Not everyone is pleased to see the autumn affiliate conference leaving Budapest for a return to Barcelona…
This time next week, I will be in (hopefully) sunny Barcelona for the renewed Barcelona Affiliate Conference. Three years on from the last affiliate conference in Barcelona and I am really looking forward to going back. The last one was an experience I’ll never forget – from near-miss muggings, to wine and beers on the Media Hut yacht (Karl Dukes – where are you!?!), to the most awesome iGaming bar crawl in (hazy) memory, organised by my now business partners, Esther and Sarah from GameOn Marketing, and Justina Cruickshank, then of Marmalade, now of the new bingo operation Blushbomb. Here are some of the photos from that blurry night. And yes, I am drunk in all of them.
Given that there is no football to go and see this year (FC Barcelona are away at Sociedad on the Saturday), I’ll be knuckling down to some serious and some not-so-serious meetings with affiliates and operators alike to do some cracking deals. If you would like to meet up at the Barcelona Affiliate Conference, please drop me a mail!
Verse 5: So, I went to Calvin Ayre’s party last night. I hated the fact that I had to queue for half an hour, I immensely resented the fact ‘VIPS’ managed to queue jump (surely that was envy?), I found the creative interpretations of the seven deadly sins to be pretty damn bland, with the exception of the half naked fat guys gnoshing raw meet off each other’s torsos whilst a butcher provided them with fresh produce, I felt the whole thing was altogether a stage managed production than a party. I just didn’t get the vibe and I have to rank it as one of the worst parties I’ve had the privilege of attending in online gaming over the past 6 years.
But here’s the thing. First off, my shock levels are obviously disturbingly high. Secondly, I’m an ungrateful son of a bitch as Mr Ayre provided me with free alcohol for 3 hours or so and something to blog about. The very fact that I hated the party is what was brilliant about it and what is brilliant about Calvin Ayre and his Bodog brand.
After I’d made the decision to leave, rounded up a few of my nearest and dearest in iGaming and headed over to a more traditional party (Grey Goose and Moet on tap – thanks William Hill), I managed to share my thoughts to Calvin’s lawyer and Bodog’s Director of Products. I told them that the party wasn’t for me, that I didn’t get it and that I thought Calvin was an egotistical prick. That last bit was the Grey Goose squawking, but it made my point very nicely.
Now, these two fellas were good guys, typically gaming, typically defending their boss and the company that pays their wages. But that shouldn’t happen at Bodog. I spent the next hour or two telling them precisely why they shouldn’t be trying to make me see sense that it was a great party. What makes Calvin Ayre and Bodog so important to iGaming is not the fat naked guys, the pole-dancers, the bondage sessions, the wankers who get in the VIP area or queue jump, or even the deformed dwarves. It’s the fact that I hated it and some people loved it.
Imagine if all those mugs who had queued alongside me had been registered players and that party dictated whether they played at Bodog or not… Once we were finally let into the hype-filled freak show, most would have left straight away without spending a penny even with a no-deposit bonus of a free bar. 5 or 10 percent would have loved it and now believe that Calvin Ayre can walk on water. They would have dropped a grand in no time flat. Hell, they’d probably even be blogging about it with some affiliate links in there for good measure.
As a result, the party I’ve disliked most in online gambling is also the most important. I left it for another run of the mill booze fest courtesy of William Hill and a decent club. I’ve woken up wearing Eau de Grey Goose and it feels like just another conference day. Before reaching this all-too-familiar ignominy, I told the guys at Bodog what I thought of their attempts to sell the Calvin party to me. In a nutshell, I told them that they shouldn’t be working at Bodog if they took the viewpoint that everyone has to like something they do. That’s iGaming’s biggest problem – every operation tries to please everyone. They take what other companies do, copy it, take a small margin, cannibalise the industry, bore players and revel in it beyond belief as they down their Grey Goose.
