Start Collecting Consent to Protect Consumers and Your Company
In April 2021, the U.S. Supreme Court issued an opinion in a major case pertaining to Facebook that was viewed as favorable to the contact center industry and a blow to the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA).
However, many states began reviewing their own calling guidelines and refining them accordingly. Florida passed an update (SB 1120) to its own Florida Consumer Protection Law and the Florida Telemarketing Act, to extend beyond certain limitations in the federal TCPA.
Created to protect consumers, the law now requires companies to work harder to comply with nuances such as the mandate to collect consent before communicating via an automated dialing system. This can only be done by fostering trusting relationships and providing customers with value in return.
This is just the start of a new trend. Florida has updated its laws, and many expect other states to follow suit.
As state, national and international laws continue to evolve, companies need to move toward a mindset of collecting consent, being transparent and giving customers control of their data.
Businesses have always asked themselves the same key questions:
- “How do we sell more?”
- “How do we provide better customer service?”
Now, with constantly changing consumer protection laws, these new questions should be added:
- “When is the right time in our interaction with customers to ask for consent or preferences?”
- “What value will we provide in return when customers share personal information?”
- “How will we give customers control over their data?”
Once a company has evaluated these key questions, it must have a system in place that organizes this data in a way that nurtures the relationship with its customers. Those customers need to see that brands are using this data as intended and that they are working to give customers control.
Companies should think through every touchpoint, whether it’s the first visit to a website, a point-of-sale purchase, an interaction with the company’s customer service or other areas throughout the customer life cycle. These touchpoints are the most natural areas of interaction with customers and provide the opportunity to ask for consent.
What’s more, if these are positive interactions with the brand, they are the perfect time to ask questions that provide deeper insights into personal preferences. This provides the ability to present customers a tailored experience that leads to enhanced trust and customer satisfaction.
Maintain an Audit Trail
Collecting the data is not the only aspect to take into consideration. When recording all this activity into a system that allows brands to legally contact customers, it’s also important to ensure the brand has the right process built in, with audit and compliance capability, that shows that the brand is abiding by updated regulations. Collecting consent data is one thing, but companies need to be ready to show when, how and what language was used to obtain that information. Having a solution in place to provide this audit trail is crucial to protecting an organization.
Value for Customers
Using the strategies stated above makes consumers feel more valued by a brand while also building trust, which leads them to share data. When brands are presented with this data, they must honor their customers’ wishes and provide great value in return. For example, companies can send customers targeted communications, promotions or product release notes based on their preferences and do so through their preferred channel. This will keep them engaged with the brand.
While new thinking is needed to comply with these laws, it ultimately benefits a brand to evolve with the changes and grow to be transparent with customers to build deeper trust. Consumers benefit from having the power to choose if they want to give away their data, and the company benefits by gaining loyalty in addition to valuable insights directly from their customers.
To learn more about Click Florida SB 1120, visit www.possiblenow.com/floridas-updated-telemarketing-rules.
Eric Tejeda is the director of marketing for PossibleNOW. He drives the organization’s growth objectives by launching new products and services, promoting thought leadership, building brand awareness and driving lead generation. Tejeda has deployed a marketing technology stack that honors customers’ wishes, provides information that is relevant and builds trust.