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The Dark Side Of Affiliate Marketing

Discussion in 'Mobile Marketing' started by drluisbarrios, Oct 22, 2014.

True or False

  1. True

    4 vote(s)
  2. False

    1 vote(s)
  1. drluisbarrios

    drluisbarrios Affiliate affiliate

    I was reading in facebook group and somebody did a comment about this

    I think this is the fear of all affiliates when it comes to buy a self serve tracking software.

    What do you think?

    PD: i use Voluum and i like it but is obvious that they will deny everything
  2. newbidder
  3. lumpenfolk

    lumpenfolk Affiliate affiliate

    Do you mean Yes or No to whether we believe the rumours, or to whether it just is (misplaced?) fear?

    I voted True!
  4. drluisbarrios

    drluisbarrios Affiliate affiliate

    I mean if you believe in rumor ;)
  5. servandosilva

    servandosilva Moderator moderator affiliate

    Looks like they updated the PDF.
  6. ljads_jerrold

    ljads_jerrold Affiliate Manager Affiliate Manager affiliate

    Any hosted tracking solution will have access to the same data these guys do. It's whether or not the companies actually utilize this data to directly compete with their customers or not which is the big deal. And in this instance Voluum showed that they were capable of even coming to the idea of actually competing with their customers.

    Yes they said they would never look at the stored data. Yes they said they decided against doing media buying. But from the outside in this is just words. We will never have actual proof that they are not media buying or using the stored data on their servers to build their campaigns.

    The only true way you could be 100% certain that any company is not using your data / campaigns, will be to create your own private tracking solution to use personally. And unfortunately that is not within many marketers technical knowledge, budget, or time frame to do.
  7. servandosilva

    servandosilva Moderator moderator affiliate

    That's correct.
    Not even self hosted solutions are safe from this, and it depends on the company.

    Also many CPA networks have internal media buying teams, so you you've got to compete with that too sometimes.
  8. cashmoneyaffiliate

    cashmoneyaffiliate Moderator moderator Service Manager affiliate

    The fact is no matter what tracking solution you use they will have access to certain data.

    Also when you set up a campaign on ANY traffic source you are essentially giving them similar data on your campaigns and most traffic sources have internal media buying teams.
  9. sleenirvana

    sleenirvana Affiliate affiliate

    ^ agreed. Nothing you can do. They can imitate your campaign, but they can't replicate your relationship with your network (payouts), your bidding strategies, and your creative mindset for angles.
  10. crysper

    crysper Moderator moderator Service Manager affiliate

    Personally I don't think they will risk the entire business by stealing data from their users. It's not a small or shady company, if something like that comes out(with proofs) it will destroy them.

    Even self-hosted solutions may contain hidden scripts that may send data...and since they are delivered encrypted no one can know. But, if someone is techy enough, he may install some outbound tracking software, to track all the traffic which gets out from the server. However, a simpler version for this are the cpanel stats for outgoing traffic. You can check that if you think a self-hosted script sends out something suspicious.
    razrus5, drluisbarrios and T J Tutor like this.
  11. T J Tutor

    T J Tutor Administrator Administrator moderator affiliate

    While we will never hear directly that any of the tracking solution companies or networks are using our data, it is most likely that they all are into media buying in some fashion. It isn't significant really. Even if you built your own tracker (and many people and companies do), any company or person can find and duplicate your successful campaigns due to the high quality and high number of campaign spy programs available. It's for this reason that many of us prefer the smaller niches. Most of the bigger marketers out there don't spend much time with the smaller niches making them less competitive. It's "Spy vs Spy" out there in the wilderness of marketing.
    drluisbarrios likes this.
  12. endclick

    endclick Affiliate affiliate

    I don't think it's in Voluum's best interest to compete with their own customers. Having a legit SaaS business for online tracking can be worth much more than trying to steal someone's PIN submit campaign. If the affiliates go out of business, not only do they lose that data, but they lose the income stream from people using their software. For paid services, anyway.

    But while we're on the subject... Forget about the tracking software stealing your campaigns, think about the traffic sources. They know what you're spending, they can easily see all your creatives and landing pages and often times they even have your conversion data if you're using postbacks.

    Traffic sources are a much bigger threat than tracking software if you ask me. But what are you gonna do? That's the business.
    razrus5 likes this.
  13. K

    K Administrator Administrator affiliate

    I've heard people saying they do, and other saying they don't.

    I think it's obvious they DID run in house but not sure if they do now.

