‘What’s Next for Your Business: Thinking Innovatively About the Growth and Management of an Affiliate Business’ was a panel discussion held by iGB Affiliate at last month’s London Affiliate Conference (LAC).
The session was hosted by our Senior Marketing Services Manager Alana Levine, while participants included our Vice President of Business Development & Marketing Lee-Ann Johnstone, along with Nick Garner and Jan Dellman, founders and CEOs of Oshi Casino and Forscher Group respectively, and Mad About Bingo founder Andrew Edwards.
Here is a recap of the biggest talking points covered during the session:
Alana Levine (AL), Income Access, to panel: What should affiliates consider when getting started?
Nick Garner (NG), Oshi Casino: Keep fixed costs as low as possible and find people who are good at the jobs you’re not. Things often don’t initially work out, so keep enough money for at least three rolls of the dice.
Andrew Edwards (AE), Mad About Media: Think about if you need extra financial backing, and put yourself out there. The best way to secure money for reinvestment is negotiating better deals at big industry events.
Lee-Ann Johnstone (LAJ), Income Access: Find a niche that you love. You’ll get no self-gratification and will find things very difficult if you choose something that doesn’t really interest you.
AL: How should new affiliates measure growth?
LAJ: If you’re not looking at your data and traffic sources daily, then you’re missing a trick. Once you understand your own customer database, their behaviours and how you are monetising this behaviour, your traffic will be monetised even more effectively over time.
Jan Dellman (JD)¸ Forscher Group: Collect and review your own data, but don’t get obsessed by it – because it can become addictive. Focus on improving your product and the money will follow.
AL: How can affiliates build a brand?
AE: Stand out above the rest – take the taboo off gambling and think outside the box when it comes to branding. We did a lot of charity work and sponsored a rugby league club.
LAJ: It’s all about engaging with your audience and building an interest group. Consumers need to know who you are and what you stand for.
AL: How many operators would you recommend working with?
JD: Don’t over-complicate things. Between five and 10 good partners is ideal – choose quality over quantity.
NG: Shop around to start with, but stick with a few once you’ve tried and tested their products. Relationships are vital – you need to be able to trust your partners and work well with them.
AL: What did you focus on when hiring people?
AE: This industry is about personality – everything else can be taught. Find a good mix of people you can trust such as close friends, and look at hiring interns when you’re getting started.
LAJ: I look at people’s natural aptitude for understanding our digital subject matter during interviews. You can teach somebody anything but if they don’t have that attitude to work in a fast-paced, goal driven industry that is highly based on building relationships, then they just won’t make it.
NG: We give projects rather than interviews. For every good candidate we find, we go through around two or three misses.
Due to time constraints on the day, a number of key questions from this panel discussion were not answered. Keep a watch out for our unanswered Q&A to find out more about how to keep your affiliate business ahead of the curve and grow your overall revenue. If you have any questions about any of the points raised, please reach out.