Name:  grant_cook_AMIS_header.jpg
Views: 88
Size:  20.9 KB



Age: 33
Hometown: Cape Town
Favorite food: Anything cooked on the braai (barbecue) enjoyed with good friends and good wine.

Commission Warehouse represents one brand Ė Players Palace Casino Ė at the moment. What are the advantages to working with an affiliate program that is focused on a single brand?

I think the most important thing is, as you mentioned, focus. Our energy and resources are not spread across multiple brands and offers. This allows us to give greater attention to detail when it comes to marketing materials, Web site appearance and content, and exclusive offers and creative materials that our affiliates may require. We offer all of this in English, French, German, and Italian so while it all falls under Players Palace Casino we actually have four brands under one. That said, you can rest assured that all of our focus and efforts are where they should be 24/7!

Players Palace Casino has gone a different route than most other sites when it comes to sign-up bonuses. The casino gives players a ďfreeĒ $2,000 bankroll for 60 minutes. And whatever the winnings are (up to $200), the casino will match it. Why did Players Palace Casino settle on this offer, rather than the traditional no-deposit or deposit-matching sign-up bonus?

When deciding on our sign-up offer we put careful consideration into what would work best for our affiliates and give players the best and most attractive introduction to our casino. With the majority of casinos offering the standard 100% match offer we thought it was extremely important to differentiate ourselves. The reaction to our $2,000 no-deposit offer has been phenomenal. Players get the opportunity to experience our casino, and to maximize their bonus before making a purchase. Through this offer we get huge numbers of registering players, who get exposure to our casino. Our custom-built, behavior-driven conversion system then kicks in, leading to far greater numbers of purchasing players than you would get with the standard offers.

What distinguishes Players Palace Casino from other online casinos?

Apart from our fantastic product offering, being a Microgaming casino with over 350 games, we put a huge amount of effort and importance into our customer entertainment and service. This is one area where, with the correct approach and dedication, it is possible to distinguish ourselves from all the other casinos out there. Apart from our proactive retention efforts and fantastic promotions, we make it as simple as possible for players to get in touch with us. We have 24/7 international toll-free numbers, live chat, and email support. Every player is treated like a VIP, and receives immediate and thorough responses. We even encourage players to get in touch with us to let us know how they would like to be rewarded for their play in our casino, and tailor make our rewards and loyalty program for players on an individual basis.

What distinguishes Commission Warehouse from other affiliate programs?

We have a fantastic affiliate team with years of experience in the industry, but most importantly, huge enthusiasm for what we do. We have dedicated affiliate managers for all our affiliates, and strive to build not only great business relationships, but lasting friendships with our marketing partners. Our affiliates are never grouped by performance, as we endeavor to treat all of our partners according to their particular needs, and provide them with the individualistic support that they deserve. Affiliates know what works best with their players, and we are happy to oblige with exclusive offers, creatives, and promotions. We believe that affiliates are business partners and treat them as such.

What's the most difficult part of your job?

Monday mornings! Every other obstacle pales into insignificance.

Whatís the most exciting part of your job?

Meeting new affiliates and getting to know them. It is unbelievably exciting starting new marketing partnerships, and watching the results from our combined efforts. Itís great watching affiliatesí commission payments growing substantially on a month-to-month basis as a direct result of different things we try.

Trust is often cited as one of the critical components of successful relationships between affiliates and affiliate programs. How do you go about establishing trust with your affiliates?

Trust is something that is earned with time and effort, but can be lost in the blink of an eye! I think honest intentions and truthful communication are absolutely essential to build trust in any environment, and particularly in our industry. My hope from affiliates is that they will always be open and honest with me in return. Poor communication leads to misunderstandings that 99% of the time are completely avoidable. A true and lasting relationship is not possible without regular and honest communication.

Besides trust, what are the keys to building successful relationships between affiliates and affiliate programs?

Teamwork, dedication, and fast payments. Accurate reporting, quick resolution of queries, and great marketing materials. Exceptional conversion and retention rates, oh, and did I mention fast payments?

What distinguishes your statistical reports from others on the market?

