Emails and newsletters
The representative’s use of e-mails or newsletters to inform his clients or solicit new clients is strictly regulated in the applicable laws and regulations, in particular to protect their personal information and prevent unsolicited commercial electronic messages from being sent. The representative must be aware of these rules when communicating with his current and potential clients, and establish an appropriate procedure that follows these rules. The sections Protecting personal information, General obligations and Telemarketing provide additional information on this topic.
Commercial electronic messages
The representative’s e-mails to current and potential clients are governed by Canada’s Anti-spam Legislation (CASL), which essentially aims to protect Canadian consumers from numerous commercial electronic messages (CEMs), also known as “spam.” CASL enforces serious restrictions on companies and individuals who want to send CEMs to their current or future clients.
The regulations apply to CEMs sent via e-mail and social media (LinkedIn or Messenger messages) as well as instant messenger and phone (text) and similar technologies.
Failure to establish required mechanisms to meet obligations from this law exposes any company or individual wanting to use CEMs to serious consequences
Here is an example: without an existing business relationship, a company must receive the consent of the intended recipient before sending him an electronic message. The CASL text explains the situations in which a representative is authorized to request such consent.
Also, all communications must contain information such as the sender’s name and the contact information for the person to contact or a link to an automated service to be removed from the mailing list.
It should be noted that there are also rules that apply to commercial communications by phone, otherwise known as telemarketing.
For more information on these topics, see the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) website.
When communication with a client occurs electronically, the representative must ensure he protects the client’s personal information. Given the inherent risks with using the Internet, it is recommended to avoid sending personal information by this communication method without first obtaining the client’s consent for this purpose. It is also important to check the client’s address to not accidentally send personal information to a third party.
When sending newsletters or e-mails to multiple recipients, it is especially important to maintain confidentiality of the recipients’ e-mail addresses. This is why it’s recommended to use the “blind carbon copy” option to insert e-mail addresses of all the recipients so as to not reveal these addresses to all the addressees.