Everything you need to know about Affiliates & Affiliating

Finding the right affiliate is very important. It will save you lots of time, money and hassle. After that,  I’ll also cover the topic of affiliating with friends and which guidelines I have found to be very important.

How poker affiliates work:

Affiliates are basically hookers 8) . They hook you up with a poker site and receive a commission from the site. They might pass some of it on in the form of rakeback, boni, rake races or some other promotion.

Why you should love and hate poker affiliates at the same time:

From a players perspective, in general, affiliates seem at first glance to be your natural enemy. They pass on deals from a poker site and keep money for themselves that you could have gotten, if there was no intermediary (simplified theory, of course it doesn’t work exactly this way).

—-> At first glance they earn money that you could have gotten, or in other words: they don’t create extra value.

The other side of the coin is that they often give you money that you could have never gotten yourself. In addition to money (in form of rakeback (=RB), boni and rake races), they also provide additional value. A big affiliate has power and provides you with additional security. Like a union can protect its workers, the affiliate can protect its players. You got a win-win situation here.

—-> At second glance they earn you money that you could have never earned yourself via the same power that a union has.

Choosing your affiliate:

Many people play on different sites. Or they switch sites.
I´d advise you to stick to one affiliate of your choice. This way, you can get the most advantage out of what they have to offer. Also, it’s easier to keep track of payments. There are many rakeback providers out there. Because the market is very hard fought for, the offers are pretty much the same on every site. If you read my paragraph about Ipoker (future post about under the hand rakeback), you will understand why many pokersites stick to very strict RB criteria and affiliates are not allowed to offer more than what the site allows. So the criteria you should look for are different.
As I´ve stated, there are dozens of affiliates. Separating the good from the bad ones is important.

The company that I would recommend to you is Pokeraffiliatesolutions (PAS). Through Pokeraffiliatesolutions I made sure to provide you the best deals possible. (For more info on them, here is the original site.) If you´re a grinder, you will find rake races worth around 500k (that’s half million) every month. If you´re looking to play on Ipoker, I advise you to find somebody else, as I will only be able to offer legal and official deals. For every other site, the deals are pretty much identical, so I´d advise you to choose the affiliate that you can trust the most. If you click on the link above you will be forwarded to IncreaseYourPokerIQ Rakeback. Basically I will earn a little commission at the cost of PAS. You will still receive the same deal with all the extras. You´re joining a very big network that has outstanding support and reliable connections. Click here to sign up for your Rakeback Deal.

They have proven to be very reliable over time. Their service is quick and extremely professional and they’ve got some hot offers. Their tracking software is great and you can look at how much rake you have generated at all times. Whenever I had problems with a site, they helped and did more than they had to. If you know my history, you will be aware that I am known to be extremely critical about the industry, and very few people/sites get compliments.
There are other good affiliates out there too.  Again, I like to point out that I’m reflecting on my experience with partners that have shown to be reliable over a long time. I don’t claim to make absolute judgments who is the complete best in the industry.

If you prefer to test the market on your own, here is some key advice. They’re the same parameters that make PokerAffiliateSolutions a great choice:

—-> How long have they been in business.
—-> Who is the owner, where are they registered (Europe or USA is usually pretty safe).
—-> Type the name of the site + problem and google it (be critical though, and analyze which kind of problem is being talked about).
—-> Ask for at least 5 long term references and make sure they aren´t the scribblings of the owner.

PROMOTING TO FRIENDS:

This should be a clear no-go for most people. The reason I advise you to not get involved in “selling” things to your friends is because it can create a big awkwardness.
Making money from friends can get very weird, because it can make people think that you’re abusing the friendship to earn extra. Nobody likes to be made money from, even if it is mutually beneficial. Also I cannot stress enough how important this is. Every time you sell something to friends you put your integrity at risk. Before I hook up a friend with anything, I make it a habit to tell them it’s AT THEIR OWN RISK. I’ ve promoted one site in the past that turned out to be a disaster after 3 months. I’ve learned from my mistake and only recommend products that are completely awesome. I do in-depth research and if possible, look for a long history of solid business. If the company is new, I look what the CEO has done before. Nobody’s perfect and I’ll make mistakes again, but hopefully not the same ones!

We all probably know some people in our social circle who always try to sell something or who come up with the hottest investing advice – every other day. Most think they’re pretty annoying. With businesses it’s a bit different. People expect businesses to make money from them. They don’t expect this from a friend. Now, having that said, I do/have been promoting to friends. Here are some important guidelines:

(In brackets I’ll give you a concrete example from myself)

- You have to be an expert in what you advise. (I’m an expert in the poker business,  know the scene, know the prices and deals available)

- They have to ask you or have clearly asked you to inform them when there’s something new on the market. I cannot stress enough how important this is. If they ask you, then you’re not selling anymore. You’re giving them advice and offering free help. That’s what you should do as a friend and people will value this.

- General rule of thumb: If you think it’s awkward, it probably is. When in doubt, don’t do it. Once you’re pegged as the “guy, who is always after selling me something” , it’s hard and close to impossible to get rid of this impression.

When not dealing with personal friends, of course I am trying to “sell”. But interestingly enough, very similar rules apply to dealing with friends. If you give genuine value to people, they don’t mind buying from you. They know you care about them and want what’s in their best interest. So in a way – and this is going a step further – I consider everybody as my “friend”, but friend has a different meaning here. I’m very strict with the definition when it comes to a “personal” friend.

- Don’t sell a second best product. If you think your friend can have a slightly better deal somewhere else, tell them. They might still choose to do business with you, because they TRUST you. Rather have a slightly worse deal, but knowing that everything’s fine and there’s no hassle. I also believe that trust is going to pay off  – long term.
Today there is so much distrust everywhere. It’s because people expect everybody to cheat them/pull a fast one/sell, sell and sell them something they don’t need.  Think about how awesome it would be if you could go to one place and simply KNOW that they’re looking after you the best. They don’t always have the cheapest deals, but you can rely on them long term, while seeing others come & go . This is definitely the case in the poker industry. Think about it.

- Don’t sell to make money (with friends). Most of the time I pass on deals with 0,00% profit. I don’t want to make money from friends. However, if the amount of work put in is way above normal help, it justifies a small margin and I’ll explain things. And guess what, it’s not a problem at all. They know I don’t need their money, but they understand what win-win truly means.

It’s easy to get burnt, so just avoid it. I have made mistakes in that area, and I don’t wanna advocate anybody to be too careful, since I’m a fan of the trial & error philosophy.

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