7 reasons why affiliate marketing should be part of your strategy when you work in the gambling industry
Due to the massive boost that affiliate marketing has witnessed in the 2010s, we typically think of it as a business partnership that only occurs in the online sphere.
In reality, affiliate marketing was being used way before the advent of the digital era. A savvy merchant would give their existing customers a fancy discount if they convinced someone else to purchase a product or use the merchant's service.
While it is true that the history of affiliate marketing started way before the proliferation of the online sphere, the Internet has naturally made this strategy as widely used as it is today. Affiliate marketing is now one of the most popular that help businesses drive sales and generate income.
Now how does this whole thing work?
The affiliate site places a link to the product within its website. If the customer ends up clicking on it and performing a particular action, the affiliate gets paid for the successful referral. Therefore, the whole essence of this marketing strategy is that the affiliate earns a commission for marketing another person's or company's products.
Affiliate marketing as a strategic weapon
The question is, how did we get to the point where affiliate marketing is seen as an immensely beneficial practice for most businesses?
The online era has created tons of opportunities, and setting up an online business has become easier and more widely accessible to the broader public. Simultaneously, the ease of setting up an online business has created an abundance of choice. In turn, the abundance of choice has come to create increased competition levels. These increased competition levels led businesses to the realization that they needed alternative sources of traffic.
This, however, is a simplified answer that only partially covers the perks of affiliate marketing as there are several other benefits related to this practice. This article sets out to explore these benefits, focusing on the gambling industry that has been heavily reliant on affiliate marketing throughout the past years.
Why is working with casino affiliate sites worth it?
Let’s go through the various aspects that illustrate the importance of affiliate marketing when you work in the gambling industry.
1. Brand awareness for your gambling product
As a gambling affiliate program, you reach out to well-known gambling affiliate sites because you want to "borrow" their traffic.
The affiliate program negotiates with their affiliates as to where the brands will be positioned on their website and try to ensure their visibility on the casino affiliate sites.
In other words, affiliate networks give your business the chance to reach a larger audience and be discovered by online casino players who would probably not stumble upon your website on any other occasion. Therefore, by securing a spot for your online casino sites on some reputable affiliate sites, you create a favourable condition for your casino brands and allow them to be discovered by the people who are looking for just what you have to offer.
If the affiliate program manages to score successful affiliate deals, they increase the brand awareness for their products. Having your casino brands featured on top affiliate sites, each with a community of players who trust the affiliate can simultaneously increase the trust levels for your brands, especially given the huge number of available choices to online casino players.
2. The backlinks to your site provide SEO value
As mentioned above, affiliate marketing involves a process where the affiliate includes a link to the affiliate program's product or service to their affiliate site. The external links pointing to your website provide a great SEO value to your gambling business (that, of course, if the links come from a reputable source with good domain authority).
Therefore, affiliate marketing can have a massive contribution to your SEO strategy as it naturally involves acquiring backlinks to your site through the casino affiliate sites and other channels they are using, such as their social media. Especially when it comes to more extensive affiliate networks with a big audience that could engage with their content and spread your message, affiliate marketing could prove highly beneficial.
You can read more about the SEO value of inbound links in this article on how SEO can boost your casino affiliate marketing strategy.
3. You make the calls and get to pick the affiliates you want to work with
The good thing about affiliate marketing is that the affiliate programs get to choose which affiliate networks they want to work with. They either reach out to the most widely-known affiliates themselves and suggest a business partnership or acquire affiliates through promoting their brands via different channels (and in some cases, the affiliate program itself).
In the case where the affiliates are the ones to discover the affiliate program, they land on its website and go through a registration process to fill in specific details such as their website URL, the markets they focus on, and which brand or brands they are interested in. This leaves room for the affiliate program to examine the affiliate network's profile, check important details such as their monthly traffic, and browse through the website to assess whether it could be a good fit for promoting their business.
As mentioned previously, not all traffic is good, and the "more the better" principle doesn't always apply. The gambling affiliate program needs to make sure that they affiliate themselves with networks with a good reputation, a solid domain authority, and an audience that has cultivated a sense of belonging towards the affiliate site.
Luckily, with the variety of tools accessible nowadays, making such informed decisions is possible. Affiliate managers don't simply have to rely on the promises that a potential partner makes.