Affiliates have the ability to create separate campaigns to measure the success of various marketing initiatives that they are running. This can be measured all the way down to individual marketing materials they have on their site. We also offer in-depth player profiling, from gender all the way down to the games they are playing. This helps enormously with campaign optimization and allows affiliates with game-themed sites and promotion platforms to really understand the players they are bringing in. It also allows our promotions team to customize the offering to their players, resulting in better revenues and commissions.

How do you help affiliates position themselves to maximize profitability?

As mentioned, we have an extremely advanced reporting system that greatly enhances campaign optimization. We have a fantastic sign-up offer for attracting new players, and put a huge amount of effort into our conversion and retention strategies to maximize profit from players. I think most importantly, though, we listen to what our affiliates want and need. We are happy to work with affiliates on a one on one basis and provide special offers, promotions, and marketing materials.

What are your three keys to success for an affiliate?

I canít just have three, as the five below are critical:

Diversification: affiliates should not invest all their efforts into a limited number of programs / casinos. Yes, you should partner with the good ones, who produce results for you and pay on time, but providing your players with a wider variety is what I feel is one key factor to being successful in this industry. Naturally, Commission Warehouse should be your No. 1 pick.

Communication: always try to establish and maintain clear lines of communication with not only your peers, but very importantly, with your affiliate managers as well. The online gambling industry is an ever-evolving entity, and many a time we need to adjust to the direction the industry is heading in. Having clear lines of communication with peers who keep their ears to the ground, and who donít mind sharing, helps in staying informed of challenges and new opportunities alike. Your Affiliate Manager is a very big part of your success or failure. Try to build good relationships and keep working with them to enhance your marketing.

Dare to be different: There are many affiliates out there competing for players, often the same ones. Work with your chosen affiliate programs to come up with unique and different ways of presenting their offering, and use the standard materials to support this activity. At Commission Warehouse we have had fantastic success with affiliates by creating competitions, interactive games, and different platforms for interaction with the potential customers. The rules of frequency apply to all marketing. You will get a small percentage of new customers based on their interacting with your brand once, but this grows exponentially the more they interact and the more entertaining that interaction is.

Build a database: The Internet provides hundreds and thousands of nameless, faceless visitors that come and go without the portal knowing who they are, let alone being able to communicate with them. This severely limits your ability to truly maximize your traffic, as you are unable to create additional interactions. Try to create some value that will entice visitors to subscribe and opt-in to communication from you. This will build opportunities to increase frequency of your promotional message (as you can now talk to the person) and creates another fantastic acquisition channel. Please donít spam, though!

SEO: I know that many people are so sick of hearing this term, but I would have to say that without proper SEO strategies in place, the chances of success are reduced significantly. Dedicating the time to this area now is sure to bear fruit in the future, and with the levels of competition there have been and still are in the search engines, you have to be committed to some really long hours, refining your copywriting skills and being on the constant lookout for changes and opportunities to stay on par with the game.

How did you get started in this business?

I come from a Corporate Sales and Key Account Management background. A good friend of mine was Head of Business Development and Marketing at one of the first Microgaming casino groups in the industry, and hounded me for months to join them. I eventually agreed, and with the excitement and energy in the online gaming community, havenít looked back since.

What songs are currently on your iPod (or MP3 player)?

I change the music on my iPod about as often as I change my socks (which is every day, by the way)! Today I happen to be listening to Jack Johnson.

What's the last book you read? What did you like about it?

The World According to Garp. I enjoyed the way the author has taken unbelievable characters and situations, and made them completely believable

Whatís your favorite movie and why?

I donít have one in particular, but depending on my mood, I enjoy either highly entertaining movies, or strong character- and setting-driven movies.

What was your favorite subject in school?

English. Language is the key to intelligence, understanding, and relationships.


Whatís the first concert you attended in person?

Oh man, you got me on this one! If I have to be honest, it was Dolly Parton and Kenny Rogers. My parents took me along as a kid. I donít remember Kenny Rogers too well, but for some reason (at that impressionable age), my memories of Dolly Parton have never left me!

What's your favorite board game?

30 Seconds.

If you had to live your life over again, what one thing would you change?

I would have been born rich instead of good lookingÖ.ha ha!

What are three things that no one knows about you?

I talk too much to have any secrets about myself!