Tired of those marketing text messages? Yes, me too! Did you know that there are just as many regulations around mobile phone spam as there are around email spam?
The Australian Communication and Media Authority – ACMA for short – has recently warned e-marketers that the publication of an email address or mobile telephone number on a website is "not an open invitation to send messages".
E-marketers need to understand that the publication of an email address or mobile telephone number on a website is not an open invitation to send messages,’ ’ said Chris Chapman, ACMA Chairman.
The accepted position in Australia has been that if a person or business publishes a phone number or email address as part of an advertisement or promotion of their business, then it is okay to send them marketing information that they might "reasonably" expect. Like a painter getting advertising about paint brushes. Something that could be unreasonable might be sending the painter cake recipes.
ACMA has recently issued warnings for bad behaviour by business in two respects –
- In the first case, Premier Auto Wholesale sent SMS messages to mobile phone numbers it took from online ads for used cars. ACMA found that the phone numbers in the ads were published along with a statement that marketing messages were not welcome.
- In the second case, Home Loan Selection Services couldn't show that it had consent to send emails promoting its business.
In both cases people complained and ACMA listened and took action. Don't think that you're customer's complaints are falling on deaf ears.
Just as with email, it has to be easy for people to unsubscribe from receiving sms or mms content, usually by replying "STOP" to an unwanted email. Customers can also now complain about mobile phone spam directly to ACMA by registering online and then forwarding any offending sms.
Don't risk your business with opportunistic behaviour and be prepared to apologise and make undertakings and clean up your act if you do get told off!