Affiliate Marketing vs MLM – Comparative Analysis of Two Methods of Promoting Gambling Platforms

These days, with the online gambling industry booming (and not just because of new behavioural traits brought on by the pandemic), the market is literally overflowing with iGaming platforms and sportsbooks vying for the attention of literally every player. Everywhere you turn, there are ads screaming about cool bonuses and lucrative odds offered by one platform or another. It’s good that we have such a competitive market, but it also creates enormous challenges for specific companies.

In the early 2000s, the whole casino affiliate marketing came down to operators just using banner farms spread all over the internet to attract the attention of gamblers. Thus, there was a problem associated with the excessive use of keyword phrases. This led to a significant decrease in the value of advertising content. However, a few years later, when search engines changed the rules of the game significantly, gambling affiliates took the market by storm, as it was a new area with a lot of potential for earning. Since then, affiliate marketing has gone through a long evolution and still plays a significant role in the rise of gambling/betting projects.

However, a different model of relationship and value transfer has arrived on the scene with Multi-Level Marketing (MLM). Over the years, MLM campaigns have been used successfully to promote products and services for many brands. But how effective is it with iGaming platforms? So, read on to find out who will win the affiliate marketing vs MLM battle.

Affiliate Marketing vs MLM – Key Differences Between the Two Promotion Methods

Although we talk about affiliate marketing and MLM as different methods of promoting a gambling product, at a deeper level, in the case of iGaming projects, MLM is just a kind of affiliate marketing. In fact, MLM is a hierarchical system built by an advertiser in which affiliates may not only promote the offer but also attract other marketers and make a profit from the income they will bring. However, authentic MLM as it was at its inception has some differences from regular affiliate marketing, and we will discuss these differences below.

MLM vs Affiliate Marketing – What MLM is All About

Also known as network marketing, MLM is a marketing strategy to promote products and services where marketers recommend and promote products from person to person by involving other people in the process. This model is a multi-tiered way of reaching distributors and leads while earning commissions from multiple tiers. A key feature of MLM marketers is that they are usually committed to a specific company or brand. Multi-level marketing works in the following cases:

Typically offering products that they use personally, MLM marketers build a network of leads, distributors (those who make sales) and customers (regular customers). In gambling, it looks like this: marketer A joins an advertiser’s affiliate program and engages marketers B and C to perform customer acquisition activities. Marketer A receives a portion of the commissions of marketers B and C. Thus, MLM for gambling is a special kind of affiliate program when the advertiser encourages marketers to attract not only new customers but also other marketers.

Gambling Affiliate Marketing Features

In simple terms, affiliate marketing is an effective way to promote products via the global web. Applied to gambling, it is a way of attracting new players to an iGaming/betting platform. Each time a new user arrives at an online casino through an affiliate link, the affiliate marketer earns a profit in the form of a commission on the player’s deposit (or according to some other payment model such as CPA). If you compare MLM vs affiliate marketing, the latter does not assume that you will buy and use the promoted product. That is, you don’t need to open an account at a particular online casino to promote that casino. However, given the way MLM works for gambling projects, this strategy may be more promising in terms of profit as you build a whole marketing network of leads, distributors and customers. Ultimately, you will choose the best option for you after considering MLM vs affiliate marketing pros and cons.

Affiliate Marketing vs MLM – Pros & Cons

While it’s not easy to compare MLM vs affiliate marketing (AM), the main difference between the two approaches is that MLM is about relationships and building them, while AM is an activity focused on developing and distributing creatives, i.e. marketing materials. Here are a few things that make MLM similar to affiliate marketing:

When choosing between the two options, you should be aware of the MLM vs affiliate marketing pros and cons, and we have listed them below.

Affiliate Marketing vs MLM – Advantages and Disadvantages of AM

Here are 3 key benefits of AM that attract casino affiliates:

However, affiliate marketing – like any activity – has some disadvantages:

However, you can always find a new affiliate program and get started based on the experience you have already gained.

MLM vs Affiliate Marketing – Advantages and Disadvantages of MLM

So it’s time to look at the pros and cons of network marketing, and we’ll start with the benefits:

As nothing is perfect in this world, MLM also has some disadvantages:

In addition, working in the MLM model will give you more free time to spend with your loved ones and yourself.

Closing Thoughts

Regardless of which option you choose (after reviewing MLM vs affiliate marketing pros and cons), gaining an audience and building relationships is a time-consuming process that requires perseverance and a willingness to get things done regardless of the obstacles. As far as affiliate marketing is concerned, this can be an easier way to get started as a gambling marketer because many advertisers provide all the necessary tools (landing pages, creatives, apps, etc.) for free. While MLM is a more promising option from a long-term perspective, for gambling projects, this marketing scheme loses such an attractive aspect as repeat sales. So, gambling affiliate marketing may be a better choice, especially for newcomers.