The Dreaded SPAM Email

Everybody has had experience with SPAM email in some form or another. There seems to be no escape from it. You get it in your home and business email no matter where you go and what you do there’s junk mail coming in and you’ve got an overflowing SPAM folder in your email accounts.

While there’s undoubtedly a reason for you to send emails to clients and customers or potential leads depending on the type of business you’re in there is a risk also that you could be spamming under Australian law.

In this update we will look at what constitutes “SPAM” email and how not to join the ranks of the “spammers”.

The SPAM Act 2003 prohibits the sending of unsolicited commercial electronic messages—known as SPAM—with an Australian link. A message has an Australian link if it originates or was commissioned in Australia, or originates overseas but was sent to an address accessed in Australia.”ACMA Website April 2016

What does this mean for the average business that uses email to reach out to the clients? Basically, your email content needs to be solicited. They must sign up to receive your emails with an advertising perspective.

If you had access to a list of potential clients/contacts from another source regardless of where you get that list from you can’t legally add them to your mailing list without being in breach of the spam act in Australia.

If you email a client with a communication message this isn’t SPAM unless your email contains an advertisement for services or products for sale so just be careful about what your email communications contain to new customers and make sure they’re not easily confused for spam.

What Happens When You Don’t Comply With The Law?

If you’ve been naughty and have been spamming away merrily you’re running some legal risks.

The ACMA has the ability to issue infringement notices, seek injunctions to stop the behaviour and finally prosecute you in the Federal Court.

From the ACMA Website “The penalty units referred to in the SPAM Act are equal to $180 each. For example, the penalty under section 25(5)(b) of the SPAM Act for a company with a previous record of spamming and who sent two or more spam messages on a given day without consent is a maximum fine of 10,000 penalty units. This equates to a maximum penalty of $1,800,000.”

How To Grow Your Email List Without Spamming

The right way to do things would be to encourage email signups in all of your communications. Your regular email should have a link to sign up to your newsletter and your website needs this function also. Don’t forget to offer your clients a sign-up option on your social media posts and accounts also.

This way your email communications are always solicited and wanted.

What impact is SPAM having on your business? Please take a moment to leave a comment in the comment section below.

image:flickr created by miniyo73