The online gambling sector is booming. In the UK alone, it accounts for £4.7 billion of spending, while projections see the US market hitting $73 billion (£55 billion) by 2024.
These huge numbers sit on top of a vast network of marketing activities. With thousands of casinos and betting sites competing for a predominantly online audience, affiliate marketing content has become a primary tool for attracting casino traffic. But what does this entail, and how can you master its intricacies?
Affiliate marketing and the online gambling industry: A quick intro
Affiliate marketing involves arranging to have your own content published on third-party websites. These sites tend to be closely connected to specific industries with high-value audiences, and they also keep themselves separate from major brands, maintaining an impartial, expert reputation.
All of the major verticals in the online gambling world use affiliate sites to promote their activities. This stretches from specialist poker sites to virtual replicas of real-world casinos — from directories of slots and sports betting to digital versions of traditional favourites like bingo.
This is no surprise seeing as there are several excellent reasons to use casino affiliate sites:
- Flexible payments – When using affiliates, casinos can specify payments based on the volume of traffic referred — a neat form of payment-by-performance.
- Easy to measure – Tracking the performance of affiliate marketing strategies is simple, making it easy to calculate ROIs for every piece of content.
- Reputation building – Good affiliate content helps to build the brand reputation of casinos, spreading the word about their quality without the brand itself being too “in your face”.
- Value – On a basic level, using affiliate sites can deliver excellent value for money. By choosing the right sites, subject matter, and writers, casinos can attract huge volumes of high-quality traffic for relatively little outlay.
So, given all of those strengths, how can you make affiliate marketing work for you?
1. Be systematic about choosing your writing topics
Firstly, don’t just spam affiliates with potential articles.
Build a list of subject areas that are relevant to your business and your audience, then branch out from there. Be creative about connecting different subjects.
For instance, you might look at links between sports and slots or art and casino games — anything that captures your imagination and that of your audience.
Secondly, match article ideas with specific affiliate sites. Some are more finance-based. Others are youth-oriented, with a cultural focus. Shortlist articles for each affiliate and fit them into your posting schedule.
2. Research broader trends to inform your writing
When coming up with ideas, research is vital. Before you can write effective content, you need to understand the context in which that content will be consumed.
Casino affiliate sites are hungry for content which interprets important trends within the online gambling industry. So, follow organisations like the UK Gambling Commission or research companies like OpenBet. You might even use academic portals like ResearchGate to track new studies on gambling.
The trick is to take complex information about industry trends (and social phenomena) and turn that into short, easily digestible content.
3. Know your audience to capture traffic
This is where knowing your audience is so important. Each affiliate site has a unique community of readers, and your content needs to appeal to those communities.
First off, contact the site managers to ask about their focus. They will know who visits their pages and the kind of content they expect. Read a few successful articles on each site to get a feel for the style they use and the subjects they cover (of course, with a new spin/angle).
After that, write or commission content which is audience-centred. Every paragraph — every phrase — should appeal to the reader. Content should offer relevant data and solutions and adopt a tone which is appropriate for the audience involved.
So, if you’re writing an article comparing derivatives of currency trading portals for sports betting sites, it’s probably a good idea to keep the language fairly technical. Conversely, if you’re writing a piece on the history of poker in the movies, you can loosen up. It’s all about serving a particular audience.
4. Get the basics right
When you’re writing an article and the main body is basically finished, you’re not done. Fine tuning various elements of articles can make all the difference in successful affiliate marketing.
For instance, it’s essential to formulate attention-grabbing titles. Make bold promises, offer solutions, and be very clear about what the article has to offer.
Remember to capture the reader from the start with an emotive but well-informed introduction. Good intros situate the article by defining a problem before offering enough factual data to demonstrate expertise and present a solution.
A strong start to an article means readers will be emotionally engaged and trust the material they are reading from the get-go, setting them up to follow the CTA at the end of the piece.
The CTA is another key element to bear in mind. Don’t be too obvious and drop the reference to your casino or betting site in like a ten-tonne weight; ease it into your text naturally, or don’t mention it directly at all. It’s often best to subtly link to your target site instead of mentioning your brand — an overly sales-sy tone can be off-putting.
5. Devise a strategy and implement it ruthlessly
Even if you’ve written plenty of engaging articles, it doesn’t mean much if your strategy is awry. In fact, the beauty of affiliate marketing content is how easy it is to connect with marketing strategies.
As we mentioned earlier, the performance of each piece of casino content can be tracked and assessed, giving a picture of its ROI. You can easily tell which affiliate sites are more productive and which ones need work or need to be jettisoned. And you can also easily discover which subjects are most ‘fertile’.
All of these things should be part of your affiliate marketing strategy. This needs to include planning, writing, placement and analysis in a feedback loop which leads back to planning. The idea is that every time information loops back, your content becomes more focused, slicker, and more effective.
Find the ideal partner for your casino marketing project
If you run or are planning to open an online casino, there’s a fair chance affiliate marketing will be at the forefront of your mind. There are few better ways to generate organic traffic with high conversion rates — as long as the content used is optimised for the task.
At greatcontent, we are ready to help out poker sites, casinos, and sports betting companies. Our team of expert writers has years of experience producing high-quality sports, fashion, and travel content for affiliates, and this is no different when it comes to producing copy for the gambling sector.
Get in touch to discuss your project requirements and we’ll help you beat the odds as you seek to grow your business.
Text: Sam Urquhart