After all these years, I'm still confused about 1 thing.

Sun Nov 11, 2012 2:01 am

Here's what confuses me.

Is Affiliate Marketing considered Network Marketing?

I know Network Marketing has a bad reputation in some circles because some compare it to pyramid schemes.

Don't get me wrong. I know how affiliate marketing works and how network marketing works... but here's my concern:

Although network marketing is legal, my own personal opinion is that it may be slightly unethical. I just want to make sure the same can't be said about affiliate marketing(ethics-wise).

I know affiliate marketing is legal and I always thought it was 100% ethical too but I heard someone group it under network/referral marketing the other day and since then, I have this little doubt in my mind.
Posts: 8
Joined: Tue Oct 30, 2012 8:42 pm

Fri Dec 14, 2012 7:40 am

Affiliate marketing and network marketing are very different, but both have some similarities. Both can be considered unethical, depending what kind of product you promote.

My main problem with network marketing is that a lot of the time, its just a front to bring members into the program so that the network marketing company can make money on sign up fees. I

I've known friends who have joined network marketing companies, and paid sign up fees in excess of $500 to get started. When fees are this expensive to get started, the network marketing company doesn't need to sell any actual product, because they make all of their money on sign up fees!

Some network marketing companies don't charge as much, but they still make lots of money with sign up fees of, say $50 or so. Many of these companies have a slightly different strategy: make money on small sign up fees, and sell the product to those who sign up! Again, no need for external customers...

There are exceptions to the rule, of course, but I sincerely believe this is how many network marketing companies operate.

On the flip side, its very rare for affiliate programs to charge affiliates to promote their products. Usually, the only time you would see this is when you have to join the program to become an affiliate - maybe for a monthly membership site or something to that effect.

With network marketing programs, you often are limited to the types of items you can promote, and usually this is frequently some scammy "miracle" vitamin that will help you live until you are 160.

With affiliate programs, you have a lot more choices in what you can promote, and have 100% control over the products you choose to promote. Sometimes, people think its unethical to promote programs you haven't tried to test out yourself, and I'd agree to that to a certain extent, but usually, you can find a review online of a person who actually has tried the product, although you have to also be leary about fake unethical affiliate marketers.

Anyway, I hope this helps!
Posts: 361
Joined: Thu Dec 21, 2006 8:03 pm

Thu Sep 19, 2013 11:05 am

Affiliate marketing is a way of promoting a service, brand or product by other people and in return you are being paid.
lesa mitchell
Posts: 119
Joined: Wed Feb 06, 2013 9:36 am

Wed Mar 05, 2014 3:26 pm

Affiliate Marketing is a free arrangement between you and an online merchant. you sign up for free and then you promote his product. You then get a commission each time you make sale..

Network marketing requires you investing some money..That module has been found to be unreliable and fraught with problems.
Posts: 86
Joined: Thu Jun 02, 2005 11:20 am
Location: Accra, Ghana

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