No industry benefits more from the power of affiliate advertising than the online gambling one. Whether it’s a review of the ‘top’ casinos (directing readers to sites acclaimed by the article), or analysis of an upcoming sporting event (whilst promoting the best odds from different sportsbooks), the internet is full of iGaming affiliate links.
And to be honest, there’s a good reason for it. It’s a mutually beneficial relationship: casinos and sportsbooks gain traffic from the exposure provided by affiliates, and these affiliates get a percentage of the revenue generated by the traffic they bring in. With a good affiliate deal behind them and a large audience to capture, some advertisers can earn a nice passive income over time.
Total affiliate marketing spend (Billions of dollars)
Unfortunately, this isn’t the case for everyone. Just type ‘gambling affiliate scam’ into any search engine, and you’ll get back dozens of sites and articles warning others about their bad experiences in the industry. This isn’t to say that all casino operators are scammers – far from it. The majority of relationships between affiliates and operator are indeed positive. But sadly, the number of negative cases has been on the rise in recent years.
In its current state, there are a handful of inherent factors which plague the affiliate industry. These issues must be resolved, and we at DAO.Casino are working hard to fix them.
Lack of Transparency
The biggest of these problems relates to the issue of transparency, or rather the lack of it for many gambling affiliates. It is unlikely that casino operators are completely open and detailed about the amount of revenue generated by relevant customers each month. For affiliates that are entitled to a revenue share, this can be particularly problematic as they cannot easily track the amount of money they are owed. This lack of transparency is especially common in new or struggling casino environments. If a casino business is going badly, affiliates can be the first to not get paid by casino management who would sooner pay their players than their promoters. Whether it is through underpayment of bonuses or pure fraud where affiliates are not paid a dollar for the work they put in, affiliates often suffer in the iGaming business.
Our move: as an innovator in this industry, DAO.Casino is driven to better the treatment of affiliates through transparent and fair payment procedures. The blockchain technology we are developing is unique in its automatic distribution of revenue, using smart contracts. All parties that are owed money will fairly receive it through smart contracts which are working automatically on the Ethereum blockchain. This removes the risk of any potential corruption from human influences, whilst being entirely transparent to keep online gambling safe and honest.
Slow Payments & High Admin Fees
Most affiliates get paid on a monthly basis. Given the issue of transparency discussed above, this can be a long, anxious wait for many. Because this process of paying affiliates is manually carried out by casino operators, they will often have additional fee subtracted from affiliates’ revenue. While this fee does vary in size between casinos, it is not uncommon for affiliates to be charged upwards of 10% on their earnings just to cover administrative costs.
Our move: by making use of smart contracts, our protocol will have significantly lower fees and instant transactions than what is seen at fiat-based casinos. This gives affiliates larger and instant payments as a result of minimised fees, whilst freeing up time for casinos to focus on important issues such as customer service. Payments will occur immediately after each game session, so affiliates will no longer have to experience an anxious wait for their pay each month.
Finally, the promotional nature of the affiliate industry is not conducive to honest, open discussion. Since affiliates make their money by drawing players in, it is in their interest to speak positively about the operators they are promoting. Sadly, this same tone is widespread on websites which are supposed to help affiliates in the gambling industry. Without giving names, there are numerous sites which compare affiliate programs – but these themselves benefit from promoting affiliate deals as they will gain financially when new marketers sign up. This conflict of interest means that newcomers to the affiliate space will often be met with biased promotional material that stifles the publication of negative experiences when researching casino operators.
Our move: DAO.Casino will provide a concierge service that is dedicated to serving the needs of our affiliates. Any questions or issues are encouraged to be raised with them. This way, we can ensure that our affiliates are happy whilst continuing to better our services.
As a cornerstone of the iGaming industry, these affiliates deserve fair treatment and our protocol development team is conscious of this fact as we move forward.