What is Ad Fraud in Digital Marketing?
Ad fraud can come in many shapes and sizes, however, its end goal is always the same: to steal your ad spend by driving fraudulent traffic or conversions to your campaign. Various methods of ad fraud have morphed and advanced since the early 2000s, making today’s fraudsters smarter and trickier than ever before. In order to avoid ad fraud, it’s important to first understand what fraud looks like and the steps you can take to proactively secure your campaigns.
Interested in finding out what types of fraud may be impacting
Ad Fraud within Mobile Marketing
As the mobile space continues to grow rapidly, ad fraud can seem inevitable. There are many different types of mobile fraud, including fake impressions, click spam, false installs, bad bots, and more. Some recent examples of these types of attacks include:
- Fake Impressions: Google removed and banned 600 apps from its Play store in February 2020 after discovering they were driving false impressions to their own ads
- Click Spam: Popular online golf retailer, Motogolf, sued a competitor in April 2020 for violating federal and state laws against repeatedly spamming Motogolf’s PPC ads.
- False Installs: In August 2019, Facebook filed lawsuits against two app developers who were generating fraudulent traffic in order to drive revenue.
- Bad Bots: It is estimated that e-commerce brands lost $3.8B to click fraud and malicious bot traffic in paid search and social campaigns in 2020; travel and e-learning marketers reportedly lost $2.6B and $830M respectively to the same fraudulent activity.
Over the past year, these fraud types ran rampant as mobile app usage exponentially increased during periods of lockdown. In order to ensure your app is safe from the dangers of mobile fraud, mobile marketers should consider running a CPA marketing model as this model ensures app marketers only pay for genuine installs and engagements. By working on a CPA model, marketers can proactively protect their traffic as this model is the only marketing method that, by its very nature, provides a level of protection that other digital marketing channels cannot.
Tactics such as regular campaign monitoring, a cost-per-acquisition model, and employing a wide range of partners can better a marketer’s chances of detecting and protecting against the damaging effects of ad fraud. Learn more about how you can proactively shield your app campaigns from mobile ad fraud.
Protecting Your Brand Against Ad Fraud
While there are several strategies and tools a marketer can use to protect their campaigns from the dangers of fraud, it can be difficult to decipher which are best for your business.
Perform[cb] employs a wide range of methods to ensure our clients’ campaigns are proactively secured before launching and continuously monitored while active. These methods include:
- In-House Compliance Team: By employing an in-house Marketing Compliance team, Perform[cb] is able to tailor its services to fit each clients’ specific needs. Pairing human compliance practices with a variety of technology solutions ensure each campaign is effectively monitored and protected 24/7.
- PerformSHIELD™: Perform[cb]’s proprietary anti-fraud software, PerformSHIELD,proactively analyzes marketers’ campaigns prior to launching to identify any vulnerabilities to suspicious activity.
- Extensive Affiliate Application Review: The Perform[cb] Compliance team utilizes an in-depth application process to ensure only the industry’s top partners have access to our marketers’ campaigns.
- Real-Time Monitoring: By utilizing its proprietary technologies, in addition to its in-house Compliance team and third-party services such as Forensiq and Appsflyer 360, Perform[cb] analyzes every campaign in real-time to assess for suspicious activity.
The Perform[cb] team has created a field guide to proactively shield and continuously protect your campaigns from ad fraud. Download the guide to start securing your ad spend today.
Fraud Within Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate marketing is most often based on a cost-per-acquisition (CPA) model, wherein marketers only pay once a consumer has purchased or converted on an offer. Affiliate marketing’s pay-for-results model offers marketers a level of built-in protection that other digital channels cannot. Albeit this additional layer of protection, CPA networks understand the importance of handling campaigns and ad spend with extreme caution.
Digital ad fraud, regardless of the technique used, is implemented by online scammers to steal advertising spend through the delivery of fraudulent traffic or conversions.
There are a number of common types of digital ad fraud to watch out for: Unauthorized Rebrokering, Click Flooding, Falsifying User Data, Click Spam, Form Stuffing, Click Injection, Fraud Bots, Distribution, and SDK Spoofing.
Working with a trusted partner that has processes and technology in place to protect your brand is key. Things like an in-depth partner vetting process, patented anti-fraud software, 24/7 real-time monitoring, and an in-house compliance team will ensure that your campaigns are secure and drive only high-quality traffic.