Compliance is the act or process of adhering to relevant regulations, laws, and guidelines to prevent and eliminate unethical, wasteful, and chaotic practices.

Successful CPA marketing relies on relationships between Brands, Networks, and Affiliates. So having a clear understanding of its operational boundaries and managing compliance risk are critical.

Since the emergence of big data, not a single business or industry is exempt from moving towards compliance, especially in the multi-cloud era we are now living in. Yet to date, there’s been an insufficient emphasis placed on compliance within these environments.

Regarding affiliate marketing, the Unsolicited Communications Enforcement Network (UCENet) exposes significant compliance issues in its most recent Sweep Report, including:

  • A lack of unsolicited communication guidelines
  • A lack of consumer consent to send electronic communications
  • A prevalence of misleading advertising

Feeling the real pressure of the digital world’s ever-growing complexity, we need to jointly address and resolve these issues to ensure our industry’s vibrant longevity.

Here’s CrakRevenue’s mindset and approach to achieving compliance in the weeks, months, and years to come.

Staying ahead

The road to hell is paved with good intentions. A good intention with a bad approach often leads to negative results. In terms of compliance risk management, the right approach must include proactive and reactive components. Why?

Because a good reputation is at least as valuable as money.

We need a sharp instinct for what could go wrong and how we can prepare for potential risks.

Evolving with the regulatory landscape requires us as a global CPA Network to increase our audit frequency and strengthen our compliance department for greater synergy and cost savings in the middle run.

Having a clear 360° view of our business processes and risks empowers us to develop innovative solutions to meet objectives within the guidelines:

Compliance testing provides insightful information to flag risks or suspicious activity by reviewing our affiliate network services and operations on a quarterly basis.

Continuous monitoring of key performance and risk indicators helps us shed early light on potential compliance violations.

Designing effective testing and monitoring programs is a challenge in itself, but without them, we’re not leaders. Success and ethics must come in pairs.

Nurturing a culture of integrity

By giving more importance to how the goal is achieved rather than focusing on the goal itself, we reinforce the sense of ethics and encourage ethical behaviors.

By finding new ways to communicate our cultural values and rewarding ethical behavior, we ensure performance is aligned with integrity.

Building relationships with our partners’ compliance departments enables us to share ethics and compliance practices for the benefit of all.

Above all, fostering integrity among associates and across operations enhances trust within your organization and among stakeholders and increases your brand value.

Preventing and resolving compliance issues

We have taken a stand by creating an Ethical Content Policy and working only with partners sharing our core values.

We also invite our network to talk with our Affiliate Management Team for compliance assessment and guidance.

Influencers and Content Creators are quickly gaining ground in the web marketing game, but most are unaware of the guidelines.

Building trust with transparency might have been a trend in a previous age.
But today, full disclosure is becoming a formal requirement.

Preventing mistakes and intentional unethical practices through a clear and thorough TOS agreement minimizes the risk of affiliate abuse.

We suggest including the following components:

  • Prevent the use of language encouraging illegal behavior
  • Prevent the use of trademark terms in domains/subdomains
  • Grant yourself the right to delay and withhold payments
  • State which forms of incentive marketing are allowed
  • State which types of content are prohibited
  • Require CAN-SPAM compliant emailing
  • Require partnership disclosure

Here’s an example of compliance guidelines provided by the United Commissions.

Of course, you will need to manage your time and focus on priorities.
Just keep looking ahead and think strategically about the risks tomorrow reserves.

Compliance isn’t a destination but a never-ending journey.
Only our joint effort can blaze the trail for a more compliant and effective industry.