the dark side of affiliate marketing

the dark side of affiliate marketing

The industry of affiliate marketing is a rich one, with tons of success stories. But there are also some shady practices that have been going on for years, and they’re starting to catch up. In this article, we’ll talk about the dark side of affiliate marketing and how you can avoid it if you want to succeed in this industry.

Influencers are making millions of dollars a year

Influencers are making millions of dollars a year. They’re getting paid by brands to promote their products, and it’s a new phenomenon that has taken the world by storm.

Influencers have become celebrities—famous for promoting products instead of acting or singing. They’ve become famous for being popular on social media, as well as in real life with friends and family members who love them too!

This means influencers have more money than traditional celebrities because they’re able to make more from endorsements alone…and there’s plenty more where that came from!

Brands are losing billions of dollars a year

You may think that the main problem with affiliate marketing is that it’s not delivering the ROI you want. But there’s another, more insidious side to all this: Brands are losing billions of dollars a year to affiliate networks and rogue affiliates.

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The biggest problem here is that brands aren’t getting paid for their ads, which means they’re not being compensated for their products or services. This can be especially dangerous when it comes to influencer marketing: Influencers often charge brands upwards of $10K per post (and some go as high as $50K), but many who participate don’t pass along any percentage—or even any money at all—to those who created them; instead, these influencers keep everything themselves!

Traditional media is pissed

The traditional media industry is pissed. It’s getting squeezed by the rise of influencers, who are taking away ad revenue and viewers from them.

Influencers have been around for a while, but they’ve really taken off in recent years as social media platforms such as Instagram and YouTube have become more effective at promoting content creators with large followings. Influencers can get paid based on how many people watch their videos or read their articles, whereas before you had to pay an agency to bring an ad campaign onto your site—and that cost money! Now influencers are able to make money through advertising themselves directly instead of going through third parties like agencies or production companies (who then take a cut).

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Brands are getting savvy

You might have noticed that some brands are getting better at tracking activity. The reason is simple: they’ve figured out how to track activity, and now they can tell who is doing what on their site. They’re also using this data to figure out who isn’t making money—which isn’t as easy as it sounds!

  • Brands will look at your backlink profile and figure out if you’re making any sales or not.* They’ll find out who referred them and then compare their performance with other similar sites in the same niche.* They’ll see if there’s anything suspicious about your account history or buying habits.*

The FTC is cracking down

The FTC is cracking down on affiliate marketers. They’ve increased their efforts to enforce the rules and educate people about them, and they’ve also increased their enforcement of the rules. In fact, the FTC has made significant progress in just five years:

  • In 2015 alone, it sent out more than 4 million letters to companies that engaged in illegal marketing practices.
  • It issued $10 million in fines to companies who violated consumer protection laws or deceived consumers with false or misleading advertising claims.
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affiliate marketing can be shady

Affiliate marketing can be a way to make money, but it can also be a way to lose it.

There are many ways you could lose money with affiliate marketing:

  • getting banned from an affiliate program
  • being removed from the network of sellers that accept your affiliate link as payment for their product
  • having your account suspended or closed altogether by a company who has no problem shutting down other accounts that are breaking their terms of service


So there you have it, the dark side of affiliate marketing. It’s a complex issue that involves both legitimate business practices and online fraud. But one thing is clear:

we’re in the middle of a major shift in how brands communicate with consumers, and there will be no turning back from these new technologies.

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