Beginner's Guide to Affiliate Program for Online Casinos
Every online casino business owner’s primary concern is how to start a casino and run it successfully. It’s an undeniable fact that promotion and marketing are crucial to an online casino’s success.
They help casinos that are restricted from using conventional marketing channels such as radio and TV advertising to drive a steady flow of traffic to their platforms. The more traffic you can drive to your online gaming platform, the higher your chances of running a profitable casino are.
Over the years, many successful online casino operators have found affiliate marketing as an effective strategy to create brand awareness and drive genuine traffic to their business. Leveraging the wide publicity they can drive from this digital marketing strategy, they have taken their businesses from zero to success.
If you are running a casino or intend to start one, this article will help you hit the ground running. It discusses what an affiliate program is and breaks down the relationship between this marketing strategy and online casinos.
What is Affiliate Marketing?
Affiliate marketing is a special type of digital marketing. Investopedia defines this marketing model as “a marketing scheme in which a company compensates third-party publishers to generate traffic or leads to the company’s products and services.” The third parties are otherwise known as affiliates.
How does Affiliate Marketing Work?
In affiliate marketing, affiliates take up the responsibility of driving traffic to their partners, whichever company, product, services, or brands they intend to promote. Most of these affiliates have a large following on social media and other platforms they can easily direct to their partners, thereby promoting such brands and giving them more exposure and better patronage.
Affiliates receive referral links from the promoted brand which they place on their blogs, websites, social media pages, or elsewhere they intend to promote a business. Potential customers or clients can visit the promoted business via the affiliate link.
In exchange for the traffic, the promoted business rewards the affiliate with an agreed commission which is usually a percentage of the income generated from each referred customer or client.
Most affiliates join affiliate networks that connect affiliate publishers with businesses. This is a mutually-beneficial arrangement that helps businesses give their products or services the needed exposure while the affiliates are rewarded for their promotional efforts.
Online Casinos and Affiliate Marketing
In the online gambling industry, affiliate networks are groups of publishers who are dedicated to promoting sportsbooks, online casinos, and a host of other gambling services and products.
Affiliate networks list several casino products for their members to choose from and promote on their sites or platforms. They help casino business owners to promote their gambling platforms in exchange for rewards that may come in different forms according to a predetermined compensation plan.
Affiliate Marketing Compensation Plans
Affiliate marketing rewards affiliates with several compensation plans. In the casino sector, the most commonly used compensation plans are:
1. Cost per Action (CPA)
In the CPA model, affiliates are rewarded each time a player performs an action such as creating an account, making a deposit, filling out a contact form, subscribing to a newsletter, or any other action as indicated by the casino platform.
The CPA model is the leading compensation plan for affiliates in the online gambling industry. Affiliates understand that the more traffic they drive to a casino platform, the more reward they receive through the CPA plan. This motivates them to put more effort into their campaigns and drive more traffic to their partner’s site.
Online casino affiliate programs also use the revshare model extensively. Through this model, an affiliate will receive a percentage of the revenue the casino generates from a player as long as the player engages the casino. This may be an opportunity for affiliates to earn a lifetime commission ranging from 5% to 25% on their referrals.
The allure of a longtime passive income-earning opportunity makes this compensation model a big hit among affiliates and affiliate networks. However, most affiliates are cautious of this model because they won’t only share profits with the gaming platform but will share their losses as well.
The hybrid model combines the compensation rewards of the revshare and CPA. Affiliates are compensated each time a referral signs up on a promoted platform. They are also entitled to an ongoing commission for as long as the player is active on the casino platform.
For each deposit a referral makes, the referrer receives a fixed amount as commission. The referrer is entitled to a certain percentage of subsequent payments the player makes. Depending on the casino platform, an affiliate may earn up to 40% commission on a referral.
4. Pay Per Sale (PPS)
As the name implies, the PPS model rewards affiliates each time a referral purchases an advertised service or product. This model offers one of the highest affiliate rewards in the industry.
5. Cost Per View
A referral doesn’t need to purchase a service or product before the affiliate is rewarded. On the contrary, the prospective player only needs to see ads on the affiliate’s website or social media pages to make the affiliate eligible for a commission.
The CPV model’s reward is lower than the PPC reward but considering that clicking or performing any other action on the link isn’t a criterion for a reward makes it a good compensation plan.
6. Pay Per Click
Unlike in the PPV model where an affiliate will receive a reward whenever a user sees a promoted casino’s ads, PPC rewards an affiliate on the condition that someone clicks their promoted ads.
Their reward is dependent on the number of registered clicks on their referral link.
Traffic Sources for Online Casino Affiliates
Affiliates can generate traffic and drive it to their partners via different channels. Some of the most common traffic sources for online casino affiliates are:
Instagram is a good traffic source for online gambling platforms. It is home to millions of people across the globe with an interest in diverse forms of entertainment such as gaming, gambling, and more.
An affiliate can create a page and populate it with casino-based content to reach out to the right audience and gradually direct the traffic to his or her partners.
2. Native Ads
If you are considering a subtle marketing strategy for your online casino business, consider native ads.
The marketing model involves presenting adverts to your target audience subtly in a manner that they hardly realize they are dealing with adverts. The target audience may interact with the ads by reading or clicking on them.
