Bonus.com Q&A: Mike Epifani of Catena Media on Speaking at G2E

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Mike Epifani of Catena Media will be jumping off of the pages of Bonus.com, Gaming Today, MichiganSharp, and NJGamblingSites on Oct. 12 to speak to attendees at the Global Gaming Expo (G2E) about what he does. His work on those sites for Catena is called affiliate marketing, and it’s been essential to growth for US online casino, online poker, and online sportsbook operators.

Epifani will share his industry views, as well as the G2E stage in Las Vegas, during the 3:10 p.m. session. It’s appropriately titled: What Will the Affiliate Marketing Ecosystem Look Like in Five Years?

The casino content manager with the Sharp Division of Catena Media North America will be joined in the Titian 2205 room by Scott Miller of Copenhagen-based Better Collective. Miller is SVP, Commercial, Better Collective USA.

G2E — presented by the American Gaming Association (AGA) and organized by RX (Reed Exhibitions) — is taking place from Oct. 10 to 13, 2022, at The Venetian Expo.

Why Catena Media?

As the legal US online gambling market grows, operators need to attract interested bettors to their apps. That’s where affiliate marketers like Malta-based Catena Media come in.

Catena fulfills many parts of the marketing funnel at once.

At the top of the funnel, the brand awareness stage, sites like Bonus.com offer relevant, informative content to gamblers. Within his first five months at Catena Media, Mike Epifani increased traffic on Bonus.com by 46%.

During the consideration stage, bettors can search through bonus offers, review pages, or continue reading the news.

Mike is proudest of the “last click” attributions his sites get, which are in the “conversion” stage of that funnel. Bettors click through from his sites to become online gambling app users.

As Catena Media puts it:

The vision set out by Catena Media for 2022 is ambitious yet straightforward: To become the world’s number one provider of high-value online leads. For us, the path so far has only been the start of what culminates with us at the top of the lead-generation mountain.

Why Listen to Mike Epifani?

Bonus.com, Gaming Today, MichiganSharp.com, and NJGamblingSites.com readers have already been following Mike Epifani’s advice about their online gambling choices.

Now’s their chance to listen live and ask him their own questions.

Here’s a preview of what he’ll say.

Bonus.com‘s questions are in bold and Mike’s responses are written below.

Where do you believe the online gambling industry will be in five years?

It seems like almost all US states will have online sports betting five years from now, and at least twice as many states will have legal iGaming (online casinos and poker). States like Indiana, Illinois, New York, and Iowa are already poised to legalize iGaming within the next year or two, which would more than double the current access to legal options in the US.

The reason is straightforward. States that legalize online gambling are seeing massive tax revenue numbers, and it’s popular among constituents. However, regulators, operators, and marketers need to be diligent about preventing problem gambling, underage gaming, and other issues surrounding online gambling. That’s the biggest threat to the ongoing success of online gambling legalization across the US. If operators and affiliates aren’t diligent, we could see gambling restrict rather than expand.

Moreso, however, responsible gaming is a personal moral imperative.

What role will affiliate marketing hold in the industry in five years?

Alongside the operators, affiliate marketing in five years will focus on burgeoning online casino verticals to create new revenue streams. But less obvious are the ways affiliate marketers will evolve to establish themselves as essential resources. How can we create communities of bettors looking for the best insights on sports and gaming odds, bonus offers, crowd- and exert-sourced advice, and so on? Live streaming platforms like Twitch seem to be moving away from gambling-related content, despite gambling streaming growing in popularity. Who will step up to create a live streaming platform that incorporates the affiliate model?

It will be interesting to see how regulations develop in five years. There are many more restrictions on how European operators can promote themselves, and North American affiliates experienced it firsthand with the Ontario launch. In Ontario, affiliates were restricted from promoting specific bonus amounts or any sort of enticement, which flies in the face of the current affiliate strategy in states like New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Michigan.

What else should Bonus.com readers know about your G2E plans?

G2E is the convergence of folks at the cutting edge of this industry. I’m meeting with software developers, platform providers, and heads of operators, as well as attending every educational panel that I can. I’ll be stopping by every booth and hoping to make new connections for our team, as well. We’re interested in any and every potential partnership, from new game launches and innovative features to insights on responsible gaming and new legalization efforts. Please reach out to me at [email protected] if you’re interested in setting up a time to meet.

About the Author

Heather Fletcher

Heather Fletcher is the lead writer at Bonus, concentrating on online casino coverage. She had her first published byline at age 10, but didn't get paid for her writing until she got her first newspaper job. Fletcher's newspaper career started at Suburban News Publications in Ohio and eventually took her to The New York Times, where she's still a contract freelance reporter for the National Desk. She covers breaking news from Philadelphia, as needed. In March 2021, Fletcher began writing about online casino gambling as the lead writer for Online Poker Report.

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