Gjorgje Ristikj, Affiliate Entrepreneur and CEO & Founder of LinkDataMedia.com and AffLuck.com, has shared his thoughts on modern affiliate marketing and the recent tendencies in the market. He has also told GBC Time about his view on the AI technology implementation in affiliate marketing these days.

2022 has definitely been not the easiest year for many different sectors. Has the global crisis touched the affiliate marketing industry in your view? Have you faced any changes in 2022?

2021 was a bumper year for online gambling across all verticals and jurisdictions, where slots, casinos, esports, sports betting, and live dealer games all practically boomed. Yet unlike 2021, 2022 is already different in most countries, especially in terms of iGaming industry growth.

In fact, despite the global economic slowdown, the US has powered ahead, reporting an all-time high gambling revenue throughout the first five months of 2022. However, across the pond in the UK, consumers are a bit more cautious, and due to this, revenue from online slots fell by 5%.

To conclude, I believe that there were both positive, and negative changes in revenue growth all over the world.

May you highlight top affiliate marketing innovations in 2022? Are there any special affiliate marketing features in iGaming? 

Affiliate marketing has a bright future. With new technologies and platforms frequently emerging in the industry, affiliate marketing is growing at a fast pace. Moreover, this is the era of automation and digitalization and I believe that anything that can be streamlined with the help of technology, should be. Emerging affiliate marketing trends could mean using artificial intelligence to bid on trending keywords, target different audiences with your PPC campaigns, or simply interact with your website visitors via a chat box.

AI technology has actively been implemented in various sectors worldwide. Are there any chances that AI innovations would be implemented in the affiliate marketing industry in 2023?

As I answered in the previous question, every year we will have more and more implementation of AI technology, so I expect this trend to continue in 2023 as well.

The gambling industry is always looking for ways to stay ahead of the curve, and AI is one of the latest advancements that the industry is currently exploring. AI can be used in several ways to assist in improving the gambling industry, from helping to identify problem gamblers, and providing better customer service, to helping create more immersive and realistic gaming experiences.

Crypto gambling is probably one of the top trends in 2022. What are the affiliate marketing tendencies from the crypto gaming perspective?

Crypto, along with the rise of online gambling, is taking on new markets and opening up incredible opportunities for the industry, and Bitcoin and other digital currencies will gain the largest share of digital payments traffic on gaming sites.

Consumers persistently prefer this type of payment due to its simplicity and anonymity, as well as the lack of bank controls and fees. I also think that crypto has contributed to a much easier job for the Operators and Affiliates themselves since affiliates receive commissions from their earnings via Crypto.

According to the fact of the highly restricted iGaming industry worldwide, it may be complicated to provide high-quality affiliate marketing services. Are there any special strategies to avoid regulatory ad restrictions on the market?

Our site is pure SEO, so we don't have any major problems in that regard. We currently do not use Facebook, Google Ads, etc. But soon we will start creating video content, so we will see what potential difficulties we might encounter.

By the way, we always strive to follow all laws in all jurisdictions. One example is our section for UK casinos, where we are obliged to follow the rules and guidance from the compliance teams of our UK Casino partners.

And this also includes casinos from Spain, where we do not advertise Welcome Bonuses to our site visitors since it is forbidden by law.

Affiliate marketing is undoubtedly a highly competitive industry. Do you have any advice for aspiring marketers who plan to start a whole agency these days?

Definitely, Affiliate Marketing is highly competitive these days, which wasn’t the case 10 years ago when it was much easier to work. But I think that thanks to the big competition that we have in the iGaming industry that applies to all affiliates and marketing agencies, it forces us to improve every day and learn new stuff, and that is something that is for the best in any business.

My advice is: the only way they can be successful is with effort, love for their work, and uniqueness, consequently they just need to be patient and success will come.

What do expect to see as the top trends in iGaming affiliate marketing in 2023?

A real boom is expected in micro and nano-influencers with an audience of 1 000 to 100 000 people. Because of that, affiliates like Gamblersconnect will have to use all available social media platforms in addition to the standard way for organic traffic to increase traffic and earnings. Videos are the most engaging type of content and with more and more platforms specializing in videos (YouTube, Instagram, and TikTok), people would rather watch a video, a story, or a Livestream event rather than read a post.

Also, I expect some of the affiliates to start using the Metaverse. In the future, the metaverse is an open platform with a seamless user interface where we will all be able to create and share our content, much like the current internet allows us to create websites, blogs, and eCommerce stores. Within the metaverse, creators can generate and share content freely with a large audience, and it can also connect people from around the world in real time as if they are standing in front of you.

Affiliate marketing in the metaverse follows a similar premise to traditional affiliate marketing being that the more web traffic and sales a website or product receives, the higher the commission rates for the affiliate partners promoting a brand/s.

What do you see as the driving force for affiliate marketing in the iGaming industry these days?

The iGaming industry is constantly growing and more and more people are seeing it as a great opportunity. In fact, affiliates themselves together with the Operators with their mutual partnerships and implementing the latest technologies will be the driving force in the years to come.

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