The Guide to Email Marketing Laws and Regulations by Country

ShareShare on Facebook4Share on LinkedIn79Tweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+0

U.S. email regulations

Chances are, if you are a marketer in the US, you’re likely familiar with the CANSPAM (Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography and Marketing) Act. The law affects “any electronic mail message the primary purpose of which is the commercial advertisement or promotion of a commercial product or service.” Compared to the email marketing regulations in other parts of the world, the legal expectations in the US are fairly relaxed. With that being said, however, following these email regulations are incredibly important in keeping your emails out of spam-boxes and maximizing the effectiveness of your email campaign management.

Writing your emails

1. Header information

a. The sender of any commercial email must be accurately identified in the “From” form and the email must be directly linked with the company submitting the message.

b. Subject lines should be “accurate” and “non-deceptive” in prefacing the content of the email.

2. The body

a. According to email regulations, your email must “disclose clearly and conspicuously that your message is an advertisement.” The manner through which this is done, however, is not explicitly laid out in the law – meaning businesses have a fairly wide amount of room to get creative on this front.

b. A valid postal address

3. Unsubscribe options

Every email in a given campaign must include an opt-out or unsubscribe option.

4. Failure to comply

The government can fine you up to $16,000 per email found failing to comply with these email regulations.

European email regulations

While they have their similarities, European email regulations are a bit more complicated than those of the United States. Despite the fact that the EU has, in the past, issued general anti-spam legislation, the specifics of those laws can vary from country to country. In addition to this, certain aspects of these email regulations are also contingent upon specific details of a given email. Throughout Europe, most direct marketing emails can ONLY be sent to willing subscribers. However, for B2B communications the specifics vary from country to country. Consult the table below to identify the specific requirements for different countries in the European Union.

europetable

Writing your emails

1. Header information

a. The sender of any commercial email must be accurately identified in the “from” form and the email must be directly linked with the company submitting the message.

2. The body

a. Unlike the U.S. emails for sales, promotions, sweepstakes and prizes must be clearly labeled

b. A valid postal address must also be present in order to further verify that the company sending the email is legitimate.

3. Unsubscribe options

Every email in a given campaign must include an opt-out or unsubscribe option.

Canadian email regulations

CASL (Canada’s new anti-spam law) resembles European email regulations in its emphasis on opt-in requirements. This legislation even goes one step further than just email and includes social media direct messaging, text messages and computer programs as well. While the law recently went into effect on July 1st, 2014 there is a three year transition period in which both Canadian and international companies alike are expected to gain consent from Canadian customers and prospects before the law fully goes into effect.

Consent – during the transition period both implied and express consent are valid. After July 1st, 2017 express consent or implied consent ONLY given within 24 months of a purchase or 6 months after an inquiry are acceptable.

1. Implied consent

a. The recipient has purchased a product/service or made a business contract, deal, or membership with the organization in the past two years.

b. If you are a registered charity or political organization, the recipient has made a donation or has volunteered.

c. An email address was indirectly given or openly published AND the recipient has not made it openly clear they weren’t interested in unsolicited messages.

2. Express consent

a. Written consent or an oral confirmation that has been explicitly given by the potential recipient.

b. When someone gives consent they must have access to: a clear description of purpose behind obtaining consent, a description of future messages and a statement that the recipient may unsubscribe at any time.

Writing your emails

1. Header information

The sender of any commercial email must be accurately identified in the “From” form and the email must be directly linked with the company submitting the message

2. The body

All messages must include the name of the sender, the person on whose behalf the email is being sent, a postal address, telephone number and website URL.

3. Unsubscribe options

a. Every email in a given campaign must include an opt-out or unsubscribe option.

b. Unsubscribe requests must be completed within 10 business days of the submitted request.

Abiding by the regulations is a big part of the success of your global marketing services. To ensure that your campaign goes exactly as you plan, make sure you follow these specific email regulations. To learn more download our Definitive Guide to Global Email Campaigns here.

ShareShare on Facebook4Share on LinkedIn79Tweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+0