Good Technique or Black Hat re: Testimonials?

by VegasGreg 14 replies
I was looking at a Clickbank product that I was going to include in my marketing projects and I noticed something strange.

One of the testimonial boxes was from a similar product and the sites link at the end of the testimonial was an affiliate link to that product.

I have never come across that before and it really turned me off to promoting that CB product. Is this something you have seen before?

Now, I am a big fan of outside the box marketing techniques, and I give the site owner props for creativity, but as far as looking for affiliates to promote his site, this could be a bad thing. Yes, No?
#main internet marketing discussion forum #affiliate links #black #clickbank #good #hat #technique #testimonials
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  • Profile picture of the author waken
    Wow! Another idiot move by vendors not honoring his affiliates. Definitely a big NO!
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    • Profile picture of the author Jelasco
      Let me make sure I understand this. The sales letter for product A had a testimonial from the creator of product B, and that testimonial had site A's owner's affiliate link for product B in it. Is that right?

      If so, I don't see what's black hat about it.
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  • Profile picture of the author Amy Bass
    Originally Posted by VegasMan2k View Post

    I was looking at a Clickbank product that I was going to include in my marketing projects and I noticed something strange.

    One of the testimonial boxes was from a similar product and the sites link at the end of the testimonial was an affiliate link to that product.

    I have never come across that before and it really turned me off to promoting that CB product. Is this something you have seen before?

    Now, I am a big fan of outside the box marketing techniques, and I give the site owner props for creativity, but as far as looking for affiliates to promote his site, this could be a bad thing. Yes, No?
    I think that is very dishonest! The vendor should do everything in his/her power to make sure their affiliates don't miss out on any sales.
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    • Profile picture of the author VegasGreg
      Thanks for the thoughts and replies.

      Normally I wouldn't mind things like this, but it just had a "shady" feeling around it. I think the 2 related products may be created by the same "organization". This testimaonial box was very BIG and Prominent early is the sales letter that really just stood out and made me want to click that link and leave the initial site.

      If I promoted the site, I fealt I would lose a lot of my traffic.

      Again, I like the overall creativity, but not from an affiliate point of view.
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      Greg Schueler - Wordpress Fanatic... Living The Offline Marketing Dream...

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      • Profile picture of the author KimW
        If I'm understanding the situation correctly then I agree with Amy.
        If I give a testimonial and it has a link to my website/product,then the person who put it on his site does not in my opinion have the right to substitute his affiliate link into the box.
        Edit: If in fact Greg is correct and the two are owned by the same organization is the only way I can think of that I would consider this technique proper.
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        • Profile picture of the author Jelasco
          So Greg, was my interpretation of your question correct? I can tell that some read it a different way than I did, so we are not all answering the same question.
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          • Profile picture of the author VegasGreg
            Originally Posted by Jelasco View Post

            So Greg, was my interpretation of your question correct? I can tell that some read it a different way than I did, so we are not all answering the same question.
            To clarify:

            Product A ("Bill") has a testimonial from "Dave". Dave's testimonial (kind of a mini pre-sell) has his name and website link at the bottom of the box.

            Dave's link is actually Bill's affiliate link to Product B (Dave's product).

            The products are extremely similar and would confuse the average non-IM customer, so if they clicked away, my commission would go away.

            I am all for having a link in a testimonial box, but to replace that with an affiliate link kind of makes it seem unethical.

            (Like saying I will only accept testimonials for my site if I can use MY affiliate link as part of YOUR testimonial?)
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            • Profile picture of the author KimW
              Originally Posted by VegasMan2k View Post

              (Like saying I will only accept testimonials for my site if I can use MY affiliate link as part of YOUR testimonial?)
              I do not know anyone that would give a testimonial to someone else if they knew that was going to happen.
              I have given many testimonials over the years,I was clsoer to being "known" then than now as I have been away from IM for a few years, but there were always two conditions to me giving one.
              1: My opinion wa going to be honest,if I thought the product was good, I'd say so, if I thought it was crap, I'd say that too.
              And of course the second was that there was a link back to one of my sites under my testimonial.
              Chaning that link to an affiliate link without my knowledge is definitely unethical in my book.
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              • Profile picture of the author Alex Sol
                I think it's a good move from the vendor.

                I mean, if someone was going to click on the link and surf away from my sales page, why not make money off of it?

                The merchant's goal is to sell his own product but I see no problem with adding an aff link to another product is it's appropriate and not "In YOUR FACE".

                Alex
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            • Profile picture of the author Jelasco
              Originally Posted by VegasMan2k View Post

              I am all for having a link in a testimonial box, but to replace that with an affiliate link kind of makes it seem unethical.
              There's nothing unethical about that, unless you think affiliate marketing is unethical.
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