Facebook remains one of the most popular digital marketing platforms for all types of online businesses. Running Facebook ads for a casino exposes the gambling platform to an enormous number of gamblers across the globe.
The leading social media platform specializes in running ads for a wide range of businesses through its Facebook Ads model that every business owner, including casino operators, can use to their advantage.
However, note that Facebook frowns on gambling. Therefore, affiliate marketers or casino operators may consider masking their ads or using multiple accounts when running ads for their businesses. It is a risk worth taking considering the millions of people from different geographical locations that use the social media platform every month.
4. Adult Traffic
The adult content industry is another reliable source of traffic for online casino businesses. As reported by Huffington Post, adult sites pull an incredible volume of traffic more than the combined traffic generated, by Twitter, Amazon, and Netflix.
Most affiliates leverage the huge traffic in the adult niche to drive traffic to their partner’s website. Since most adult sites aren’t restrictive with gambling, driving traffic through them is one of the best ways to promote a casino business.
5. Push Notifications
Advertisers are currently taking advantage of push notifications to push their clients’ businesses to the world. Although it started as an efficient way for mobile device users to get instant email notifications, it has since become a powerful advertising strategy for businesses, online gambling inclusive.
This marketing strategy offers a better conversion rate than most other strategies because only interested players who desire to be contacted are only notified via email. That’s why it guarantees better traffic drive than others.
Affiliates can also reach a large audience through Telegram. They can create a group of players where they can reach out to their customers with updates about the casino and offer them new bonuses and other incentives.
A telegram group can accommodate up to 200,000 people, one of the factors behind its growing popularity as an efficient marketing platform.
7. Email distributions
Email distribution still remains one of the most effective digital marketing strategies. Through a well-crafted email, businesses can reach out to a wide range of prospective clients or customers. The efficiency of this promotional strategy depends on the content. Catch and informative emails will grab recipients’ attention and gradually increase their interest in whatever is promoted through the messages.
YouTube remains one of the best platforms for online casino affiliate promotion. With billions of active monthly users, the video-sharing platform offers casino operators and their affiliates what they need to spread brand awareness and drive traffic to a gambling platform.
However, to maximize the potential this platform offers, the affiliate must be strategic. Develop a practical strategy for promotional purposes. This may involve purchasing advertising from a credible source such as established bloggers or creating a direct video with attached links to the casino site.
What is an Affiliate Network?
An affiliate network, in the online gambling industry, is a group of online publishers who specifically promote all forms of gambling activities such as sportsbooks, online casinos, and other gambling-related products and services. They may promote related or same products.
Affiliates can choose from a list of products or services they intend to promote on any of these affiliate networks and direct traffic to it.
This is how the affiliate marketing program with affiliate networks works:
- The advertiser determines the line of action a potential customer or client should take.
- Publishers use their online platforms to give the advertiser traffic.
- The target audience responds to a call to action and performs the relevant action.
- The promoted casino pays users for the actions they perform.
- The CPA network pays the publishers from the commission it deducts from the generated revenue.
Top Gambling Affiliate Networks
The online gambling industry boasts a good number of affiliate networks. The top members of the group are:
MyLead supports over 3,000 affiliate programs and has paid over $8 million to publishers in 154 countries.
For the past couple of years, the affiliate supported offers include CPS, CPA, SMS CHAT, IVR, PPI, Smartlinks, and CPL.
The affiliate network also supports a wide range of payment options that include Revolut, bank transfer, WebMoney, PayPal, Skrill, and Bitcoin.
Leadbit is one of the few affiliate networks with a direct working relationship with CPA network representatives and advertisers.
Since it joined the race in 2013, it has successfully supported a good number of verticals, including betting and gambling.
Leadbit offers good CPAs and thanks to its team of professionals, prompt payment is guaranteed.
PayV has been in the business since 2013. Well-grounded in the industry, it understands publishers’ diverse commission preferences. It supports a wide range of commissions such as CPS, CPA, and Revshare.
It has built a strong partnership with advertisers, webmasters, media buyers, and a host of other stakeholders in the online gambling industry.
Benefits of Affiliate Marketing
There are several reasons why affiliate marketing is the preferred promotional strategy for online gambling businesses.
Some of these benefits are:
With affiliate marketing, casino business owners can measure their progress. They will have a clear idea of the returns on marketing investments. Hence, they can easily identify what works for them and what doesn’t.
Affiliate marketing ensures a casino operator isn’t throwing money into the wind. Rather, payment is based on the results of the marketing campaign. The assurance that businesses only pay for results makes affiliate marketing a worthwhile promotional strategy.
Opportunity to convert real users
Through affiliate marketing, online gambling platforms have a better opportunity to convert real users to their platform since such a marketing campaign is directed exclusively to gamblers. The increased conversion rates will have a positive impact on the business in the long run.
The online casino and affiliate marketing relationship is mutually beneficial. While it allows online casino business owners to build and grow their business, it’s a great way for affiliates to earn some money.
As a casino operator, you should include this marketing strategy in your promotion campaign and reap the associate benefits that will help you to run a successful casino business.
BY CASINOWEBSCRIPTS PUBLISHED 11 May 2022