News & Updates

someone using a computer

Is Your Franchise Ready for Anti-spam Law?

August 17, 2011

Electronic message marketing is a reliable method for franchisors to reach their broad customer bases in Canada. However, the method in which these messages are disseminated is about to change, and franchise systems should be aware of how new anti-spam law may impact on their marketing strategies. 

In December 2010, the Fighting Internet and Wireless Spam Act was passed in Canada and, while it is still not yet in force, the CRTC and Industry Canada recently published draft regulations to govern the form of commercial electronic messages sent to Canadians, such as e-mail, text and maybe even social media messages. 

As franchisors prepare for electronic message marketing, it would be prudent to bear the following proposed regulations in mind: 

  • Businesses will need either express or implied consent before sending any electronic message
  • An “unsubscribe” function must be presented “clearly and prominently” and must not take more than two clicks to access
  • The message must include the name of the sender or the name of the person on whose behalf it is sent
  • The sender’s address, phone number and email address and website must be included in the message
  • The message should contain a statement identifying the sender and any other names by which they carry on business
  • If the above information cannot practically be included in the message itself, an exception may be available whereby the information and the unsubscribe option can be provided in a clearly labeled one-click link to a website which contains them
  • The above information must also be included in any request for consent to send electronic messages, which request must also contain the purpose of the message and a statement that the recipient may withdraw his/her consent at any time

 Businesses will be permitted to rely on a 3-year grace period from the date on which the legislation comes into force with respect to existing business relationships with recipients, but the application of this statute is far-reaching, and franchised businesses should be preparing now for the future of electronic messaging.

Tags: Franchising