Andrea Johnson

3 Steps to Conquering CASL: An interview from Email Summit 2015

February 19th, 2016

As we’re in the final days before MarketingSherpa Summit 2016, we thought it would be fitting to share the last Media Center interview from last year, covering a timely topic marketers were concerned about — Canada’s Anti-Spam Law.

With fines of up to $10 million per violation, Canada’s Anti-Spam Law (CASL) is among the world’s strictest anti-spam legislation and, naturally, it got attention. As a result, it’s too easy for marketers to feel overwhelmed by the new regulations, Shaun Brown, Partner, nNovation (an Ottawa-based law firm), said.


He discussed CASL with Courtney Eckerle, Managing Editor, MarketingSherpa, at Email Summit 2015.

“There are potentially huge penalties under the legislation. Every law firm is publishing information. You have bloggers, email marketers … everybody is talking about CASL. But not everything out there is necessarily factually correct,” he said. “And even then, we can’t always claim to know exactly how the law is going to apply in every circumstance.”

Consequently, some marketers have embraced CASL compliance. Others, not so much.

“Some people got out ahead of (the legislation), but then a lot of people I think just kind of put their head in the sand or maybe didn’t know how to deal with it and just left it until the end,” he said. “So we still have a lot of people who are trying to work though it even though the new law is already in force.”

He outlined three measures that marketers can use to prevent information overload and take control of CASL compliance (if you aren’t already), or to apply stricter compliance generally.


1. Make someone within your organization a champion of the legislation

“You really need someone within your organization, or maybe a team, who … really understands the legislation,” he said. “One of the most valuable assets a marketer can have is someone who understands CASL and appreciates the need to understand it.”


2. Retain outside counsel

“You need someone who is highly specialized in this area of the law and is a good fit with your organization,” Shaun said.


3. Develop a compliance checklist

“There’s a lot of checklists and information bulletins out there. Having something tailored to your organization and meets the need needs of the type of marketing you like to engage in can be very, very helpful,” he said.


Here’s an example: Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation — Campaign Checklist


You can follow Andrea Johnson, Copywriter, MarketingSherpa, on Twitter @IdeastoWords.


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