Catch a Scam.! Better Business Bureau (BBB)
What affiliate marketing is not and how to catch a scam?
If you get an unsolicited email inviting you to join an affiliate network and it is asking for an upfront payment, then you definitely have to scrutinize them and find out whether or not they are a scam or legit.
Go to the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and find out about the company, if you can not find any, then go to affiliate marketing forums and discussion boards.
They would know a lot about these scam sites as news spreads fast in social media and forums.
Another thing to look for is if these people are selling you unrelated products or something that you will never be able to use, like the $350 "Secrets to Affiliate Marketing Success" book or some other catchy titles;
Although a few are genuine but they do not charge you that high.
The truth is you can learn the basics of affiliate marketing for completely free from top-ranking websites, blogs, and YouTube.
In fact, they can teach you more useful information than all those specialized books and DVDs that other people are selling.
Becoming an affiliate is free when you sign up to affiliate marketing programs and the only thing that will really cost you money is web hosting.
A few other expenses may include a unique website or blog logo (optional), hire a blog writer (optional because you can write the blogs yourself) and probably paid advertising to promote your website or blog (optional again).