This interview is with outgoing affiliate manager Stanislav Eihi from Wildtornado Partners and featured in our casino affiliate programs directory. 

What kind of changes are you seeing with your affiliates in their performance with regards to the latest changes that have happened with constant Google updates?

Google’s been brutal for the past several months. I’ve seen some of my partners being crippled beyond any hope of recovery by the updates, where their volumes plummeted. There are a few things to consider when it comes to ways out.

With the almighty G-man you need to rethink how you approach your content and campaigns and I cannot overstate the importance of quality. Quality will always be before quantity and nothing can change my mind. Even at Wild Tornado we focus on quality. I’d rather skip 10 cooperation opportunities of lackluster projected results in favor of one that will bring in great results and a long term working relationship. Kind of like in life. 

Next: mobile experience. Let's be real, people use their phones/tablets to access the net these days, well, most of us. Even I, I can’t remember the last time I used my PC for anything. I'm always on the phone. Thus I think it goes without saying that a product that is well adapted for mobile users will reap the benefits. 

A swift and smooth site is also something you just can’t skimp on. I mean, would you stick around if your favourite casino was clunky and had a loading time of 3.7 minutes? Didn’t think so=)

What are some marketing channels that are growing for driving FTDs and more players to Wild Tornado?

Right now I work primarily with SEO traffic sources. Review sites and aggregators are my target audience, so to speak. It can be tough at times, the first hurdle being getting them to actually reply (that’s an art form in itself), but it pays off.

Keeping in mind that SEO is a fickle thing, changeable like the weather, it’s a challenge, but I’m up for it. Never thought I’d say that, but I do like to be challenged when it comes to my work. Keeps me on my toes, keeps me moving. But I digress.

We’re always looking for new sources, for new kinds of traffic, and it's trial and error, like with anything. Even SEO, until relatively recently, was something we considered off limits due to the sheer amount of resources, time and energy it required, but isn't anything worth having does?

What are some ideas you have that affiliates could add in their content and marketing that could perhaps increase player value?

So many things to consider and so little time… Haha. But yeah, there are a few things affiliates could do to increase player values. Many of them are a team effort that requires both me and my partners to work together.

For example: exclusive bonuses. Shocker, right? Even still it works like a charm. It’s like owning an iPhone with a gold pattern etched in metal: it’s unique, it’s sought after and it increases the value of that said iPhone. Same principle here: if it’s not a generic welcome package, it will attract an audience.

Other things to consider could be events, like tournaments. Look at some of the brands that are out there, they host tournaments, they launch seasonal events, they keep their players engaged and interested. It’s just human nature to seek out something new and exciting, why not apply that approach to a casino?

Loyalty programs can also go a long way. Rewarding your players for their commitment can only bring in better value and more players and who, other than affiliates, can bring this kind of intel into the masses?

Retention is normally seen as the role the casino has but how do you think affiliates can help with retention?

Something I’ve been thinking about a while back was community building. A sense of belonging will go a long way when it comes to retention. Create forums or social media groups where players can discuss strategies, share experiences, and connect with each other. This fosters a sense of community and loyalty. I;m sure there are things like that put there, but no one says there can only be one or two, right?

Communication is key, and knowing the people you target is an essential part of it. With that knowledge you can target the specific audience you need and keep them engaged. 

In my time as an affiliate manager I noticed that the way you speak to a potential or an existing affiliate sets the overall tone of cooperation. For me, it's the ratchet nonchalant and buddy-like tone with a pinch of irony. I treat my affiliates as equals and it pays off.

Keeping the players informed about new releases and updates is also vital for keeping them engaged. Newsletters, IG stories, TikToks on the subject, it can all work.

So many possibilities, sky’s the limit as they say.

What are some tools you use in your role as affiliate manager?

I’m always looking to make my life easier, really. Isn't that the goal of progress? =) One of the tools I use is my voice, as weird as it sounds. I found that live communication is so much more rewarding. Emailing and texting is good and well, and being a millennial, I think I have that inherent fear of phone calls. But when it comes to affiliates, it all goes away and I’m there, sending out emails with that “shall we schedule a call” line.

As for something more tangible, well, it’s your usual package of ahrefs for traffic analysis, though having at least one more tool like that, maybe SimilarWeb or Semrush, is a major boost to accuracy. 

Canva for some visually appealing stuff, for example reports I need to file (I like them pretty, what can I say). 

Google documents for all things writing and storing data and as of recently AI tools. They are a lifesaver when it comes to my work.

I’ve also become more active on LinkedIn. Well, when I say more active, I mean that I started actively looking for people and ideas that I could be inspired by.

To be honest my tool set is quite small, but I’m always on the lookout for something new and fresh.

How do you use AI in doing your day to day job?

Oh, it’s practically my new best friend! I mean, the occasional joke about it asking me at some point if I know a certain Sarah Connor is there, sure, but in all seriousness with the introduction of AI’s like ChatGPT and Midjourney, a whole new frontier has opened up. 

Though I LOVE writing, my imagination can get to a point where I’m chugging coffee and thinking about new and exciting ways to write a cold email only to end up with “I hope this email finds you well…” AI is where I turn for help these days, in some ways it even replaced Google for me. It’s kind of like talking to a living encyclopedia that can adjust to your requests.

Imagery is also where I tend to turn to AIs. Creating references for what exactly I need has never been easier. Sure, I’m not really in the department of creating banners, etc, we have people for that, but I can whip up a quick reference sheet to speed things up and that is something that, I think, anyone would appreciate. I’ve dabbled in graphic design back in the day and God I wish AI was a thing back then.

All in all, AI is making my life as an affiliate manager easier and more productive, but I still thank them and say “hi”, you know, just in case.

What do you enjoy about working with affiliates?

Communication. Might be strange to hear that from someone who;d considered introverted, but that’s the weird reality. I enjoy speaking to people, and I mean like out loud, I love scheduling calls. Even if it doesn’t pan out, I can still establish a rapport with people. Get to know them, build trust for future opportunities. And it’s always nice to see how people in real life, well, so to speak, are so much different from what you see in text (the millennial in me dreads to see a full stop at the end of an “Okay” message).

I came to this industry by chance, to be honest. I used to be a support agent, always on the phone, being yelled at, but here it’s different. Here you are communicating. Getting to know each other and trying to build a mutually beneficial deal through that. It’s a different kind of communication and I love it.

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