So you run an affiliation website that is in the sports betting niche but for whatever reason you could not attend the London Affiliate Conference 2018 at Excel London? I have good news for you, I went, I spent two whole days going from stand to stand, talking to pretty much everyone, checking out all the products and probably tasting all the snacks and drinks.
Here is a list of the 11 things I liked the most, feel free to click a link below to be taken right to the relative section, but keep in mind that this is not a ranking but just a list:
- The Venue (Excel London)
- The Organization
- The Paddy Power Betfair Stand
- The Opportunities and The New Discoveries
- The Drinks at QuasarGaming’s Stand
- Oscar The Robot
- The Talks
- A Bed of Gadgets
- The Games at the Stands
- The Learning
1. The Venue (Excel London)
I have been to Excel London a few times now and I always really enjoy the experience! It is a gigantic pavilion that is really easy to reach from the city Center with the DLR line (the train stops almost inside the convention center) and offers everything that you can ask for when it comes to setting up a great event. The space is huge, so no matter how many people will be there, you can always enjoy the fair and move around at your own pace. The services are first class, from checking in areas to cloakrooms; from the cleanliness of the restrooms, to the various options of restaurants.
And the building itself, as you may notice in the pictures, is beautiful!
2. The Organization
BetzCenter is by no means affiliated to LAC 2018 but I have to say that the organization was outstanding! No queue at registration, little queue at the cloakroom, very good distribution of the stands and very accessible maps and information! The talks were punctual all the time and the two conference rooms strategically located. All of this contributed to a great experience (I attended as an affiliate). This was my first conference ever as an affiliate (to be precise, we are not even affiliating on BetzCenter), and it felt great and I now know why they are granted free access: of course the whole event is about affiliation and but I did not know that the real star of the event are the affiliates. If you run an i-gaming affiliation website you want to make sure that you attend one of these events in the future as they will be worth it. Companies are after traffic to their website, and that’s pretty obvious, but what was not obvious to me is that they are really open to understand your point of view and needs and willing to find a solution that accommodates both instead of just trying to get the deal that gets them the most. No matter how big or small you traffic numbers are, they will listen to you, they will help and suggest on your next moves. Pretty cool stuff!
3. The Paddy Power Betfair Stand
I really enjoyed my time at this stand! Even if it was a nice stand (well, actually 2 stands all together, one for PaddyPower and one for Betfair) it wasn’t really about the looks of the stand, but the atmosphere. Let me explain this a little bit better.
At BetzCenter.com we are not really interested in casino games like roulette, crap, blackjack or even forex and trading. We only focus on sports betting because we think it’s the coolest among all of this activities; in the end, who does not like a good bet?
PaddyPower’s stand was a replica of an Irish pub, a little bit too dark probably for my taste, but hey, that’s what an Irish pub look like, right? For clarification this above is not PaddyPower’s stand at the event, but imagine something like this but much smaller; still serving Guinness though!
Betfair’s stand was a living room replica with a small coffee machine and Nespresso coffee, good coffee!
I really don’t know if it was the beer or the coffe, or maybe just the fact that these two are among the biggest names in the industry, but the united stand’s atmosphere was always vibrant and lots of people spent time there. This is probably where I spent the most of my time as networking came natural and it was easy; and talking about that, let’s move on to the next item on the list: opportunities and new discoveries.
4. The Opportunities and The New Discoveries
With good networking come good opportunities, that’s well know and the organizers have done a great job making networking easy, they have even come up with an app to facilitate this, well done! But in-person networking was easy too, both at the fair and at the side events. For example, at the PaddyPower Betfair stand I met a couple of guys representing TipShow.net, which I had never heard of before.
They are from Italy and their idea is pretty cool: they have gathered quite a number of Facebook pages that provide tips and put them together into a single platform where users can decide which free tipping service to follow, comment and like (as on Facebook). The traffic numbers that this website has reached are pretty impressive and, also talking to people from the industry, they confirmed that they are doing a great job in terms of referring players while providing a fun experience; they are among the very best in Italy (where betting on multiples is incredibly popular).
It’s 100% in Italian, but it is very easy to understand and use, make sure you go check it out, cool idea!
Another new discovery that I made was Betbull: I haven’t tried it yet, but their sales people were very good (and their stand in front of Betfair’s, lol). The idea behind it is interesting as they want to focus on the social aspect of sports betting. Here you can again follow the tipsters you like and get some good information from their bets in order to win together. Nice!
Not sure if LAC2018’s merit here, but how can I not mention this city?
Day 1 of LAC 2018 started with this view (on my way to Excel London)…
And ended stopping for a quick picture of this on my way back:
How beautiful is this city? One of my favorites!
6. The Drinks at QuasarGaming’s Stand
As I said I’m not into casino games and that kind of stuff, but that did not hold me back from spending time at this stand!
