Why affiliates should be ready to pounce after the World Series of Poker

By iGBA Editorial Team

With the latest series underway and set to smash attendance records, ex-pro Tadas Peckaitis dives into what makes this year’s WSOP special and why affiliates should be taking a keener eye on these tournaments

In recent years, there’s been a lot of talk about poker being “dead” and the poker boom being but a distant memory. However, these claims don't seem quite right if the recent numbers from the 2023 World Series of Poker (WSOP) are anything to go by.

The 2023 WSOP is currently underway, and so far, it has been breaking records left, right and centre. Perhaps the only “upset” came in the $300 Gladiators of Poker event, which attracted 23,088 entries, making it the second-largest live tournament in poker history.

The $1,000 Mystery Millions tournament shattered the attendance record and attracted a total of 18,188 entries compared to 14,112 in the previous year. Even the Casino Employees' event broke the record with 1,015 participants. All tournaments so far, including the $10,000 championships featuring games like Razz and 2-7 Triple Draw, saw increased numbers.

All this tells us that the interest in poker is not waning, no matter how you look at it. In fact, there appears to be a new wave of poker hype travelling across the globe. Therefore, we decided to look into what this uptick means for poker affiliates and how they can take advantage of it.

Growing regulated US market

In the United States, there are currently five states offering online poker: Michigan, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Nevada and Delaware. These states, except Nevada, also offer regulated online casinos and are responsible for the bulk of the action.

WSOP is one of the major players in the US, present in all of these markets. Not only this, but WSOP.com shares its liquidity between NJ, NV, and DE, and it is currently the only three-state network. With recent legal developments in Michigan, it is fully expected that their MI platform will join the network soon, too.

Obviously, WSOP.com holds exclusive rights to the tournament, offering both satellites to live events and online bracelet competitions, and if the 2023 Series numbers tell us anything, it’s that this is what people want.

For the affiliates operating in the US market, this is an excellent opportunity to focus on promoting the brand that players already know, love, and respect.

"The Gladiators of Poker winner took home $500,000, which is simply mind-blowing for a $300 tournament"

Tailoring the marketing strategy around record-breaking numbers and people turning small buy-ins into huge piles of cash isn’t too big of a challenge. For example, the Gladiators of Poker winner took home $500,000, which is simply mind-blowing for a $300 tournament.

And this is all with the main event yet to come. The 2023 edition should break the 2006 record, becoming the largest one in history and generating a lot of interest from the players. More importantly, there will be a huge number of qualifiers in the field, and one of them could take home the title.

If this were to happen, it would open a whole new world of possibilities. People will be inspired to play and on the lookout for the sites to help them get the best possible experience in their quest.

What about the rest of the world?

In some ways, you could say that affiliates operating in the US have it easy. The WSOP is doing all the heavy lifting, and they’ll likely get to enjoy the fruits. But what of those catering to the ROW market, promoting sites like GGPoker and PokerStars?

GGPoker has been working with the WSOP for the past few years, and if this partnership were to continue, there would certainly be options to promote the site in light of the 2023 Series.

If they continue running promotions like the “Road to Vegas” we saw earlier this year and continue building on the hype, it will make things much easier.

For other sites that don’t have such direct links to the WSOP, you’ll just need to get a bit more creative. After all, if the poker dream is alive, possibilities are pretty much endless. It’s all about the presentation.

PokerStars, for example, is the only platform that offers a full array of poker variations, both in cash game and tournament format. So, if you want to hone your skills for the next world series in non-Hold’em games, this is by far the number one pick.

Here for the taking

Staying creative and finding ways to stay ahead of the pack has always been at the core of affiliate business. It’s not always just about what you have to offer – it’s also about capturing people’s imagination and piquing their interest.

The record-breaking 2023 World Series of Poker will give you ample opportunities to do both. Don’t be afraid to lean into it and take advantage of the momentum. People’s interest in poker seems as strong as ever, and after a tough last few years and stagnant numbers in poker affiliation, there is a lot of room to generate revenue going forward.

There may be a brief calm period immediately after the conclusion of the WSOP, but it won’t be long before people are back in front of their computers, looking to play more. They’ll hope to turn their poker dreams into reality, and you need to be ready and waiting for when that moment comes!


Tadas Peckaitis

played poker professionally for over a decade and founded mypokercoaching.com to offer helpful resources to players. He has launched multiple affiliate websites over the years and has became one of the leading experts in the gambling industry. In 2021, Tadas founded the fast-growing iBetMedia agency helping other gambling brands to reach their targeted players and acquire new customers.

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