Best Practices: Problem Advocates

Do you have some advocates that are providing terrible answers to your questions or seem like they are gaming the system? We will be outlining the best way to deal with these problem advocates.

Types of Problem Advocates (Badvocates)

Let’s go over the definition of “badvocate”, different types of badvocates, and the various ways through which they may join your hub.

Type How they join
The Doppelganger (one person, many accounts) Via generic invite URL. They were probably legit advocates at first, but figured that the invite URL can be used to make infinite accounts.
The Trawler (illegitimate member of many Influitive communities) Via invite URL or Open Sign-up Hub* discovered on the internet - searching Google, Twitter, etc. for *
The Badvocate You invited them. Bad move. They don’t care about your company, but they sure do love gift cards.

Three Strikes And You're Out Rule


If an advocate is providing poor, less than stellar, one-word answers, it could be that they are more misinformed than mischievous. To approach the topic, first provide them with guidance on what you are looking for in an answer or action. Consider showing the advocate a good example as a way to help them understand what quality of an answer you're looking for. This will help get your misinformed advocate back on the right track. A “show don’t tell” approach serves as a gentle warning without running the risk of alienating an advocate who made an honest mistake.


If an advocate still provides a low quality answer, reach out and ask if they have questions about the issue that was previously flagged and addressed. You must always give the advocate the benefit of the doubt. At this stage, you should provide direct feedback that their account may be deactivated if it happens again. 

Terms and Conditions

If they continuously provide poor answers, on their third chance you may have no choice but to deem the behaviour intentional. As a last resort, tell the advocate that they have broken the terms and conditions of the program and unfortunately, they will be deactivated ( Locked). Buffer this communication by offering the opportunity to discuss their membership on a quick phone call.

Taking Action

Once you decide that the advocate is really a problem advocate or abuser, create a group specially designed for them. I would call this group, "Problem Advocates." or "Badadvocates". The group would look like the following:

Now when you find a problem advocate, place them in this group and  deactivate their account. This group is to help you keep track of your them to prevent you from inviting them again as well as exclude them from your Reporting.

If you find an account that instantly appears malicious, lock them right away. After locking these advocates, change the join code these advocates joined using (if applicable). This is to make sure they are not able to access the program again. Next, review the advocate’s history of challenge completions and reward redemptions to ensure you have a full view of any unfavourable activity. 

Preventive Measures

We recommend doing the following preventive measures:

  1. Influitive’s built-in fraud-prevention mechanisms: All new advocates who joined through a join code and have never redeemed a reward before will require administrator approval before redeeming rewards.

  2. Check whether they are a trusted advocate:
    1. Salesforce: Are they connected to a Salesforce Contact? (look for “View in Salesforce” link on their profile or Salesforce ID)
    2. No Salesforce integration? Look them up in your CRM
    3. Take a look at their latest activity. This can be tricky because we’ve some people actually provide legitimate responses to challenges
  3. Hub Sign Up:
    1. Since invite URLs/links are generic, anyone with the link can join. We recommend changing up invite codes every once in a while and not using the automated URL provided. Make sure the code is not obvious either.
    2. Close the Hub and avoid using Open Sign Up.
    3. Enable Single  Sign On  (SSO): This way only registered users in your company's portal will be able to sign into the Hub.
  4. Use the power of targeting to your advantage
    1. Create a group called "Reward Eligible", "Trusted Advocates", or something of the like.
    2. Then include the trusted users into that group. The trusted users can be users who have completed a verification challenge. The verification challenge is used for admins to confirm and check whether the user is a real customer before opening to other challenges.
    3. You can also target this group to include the Salesforce Customer status through Custom Profile Field import (Salesforce: Automatic Customer Data Import).
    4. Do you want to exclude people with  non business  emails addresses? If so, create a challenge and target to people with gmail, yahoo, msn, live email addresses to change to their work email and exclude the users that use personal emails.
    5. Reduce the number of challenges targeted to "Everyone".
  5. Rewards
    1. Reduce financial incentives as the rewards and use experiences or physical gifts as rewards instead.
    2. Add "Administrator Approval Required" for expensive rewards.

Why can't we delete the badvocates?

If we delete their account, we will lose all of their activity feed history and they can re-sign up into the Hub again with the same email address and we are not able to detect them. Therefore, we strongly recommend to lock/disable them instead.

If you would like to delete the bad advocate's activities that may affect the Reporting, please contact Influitive Support (

Materials and Resources

  1. How to lock/disable advocate accounts
  2. How to lock/disable advocate accounts in bulk
  3. How to identify where/how a badvocate joined and which join codes to update asap!
  4. Instructions on how advocates can update email address that Administrators can share.
Did this answer your question? Thanks for the feedback There was a problem submitting your feedback. Please try again later.

Still need help? Contact Us Contact Us