MARKETERS OFTEN MAKE the dangerous mistake of not giving Millennial consumers enough credit. They’re not given enough credit when it comes to their willingness to spend, their loyalty and, perhaps most of all, their consumer intelligence. Despite some superficial appearances, Millennials don’t make decisions in a vacuum and give much more thought to buying choices than what we marketers tend to believe.
One factor that all too often gets overlooked with regards to how Millennials choose one option over another is trust. Affiliate marketers in particular focus a much more significant portion of their efforts on search rankings rather than content and value, and although that might work for short-term gains, longevity depends on a deeper connection with Millennial players.
Authority and trust go hand in hand. The path of least resistance one should take to achieve the coveted status that includes both these qualities is one that relies heavily on your content. An initial click or conversion may be the result of an offer that players deem too good to pass up, but to keep these individuals coming back to your property time and time again, you’ll need to rely on assets that go beyond a one-time deal or bonus.
Creating — on an ongoing basis — content that your players can’t live without will help you to achieve that level of authority as well as establish a relationship built on trust that drives long-term engagement and loyalty.This list of four strategies for content development is by no means exhaustive.
There are always new tactics that can be employed to help you evolve with your audience and maintain your relationships with players. What is outlined here is merely a starting point from which you can launch a new content initiative that establishes your brand as a go-to for Millennial players.
Affiliate times are a changing
Back when I joined the affiliate industry I learnt my affiliate management skills from others who had just a few years experience in the job ahead of me. Granted, the job of “affiliate manager” has only been around a few years as part of the online marketing function.
It is less than 20 years since the first referral link was placed on a music site owned by Jeff Bezos, which is why it’s still very much a work in progress. Finding the skills required to fill affiliate manager roles is still quite hard. Affiliate marketing is still evolving and therefore it makes sense that the role of an affiliate account manager is changing constantly too.
Provide consistent value
This is quite possibly the most important point to remember when it comes to the content you create for your audience. Players can go virtually anywhere for scores, picks and offers.
You need to give them a reason — and a good one — to keep coming back to you. Having a wide selection of affiliate offers from a variety of operators is a great start. Enhancing that with value-added content makes your position all the more strong. Value comes in many shapes and sizes.
Writing articles that provide expert insights is perhaps the best way to both keep your audience engaged and your authority enhanced. Go in-depth with the reasons for your picks. Create step-by-step guides that can be used for poker, blackjack or other casino games. Give people some information about progressive slots and how those bets work — that is something that is certainly lacking when it comes to slots online, and something that would showcase your knowledge.
Whatever you decide to do, make sure it answers one simple question: how is my audience made better off by visiting my website and reading through my content? If everything you create answers this question clearly, you’re in a great position to begin building lasting relationships with Millennial players looking for an affiliate’s new offers.
Educate your audience transparently
Players strive to get better. You have the tools to make that happen. Taking what was mentioned earlier, focus a lot of your effort on education. One of the greatest assets of the world of online gambling is that the barriers are virtually non-existent for new players (with regards to playing a game, and not necessarily the logistics of signing up and restrictions and so forth).
There is a certain level of intimidation when it comes to brick-andmortar operations. Think back to the first time you stepped foot in a casino: a craps table full of fast-moving, high-energy and knowledgeable players makes for a rather intense situation for virgin rollers. That doesn’t exist online. Still, knowing the rules of the game makes playing it both more fun and inviting.
Keep in mind that, as an affiliate, you can be rooting for the player. Show them that they are your peers by sharing insights into betting strategies and advanced tactics for games that have them. As an added benefit to building trust with your audience, you can anchor links in these articles to special offers on these games. Tying your content to the objective of driving traffic to your operators is something you’ll need to do on a regular basis. Creating this kind of content, the kind that might provide readers with a newfound excitement for a particular game, is a great place to store these links.
Entertain beyond the offer
Although you’ll want most if not every visit to your property to be a conversion, you’re going to want to establish trust and authority through the strategic use of non-gaming entertainment. What does that mean, exactly? Perhaps the best way to understand this content strategy is by looking at Paddy Power’s successes.
Paddy Power might be your (social media) neighbourhood jokester, but it is still, first and foremost, an operator. It has simply cultivated a unique experience with its clients by focusing much of its nline content on the lighter side of the world of gambling and sports.
Not everything needs to be about driving traffic. For an affiliate, that can sometimes be a tough reality to accept, but in today’s communications landscape, relationships matter most. You’ll be able to build these relationships and drive engagement and clicks via the trust cultivated with the strategic use of this kind of content.How does this create trust, you might ask? It’s simple.
This angle of your communications strategy, much like Paddy Power’s, shows your audience that you’re interested in more than the signup and deposit. Although that might be your end goal, it is not your only one.
On top of that, it is a strategy that will lead your prospects to visit your social platforms and website regularly, and with every visit there’s a greater chance that you drive the visitor to click on an ad or accept an offer you’ve posted.
Don’t be afraid of conversation
Your content needs to be a two-way street. Social media is all about one thing: being social. If you’re constantly pushing out content but rarely — if ever — engaging with your audience on an individual level, it will be virtually impossible to build up trust and therefore impossible to nurture relationships. Without those, you can never grow, only move from player to player without making your life any easier in terms of acquisition (from a decreased cost-per-acquisition angle).
Engagement of this kind also helps to build your referral business. Often, new players will turn to their friends to ask for a recommended operator or affiliate. Although it is true that the signup might be generated from the best new offer out there, the recommendation will almost certainly come from a brand advocate. Conversations build that advocacy group quickly, and they can help you drive new traffic without any additional investment from your end. That’s the growth affiliates dream of.
Rome wasn’t built in a day, and an effective content strategy will take time, effort and patience to really begin taking effect. Those listed here are a great starting point, but you’ll need to be creative. Authority and trust will generate brand advocates and help you build your business, but the right steps need to be taken in order to achieve this. Those steps almost certainly need to include the content strategies laid out here, and you need to be dedicated to implementing them properly to ensure the results are genuine and not simply fleeting.