Can Online Business Get You Into Trouble?
If there’s one thing we know, it’s that online marketing is a good way of making money through an existing online structure. It’s a gold rush for many people. However, we have to be careful about the future because as of right now the internet is unregulated; this can change at any time. Still, there are always ways of doing things.
Say, for example, that if enough people mark your emails as spam, you’ll eventually get banned on whatever email provider you use. If this happens, you’ll have to close everything down and start all over again. No, that won’t put an end to your business, but it’s a pain to get it back up and running and can cause delay. There will also be the additional expense of buying new domains, setting up pages, and re-establishing your auto-responder, not to mention the opportunity costs associated with being offline.
Keep one thing in mind: you are breaking the law when you send emails to people who haven’t invited you to do so. There’s a law called the CAN-SPAM Act. It stands for Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography and Marketing Act of 2003 and regulates commercial emails. This is the law that gives people the right to unsubscribe to any emails they don’t want.
Let’s say that somebody asks you to take them off your email list; you have to do it because not only is it a good business practice, but also, if you don’t, you’re subject to fines. Fines are per email violation, so they tend to add up fast. This law also explains the requirements for what you can put in the subject line of your emails, the “Sender” and “Recipient” lines, and other elements of the email.
Normally, people think that buying leads is the quickest way to build your list. In reality, it’s a bit expensive. This kind of lead has lower conversion rates and can harm your reputation. You can even be subject to paying fines or being banned. What I’ve noticed is that many autoresponders, such as MailChimp or ImicaMails, don’t let you easily use plugins or import leads to your list. If they let you at all, you’ll be required to have relevant opt-in data. You might have to enter them manually, which is time-consuming and, given the low conversion rate, is probably not worth the effort.
When you import leads using these services and others like them, you have to make sure that the people on your list have given the person you bought the leads from permission to sell or give them to third parties. In other words, you must be able to prove that your leads have opted in to receive third party information. That means that, in addition to the email address, you will also need to provide the opt-in date, the website it was opted in from, and so on.
Companies that sell leads legitimately are going to be able to provide you with all this information. Those that are less reliable will not. So, if the leads you buy are accompanied by this critical information, that’s a good indicator that you’re getting high-value, legitimate sales leads for your money. Being careful and working within the law is important for any business, whether it’s online or offline.