The truth about affiliate marketing in Asian iGaming

Affiliate marketing has already reached maturity within the European and American markets but Asia is still forging its way, often with cutthroat tactics. A panel of experts agree that affiliates are essential for success in the iGaming Asian arena, if chosen wisely, but channels have to be well selected.

Use of live-streaming and influencers also has to be selectively done, making sure products are up-to-date with streamers’ audience interest and demographics.

02:49 – European providers are less prone to using affiliates.  Few providers are directly engaging their players – from the fear of getting too noticed and getting shut down.

04:30 – Asia is a crowded space, if you don’t market then you won’t be noticed.

05:10 – Google Ads and SEO are the best for player value, but affiliates will have less exposure, but they’re more low-profile.

06:00 – Question is how to pay an affiliate?

07:50 – Look at making every user an affiliate. There’s nothing more powerful than word of mouth.

10:45 – Percentage splits could be hindering some operators from using affiliates, as they also pay tax.

12:15 – Operators have an inability to try something new. Affiliates are not afraid to try different things.

17:20 – Consistency has always been the biggest problem for operators when working with affiliates. You also have to compete with other brands. Operators could take the same budgets they’re spending on affiliates and channel into developing their own product, SEO etc.

21:30Affiliate market in Asia is not as mature as in Europe or the Americas. But affiliates still know the lay of the land.

23:00 – Two different kinds of players: inner-directed and outer-directed. Inner-directed will search out their own gaming outlet. Outer-directed need more marketing strategies.

25:15 – Providers typically foot a portion of price. There is cost-sharing between a provider and an operator.

27:45 – Affiliates are a very important arm of your marketing.

29:05 – A lot of turnover of affiliates.

30:10 – iGaming affiliate landscape in Asia is very cutthroat. Will be clickbombed by competitor affiliates. It’s like the Wild West.

32:30 – Affiliates are also choosing to become operators, so you might be funding a business that then goes independent.

34:00 – Audience Questions

Are there any new forms of affiliate marketing aside from the conventional methods?

34:20 – No new tech. Google Ads last years have been a disaster for affiliates.

35:00 – Uptick in marketing strategies leveraging on messaging apps, especially in countries such as China where SEO doesn’t work.

36:50 – Affiliate marketing money model where all players are affiliates works – more grey and easier to avoid getting shut down. Multi-level marketing models are working very well.

39:00 – Survey players to find out what they actually want to get in a raffle. It’s not the Western model. Gambling is an activity that people recognize as what they want to do, providing incentives that go in line with their real-world desires. Decisions need to be driven by data.

What are some of the effective strategies of targeting millennials?

40:45 – Previously mentioned points, players introducing players.

Where do you see the influencer and streamer aspect fitting into the marketing mix – are they rivals? What’s the streamer situation in Asia, are there any no-go countries?

42:30 – Looking at streaming yourself can help you understand how you’re marketing your product. It’s platform-dependent. You have to be careful how much you promote, be subtle about it.

44:10 – Use rewards as part of your live-streaming strategy, don’t make it only about marketing the product, also live-stream events.

45:20 – Influences themselves when partnering with brands, if they don’t coincide with their image, might not result. For start-ups – if you don’t directly equate these new channels with player acquisition, that could work but need proper channels in place to get metrics on upticks in activity.

47:30 – There is a place for live-streaming that won’t be taken down: new category of games – crash games, mind games (those that aren’t overtly a slot or table card game), those that look non-gambling. Regulators don’t associate them immediately with gambling. That category appeals to millennials. Medial influencers need to market things that appeal to their young audience.