4. Affiliate marketing is cost-effective (if you do it right)
The affiliate program typically only pays for the successful referrals coming to their online gambling sites. This "arrangement" is why people sometimes refer to affiliate marketing as "performance marketing," making it a truly great option for your gambling business.
The fact that you only pay when the conversion happens means that should your affiliate partner's campaign prove ineffective, this would not affect your budgets and would not generate losses for your business. This reassurance is quite important, especially given that when you choose to market your product using your own means, you would still need to pay even if your campaign (a PPC or a social media campaign, as an example) performs poorly and your efforts yield zero results.
Therefore, given the details mentioned above, affiliate marketing can prove a cost-effective and low-risk strategy that would lower your business's financial risks.
5. Target an audience that is more likely to convert
Non-thematic traffic can indeed work on some occasions. However, it is no secret that the traffic that converts the best comes from an audience that is directly interested in the product that your company is offering.
When trying to promote your gambling product (a casino site, as an example), you would rather list it on a casino affiliate site instead of a website that features properties for rent, even if the latter enjoys high traffic volumes. While monthly traffic is an important factor, what truly matters are the conversions. If you direct your affiliate marketing efforts to a website that does not cater to your target audience, you might end up disappointed in their results.
That being said, dedicated affiliate sites with a focus on gambling allow you to get access to your target audience that is more likely to convert and, therefore, generate income for your business.
6. Detailed statistics allow you to measure the impact of your marketing efforts
What if we asked you what was one of the most widely accepted shortcomings of various marketing efforts? Many of us would agree that it's the lack of data and the difficulty of tracking your marketing campaigns' results. While it is not impossible to calculate the impact of your brand on your target audience, businesses don't always have the luxury of knowing how they nurtured the lead in the first place. Affiliate marketing, however, can be seen as an exception to this "rule."
Affiliate marketing allows your business to access a detailed dashboard and generate reports to measure the impact of your affiliate marketing efforts. Through these dashboards, also known as affiliate platforms, managers can monitor the data and tweak their campaigns based on the statistics. They also get to evaluate which casino affiliate sites bring in the most traffic to their casinos, which of their brands convert the best, with geographic regions to focus on and plenty of other valuable details that will help them make informed business decisions.
Why does a particular affiliate perform well? Is it because of the website's interface that's very easy to navigate, or does the affiliate site display a strong focus on SEO? How did they manage to attract all these loyal "customers"?
In other words, the ability to track your affiliates' performance helps affiliate managers answer these questions and make more effective strategic and marketing decisions, not only in regards to their affiliate program but also other aspects of their business.
7. Leverage different skill set and get access to foreign markets
If you're running a gambling business, you are highly likely to cater to an audience that is not limited to a single country. Each of the countries you operate in, comes with a different culture and requires a different approach to marketing your products. Naturally, you don't have the workforce with all the knowledge you need to operate smoothly in each specific geographic region.
Luckily, as an affiliate program, you can use the local knowledge of your affiliates and market your casino products strategically. Moreover, having access to multiple affiliate networks helps you promote your product through multiple and diverse channels. For instance, you can choose to collaborate with online casino streamers who have a loyal audience that enjoys watching casino streams. Another affiliate might have a solid social media presence or an excellent YouTube channel that generates thousands of views from your target audience.
In other words, by partnering up with affiliate networks, you get access to their skillset and further raise your chances to attract a different audience.
Marketing is typically a sphere that's extremely difficult to predict, and the results are difficult to track. Affiliate marketing, however, allows you to track your results. How many first time depositors (FTDs) did the affiliate bring? What did that cost you, and what was the profit you have made? All these questions can be answered when you decide in favour of affiliate marketing.
The abundance of choice when it comes to affiliate networks means that as an affiliate program, you get to choose who to collaborate with and which casino affiliate sites you would want to promote your products. You get access to an audience that would typically not be accessible to you and can leverage the knowledge of several affiliate networks in your favour.
Finally, affiliate marketing allows you to raise awareness about your brand and increase your website's SEO value.
It's true that businesses can choose to rely on their own tools to promote their products. However, affiliate marketing will certainly give your business a boost that you were so long looking for.