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  1. #1
    GPWA Aaron is offline Former Staff Member
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    Default Affiliate Interview Series: Sylita | sly24

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    Age: 36
    Hometown: Virginia, USA
    Living in: Wherever I stop
    Favorite Food: Salmon

    Sites:
    peli-kauppa.com
    casinohaku.com
    casinoroyale007.net
    multiplayerbingogames.com
    salabingogratis.es
    salapokergratis.es

    When did you launch your sites?
    The first site was launched in 2004 and the others a couple of years later.

    How did you become involved in the industry?
    I was investigating different niches at a time when I was focused on building high content filled websites back in 2004. During that time I was studying Finnish and I decided to take a crack at a Finnish gambling website. I havenít looked back since.

    How long did it take for you to start earning money?
    It did not take me long. During the time that I started my first casino website, Peli Kauppa, I was building a number of niche websites and by accident I noticed that Peli Kauppa was making money. After making that discovery, I started building more original content and focusing on the casino niche in particular. The earnings were something that I could not ignore!

    Two of your sites are in Finnish, two are in English and two are in Spanish. How did you arrive at this particular mix?
    I played professional basketball in both countries and learned the language while living there. So decided to hit both niches, as I knew the U.S. market was saturated with tons of affiliates. During that time there were not a lot of Finnish affiliate websites so my site was among the top sites in the search within Finland.

    How many languages do you speak?
    I fluently ďspeakĒ two languages, English and Spanish, but I have a great understanding of Finnish, French and Catalan.

    How important is it to have sites in multiple languages? And how important is it for a website to be in the visitor's native language?
    I think it is important to have sites in one language per site as opposed to one site with multiple languages. I would like Web visitors to feel at home on my site and gain their trust as a ďhomeĒ website.

    You've offered to translate content for other GPWA webmasters in the past. Have you had any takers?
    No, no one has contacted me yet. However, Iím not very active on the forum so I understand perfectly.

    When it comes to translating content for websites, can webmasters get away with using online translating tools? Or is it still essential to get a human translator involved in the process?
    No, it is impossible to get away with using the online translating tools. When I first started I had the help of good friends to do minimal translation. Soon after I started making consistent earnings I began to outsource my content to native speakers of that particular language. Some webmasters think that they can get away with online generators but in the end Web visitors know the difference and they will leave as fast as they arrived.

    You've also offered to provide content for other webmasters. Are you still doing that?
    Although I have not received any requests or replies back for content, I am still in the business of providing content for other websites of course. I have always believed that content Ė original content Ė is king.

    You list "sports" as one of your interests on your GPWA profile page, yet none of your sites are devoted to sportsbooks. Have you considered adding a sports betting site to your portfolio?
    I have considered creating a sports betting website in the near future. It is strange that I donít have a sportsbook website considering my background. Sportsbook websites are a totally different beast compared to sites promoting casino and poker. I would probably focus on one sport in particular, instead of trying to conquer everything. I prefer small niche-focused gambling websites so hopefully I will get one started and completed in 2014.

    Are you a one-person shop or are you part of a larger organization?
    I am a one-person shop and outsource when I donít have time. I like to leverage my time to focus on other aspects of the business.

    Describe your work environment. Do you work from home or in an office? If you work from home, how often do you get to see and interact with other people in the industry?
    I work from ďhomeĒ wherever that may be. I love to travel and normally donít stay in one place more than six months. For the past four years, minus this year, I have attended the Barcelona Affiliate Conference. Each time I have learned something and have had the time to meet affiliate managers and other people in the industry. I think it is important to attend an affiliate conference at least once a year.

    What traits do you look for in an affiliate manager? How about in an affiliate program?
    I like for affiliate managers to respond in a timely manner in the event that I send a rare e-mail request. I appreciate those affiliate managers who donít send generic e-mail and who give attention to my particular websites.

    In an affiliate program my most important concern is communication of changes in terms of service. I like programs that offer no negative rollover in commissions. And obviously I like the brands of the affiliate programs to have constant offers and promotions for new players, which makes converting money players a little easier.

    Whatís your preferred method of communication with affiliate managers? Do you like to talk on the phone, by e-mail or via Skype?
    I prefer e-mail or Skype. Iím not much of a telephone person.

    What prompted you to join the GPWA? How has it helped you?
    From what I vaguely remember, I was researching a particular affiliate program to ensure that they were legit and that they paid on time. Although Iím not active on the forum every day, I do visit consistently to check on the industry changes, SEO tips and conference news. It is an invaluable resource that no affiliate should take for granted.

