On July 1, an important new law is taking effect in Canada which affects everyone doing Email marketing. It’s known as CASL, “Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation”. You probably need to make changes to your website, email sending and other online marketing activities in order to comply with CASL or risk costly penalties.
In this blog post, I’ll share with you what steps we’re taking to comply with CASL along with links to authoritative sources for more information.
While we think the legislation is overboard and has significant impact for the local small business, it is in fact the law and we all need to comply.
In essence, this new law requires that for any emails sent from or received by a computer located in Canada, you must:
- Make sure that any opt-in forms on your website or social media must clearly get “express consent” to receiving email communications from you.
- Only send emails to people you have an established business relationship with (implied consent) or to whom you have their explicit permission to send them emails.
- On all emails (not just mass emails), you must include:
- a method for them to unsubscribe,
- who you are (e.g. your proper company name)
- your postal mailing address and
- your phone number or email address.
This means that you may need to change things like your opt-in form on your website and the method you use to send emails.
Here’s What We’re Doing To Become CASL Compliant
- We updated our opt-in forms to include the verbiage: “Enter your email to receive updates from us. You can unsubscribe at any time.” That counts as express consent.
- Using IP addresses, we’ve identified our Canadian subscribers; these are the people we need to be concerned about in terms of having consent. Our non-Canadian email addresses, we’ve left in our list and identified as such.
- Updated our Email signatures in GMail to include an unsubscribe link. We also made sure everyone at Piggybank Technology had our full postal address and phone number in the signature…great time to revisit and standardize the branding in our Email signature.
- Cleaned-up our CRM system to make sure our Customers and those we have personal relationship with are clearly identified (we can Email them no problem).
- For our sales leads with whom we are allowed to Email with while we discuss their interest, we’ve added a process to invite them to expressly opt-in.
- We dumped all other email contacts from our mailing list! I must admit, at first this seemed like a bold, scary move. Once we made the decision though, we actually felt quite good about it. We truly do want to only communicate to people who expressly want to receive emails from us.
CASL is being referred to as the toughest anti-spam legislation in the world and there is much more to the legislation than I’ve outlined above so I strongly advise you to check out the full legislation yourself which you can do at: http://fightspam.gc.ca.
Have questions? We’re offering a free review of your emailing practices and if you’re not in compliance, we’ll help you get compliant. Call us today at 705-792-7155.
Disclaimer: We’re not lawyers and are only sharing our understanding of this legislation. Please seek legal advice on how this legislations affects you specifically.