In a recent report by E-Consultancy, affiliate marketing techniques have witnessed dramatic growth recently, with 78% of brands surveyed reporting that they will increase their investment in affiliate marketing over the next 2 years. This is incredible, even for an industry that has been growing dramatically since it’s inception over 10 years ago. The CEO of E-Consultancy references the decline of broadcast advertising as a boon for affiliate marketing and other performance-based marketing channels. Nearly one-quarter of those that are spending more reported having doubled their spending on the channel in the past two years. Two-thirds of respondents said that the number of sales generated by affiliate marketing has increased over the past two years, and 40% said they have more people employed to manage affiliate marketing than they did two years ago. Half of those expect this number to continue to grow over the next two years. Interestingly, the merchants surveyed site the main barrier to adoption as a lack of internal resources to manage their affiliate marketing initiatives. More likely, however, is that many advertisers are still learning how to maximize the effectiveness of the affiliate marketing channel. Part of this is a changing perception of affiliate marketing, which was once viewed as a sketchy marketing discipline to promote vitamins and other questionable products. Based on the study, over 1/3 of all respondents think affiliate marketing is becoming more mainstream and accepted as a legitimate marketing channel. Still, over 50% of respondents think that there is some way to go before affiliate marketing becomes completely mainstream. Nevertheless, the study shows that this marketing channel is gaining legitimacy and popularity among marketers who are serious about measuring ROI.