6 tips for staying compliant with SMS regulations

Text message marketing is a great way to bring in new customers and keep them engaged. With government regulations in both the U.S. and Canada overseeing the SMS marketing industry, it is important to abide by these rules in order to build an effective SMS campaign. Failure to do so may open your company up to lawsuits from aggravated customers. 

Here are six ways to remain compliant with these government regulations:

  • Opt-in. Companies are only allowed to text customers who have given their written consent. This can happen in a number of ways, including having them text your company to opt into the program. Once you build a list of consenting subscribers, only text these people.
  • Confirm. It's always good to double-check to see if the customer wants to receive your promotional material. Even though consent and opt-ins can occur with just a single text, it is often better to send a follow-up confirmation text to ensure that the customer did not opt-in in error. These should include your company's name, frequency rate of future messages, general information about what you're going to send, opt-out instructions and standard disclaimers about messaging and data rates.
  • Fine print. It never hurts to be transparent with the customer. When marketing your text messaging service, make sure to specify the information that you would include in a confirmation text, as well as terms and conditions and contact and support options.
  • Opt-out. While it is necessary to provide your customers with an option to opt-out of the program, its not something that needs to be done all the time. Typically, you're only required to include that information once a month after the initial opt-in disclaimer. This will help you save some space on longer messages. That being said, include the opt-out instructions if you have the space to spare.
  • Relevance. You can only send customers the kind of information they elected to receive. For example, if you have a customer that opted in to receive informational or transactional massages, you should not also send them marketing messages. 
  • Frequency promise. One of the more critical aspects of text message marketing is message frequency. Before a campaign begins, companies have to decide on how often they want customers to receive their messages. This allows businesses some leeway, as the regulations do not restrict the number of messages that can be sent. What they do require is that you disclose that information to the customer when they opt-in and then adhere to that number throughout the course of the campaign. 

SMS marketing offers the highest open and conversion rates across any marketing channel. Implementing a text message marketing strategy can engage customers by acknowledging special occasions throughout the year. Swift SMS Gateway offers the SMS API and gateway needed to launch an effective text message campaign across North America.