QuasarGaming‘s stand nailed it with music, good (and particular cocktails) and even a drinking game through which you could win an iphone x: some unexpected stuff here!
If you are into online casino games their signup offer seems pretty sweet and if you have casino traffic you might want to have a look at their website as they have good commissions too (just double check as that’s what I remember from before the smokey whiskeys, lol).
7. Oscar The Robot
If you ask me, the coolest thing I have seen this week, ICE included!
Every time I see a booth babe, and I pretty much stare at them all the time, I wonder: why does no one show up with a robot that is dressed like a booth babe and interacts with people? Well, it looks like MyLotto24 and I are on the same page here!
I’m not interested in Lotto either but as soon as I saw this I had to stop at this stand; this thing is amazing, among the very best I saw this week! This thing is incredibly sophisticated: it talks and sees what you are doing, shakes hands with you, and understands you very well. I mean, the place was very noisy, I’m not an English native but still he got me right all the time.
Seriously, just look at the video!
Oscar the Robot is so cool that it also has its own website, make sure you go have a look!
8. The Talks
Even before getting to LAC 2018, I realized that the lineup of speakers was pretty impressive and you can see why on the event’s official website as all the speakers are listed!
SEO Expert, head of SEO, CEO, Head of Media Relations, Managing Director and General Manager are only some of the very cool positions that these people hold. So many subjects were discussed that it would be difficult to list all of them and surely impossible to comment on all of them here, but I liked one in particular.
Not sure if it was the bright orange color of his suit (just joking) or the very interesting subject (not joking), but this talk got all of my attention. Everyone knows that backlinks are important, actually vital for a website, but these guys are taking it to the next level! Christoph’s company, LinkResearchTools, came up with a tool that instantly get a list of all the backlinks to your site and analyzes them.
How do I know this? Well, after the talk I felt the need to know more about the product itself so I went to the company’s stand at the event and, even if Christoph’s was too busy with other people, I talked to one of his colleagues who briefly showed me how this tool works.
Please excuse the quality of the photo, but I really liked this slide. It’s an obvious sentence, I know, but here is where this company gives its best: the analysis of your website’s backlinks lets you understand which of them are good and which are not, how to remove Google penalties and how to leverage your competition in this particular field. BetzCenter needs this tool so much, and fortunately they have a 7 day trial on their website to test it out and I can’t wait to go home and give it a try.
9. A Bed of Gadgets
I am not really a collector normally but this is how I ended up on the free gadgets situation after ICE Gaming and LAC 2018. It started because I wanted to rank the gadgets but quickly escalated.
So, here are the 3 things I liked the most, in no particular order:
- Copybet‘s battery pack, 5000mAh, very cool gadget! (It’s the one in the front, right above the C in the picture).
- PaySafe‘s travel adaptor. It works anywhere, great thing to have! (In the picture, the black thing right next to the battery pack).
- BetHard‘s sports bag, which included a scarf, 2 t-shirts, a hat, a mini ball and other stuff that I probably can’t recall right now. It’s in the top left corner of the bed, and next time I hope BetHard does the same so that I can fly to London with no luggage at all and just collect their gadget again!
The only problem is that this bed of gadgets is now a bag of gadgets, which Ryanair will charge me 40 euros for…
10. The Games at the Stands
There were many games to play at LAC 2018 and the prizes were great. But I really liked two in particular:
- AffAlliance‘s BlackJack: a free blackjack version where the biggest winner (after 5 hands) was the winner of the prize. They played this a few times and prizes included an Apple Watch, a Gopro 6 and more! The prices were crazy!
- Intertops‘ Wheel of Fortune: a simple wheel of fortune that I played so many times and ended up hating it as I never got close to winning anything while I really wanted that bluetooth mini keyboard that they were giving away!
A particular mention to Netbet and their foosball table, many thanks! Foosball is always a good idea and IG story worthy!
11. The Learning
I left this last not because it is not important but because these are the things that really stay in your mind after this kind of events and also because I wanted to wrap up with something serious.
In these few days I have seen extremely good products and I’m not only talking about bookmakers and bookmaking platforms, which can afford a team of developers and deliver quality stuff; even when it comes to “smaller” projects in terms of investments, there is a real chance to build something good and that works and can be successfully monetized.
I have seen a few cool ideas that are shaping and promise to bet successful, I have met many people on the company’s side that showed me and taught me a lot on this world, which is pretty new to me and I had a little taste of what affiliation life looks like.
And, while we haven’t yet decided if affiliation will be BetzCenter‘s future, we have learned that revenue shares are impressive but also that the competition is fierce on both sides (between companies and between affiliates). It is also true that regulations often change and new markets pop out while other markets have to shut down; the future of i-gaming affiliation promises to be interesting and prone to surprises!