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Thread: Player Shaving

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    Default Player Shaving

    Hi all,

    Looking to get some advice from seasoned affiliates on player shaving with a number of my affiliate sites. I'd like to know what you think reasonable grounds for believing this is going on are? Also, with such little transparency with data is it ever possible to make a fair accusation?

    I have one program which we have sent high rollers to quite a few times however they always seem to vanish after 2-3 months, when I ask my affiliate manager they simply say they will try and get them back with a mailer.

    I'd stop promoting them however I pick up a lot of their brand traffic in search engines, so it would be a waste to do so.

    Advice appreciated

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    Testing them is about the only way I know. Have a reliable source deposit, play and redeposit a few times?? Perhaps the APCW can do an audit on the program(s) in question. I am not so naive to beleive it does not happen.

    I'd stop promoting them however I pick up a lot of their brand traffic in search engines, so it would be a waste to do so.
    Maybe a hint to players to play at casino x instead within the review? Get your traffic and try to switch them to a better brand. If the program is shaving, what are they doing to the players? I can't see them jacking affiliates and not being dishonest to the players you send. Maybe that is why the players are signing up and then disappearing?
    --
    "People who are unable to motivate themselves must be content with mediocrity." ~Andrew Carnegie~

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    Thanks Chips, pretty sound advice.

    The problem with pointing people away is I don't think they are doing this to the smaller players, just the large players that I really notice.

    It's a hard one because I actually earn a decent living from the program, it just so happens that every month a big whale comes a long (you can see their username in the stats) and then vanishes almost roundly on 6 weeks every time.

    Thanks again, I'll ponder my options!

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    Yes, but the problem is that no one (well, definitely not many of us) can make 10K + deposits per month just to test the program, and they know it, so they don't shave the small players, only high rollers... they also always can say that this player was a compulsive gambler and he requested to close his account.

    It's good if you have a good and big forum, and good relationships with your players so you can catch the rats by talking to high rollers in private forums or via PM.

    Another good idea, to setup a global audit (non-sponsored), for example to collect donations each month, from, for example 100 big affiliates and to test the suspected program. Or I don't know.... Because these greedy bastards will find the right excuses anyway I guess.

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    Some valid points made their Alex777. I'm beginning to get the same feeling the moment you land a high-roller they tend to magically "disappear" from the scene after a few weeks. Why give the affiliate 30% plus if the casino/s can take 100%.

    The time has come for affiliates to start networking like never before and to start warning each other about programs that dupe us. Otherwise we might as well pack up shop and do something else.

    Internet casinos

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    Yeah testing privately is the way to catch these clowns. I do not care what anyone says - there are at least 1/2 a dozen on here at GPWA that do it. Just read the posts here daily and you will soon see who does it.

    Between cross promotions and player shaving - its never going to be a honest industry. It never was to start with.

    Either you go into it knowing your going to be shaved and accept it - or find another way to deal with it.

    But the best way is to do many deposits over time different months apart.

    Like Alex also said - its good if you know high rollers personally and can get them to test.

    Ask some of the big guys around - maybe ask Big Fish what he does to test - I am sure he has had players shaved.

    Many brands are doing it nothing we can do.

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    The time has come for affiliates to start networking like never before and to start warning each other about programs that dupe us. Otherwise we might as well pack up shop and do something else.
    Yes, I always say " better later than never".

    GFPC: How about the private forum on http://www.belosers.com for a start?

    Or any other place? Guys let's do something, or tomorrow we will wake up with an empty pockets.

    I actually have a nice scheme in my head now, I think I know an effective way to catch the rats with not very big monthly investments. But I don't want to share it here in public, and I will not share it here in private forums.

    We need to work on this with webmasters like: GCG, arkyt etc and with any webmasters who want the justice, and don't have the money motivation on the first place. What do you think guys? Or we can do nothing of course, and we can continue to pull the hairs out of the head and ask the same question every month "where are my good players"?

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    Hey Alex,

    I have another week , week and a half and then a tournament to play in (chess haha) and then after that I am pretty much free to help out anyway I can.

    For sure - Belosers can be used by all - We can add as many programs as we like to the list provided there is proof of course they are scamming us.

    Right now I am doing an audit with another affiliate a program everyone knows about and works with - we have been testing them now for a few months.