    Rob's response:

    Screen Shot 2014-10-23 at 10.12.37.png
  14. captain47

    captain47 Affiliate affiliate

    That's a kick ass response. Can you share that link to the presentation he gave in Dubai?
  15. crysper

    crysper Moderator moderator Service Manager affiliate

    Good response. Voluum business can hit 15-20 mil $/year in revenue if is not there yet. At that revenue, an exit will make the owners rich enough to be able to retire and don't care about their money for the entire life. Affiliate marketing business alone is not an asset that you may sell(except email lists), so many super affiliates are building products or start an affiliate network, to turn their knowledge into an asset. That's why I don't think Voluum owners will risk their investments to steal campaigns.

    Anyway, that "everyone is stealing" mindset is very popular in affiliate marketing, we all know why. There are other industries where online services have access on the data of multi-million dollars corporations and they are not afraid of stealing as 10k/month affiliates are.
    cashmoneyaffiliate likes this.
  16. BronsonDigital

    BronsonDigital Affiliate affiliate

    Thanks for sharing this. If you can, please post a link to the doc referenced in your screenshot. Thanks!
    montengco33 likes this.
  17. the_real_djcrunk

    the_real_djcrunk Affiliate affiliate

    When I started using voluum, I did with the idea already in my mind, that they could use the data for their own media buying, if they so wanted, but honestly I didn't care about it at all if they did or not. Why? Cause I was running there for FREE (like many here did and keep doing still).

    And I always thought it was an amazing tracking platform, from day 1. So I'd be paying for the further development of it that way, if they used any data. Cause honestly, who the hell cares if someone steals one of your profitable campaigns? The posibility of one lucky campaign making you a millionaire and set for life is highly improbable, like you have more odds at being hit by a lightning or winning the lottery, while flipping burgers at MCdonalds.

    Therefore if you aren't able to consistently come up with profitable campaigns, you won't last long in this industry, trust me on that. Been doing full time IM for a while now. If you can only have one great money making idea in your life, I'm sorry but you're screwed. Cause success is about how many times can you get knocked the fuck down, and still come back swinging even harder than before.

    So if Voluum used or not the data for media buying when it was free for all, is not of my concern (still highly unlikely), and I bet right now, it would make even less sense for them to do so. When they can make a killing and become filthy rich by being legit.

    I believe people are grossly overestimating internal media buying teams, cause if they were that good at it, THEY'D ALREADY ALL BE SUPER AFFILIATES LOL, or very well in the process of becoming one and quit their job. Remember they are employees working for "the man", while we go out there to hunt and only eat what we kill.

  18. captain47

    captain47 Affiliate affiliate

    True story ^^
  19. montengco33

    montengco33 Affiliate affiliate

    Hey, could you post that link mentioned?
  20. MxyzptlkFishStix

    MxyzptlkFishStix Moderator moderator affiliate

    Not if you're cloaking. Two, there's no rule that states you have submit to your traffic source a postback on the same server your tracker is running on. I call my tracker, Piwik and my content lockers from scripts off-site. If a random visitor so much as even sneezes in the direction of one of my tracking servers, their entire C-Class is dropped by iptables forever.

    Every single encoder out on the market can be decoded. *cough* ionCube *couch*

    But, that's not why I hate ionCube. With ionCube's module loaded, on average, you can expect a 20% drop in concurrency over all your PHP scripts. When I mean all, I mean all. That includes PHP files that aren't even encoded. Depending on how many files are called by a web app, I've seen performance drops as high as 60%. Nothing will get you more hot under the collar than trying to run ionCube on top of NFS. It'll have you looking like this lady.

    [​IMG] - Where's the disk IO?

    If you're worried about hidden scripts sending outbound traffic, install ngrep and watch with delight.

    ngrep -t '^(GET|POST) ' 'tcp and dst port 80'

    [​IMG] - "The packets must flow" - Edric

    "We no longer do any active media buying, nor do we have or are we looking for a media buyer - that job posting is still up as we have nothing to hide"

    "Anytime someone uses a double negative in a sentence to rebut a critique, put your wallet in your front pocket and place your hand over it." - Ms. Sanders (the meanest 5'2" 10th Grade Honors World History teacher that ever lived)


    Funny, the only people who ever complained were one or two AMs that I knew for a fact tried to steal campaigns.

    AM: Why are blanking all of your referrers?

    Me: I'm not.

    AM: Yes, you are.

    Me: Dude, do you even know how https to http transactions work?

    AM: Huh?

    Me: Nevermind. Is the advertiser satisfied with the leads?

    AM: Yes. They're actually thrilled.

    Me: That's all you need to know. *tracks down advertiser to pitch a media buy*
    Last edited: Oct 28, 2014

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