We came across a guide by Mobile Storm addressing compliance and how mobile marketers can protect themselves by complying with regulations relating to bulk SMS marketing.  Whilst it specifically talks about regulations in America, some of the tips should be adhered to by businesses worldwide.  We firmly believe that targeted and relevant bulk sms messaging is the most successful marketing tool for your business. By sending bulk sms messages to customers who have opted in to receive your messages, you will be guaranteed a higher response and greater return on your investment. Here are the key points from Mobile Storm’s white paper on Mobile Marketing Compliance.

Written Consent

Marketers are required to obtain written consent from a consumer prior to adding that consumer to a mobile marketing campaign. This is a very specific term that means an agreement, in writing, bears the signature of the person being marketed to and clearly shows that they are authorising the seller to deliver advertisements or other marketing messages to their phone. The telephone number to which the signatory authorises these marketing messages or advertisements must also be included in the written consent form.

There are various methods by which a consumer may “sign” their consent, and not all include the use of the typical paper and pen. Consent may be given through a form on a website, an email, keypad touch technology, or even a voice recording. Consequently, marketers should take great care to ensure that the authorised party is clearly identified in any type of agreement that they choose to use. The reason is simply that, when any question arises regarding whether a consumer has actually given their consent or not, the burden of proof to demonstrate that clear, conspicuous and unambiguous consent was indeed provided, falls directly on the shoulders of the marketer or marketing company.

Opt-in Language

When it comes to the language used for obtaining consent, or the “opt in” language, mobile marketers must be sure to integrate all required carrier disclosures into their message. These include factual data about message frequency, unsubscribing instructions, help instructions and terms.  Appropriate wording should read similar to this: I hereby consent to receive text messages from or on behalf of (Company) at the telephone number I provided above. I understand that consent is not a condition of purchase.

Did you know…

  • Opt-out instructions must always appear in bold? When it comes to mobile marketing compliance, there is required language that must appear on all sign up forms and advertising. For example: “Text HELP for help” and “Text STOP to cancel.”
  • Sent records should be retained for a period of at least four or more years.
  • You should not send messages after 9 p.m. and before 8 a.m. in the user’s time zone. Timing is everything with mobile messaging compliance. If your communication is sent and received outside of this established time frame, it’s a big no-no.
  • You should already know that major brands almost immediately began taking legal steps to make sure that the integrity of their existing database is sound, making the necessary disclaimer changes on all of their marketing materials and text messages as well as other content including websites, blogs and so forth. You should be following their lead.

Some very handy tips we think, we hope you found them useful too.