    After that were doing other ones - so this site belosers for sure can used to show the Predatory affiliate programs and scam programs who cross promote and everything like that.

    The forum - I would only ask we get another type of forum that is more professional like v bulletin and make it truly a forum to discuss this very specific topic were all facing.

    It would require volunteers to help run it of course, and I welcome anyone interested in adding to the list.

    My initial idea was to use it specifically for Bewinners, and its for sure served its purpose in the search engines everywhere.

    Just type in Bewinners or Predatory Affiliate Program, or even some BWIN terms and it shows big and bold.

    Over time I then figured why not use that as a stepping stone to add all the rats in there.

    My only problem is time and energy but if we all worked together - we can use it to really fight back.

    I am all game for that if other people are also willing.

    We would need to maybe discuss of course - maybe talk on the phone and see how to go about doing it and see who is seriously interested,

    I will put up some dollars, and host the site if others want to contribute as well..

    I am pretty flexible when it comes to helping fellow affiliates and will do all i can.


    My immediate want is to add Europartners, Gambling Wages, Rewards Affiliates and a couple more to name a few on top of my list..

    But i first need to clean my own house in order to do that as Michael once pointed out.

    Just so swamped I have not gotten around to it and its not a one man job.

    Essentially in a couple weeks I am ready willing and able, and your welcome to use Belosers as an aid in the matter anyway possible.

    Steve


    Quote Originally Posted by ALEX777 View Post
    Yes, I always say " better later than never".

    GFPC: How about the private forum on http://www.belosers.com for a start?

    Or any other place? Guys let's do something, or tomorrow we will wake up with an empty pockets.

    I actually have a nice scheme in my head now, I think I know an effective way to catch the rats with not very big monthly investments. But I don't want to share it here in public, and I will not share it here in private forums.

    We need to work on this with webmasters like: GCG, arkyt etc and with any webmasters who want the justice, and don't have the money motivation on the first place. What do you think guys? Or we can do nothing of course, and we can continue to pull the hairs out of the head and ask the same question every month "where are my good players"?


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    But i first need to clean my own house in order to do that as Michael once pointed out.
    LOL, same here. And I'm also in the process of buying another small network of sites now, it will take some time. Plus another big project, plus all other things... aaah. But anyway, we can start slowly, and we will see a big advantage after all.

    Who with us?

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    Originally Posted by ALEX777

    We need to work on this with webmasters like: GCG, arkyt etc and with any webmasters who want the justice, and don't have the money motivation on the first place. What do you think guys? Or we can do nothing of course, and we can continue to pull the hairs out of the head and ask the same question every month "where are my good players"?
    Guys I am sorry to disappoint you but I am not doing this fulltime and besides that I just do not have the time anymore. I am also seeking for luck elsewhere as this just is not my thing.
    Live dealer games at golden tiger casino

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    Since you are a savvy internet marketer and know a lot about live gaming I'd trust your instincts and move your traffic to another brand.

    That's a tough one Dave. Does the program use income access for affiliate tracking? They are pretty transparent, and configure their system to where the program can't shave. Unless, they drop the player at the most basic software level.

    Seems to me that the six week mark is suspicious. Your high rollers should have the same distribution of activity as your other players. There's really no way to test it at that level.

    Please keep us updated.

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    Thanks for the help Adrian, appreciated as always.

    Yes they use IA and I do suspect that it would be dropped at software level. I actually used to be really good friends with a guy who worked closely with this company and he said he wouldn't trust the management as far as he could throw them, although I'd say that about a lot of people I've met in the industry!

    It is hard to switch from brands who earn money, which is the dilemma! I've demoted them across all of our sites however they still seem to convert players excellently. Still the feeling of shaving remains as strong as it has been for the last year.

    I'll keep an eye on it for a few months and maybe even test deposit myself, I'll keep you updated.

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    Sure some will indeed be caught out doing it if they are indeed doing it and it not just a case of the player moving on.
    eg picture a scenario where extra incentive to join was offered. Player id might be conectable to an email address.
    Promoter might then contact his subscriber and query why he stopped playing at X.
    If they player replies..what are you talking about I turned over $10k last week..then there is decent solid proof of affiliate abuse.
    It would be risky strategy for any long term thinking operator.
    Thats not to say they may not be tempted for short term cash flow reasons.

