In late 2003 it seemed a perfect storm had swelled against the use of e-mail in affiliate marketing. The CAN-SPAM Act of 2003, signed into law by President Bush on December 16, 2003, made legitimate e-mail affiliates wary of clicking the â€œsendâ€ button.
In addition to challenges like getting white listed by ISPs and beating Spam filters to reach their double opt-in subscribers, affiliates utilizing e-mail now had to lose sleep over whether they might run afoul of the FTCâ€™s ambiguous e-mail regulations.
At the same time, industry pundits lined up to anoint RSS the heir apparent to e-mail. RSS, an acronym for Really Simple Syndication, Rich Site Summary or RDF Site Summary, enables people to subscribe to receive communications to an â€œRSS feed readerâ€. It sounded good on paper and pixels â€“ subscribers get only what they want with RSS.
Could this be the end of e-mail as an affiliate marketing tool?