    What do you like about the industry?
    I love that the industry is forever evolving. It has taught me to stay on my toes in other aspects of my business. I also like to study industry websites and SEO techniques because everything constantly changes. The gaming industry is definitely on top of the changes and knows how to adapt quickly.

    If you could change one thing about the industry, what would it be?
    I would change the legality and bureaucracy surrounding the industry. I think people should have the right to gamble not matter their location and laws in their country. Of course, I would also eliminate all of the rogue gaming websites. They care nothing about the players and even less about the affiliates.

    What do your family and friends think of your work as an affiliate?
    Back when I first became an affiliate marketer in 2003 my mom in particular didnít really understand it and would ask me, ďSo will you look for a job or go back to school to get your graduate degree?Ē Definitely now there is no question about what I do and my family and friends are very supportive and even more curious.

    Do you gamble online? If so, what do you play?
    I actually donít gamble or play the lottery. Go figure! The dealer always wins in my mind so Iíd rather not pay him or her.

    How long do you give yourself for answering e-mail? What e-mail tips can you offer?
    I donít have a time frame for answering e-mail but it is the first thing that I try to take care of before starting my day of work.

    How do you manage your ďto-doĒ lists? Do you use any special software to help you out?
    I have an unorthodox method for sure. I create a to-do document on my desktop for each of my affiliate sites and move it to the trash when Iím done. That way itís in my face, and since I donít like crowded icons, it pushes me to get the work done and clean up the desktop.

    How much time do you devote to SEO and/or social networking in order to drive more traffic to your sites?
    In the past I devoted 70 percent of my time to SEO, but Iíve found lately that no matter how much promoting, linking or optimizing I do on my websites, there is no single, sure method to keep my sites ranking high in the SERPs. In the future, I plan to do more paid advertising because trying to keep up with changing search engine algorithms is becoming more frustrating every day.

    Whatís the most difficult thing about running your sites?
    I think the most difficult thing is making sure the tracking links are working correctly. I manage my sites using a CMS so I have several modules to help with broken links, but there is nothing available for checking to see if the affiliate links are actively tracking.

    Whatís the best thing about running your sites?
    I like being able to update my content on the fly using a CMS and not having to worry about building HTML pages manually like I did when I first started. I barely have to use Dreamweaver, which was my HTML editor of choice at the time.

    If someone were visiting you, whatís the one place youíd definitely take them to see?
    Well, it depends on where I am at the time. But if I were in Spain, I would most definitely take them to visit Valldemossa, Mallorca. It is a charming village just 15 minutes from the outskirts of Palma de Mallorca.

    When you need to get as far away from work as possible, where do you go?
    Anguilla, in the Caribbean, for sure is my favorite getaway. The ocean, friends and peaceful moments are something I wish for when I need to get away.

    Whatís your favorite vacation spot?
    Formentera, Spain. I love this small island because it is peaceful and close by if Iím in Spain.

    Whatís your all-time favorite movie?
    I wouldnít say that I have an all-time favorite movie, but for a TV series I would have to say The Golden Girls. They keep me laughing for days.

    If you could invite any five people, living or dead, to dinner, who would they be?
    1 & 2. Mom and Dad Ė I want to cherish the time that I have with them while they are around.
    3. Michael Jackson Ė For me he was the epitome of hard work and a genius artist.
    4. Betty White Ė One of my idols; she is beautiful and has a great sense of humor.
    5. Rafael Nadal Ė Iíve had the opportunity to meet him once but a dinner would complete my dream and hopefully his highly competitive spirit would rub off on me.

    What are three things that nobody knows about you?
    1. Iím a candy video blogger. I absolutely love candy!!
    2. Iíve played professional basketball in Finland and Spain.
    3. I love FC Barcelona (futbol).

  2. The Following User Says Thank You to GPWA Aaron For This Useful Post:

    PromoteCasino (30 April 2014)

  3. #2
    eaton2003's Avatar
    eaton2003 is offline Public Member
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    If you could change one thing about the industry, what would it be?
    I would change the legality and bureaucracy surrounding the industry. I think people should have the right to gamble not matter their location and laws in their country. Of course, I would also eliminate all of the rogue gaming websites. They care nothing about the players and even less about the affiliates.
    Well said
    Simon Eaton - Online marketing consultancy with 20 years experience

  4. #3
    Maria F is offline Former AM
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    Hi Sylita,

    Your interview was lovely, thank you for sharing!

    All the best with your sites.

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