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Affiliate Marketing

Compliance Hacks for Financial Affiliates to Stay Ahead of the Game

Danielle Lauzon

Danielle Lauzon

Client Services Director
  • April 18, 2023

In This Article


Affiliates have become a powerful force in the world of personal finance. With their ability to reach millions of followers on social media platforms—60% of millennials and Gen Zers follow at least one financial influencer on social media, according to a Morning Consult study—they have the potential to influence financial decisions on a massive scale. However, with great power comes great responsibility. In this piece, we explore the best practices for financial influencers to ensure they provide accurate, reliable, and unbiased information to their followers.

As an affiliate, it’s crucial to stay compliant with the rules and regulations governing the financial industry. Failure to do so can result in serious consequences, including fines, legal action, and damage to your reputation.

Know the Rules and Regulations

Before entering a partnership, it is your responsibility as an affiliate to understand the guidelines set forth by regulatory bodies, and be aware of the consequences of not following regulations. In order to maintain compliance, it’s also important stay alert of changes in regulations. There are a few ways you can do this:

• Follow industry news. You can learn about new regulations by reading industry publications and websites, such as the CFP Board’s “Financial Planning” magazine or Financial Planning Association (FPA) publications.
• Attend conferences and webinars on financial planning topics that may include information about recent changes in laws or regulations.

Disclose Your Relationships with Partners

Disclosing your relationships is essential to staying compliant. As an affiliate, it’s important that you disclose any financial incentives or compensation received for promoting a product or service.

The FTC has guidelines on how best to disclose these relationships, so consumers know what they’re buying into when they see an ad from you on social media or your site. These guidelines include:

• A hashtag like #ad or #sponsored at the beginning of social posts (e.g., “I’m partnering with [company name] today! Check out this video about their latest “product.”)
• Placing clear language in the text or copy above photos/videos (e.g., “This post was sponsored by [company name].”)
• Adding information within your blog content that clearly states that your post is sponsored by a brand (e.g., “This post contains affiliate links in partnership with [company name].”)

In addition, it’s a best practice to disclose any partnerships that you have with other affiliate networks or brands when establishing new relationships. Transparency is key for both compliance and maintaining strong partnerships.

Provide Accurate Information

You are a trusted source of information, and your followers rely on you to provide accurate and reliable information. As such, it is important that all the information you provide be accurate and not misleading. Speaking about a brand in your authentic way is important but be sure to follow brand guidelines to ensure that your reputation and that of the brand remain intact.

By providing accurate and complete information on your partner’s products and services, you can help your followers make informed decisions about whether to invest in it.

Create a Compliance Plan

You can’t be too careful when it comes to compliance. As an affiliate, you are likely already aware of the rules and regulations governing your industry and how they may change over time. However, even if you are constantly keeping up with the latest changes in regulations, it’s important to have a plan in place for staying compliant with those rules and regulations as they evolve.

As such, we recommend creating a compliance plan that includes procedures for monitoring and responding to changes in regulations when they arise. Here are a few things to ask yourself when creating a compliance plan:

• How will you audit your content and data? How often?
• How will you update your content if there is a regulatory change?
• What process will you follow to make the change?
• Who do you need to inform about changes?

Staying compliant with regulations and guidelines is crucial for all affiliates, especially those working in the financial space. By knowing the rules and regulations, disclosing relationships, providing accurate information, staying up-to-date with changes in regulations, creating a compliance plan, staying informed, and monitoring content, affiliates can stay compliant and continue to make a positive impact on the financial decisions of their followers.

If you have any questions about compliance, reach out to us – our team is happy to chat with you about any questions or concerns you may have.

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