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    IMO shaving is rampant - even with programs listed here at the GPWA.

    Probably 50% do it at least (mind you its a guess)

    Pretty much there are two camps were seeing developed

    1. The good operators who value many years of good relationships and would never do this.
    2. The rest (shaving, predatory programs, cross promoting, all sorts of the rest of the crap that make this industry as sick as it is)

    Roll the dice and be prepared.

    50% good - 50% bad!

    Just look at some of the top programs here who CROSS PROMOTE and remove the affiliate tag... LOL that accounts for 3-4 dozen casinos already in one click. That is a sophisticated form of shaving - and there are also other elaborate ones. Closure of affiliate program is another one.


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    Quotas is another form....

    By not paying for the first 4 players an affiliate gets, they FORCE the hand of the affiliates in an attempt to get more exposure etc from an affiliate in order to "meet the quota" and this hurts the smaller affiliate the most.

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    Relative to you guys I'm a noob in this niche, so I can't really speak from experience.

    The problem as I see it is pretty much summed up by what Dave said - even if shaving gets proved, people will be very reluctant to drop a program that converts and gives them good income - I know I am.

    In the long run, everyone wins from cleaning up corruption, but with so much uncertainty in the industry I can't blame people for worrying more about the next few payments.

    I certainly have my suspicions on a few programs already, but I've put it down to paranoia for now since there's not much I can do anyway.
    Interested in quality, relevant link exchanges and deals, especially with UK sites.

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    Sneakiliy removing certain players from an affiliates referral list.
    That falls more so under the banner of illegal fraud.

    Quotas I would peg as a more legitimate form of player shaving.
    Typically it's in the terms agreed to.
    It is really just there in order to permit effective shafting of affiliates
    and would typicaly involve closure of an affiliate account.

    I do not belive such terms highly ethical with the promoters of the programs shouting in big print "Commission for the life time of referred customers"
    Classic usage might be when a smaller site happens to refer a big whale and not too many others.

    I am newish here but a word I see banded about is "predatory"
    I guess use of such tactics by an operator would put them under that category.
    It could be argued that it is short term thinking as the more affiliates they shaft in such a fashion the more they get moaned about on forums such as this where thousands of webmasters can read it.
    A bad report can disuade affiliates from joining and reduces hunger in others to see them as top partners as they will be deemed to be much more risky sites to work with.

    There would be certain dangers I guess for an operator if they trust in an affiliate manager who thinks short term and not long term positive affiliate brand building.

    Cheers
    Mick

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    I have just thought of another big danger to the more predatory operators who shaft their affiliates.

    Picture the scenario of an operator who decide they are going to carve out a niche for themselves
    with a very fair affiliate contract.

    If they add to it a two tier program then god knows what an affiliate seeking to sign up other webmasters to it is going to use as a pitch.

    They might for example put together a huge list of all webmasters who promote a well known but predatory operator
    then contact said webmasters highlighting the key flaws and horror stories others have experienced using them
    in order to stress the benefits of the more affiliate friendly program they are seeking to earn 2nd tier benefit from.

    20 or 30 thousand betting webmasters could get educated over night as to the serious flaws of operator X

    The rouge program used as the bad example could experience a huge and dramatic loss of exposure over a very short space of time.

    Perfect fall guy may be a well known brand with unfair affiliate terms and a reputation for employing them.

    Anyone care to highlight any candidates?

    Cheers
    Mick

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    Without overthinking things, there is a rule of thumb that I learned when I first started in this decadent online gambling world.

    I asked, as everyone does, 'who should I use?'

    A wise (and very successful) man gave me this piece of advice: "They all shave. You just need to determine which one shaves the least."

    I humbly stick with that and find it true. No matter who 'leaders' say is the 'best'. Listen to yourself. We've seen it all. Here today, gone tomorrow. There are no friends here. Respectfully, I know that will be disputed but this is what I have found in my years, for what it's worth. Stick with your instincts and take everything with a grain of salt.

    Trust your gut. If you think there is something wrong, there is!

    Good luck.
    Last edited by mojo; 9 September 2011 at 5:54 am.

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    Hello, I'm an affiliate manager of Bla Bla Bla Casino, I have a very good deal for you! LOL

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