Surviving the Murky World of Affiliate Marketing

Jun 7, 2019

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So, let’s say you have a product or service with the potential to light up the world. The only problem is you have already saturated your audiences and hit a natural ceiling to your reach. Sound familiar? Assuming you have your figures and know what you need to pay to acquire the details of a potential customer, all you require is a scalable operation to break through this ceiling, right? Without further ado, we would like to introduce you to the murky world of affiliate marketing!

Affiliate Marketing doesn’t really need an introduction as such; the idea of having an army of virtual performance-driven marketing and sales people paid only on performance should hopefully already have pushed the buttons of your curiosity. Affiliate Marketing can be a brilliant way to scale exponential growth and boost your profits with very little effort - at least on your part - needed. Essentially, you pay a pound and should, through several other processes, receive a return. Simple, right?!

Well yes, and no. If you are looking to - or are indeed currently managing - affiliate campaigns, you need to have robust systems in place that will handle anything thrown at you before it has happened. There are great dangers and threats in the world of affiliate marketing that we now want to help you avoid with these simple tips.

Lead Fraud Is Costing You Money!

If you think that you are not affected by lead fraud and that all your virtual partners happily delivers their daily quota to you without sneaking in questionable data then, you are at best naive and at worst simply wrong.

“Global ad fraud is predicted to cost an unprecedented $23bn this year and could reach $30bn including indirect economic and social costs!”

  • The Economic Cost of Bad Actors on the Internet, Ad Fraud 2019

See original source here:

This quote may focus on Ad Fraud - which is obviously different to lead fraud - but the underlying principle still holds. When it comes to digital marketing there is an internet level of risk within the entire industry. In short, when people see an opportunity to technically deceive, they will take it more often than not. The key is accepting this, then taking measures to prevent it! The number one way to that is by running your affiliate marketing campaigns through software with inbuilt validation and fraud eradication measures, as well as powering offers transparently and securely.

So, with that being said, what should be considered when deciding upon affiliate marketing software that will power the offers?

There are potentially three sides to deal with and they all have to be confident when affiliate campaigns are being delivered. You are creating a whole ecosystem and want to do so as painlessly as possible. Do due diligence on all parties because In every case you are all investing time, effort and money.

The three sides to affiliate campaigns are:

1 - The Lead Buyer.

Lead Buyers will want to know that their specific requirements are being managed correctly, remember some will have been burnt by low performing campaigns that may have been mixed with poor quality traffic. However, some will also be habitual “complainers” who in-turn refuse to pay for eligible leads and will try to excuse withholding payments for any number of reasons.

2 - The Lead Generator.

Lead Generators may be experts in a particular source of traffic or may have teams running campaigns on multiple different networks. Make sure you agree upon the methods of traffic used to generate enquiries. This in itself can be a minefield, with ever changing legislation when it comes to GDPR or regulatory agencies who may audit campaign creative if you operate in areas within claims, finance and insurance.

3 - You & Your Network.

You need to know you have systems in place that will spot issues in gaps you may not have realised can happen, remember, you are creating a centre to appease all parties.


There are few simple tips to improving your affiliate marketing, all of which can be distilled into simple questions to ask when looking at your software and martech systems. Ultimately, to avoid huge losses and fraud later on, you need to be stable and secure from the ground floor. Ask yourself the following questions when choosing your affiliate marketing software.

  • Is the software easy to use or will you need further technical help from set-up to daily management?
  • Will you need administrative help, creating reports for all parties and invoices upon performance, or can your system do this automatically?
  • Can you request support when you need it? You will 100% need it at some point and this will be essential. Make sure this is offered!
  • Are they a faceless organisation, or do they pride themselves on pioneering technical advancements that will help you run and scale your business confidently?
  • Do they offer technical protection and understand the battles going on in a noisy fraudulent world and with intention save you money and heartache in the meantime?
  • What do others say about them and can you verify reviews by speaking to real people?

We at Databowl pride ourselves on pioneering the way when it comes to lead and affiliate management solutions and common problems faced, we are also confident you can answer positively when assessing Databowl against the above list.

If you would like to learn how Databowl stacks up - whilst simultaneously saving you money and improving performance - then fill in your details below and one of our experts will be in touch to start helping you.

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