So, hats off to Calvin Ayre and Bodog for differentiating on their brand. Your product is run of the mill along with 95% of the gambling operations, but every Tom, Dick and Harry has an opinion on your party, was prepared to queue in the rain for an hour and look like a tit, and write a blog post about it and this makes your brand special. It shows that extremes attract some people and that picks out Bodog’s well-deserved share of the market. Everyone else sits on their “evolutionary”, “state of the art” can’t-tell-the-difference-software-suites, let’s-all-go-for-the-same-players-and-pay-stupid-CPAs-to-acquire-them pedestals, all the while not sparing a moment to realise they are all drinking and smelling of the same brand of vodka. Good on you Calvin. For as long as you can stay out of jail, keep on carryin’ on.
(Please forgive any grammatical or spelling mistakes here. I am inebriated courtesy of Grey Goose. Maybe I should have shares there…)
GameOn Affiliates has been shortlisted for two awards at the upcoming eGaming Review B2B Awards 2011. The affiliate marketing agency, which specialises in outsourced affiliate management, is up for both the Acquisition Partner of the Year and Services Rising Star of the Year awards, alongside sister agency GameOn Marketing in the latter category.
The EGR B2B Awards take place at Chelsea Football Club on 3rd May 2011 on the first night of this year’s EGR Live conference at Stamford Bridge.
Thursday 17th February 2012, LONDON – Fairway Casino is delighted to announce that it will host the Fairway Charity Golf Open taking place on Tuesday 24th May 2011, at the prestigious K Club Golf Resort which is situated just forty minutes from Dublin City Centre.
Twenty five teams will tee off at 11am on The Palmer Ryder Cup Course, internationally recognised as one of Europe’s finest Championship Courses. This course hosted the 2006 Ryder Cup, adding further kudos to this fantastic fundraising event.
The Fairway Charity Golf Open has partnered with the Children First Foundation, a charity that works with disadvantaged families throughout Ireland. All donations and funds raised by the Golf Open will be donated to this charity which operates three services; Counseling, An Intervention Programme and a Graduate Programme where “individuals of good fortune commit to children of misfortune”.
Gian Perroni, Affiliate Programme Director at http://www.FairwayCasino.com, said “The Fairway Charity Golf Open has been arranged in association with the iGaming SuperShow taking place in Dublin on 24th-26th May 2011. This is the perfect opportunity for keen golfers, whether they are avid or fair weather players, to get involved and entertain clients. It will be a fun day out and a perfect addition to what is set to be the biggest gaming show of the year. Our goal is to help raise much needed funds for a respected charity while providing the gaming community with the opportunity to give while enjoying great networking.”
A variety of sponsorship packages are available and a celebrity host will be announced in the coming months. For more information on how to become a sponsor and to register your team, please contact Esther@GameOn-Marketing.com
For Further Information:
Esther Cochrane, GameOn Affiliates Limited e: Esther@GameOn-Marketing.com
About Fairway Casino: Fairway Casino is an online live dealer casino powered by Visionary iGaming software. Launched in 2010, the casino has quickly gained a reputation as one of the most trusted online casinos as it offers their patrons the opportunity to play roulette, blackjack and baccarat all dealt live, on camera, by professionally trained dealers. www.FairwayCasino.com
About Children First: The Children First Foundation operates an outreach program for families and children all over Ireland, particularly in urban areas. Their goal is to help children break free of the poverty trap by providing support through education until employment. www.childrenfirst.ie
GameOn Affiliates consulted in the development of PartnerMatrix and the system offers fantastic reliability and accuracy to affiliates and licensees. PartnerMatrix unites the functionality of a solid affiliate reporting system with BanaMatrix, EveryMatrix’s fantastic banner creation and serving tool.
Eric Yonce, CEO of BoogieBet said “The power of the PartnerMatrix software gives us the confidence to use it for all our online marketing and affiliate campaigns. We are excited about using live odds and fixtures in our dynamic sports betting banners and attract new players across all of our products.”
