1. Follow The DMA Guidelines
DMA Guidelines require that list owners, brokers, managers, compilers, and users of marketing lists “ascertain the nature of the list’s intended usage for each materially different marketing use prior to rental, sale, exchange, transfer or use of the list.” Further you should not permit the use of your marketing lists in any way that would be in violation of the DMA Ethical Guidelines.
To successfully implement DMA Guidelines:
2. Review the Promotion
- All partners involved in the use of the marketing list should agree on the use prior to rental. Ask for and obtain a copy of the script, e-mail or print promotion and keep it on file. Monitor or decoy list usage to make sure that your approved use of the list is the actual use.
- The person who reviews promotions on your behalf should be knowledgeable about DMA Ethical Guidelines and relevant laws. This could be an internal staff person or outside counsel. DMA staff can be of assistance, too.
Those who rent lists to telemarketers should have an understanding of the Telemarketing Sales Rule (TSR). Similarly, those who rent e-mail lists should know the CAN-SPAM Act.
In addition, all list managers should educate themselves on the most obvious fraud schemes. Avoid promoting an obvious fraud by asking whether the offer, promotion, payoff, or benefit sounds too good to be true.
Pay particular attention to get-rich-quick schemes, outrageous weight-loss claims, miracle health cures, credit-repair promises, advance fee loan offers, or unbelievably inexpensive travel offers.
Also, view carefully any ads that claim endorsement of a government agency or national consumer group. Most do not approve or endorse specific products.
3. Know Your Business Partner
You have the right – and indeed the obligation – not to do business with any company that is obviously breaking the law. It is, therefore important that you check out potential business partners to verify reputation, integrity, and performance.
The FTC settlements underscore the need for knowing with whom you are doing business. Just as you would investigate to make sure that your new business partner has a good reputation for fair business dealings, it pays to investigate their past experience with regulators. A quick background and reference check on a potential business partner can save costly legal fees and risk to your own reputation.
For further information on The DMA Guidelines for Ethical Business Practice, click here.