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  1. #1
    GPWA Abby is offline GPWA Editorial Staff
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    Default Affiliate Interview Series - Mark Taylor - WonderPunter

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    Hometown:
    Colchester, U.K.
    Living in: Valencia, Spain
    Favorite Food: Argentine steak
    Must-Read Book: Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert T. Kiyosaki
    Favorite Movie: Glengarry Glen Ross

    Sites:
    wonderpunter.com
    casinowhizz.com

    (This interview was originally published in the October 2016 issue of the GPWA Times Magazine.)

    When did you launch WonderPunter.com? How long did it take for it to start producing revenue?
    WonderPunter was launched in 2010 initially as a fantasy sports site, which came across a few problems due to a rogue SEO advisor we employed. The current site that targets the betting side of sports has been around since 2012. It started producing quite quickly due to the type of visitors we were attracting; however, it took just under two years to get to a level where we could actually run it as a business.

    You've been blogging about the progress of your new site, Casino Whizz, on the GPWA forums since January. Why did you decide to track that project publicly? Has doing so helped you or other GPWA members?
    I had seen so much information – most of it wrong or based on old methods, or even on what others had heard or read – that I wanted to show that it was possible to build a site adhering to Google's terms and conditions, and at the same time lay down a roadmap of progress on what to do and not what to do. I am certain this has helped many affiliates, not just technically, but also with motivation. I have come across a few sites that have used Casino Whizz as their inspiration. And the end result? A much higher quality site that this industry had been lacking. So, yes, I am pretty sure it has helped GPWA members on various levels. Has it helped me? Yes, it has. It has shown that we are serious in what we do, and all the interest surrounding the site has given us an authority that is noticed by programs we work with and which allows us to negotiate much better affiliate deals.

    How did you get into iGaming affiliate marketing? What did you do before? Are you a full-time or part-time affiliate?
    I started off in the weight-loss industry. It was very successful for some time, but I saw iGaming as a much more lucrative industry with bigger rewards. We are a full-time affiliate. The number of hours that go into the project is insane.

    WonderPunter.com is predominantly a sports betting site, but it also features casinos and poker rooms. How much traffic do the non-sports-betting sections of the site get? Do some verticals do better than others?
    At the moment, the non-sports side of the site gets around 20% of all traffic. It doesn't sound like much, but WonderPunter pulls some decent-sized traffic. We have actually started to increase the casino section of the site and will be spending time trying to make it equal to the sports side. Poker is something I have yet to push and really just serves as an extra area for our existing readers to explore.

    Your main site is currently available in both English and Spanish-language versions. Do you have plans to add additional languages at any point?
    Once we reach the full potential of the English sites, we will add languages by popularity.

    What are some of your sites' unique selling points? How do you stand out from the crowd?
    On the sports side of things, our betting predictions are very precise. Our resident handicapper, Mario, has a big following, and now a lot of our traffic comes directly to our brand name and whatever is being searched. Unlike similar sites, we do not charge for our picks. They are all completely free. For Casino Whizz, we have a 10-year experienced casino player and writer who goes through each casino or slot game like a veteran player would. Instead of listing what the product has in a regular mundane way, it's taken for a real blast, and then results are placed in the review. Apart from the quality of what we produce, we also do it in volume, aiming to cover every aspect.

    How many employees do you have? Do you use freelancers?
    At the moment, we are a team of five between both sites, but I don't call them employees. They are as much a part of the business as I am. We never use freelancers. Everyone here is part of the team. I try to search out people with the same passion, but with a different skill set.

    Sports betting can be a tough business, especially when your players are doing well. How volatile are your revenues from month to month?
    Extremely volatile. We always know that the off-season (July to September) is our lowest, and we are always prepared for it. However, due to the type of players that WonderPunter appeals to, we have picked up some very high-depositing players. On the flipside, they also make massive bets – six figures per week – so you can end up in the red pretty quickly, and unlike casino programs, most sports programs have negative carryover.

    Do you bet on sports yourself? What's your favorite football team?
    I sometimes have a flutter, but it's very rare. My favorite team is Real Madrid, which is where our company is based.

    How often do you get to see and interact with other people in the industry? Have you attended any conferences?
    I speak to many guys over Skype or via private messages on the boards. As many know, I am always there to give out free advice. For the larger affiliates, we speak over Skype, and they usually complain about something. I have not attended any conferences yet as we rarely have free time. I do plan to be in Berlin this year, though.

    What traits do you look for in an affiliate manager? How about in an affiliate program?
    For the affiliate manager, it's their ability to customize the deal. We never take the standard offering, as we offer a little more than the average site. Another area is time of responses and their willingness to get things done. I like the "Yes, yes, yes" type of manager. With regards to affiliate programs, it's the same: the ability to adjust the program. And one thing I cannot stand is chasing late payments.

