Although online gambling raises many an eyebrow and is barred from some countries, it still remains one of the most popular trends in the Internet marketing world. While there is a whole range of different strategies to promote online casinos, affiliate marketing is rightly considered to be the most effective one.
Gambling is a lucrative line of work for an affiliate marketer, but it also poses a number of challenges and is characterized by high competition. For more information on the current state of the gambling vertical, check out our comprehensive article exploring the trends and prospects of online gambling development.
To stay ahead of the competition and increase their revenues, affiliates have to constantly improve their approaches to running gambling ad campaigns. Some of the most widespread techniques to promote online casinos are content marketing and motivated traffic, and today we’re going to break down these common strategies in more detail.
What is motivated traffic and is it worth using?
To begin with, let’s clear out the terminology.
Motivated traffic (or the so-called incentivized traffic) is users who have agreed to take any action that qualifies as a conversion in return for money or any other kind of promotion.
When using motivated traffic, you basically pay users for installing an app, leaving a review, passing a level in a game or signing up at an online casino. In return for performing the desired action, you can reward users with money, virtual coins, discount coupons or unlockable content.
In an effort to drive more installs or subscriptions and cut costs, some advertisers tend to turn a blind eye on installations from users who have been paid to perform the action. If this is the case, affiliates can acquire motivated traffic from the so-called short task sites.
Short task sites such as Swagbucks or InboxDollars allow users to earn money by taking surveys, watching videos, playing games, registering at a site or installing an app. The amount of pay varies depending on the number of completed tasks but is generally very low. As you can see, motivated traffic is rather cheap and can allow you to significantly increase the number of installs or user sign-ups at a low cost.
However, affiliates should always bear in mind that they can use short task sites to generate installs or user sign-ups only if the offer they are promoting accepts traffic acquired this way.
One of the most common ways to encourage users to sign up at a casino website is free spins. In this case, the ads can look like this:
Obviously, incentivized traffic falls into the grey area in the promotion of online gambling. Although it can’t be considered fraudulent, motivated traffic is still marked by a high percentage of frauds, Device ID Reset fraud being the most common and insidious type of scam activity. This is one of the reasons why many advertisers won’t allow you to promote their service or app using motivated traffic.
Another thing to consider is that from an advertiser’s perspective motivated traffic seems to be absolutely worthless when it comes to user engagement and longevity. When using incentivized traffic, affiliates pay a user to perform the desired action on an advertiser’s website, and it’s more than likely that such a user will never open this website again, let alone make a deposit. The latter is especially important for online casinos that closely monitor user monetization metrics.
If a newly acquired player fails to make a deposit into their casino account during the hold period, the system will filter them out and an affiliate won’t get a payout. That’s why before starting to run ad campaigns with motivated traffic, you should always check the offer description and find out whether the advertiser accepts incentivized traffic.
To summarize, let’s enumerate the pros and cons of motivated traffic:
- the most economical way to drive installs and sign-ups;
- it’s not time-consuming;
- it allows you to see quick results without taking a lot of effort.
- a high percentage of fraud;
- a low level of engagement;
- short user lifetime;
- the discrepancy between the actual and target audience;
- users are reluctant to pay.
Content marketing may seem the exact opposite of motivated traffic in terms of its advantages and disadvantages.
On the one hand, it requires a lot of effort on the part of affiliates who have to generate unique and engaging content to bring the target audience to an online casino website. These can be posts breaking down various gambling strategies and techniques for beginners or describing the latest online casino releases.
In any case, you will first have to design an attractive website, start a Facebook group, create a blog or a Telegram channel — the platform will depend entirely on your audience’s preferences and habits. If your content appeals to users and is worthy to read, you will be able to gradually start warming up your audience and get people interested in making money in a certain online casino.
Of course, it takes a lot more time and expertise to attract players through content marketing, but in the long run this strategy will enable you to generate profit in a more sustainable and effective manner. Users that sign up at a gambling website following your recommendations have a higher payment capacity and lifetime value, as they belong to the website’s target audience.
Content marketing appears to be the most fraud-proof method for promoting online casinos, but still there are some aspects to it that fall into the grey zone. For instance, let’s consider the so-called scheme traffic, which is one of the content marketing strategies most commonly used by Russian-speaking affiliates.
For instance, some guy registers at an affiliate program and gets his affiliate link. Then, he creates a Telegram channel and starts attracting users interested in making money in an online casino. He can get traffic by placing his creatives on corresponding forums or from other Telegram channels dedicated to the same or similar subject matter.
Banners promoting such channel promise to TEACH users how to make MONEY through gambling and often feature heaps of banknotes or other material “proofs” of success. By clicking on these creatives, users get redirected to articles with money-making schemes and referral links or to a Telegram channel on gambling.
On his channel, the affiliate posts stories about how he was deceived by the owners of a certain online casino. To get his revenge, he is going to teach his subscribers how to win over the slot machine algorithm. Then, he describes this surefire way of making money and places the referral link.
Of course, it’s all false information, but people buy into it, follow the link, start making deposits and end up losing their money, while the affiliate gets his commission from each and every deposit. Generally, advertisers have nothing against scheme traffic, as such users are actively interacting with the product and are ready to pay.
Returning to content marketing in general, we can enumerate the following pros and cons of this promotion strategy:
- practically no fraud;
- a high level of user engagement;
- longer user lifetime;
- high payment capacity.
- it’s more time-consuming;
- it requires more effort on the part of an affiliate.
So, we have discussed the two strategies of online gambling promotion — motivated traffic and content marketing. Of course, it’s up to you to decide what strategy to opt for, but remember that it’s important you know for sure what an advertiser wants to get from the leads you have generated and what traffic type is more preferable to reach their marketing goals.