Cardiff University | Prifysgol Caerdydd ORCA
Online Research @ Cardiff 
WelshClear Cookie - decide language by browser settings

All that glitters is not real affiliation: How to handle affiliate marketing programs in the era of falsity

Mangió, Federico and Di Domenico, Giandomenico 2022. All that glitters is not real affiliation: How to handle affiliate marketing programs in the era of falsity. Business Horizons 65 (6) , pp. 765-776. 10.1016/j.bushor.2022.07.001

[thumbnail of 1-s2.0-S0007681322000775-main.pdf] PDF - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution.

Download (1MB)


Affiliate or partnership marketing programs are a performance-based approach to online marketing whereby brands only pay when a sale occurs and is traced back to the affiliate who made it happen. Affiliate marketing programs conquered Web 2.0 and are now one of the most used channels for marketers and publishers online. Despite their success, affiliate marketing programs are exposed to different and problematic degrees of falsity, which finally threaten both consumers and brands. Acknowledging the lack of strategic and academic guidance about how to prevent and handle affiliate frauds, in this article we provide an original classification differentiating between noninfluencer and influencer falsity. We describe the direct and indirect costs that the various techniques belonging to each category cause and outline the best strategies that brands can implement to preserve their economic and reputational integrity. We then propose a two-stage affiliate listening protocol and show its applicability with an illustrative case on real influencer affiliate data. We offer several insights to marketers who need to manage their brands in an era of falsity, suggesting that continuous affiliate listening is needed to identify falsity in affiliate marketing programs and carefully select the affiliate influencers with whom to partner.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Social Sciences (Includes Criminology and Education)
Publisher: Elsevier
ISSN: 0007-6813
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 25 August 2022
Date of Acceptance: 22 July 2022
Last Modified: 05 May 2023 21:18

Citation Data

Cited 1 time in Scopus. View in Scopus. Powered By Scopus® Data

Actions (repository staff only)

Edit Item Edit Item


Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics