New Study Reveals Widespread Failure to Meet FTC Disclosure Requirements

Based on BrandVerity’s work with some of the largest U.S. and European brands, we had a suspicion that affiliate bloggers often were not using proper disclosures of endorsements. In the past, this may not have been a big deal i.e. no penalties for brands or bloggers. But in the last two years, the FTC has stepped up its efforts to ensure compliance with the guidelines that have been on the books since 2009.

Preston Holland
Jan 16, 2017

Content Compliance in the Financial Industry: Where Should You Start?

When marketing consumer financial services, marketers have to be hyper-aware of the many rules and regulations that go along with the industry. Marketing a financial service—be it retail banking, loans, mortgages, or credit cards—is often a complicated matter. There is a strong need to curb risk, but also successfully promote your products.

indi.rooney
Dec 15, 2015

Bitly/Viglink Partnership Raises FTC Concerns

If you’re a regular reader of our blog, you’ll know that here at BrandVerity, we’ve been thinking a lot lately about regulations and disclosures--particularly with regard to the FTC and its take on affiliate marketing. Today we’re happy to have a post by our own Mason Smith about a new, somewhat concerning development, in this field: Bitly’s announcement that they are testing a new partnership with VigLink. This news was a hot topic of conversation at AM Days a few weeks ago and we thought it would be of particular interest to our readers. Mason, take it away!

The recent announcement that Bitly is testing a partnership with VigLink presents interesting questions for companies with affiliate programs. For those who haven't heard, Bitly is testing out a partnership with Viglink that transforms their shortened links into Viglink affiliate links. In other words, if someone shortens a link to an ecommerce site using Bitly, that shortened link is now an affiliate link. Any clicks on that Bitly link will be routed and monetized through Viglink’s platform.

Jennie Scholick
May 7, 2015

Maintaining Brand Integrity: Highlights from My Presentation at AM Days

Since we’re still fresh off of a wonderful few days in San Francisco at AM Days, I wanted to take the opportunity to share the slides and recap the presentation I delivered at the event. I thought this could be a useful reference—whether you were able to attend the talk or not. For those of you that couldn’t be there, I’ve provided a synopsis of my points below (along with my slides). You can also feel free to connect with me over LinkedIn or send BrandVerity a note!

sam.engel
Apr 16, 2015

FTC Updates from March 2015

March was a big month in FTC developments! We give our quick take on some of those most relevant to our readers.

Jennie Scholick
Apr 7, 2015

Are Your Pay-Per-Call Affiliates Opening You Up to Regulatory Risk? We Talk to the Experts at Fraud Posse

A few months ago, as part of our Lead Gen Series, we published a post about pay-per-call sites and the questions they can raise about where exactly those calls are going. In that post, we didn’t delve into the possible FTC and FCC violations that these kinds of ads can give rise to, so we’re going to do that today as part of our FTC Compliance Series!

Jennie Scholick
Mar 31, 2015

FTC’s “Operation Full Disclosure” and ROSCA Enforcement Efforts Gaining Momentum

We’re thrilled to be featuring the first guest post in our FTC Compliance series, written by attorney Richard B. Newman. Richard has been a great source for us at BrandVerity as we’ve developed our knowledge regarding regulatory issues, as well as a noted leader in the field, working on the Performance Marketing Association’s Blogging and New Media Disclosures Guide and contributing frequently to publications including mThink, OfferVault and LeadsCon.

Jennie Scholick
Mar 17, 2015

FTC and FCC Sources, Resources, and Information

FTC Compliance is not a new topic for the BrandVerity blog--in fact, our first post after announcing our launch touched on FTC issues! And we’ve added a fair bit more content since 2009. In 2013, Sam Engel explored .Com Disclosures with the help of law professor Eric Goldman and looked at how well affiliates on Twitter were complying with those standards. We also recently took a look at e-cigarette companies and the potential for the FTC to enact further regulation in that space.

Jennie Scholick
Mar 10, 2015

WSJ Article on Fashion Blogs Raises Questions About FTC Compliance

Sometimes the stars align and topics you’re already thinking about suddenly become major news items. Last week’s news cycle was was all about affiliate marketing, starting with a Wall Street Journal article about how style bloggers monetize their blogs, Pinterest, Twitter, and Instagram accounts, and culminating in Pinterest’s announcement that it would be banning affiliate links from its site.

Jennie Scholick
Feb 18, 2015

Launching the FTC Compliance Blog Series!

With 2015 now well underway (can you believe it’s February?!) and Affiliate Summit West behind us (though we’re already looking forward to our next chance to meet up with our customers in person!), BrandVerity’s team is looking towards what’s next for this blog space. Last year we did several exciting things, including deeper dives into how major events like Valentine’s Day, Black Friday, and the NFL Season impact paid search, how best to navigate the delicate balance of Reseller trademark bidding, and how to work with Lead Generation Publishers in a smart and thoughtful manner. This year we want to do even more.

Jennie Scholick
Feb 9, 2015
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