SBC Digital Summit: “Affiliates must be more agile in the way they operate” – Stuart Simms

The current pandemic has highlighted the need for companies to become much more agile in the way that they operate, explained Stuart Simms, Group CEO of XL Media and former Global CEO of Rakuten Marketing.

Delivering the day-five keynote at this week’s SBC Digital Summit, kicking off the Juicy Stakes sponsored Digital Marketing Day track, Simms told delegates that affiliates should move away from ‘throwing a load of sites on the market’ and instead focus on fewer, higher quality products and services. 

He said: “We think very carefully about expanding our publishing activities. This means increasing our content, ensuring that we’re getting more user-generated content, that we get more rich media in place, that we offer more advice to consumers to advice that can be trusted. 

“We’re lucky in that we sit on a wealth of data like a number of other affiliates that can be used to drive performance: data, insights, behavioural understanding of the consumers that we’re engaging with. It should give us the armoury to match-make them with the right products and services.

“It’s important for us to move from cascading and throwing a load of sites on the market to then working on fewer, but higher quality sites. We’re thinking carefully about creating bold brands that have a clear identity, as well as a demographic that they’re looking to engage with – and a clear story for that demographic too. 

“I also believe, and COVID-19 is amplifying this – is that we have to be more agile. We have to be flexible in the operating model. Rather than a defined hierarchy that stays in place for a number of years, we need cross-functional teams that are working in an agile way. The developmental capabilities that we have seen in the past are now going to have to be shifted into how we run our business day-to-day.”

The XLMedia Group CEO added that affiliates now have a wealth of new market opportunities as the industry shifts towards a more digital way of operating, but we need to shift to embrace new technologies.

He continued: “There is a huge market opportunity available to all affiliates at the moment.Digital is continuing to disrupt value chains that have historically been very hierarchical and now they are collapsing.This gives affiliates a massive opportunity to be able to support new products and services as they come to market. 

“So I believe that the affiliate space has got relevance both now and in the future. Albeit, we are going to have to shift to embrace technology, data and intelligence a lot more in the future.”

The SBC Digital Summit is a truly groundbreaking online event for the betting and gaming industry, offering up to 10,000 delegates a fully virtual and interactive conference, exhibition and networking experience. It takes place all this week, up to and including Friday May 1.

With global business communities in the grip of the COVID-19 crisis, the Summit was created as a platform for the industry to connect and share knowledge amid critical and unprecedented conditions.

The SBC Digital Summit runs from 27 April to 1 May 2020 and features seven conference tracks, a virtual exhibition and virtual networking lounges, attracting an estimated 10,000 delegates logging in from around the world.

There is still time to register for the event, with company discounts available:

Check Also

XLMedia recruits ‘transformation pro’ David King as CEO 

The board of XLMedia Plc has confirmed the appointment of David King as inbound Chief …

XLMedia confirms CEO departure of Stuart Simms

The board of XLMedia has confirmed that Stuart Simms has chosen to resign as Chief …

XLMedia seeks new Chair to build on 2021 acquisitions strategy

XLMedia will initiate a recruitment process for a new Non-Executive Chairman, as Christopher Bell withdraws from …