Emails are a great way to connect with customers and the data proves it’s an effective strategy for conversion. However, there are strict laws in Canada that govern email marketing and the fines can be high for businesses that are caught violating Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL).
To meet CASL requirements, you need to obtain consent, provide identification information and include an unsubscribe mechanism in each email message.
What makes CASL different from laws in the United States is that we have an opt-in (rather than opt-out) model, meaning consumers need to agree to receive emails in advance. Consent can be given explicitly or be implied through a pre-existing relationship.
A person gives explicit consent when they take a clear action of providing their email address. Most often, this is done through a sign-up form on your website but can also be given verbally (some companies ask for it at the point-of-sale).
If you have a pre-existing relationship with a customer (for example, a recently made purchase) you have implied consent to send promotional materials. It’s important to note that implied consent is time-sensitive, so you only have a limited amount of time you’re legally able to send emails before requiring explicit consent.
We always advise clients to use a double opt-in method.
Once a person has consented to receive communications from your company, it’s always best to send a confirmation email, asking them to verify their email address. This ensures the person signing up is the actual owner of the email address and would like to receive emails from you.
Ability to Unsubscribe with Every EmailProvide Identification Information
The second part of CASL legislation requires that all email communications clearly provides identification information from the sender. All emails must include your name, physical mailing address and your telephone number, email address, or website URL. We find many companies fail to include their mailing address in emails, which is a violation of CASL.
You must provide people with the ability to unsubscribe in every email. It needs to be clearly marked and easy to follow. Once a request has been made, you are obligated to stop sending promotional emails within 10 business days.
The fines for violating CASL are steep. Businesses can be fined up to $10 million per violation, so it’s imperative that you’re properly following guidelines and laws when communicating by email.
If you have questions about CASL compliance or would like help with your email marketing campaign,
contact one of the marketing specialists at idig Marketing.
idig Marketing is a full-service digital agency that generates meaningful website traffic and drives high value leads to your organization. By optimizing organic content with paid advertising our custom methodology includes hosting, eCommerce and online security.
Information about CASL requirements: Government of Canada. “Frequently Asked Questions about Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation.” Retrieved November 11, 2019 from https://crtc.gc.ca/eng/com500/faq500.htm