E-Mail Marketing Laws You Need to Remember

email marketing lawsIf you’re only starting out as an email marketer, you should keep in mind that there are e-mail marketing laws that you have to comply with, since not doing so can lead to either fines or jail time, depending on the state concerned. At best, it may result in ISPs blocking every single one of your mails.

While there are minor variations in spam-related laws for different states, the real one you have to watch out for is the federal law called Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography and Marketing (CAN-SPAM) Act, as it supersedes state laws when it comes to spam. Violating the CAN-SPAM act can result in the manufacturer of the product and the email marketer in question being fined for up to $16,000. Some cases will even warrant imprisonment. If you don’t want to end up like them, you have to keep these key parts of the CAN-SPAM Act and ensure that you’re not violating them:

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Do Not Use Deceptive or Falsified Header Information

The CAN-SPAM Act prohibits the use of email addresses that does not properly identify the business in all the headers, such as the From and Reply To fields. This is because spammers and phishing scams use well-known company names or pose as popular people in order to trick people into opening their mails and clicking their links.

Use Descriptive Subject Lines

It is considered a violation of the CAN-SPAM Act if you use misleading or false subject lines in an effort to deceive readers and trick them into reading your email. Additionally, the federal law requires marketers to identify their messages as advertising in the subject line. Again, this prevents spamming and phishing, both of which tend to use misleading subject lines that give the impression that the mails are of personal nature.

Always Include the Company’s Physical Address

According to the CAN-SPAM Act, all commercial email must include the company’s physical address. The address must be valid, actually used by the business, and adheres to postal regulations. The federal law is a little bit lax with this proviso, as it provides some leeway. Such as companies being allowed to use a P.O. Box as their company address, which lets companies that cannot reveal their physical location out of security concerns (such as auction warehouses) still comply with the law.

Always Provide an Opt Out Link in the Email

All email marketers are required by federal law to include an opt-out link in their emails, and for good reason. The CAN-SPAM Act doesn’t want anyone to be stuck receiving newsletters and marketing mails even if they don’t want to. It’s what differentiates spammers from responsible email marketers – that you give clients the ability to opt out if they are not interested. The CAN-SPAM Act requires that the opt-out link be placed in easily seen places, must be legible, and should work. Email marketers have 10 days to honor all opt-out requests, which shouldn’t be a problem as almost all email marketing software usually do opt-outs automatically, so any recipient who wants to opt out will be removed from the list immediately.

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One Response to “E-Mail Marketing Laws You Need to Remember”

  1. […] in turn have subscribers that are spread out in all corners of the globe as well. Add the fact that different countries, states, and jurisdictions will have their own specific laws regarding email and…, as we need to take care that our customers aren’t breaking any laws that might affect their […]

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