Galaksion blog 360 OFFENSIVE DEGREES
Thu Jun 20,2019
360 OFFENSIVE DEGREES

Digital Marketing is a nuanced field. On the one hand, it is growing, advanced, and increasingly regulated. On the other hand – even with all the measures taken to secure high business standards– our activities are often based on trust. And this trust is misused from time to time.   

In other words, networks risk losing their money, time, and resources while collaborating even with seemingly adequate partners. One could argue that such unfortunate situations are rather exceptions than a general rule. We agree with this. At the same time, such exceptions are real and not rare. Therefore, they cannot be ignored.

Background

We started to collaborate with Qihoo 360 aka 360 Mobile Security Limited back in September 2017. We have always been following all the stipulations such as regular weekly and monthly reports; optimization based on the agreed KPI and fraud terms; toleration of substantiated payments deductions; and even acceptance of UNSUBSTANTIATED payment delays. Such delays have been quite frequent and long, up to six months.

The Case

The situation looks like this:

  • The advertiser unilaterally and without any notification changes the terms related to KPI and fraud after the last April round of working with us, i.e. in May. The contact manager’s justification is ‘cvr too low and too high - will be 100% deducted’. Nothing more. No reports. No investigations. No double checks.
  • Namely, Qihoo 360 starts to view ‘low’ CVR rate as an indication of fraud. While CVR rates that are too low may indicate fraud, our attempts to clarify the situation to find our whether this verdict is valid, with reliable reports, are unequivocally turned down.
  • Let us make ourselves clear: we do admit that low CVR rates may imply fraud. Thus, according to AppsFlyer, ‘Normal Conversion Ratesare between 0.5% to 35%. Abnormally low conversion rates compared with the average rate indicate click flood fraud’. We did secure just 300 conversions out of 96 000 conversions during April. However, Qihoo 360 refuses to go into details and deducts 46 000 (50%) conversions as fraud while all these conversions are above 0.5% CVR. Citing AppsFlyer’s approximate estimate as their own standard as evidence has never been negotiated with us.

We are left speechless. After that we make every effort to clarify the situation:

  • We ask to show us a report clearly indicating fraud and specifying its sources;
  • We ask for a chance to talk to the department manager;
  • We say that we are ready to submit any info that might help us resolve the issue;

Any initiative from us is automatically rebuffed with no explanations. No, you will not see the reports. No, there will be no details. No, you will not talk to our manager. And, no, we do not need any technical data from you.

Summary

Let us sum up this situation: we face an unagreed and arbitrary modification of the agreement terms. With no intention to hold an adequate dialogue at all.  

Conclusion and Questions       

And now we would like to ask you, our dear colleagues.

Have you tried to work with 360 Mobile Security Limited aka Qihoo 360? Have you faced such an inadequate foul game with them or with other networks?

Do you think it is appropriate to act this way? What would be your reaction? And what would be your advice? Should we seek legal redress? Or should we just come to terms with the fact that large companies can allow themselves to act in such an inappropriate fashion?  

We will be grateful for any comments and recommendations here!