BoogieBet is the latest partner to receive GameOn Affiliates’ affiliate management service. Newly live, the BoogieBet Affiliate Program launches officially at LAC 2011 at the end of January with a unique, invite only experience for a number of leading sports and casino affiliates – an exclusive Limo trip to Nike Town on Oxford Circus to design personalised training shoes with Nike iD.
Tom Galanis, Director, GameOn Affiliates, is hugely excited about working with both BoogieBet and PartnerMatrix. “Having been involved in the development of PartnerMatrix, we have witnessed the system’s progression towards an industry-leading reporting tool. BoogieBet have made a wise choice in working alongside EveryMatrix and we are incredibly excited by the prospect of launching the BoogieBet Affiliate Program in style at the London Affiliate Conference with an exclusive trip to Nike Town.”
I’m working on an exciting project at the moment with the Hippodrome Casino, currently in development in both an on and offline sense. If your recollection of the Hippodrome is of a dingy, black wall clad single storey nightspot often seen as a last resort to those of questionable drinking age, prepare to be blown away.
Simon and Peter Thomas, founders of Beacon Bingo, have invested significant amounts into an astonishingly large site right on the corner of Leicester Square. I was given a tour of the site, and it is still a building site at this stage, and I was staggered at how much premium real estate was previously unused in such a central London location. Being a bit of a grumpy, ageing cynic, not a great deal excites me, but having viewed the plans and the site, I am looking forward to the task at hand – and that is helping to prove to the Genting’s of the world that it is possible to harmonise a successful land-based casino with an online offering, and making the two work for affiliates in particular.
Hippodrome Casino aims to become the number one gaming venue in London and with a walk-by audience of over 1 million people per week, you can well imagine that becoming the case pretty quickly. We will be working on systems to ensure that affiliates can not only gain credit for any offline play their recruited online players partake in, but also to create a full circle approach that will see them gain use of the land-based facility to recruit to and retain their player base. Not the easiest of tasks, but later this month I’m giving a select group of leading casino affiliates the opportunity for a sneak peak at the venue and help them envisage what this opportunity holds for them.
The Hippodrome Casino is due to open in the Summer of 2011, with the online product preceding it in the next few months.
GameOn Affiliates will be attending the Budapest Affiliate Conference from 7th-10th October. We will be there representing our clients, CAI Games, Yower.com, ApostoGano, ApostouGanhou, BetMotion and Copacabana Poker. Affiliates are invited to arrange meetings in order to secure conference special deals with our partners.
The Budapest Affiliate Conference is an affiliate expo and conference run by iGaming Business. It will be held at the SYMA Centre in Budapest. BAC 2009 was a huge success for GameOn Affiliates and the industry in general, being the first gaming affiliate conference to take place in the growing Eastern European market.
1600 delegates are expected to attend the Budapest Affiliate Conference this year, with 70% of those being affiliates keen to arrange deals with leading affiliate programs.
Meet up with GameOn Affiliates and get a free CAI Games branded pack of cigarettes! We will also be attending the Hungary v San Marino Euro 2012 Qualifier on Friday 8th October. Any affiliates wishing to come along, please get in touch and we can arrange your ticket!
GameOn Affiliates will be in Amsterdam during CAC 2010 on Thursday 15th and Friday 16th April 2010. If you would like to meet up in Amsterdam as an affiliate or as an operator, please Contact Me.
Partner with GameOn Affiliates before the end of February and we’ll run your launch PR for FREE!
That’s right, courtesy of GameOn Affiliates’ sister agency, GameOn Marketing, we’re offering any new gaming client that chooses to work with us over IGE and LAC four FREE written and seeded press releases worth over £2,000. This means that we will not only handle the development and management of your new affiliate program, but we’ll also tell all the right people about it at no extra cost!
Get in touch to arrange a meeting and for more details on this fantastic offer!