Anti-Spam Legislation Strengthens CRM, Marketing Efforts

In last week’s post, we introduced Canada’s new Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL) that sets strict mandates on Commercial Electronic Messages (CEMs) sent from within and to Canadian organizations. While the act was established to cut down on the exorbitant amount of digital spam sent globally, its requirements can dramatically alter the way even legitimate organizations conduct everyday commercial communication.

Checklist: Preparing Systems for CASL

Though rigorous, the regulations aren’t meant to overwhelm and compound existing sales and marketing departments, but rather provide an opportunity to make sure your consumers truly want to receive your messages before you spend valuable time and resources developing collateral that may be deleted before it’s read. This way, you can direct campaigns toward those truly interested in your promotion, eliminating parties whose interests may not be aligned with your brand. Such adjustments will only help existing operations and streamline and simplify marketing efforts.

Yet, knowing exactly how to adjust current processes to comply with the legislation may be a bit daunting at first, especially when failing to meet requirements can result in fines up to $10 million per violation for corporations. In fact, according to a recent Deloitte poll, only 13% of organizations fully understand CASL requirements and have started applying them to their business.

Thankfully, maintaining compliance with the new directive doesn’t have to mean a complete overhaul of your existing best practices or marketing plans. Rather, existing CRM systems such as Salesforce or Pivotal can be automated to include provisions for consumer consent. While this can take many forms, three considerations are key to making your CRM system CASL ready:

1. Obtain Consent

Though implied consent is permissible in some cases with existing business relationships, it expires in three years and is less desirable than explicit, express consent obtained from both new and existing contacts, which is always valid. CRM systems provide an excellent opportunity to receive and store express consent. Though specific strategies will vary, one solution is to develop a “Contact Me” button on your website that takes visitors to an application that requires them to state their level and field of interest, then select what forms of CEMs they would like to receive.

2. Track and Manage Contact Data

Once customers populate the consent forms, the data is then funneled directly back into your CRM system so leads can be properly organized and ones giving express consent are easily identifiable.

3. Communicate via E-mail Channels

Referencing consent data linked to CRM leads, your sales and marketing teams can developed targeted campaigns sent electronically to interested prospects specifically on the topics they care about, through the channels they request.

While updating CRM systems provides an excellent way to track CASL compliance, additional internal audit and risk management processes may need to be reworked to bring your practices up to regulatory speed. To ensure ongoing obedience, your organization may also decide to appoint a CASL officer to review online communications, monitor consent and oversee business contact applications.

If you’d like greater detail on the new CASL legislation, we’d love to speak to you. In the meantime, to learn more about how our seasoned consultants can help your organization design CRM and marketing automation solutions that comply with the new standards, please contact any member of our consulting team at info@tokarasolutions.com. We also encourage you to contact Tokara’s VP of Business Development, Mark Fillingim, directly at +1 972-719-0213.

Sources:

Salesforce and Deloitte Live Webcast, “CASL is Now in Force: Is Your CRM Ready?” October 2, 2014, https://www.brighttalk.com/webcast/11091/127809?elq_mid=7674&elq_cid=9437424  

Deloitte, “Impact of CASL,” Navigate Magazine, Vol. 6, Summer 2013, https://www2.deloitte.com/content/dam/Deloitte/ca/Documents/consumer-business/ca-en-consumer-business-navigate-summer.pdf