    What prompted you to join the GPWA? How has it helped you?
    It was initially to find out what the good programs were, and yes, the GPWA has helped me a lot over the years. A lot of questions regarding the problems I have had have been answered by another affiliate who had experienced a similar problem.

    What do you like about the industry?
    It sounds shallow, but the financial side of it. It's very lucrative. But also the freedom of working for myself. What's better than seeing the fruits of your labor pay off?

    If you could change one thing about the industry, what would it be and why?
    The way affiliates are sometimes treated with contempt: Late payments, non-payments, shaving, hacking. Erroneous software is rampant and needs to be cleaned up, which is another great thing about the GPWA. It's a great resource to find out who is doing what.

    What do your family and friends think of your work as an affiliate?
    They don't really understand it. I live quite far away, so when we talk it's usually just family related.

    How do you manage your to-do lists? Do you use any special software to help you out?
    I have a daily routine, which I complete after updating the sites. Anything important I do straight away. For instance, if I add a new program, I will have five to six new pages completed for it within a few hours.

    How much time do you devote social networking for your sites?
    Not much. We do a little, but I have so far found that our time is better used creating organic results and repeat visitors.

    What’s the most difficult thing about running your sites?
    Time. There is not enough in the day, and I wish I could replicate myself. As many owners know, it's hard to find someone like yourself to take on responsibilities. If they do exist, they are usually already in competition with me.

    What's the best thing about running your sites?
    I get to choose who I work with, so I get to choose the best. No arguments. No stress. Just a great working team.

    What do you do to stay in shape – both physically and mentally?
    I used to work out regularly for many years, but in the last year or so I have dedicated more and more time to the work, mainly due to the increase in traffic. But I still aim to walk around 10 kilometers a day. Mentally, working keeps me focused and sharp.

    What do you do with your spare time?
    Spare time? What is that? At the moment, it's all work, no play. But I suppose that's what it takes when your aim is to surpass all the competition. Once I reach my personal target, I then have plenty of plans for spare time activities.

    What did you dream of doing, both professionally and personally, when you were a kid?
    Like many other kids that grew up in the '80s, an air force pilot. It was the generation of action movies, and Top Gun was my favorite.

    If someone from out of town were visiting you, what's the one place you'd take them to see?
    It would have to be the old town in the center. Great architecture, great weather, and authentic Spanish food and wine.

    When you need to get as far away from work as possible, where do you go?
    I have not reached that limit, but when I do, it will be Asia. It's one area I have yet to see, but I would like to experience it as a lifestyle, not a holiday.

    If you could invite any five people, living or dead, to dinner, who would they be?
    First on the list would be David Bowie. His music is the first thing that gets switched on before commencing work. It helps with my creativity, and I found him to be an intriguing character. Then it would be Mick Jagger, Kurt Cobain, Axl Rose and Eazy E, as they have entertained me so much in my lifetime and I would like to repay the favor.

    Name three things that people reading this don't know about you.
    1. I left school and home at 15.
    2. I have five cats.
    3. I am a great cook.

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  3. #2
    PromoteCasino is online now Private Member
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    Very nice interview Mark, any update on CasinoWhizz? Been a while
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    Good transparant interview Mark! Nice websites you built!

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    I enjoyed reading this interview, going to check your websites now

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    Great interview and brilliant sites !!
    Sweet Bet - Reviews of reputable online casinos, poker sites, sportsbooks & bingo halls
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    Awesome, great read. The sites offer great imput as well.

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    Great stuff and inspiring indeed.

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    Really impressive read... Buena Suerte, Marco!

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    Nice!

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    ALEXRAW is offline Public Member
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    You have written everything correctly and properly, it's a lot to take note of

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    Great interview, man!

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    betting apps is offline Private Member
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    Great interview, enjoying following along with the Casino Whizz updates!
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    Quote Originally Posted by PromoteCasino View Post
    Very nice interview Mark, any update on CasinoWhizz? Been a while
    If you check the serps you will know it's doing very well has climbed to levels past some old school authority sites and we have created a niche for casino players looking for a bit more than a table of 10 casino bonuses, Google seems to favor us for quite a lot now.. pages which have 0 links but domiante 1-3 positions..

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    PromoteCasino is online now Private Member
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    If you check the serps you will know it's doing very well has climbed to levels past some old school authority sites and we have created a niche for casino players looking for a bit more than a table of 10 casino bonuses, Google seems to favor us for quite a lot now.. pages which have 0 links but domiante 1-3 positions..
    Yeah I see you all over the place, but it is hard to quantify what sort of figures it is attracting. Love the site very informative
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    WonderPunter always provides great insight and help on these forums, I`m glad things are working well mate. Rock on!
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