Get smart about purchased lists | ACMA


26 March, 2014 10:53 AM


Get smart about purchased lists

By Editor

In previous blogs, we’ve talked about the things to watch out for if you’re using a purchased list—but recent ACMA investigations have shown that businesses are still being caught out.

If you purchase a marketing list, you need to make sure that the consumers have given their permission to receive marketing messages from third parties. Your business also needs to be able to demonstrate that consent exists, in the event that the ACMA investigates a complaint about your marketing practices. 

The need to demonstrate consent means that a simple assurance from your list broker that the marketing list is an ‘opt in’ list, or that subscribers have consented, may not be enough.

So, if assurances from the list broker aren’t enough, what should you do? Here are two useful tips:

  1. Question your list broker

Make sure you ask questions and get examples. Start with question like these:

  • How did the subscribers opt in to the list? If they filled in a form or entered a competition, ask for a sample so you can see exactly what fields they were asked to complete.
  • What exactly did the subscribers consent to? Ask to see any terms and conditions, and clarify what they were told when they signed up and if the consent specifically includes third parties.
  • When did the subscribers consent to be on the list? If they gave their information to the list broker years ago, will they really still be expecting to receive marketing messages?
  1. Satisfy yourself that the list is reliable

You should now have answers to the above questions, but remember:

  • your business needs to be able to show that every person agreed to receive your marketing message
  • you need to be satisfied that your list broker can give you this information for all of the people you contact.

If you’re not satisfied that the list broker can provide the information you need, make sure you go back to them for further assurances or evidence.

Purchasing the marketing list without asking the right questions puts your business’s reputation at risk and leaves you in danger of not complying with the Spam Act.