know these tricks and will surprise you with questions you can’t answer.

How not to get scammed by affiliates

There are four types of affiliates that can ask for a deal that they largely profit from and that will give you fun profit margins:

  1. Affiliates whose business is solely to send fraudulent traffic or to take your money and send no traffic at all.
  2. Someone who wants to ruin your business and wants CPA deals only. It’s highly unlikely that a decent businessman would have such goals (pay attention to your competition).
  3. Narcissists ready to take advantage of you. Avoid them, because even if you take them on, they won’t stay in your affiliate program for long.
  4. Overly talkative people. Someone who just talks and does nothing.

If a deal looks too good to be true, it’s probably a bad deal

Shady partners can easily bring you a lot of visitors who are worth nothing! Since you taking this risk, it’s very important that you don’t fall victim to such a scam.

You’ll learn this from the community and from your own experience.

Forums like – AffiliateGuardDogGPWA and AskGamblers are very good to get the opinion of other business owners.

This is often the case with CPA businesses because affiliates are compensated before your customers make a first deposit.

So how can you avoid this?

Find out about the affiliates you work with! Find out about their traffic sources before you sign them up!

If people say they can provide you with SEO traffic, but you don’t see any SEO traffic during your due diligence, it’s probably a lie (you can easily find out the traffic with Ahrefs, or Semrush)

Note: It’s not always black and white. If traffic doesn’t convert well at one offer, it doesn’t automatically mean it won’t convert at your casino either! You should test things that look good!

Set a budget with which you can test affiliates

If you think something will work, give your affiliate account a window of time to complete twenty to fifty FTDs at your online casino and watch what happens!

Paying two hundred dollars for a depositing customer shouldn’t break your bank, and you could find a valuable affiliate that brings millions in revenue to your business!

The five best iGaming conferences where you can meet affiliates

There are plenty of networking opportunities in Europe, Latin America and Asia.

You can find iGaming events in the Philippines, Brazil, Las Vegas, Singapore, Malta, Spain and other countries. You can find a list of upcoming events on this page – http://www.igamingcalendar.com

1. ICE London exhibition and iGB Affiliates

This is one of the most attended events in the industry. At ICE London you can meet the Best iGaming Software Brands, Payment Providers, Aggregators, Banks and many other service providers at ICE London.

The iGB Affiliates takes place in the same building and is jacked with affiliates. Everyone needs affiliates and the organizers know that – that’s why you have to pay to play. The price for one ticket is 650 British Pounds which is around 720 EUR.

2. SBC Summit Barcelona

3. iGB Live in July

4. Sigma Europe in Malta

Summary:

Affiliates are an essential part of any live casino. They are a perfect source of traffic and information. You can use their industry experience to avoid costly mistakes.

Your task of building relationships with affiliates never ends. Make sure you can add value to them and have all the marketing tools to increase the lifetime value of your customers.

It’s easy to reach affiliates online, but there are plenty of ways to network offline as well. Use the iGaming Calendar to search for industry events.

There are many shady affiliate programs out there. Make sure you build transparent relationships and a brand you can trust.

It can be a hard work to attract more affiliates to your affiliate program. Scammers know this and use it to their advantage. Do your own due diligence and run away if things look too good to be true.

Treat your partners like gold and manage them properly. Always have your finger on the pulse and take care of problems quickly.

Author photo

Max Kerry

Maxim is the founder of LicenseGentlemen.com We help our small and large clients with online gambling licensing, platforms and payment system providers. After more than 300 successful licensing projects, we know exactly what problems every startup faces. We help our clients get the license quickly, choose the best platform and connect all payment methods so they can focus on their business. We also produce free content you can find on this blog or on YouTube.

FAQ

How much do gambling affiliates make?

The income of gambling affiliates can vary widely depending on several factors, including the affiliate’s website traffic, the quality of the affiliate’s content, the affiliate program’s commission structure, and the specific gambling brands being promoted. Some affiliates may earn a few hundred dollars per month, while others can generate substantial six-seven or eight-figure annual incomes.

Affiliate commissions are usually based on a percentage of the revenue generated by referred players, and often range from 20% to 50% or more of the net gaming revenue generated by those players. In practice, you will negotiate three different deals with affiliates – the CPA, revenue share or hybrid deal. High-quality, targeted traffic and effective marketing strategies can lead to higher commissions. It’s in your best interest to favor high-performing affiliates.

Who are casino affiliates?

Casino affiliates are individuals or companies that promote online casinos and gambling websites to potential players. Many of them start small and have teams of one to two people. They drive traffic through various means, including websites, blogs, social media, email marketing, and other online channels. Affiliates earn commissions based on the players they refer to the casinos or gambling sites. These commissions are typically a percentage of the revenue generated by the referred players, and they are a way for affiliates to monetize their marketing efforts.
Casino affiliates play a vital role in the online gambling industry by driving traffic and new players to casino operators. They may create content, reviews, and promotions to attract players to specific casino brands. Affiliates can range from individual bloggers and website owners to larger affiliate marketing companies. Their success depends on their ability to attract and convert players, as well as the terms of their affiliate agreements with casino operators.

Is casino affiliate profitable?

Casino affiliate marketing can be profitable for individuals and entities that effectively drive traffic and refer players to online casinos. The profitability of casino affiliate marketing depends on several factors, including the quality of traffic, the conversion rate, the commission structure, and the competitiveness of the niche.
Successful casino affiliates often have well-optimized websites, high-quality content, effective marketing strategies, and a strong understanding of SEO and online marketing. They may also diversify their affiliate partnerships and promotional efforts to maximize their earnings.
However, it’s important to note that affiliate income can be variable and subject to fluctuations based on player activity, changes in affiliate program terms, and market dynamics. Additionally, the regulatory environment in certain regions may impact the ability of affiliates to operate and earn commissions. Like any business endeavor, the profitability of casino affiliate marketing depends on the individual’s or entity’s efforts, strategy, and market conditions.

What is the most profitable gambling business?

There is no one-size-fits-all answer to what is the most profitable gambling business, as different businesses may excel in different niches. Some potentially profitable gambling businesses include:

  • Online Casinos
  • Sports Betting
  • Lotteries
  • Poker Rooms
  • Slot Machines
  • Betting Exchanges

Ultimately, the profitability of a gambling business depends on various factors, including the business model, location, marketing strategy, and the ability to attract and retain customers. It’s essential to conduct thorough market research and financial planning before starting a gambling business to assess its potential for profitability in your specific circumstances.

“There are riches in the niches” and we can name dozens of super-successful websites in every category.

How to start my own online casino?

Starting your own online casino is a complex and highly regulated process. Find out about the legal and regulatory requirements for online casinos in your desired country. Remember that the online casino industry is highly competitive and regulated. It is important that you meet all legal requirements and ensure a safe and fair gaming environment for players. Essentially, you need a gambling license, a platform, game providers and payment providers. LicenseGentlemen offers the most popular international licenses. We also help you choose the best platform that fits your needs and connect payment system providers.

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