You are thinking about starting your first email marketing campaign. But before you go ahead with that, read this blog entirely. It can save you money in the long run.
What is Email Marketing?
Email marketing is a kind of communication between you and your audience with the help of emails. This audience comes from an email list.
Types of Email Lists
Email lists are generally of two types – solicited emails and unsolicited emails.
Solicited Email List
Solicited emails are the ones where the user has given you permission to send him the news, updates, marketing and advertising stuff. These are the kind of lists you make by your newsletter signup.
Unsolicited Email List
Unsolicited emails are the ones where the user has not given you permission to send him any kind of marketing material or advertisements. These are the kind of lists that you have bought from a third party for the purpose of marketing.
In case you have got an unsolicited email list, it’s time you should read your country’s laws related to email marketing.
Are There Email Marketing Laws?
In many European countries, the UK and Australia, non-solicited email advertising is not allowed. The non-solicited email advertising and marketing is allowed in the United States but only if you are following the law. In 2003, then Prime Minister, George W. Bush passed a law known as CAN-SPAM Act.
What is CAN-SPAM?
CAN-SPAM stands for Control the Assault of Non-solicited Pornographic and Marketing. This law tells you about what you can send in your emails and what will be the way to send that information.
In case, you are thinking you have got a solicited email list and this doesn’t affect you, it’s time to think again. Most of the CAN-SPAM Act requirements that apply to non-solicited email marketing also apply to solicited email marketing.
These are some very basic requirements. Nothing too complicated. Nothing too time-consuming. So, it’s good to stick to them. Even if you are still confused and think it won’t affect you.
How can the CAN-SPAM Act Affect My Business?
The price of not following CAN-SPAM guidelines is too high. You shouldn’t take a chance with it. Generally, it’s said that the fine is between $16000 to $42000 per email violation. So, if you send just 100 emails, the fine will add up to $1.6million to $4.2million. Not trying to scare you but just trying to make you aware of something. This is the money that if you use for marketing instead can help your business extremely.
What am I Required to do for forming a law-abiding email marketing campaign?
The answer to that is very simple. It won’t take many efforts from your side and can save you from restless nights.
Here are the guidelines –
Always use a physical address at the bottom of your marketing emails.
Just a phone number won’t work!
Just a website address won’t work!
It has to be a physical address. If you are a brick and mortar company, you don’t have any problem but what if you are just an online business. Maybe you are doing business from home and don’t want to use your home address as your physical address.
What can you do?
One of the things you can do is get a PO Box address. The charges are generally not that high, just $100 for a year. This can easily solve your physical address problem.
Honest and Clear Details
Keep your business name, email address, sender details, reply to, and from section as clear as they can be. These details should help your audience to easily identify your business. For example, firstname.lastname@example.org is not the right email address for a business who is planning to send marketing emails.
Honest Subject Lines
Remember these three words –
These are what your subject lines shouldn’t be.
Subject line: Win $20000 in just 20 minutes is not the right subject line if your email content is a promotional message for selling t-shirts.
Make It Clear That It’s An Ad
Your content and subject line should be written in this way that shows it’s an ad.
Remember to make unsubscription as easy as it can be. Explain the ways they can use to opt-out of your email list. It shouldn’t be a complicated process where they have to go from one page to another, just to unsubscribe. You can’t ask additional personal details as a part of unsubscription.
Another important thing is that you should never wait for too long for removing an unsubscriber from your email list. Try to do it within a week.
For more information on this, check out your government’s website. Exact legal information can only be found out there.
In the end, email marketing is still a great way of doing marketing.
It comes with how-to guidelines, but what doesn’t these days.
So, stick to these rules and form your first email campaign in compliance with those.
Do you have any other query related to email marketing laws or mistakes that first-timers make? Let us know in the comments and we are going to use that topic for our next blog.