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As if newer, more robust spam filters weren’t enough to pull out the hair of legitimate e-mail marketers, the Federal Trade Commission’s final rule enforcing the CAN-SPAM Act became effective July 7. Is it the end of using e-mail to tell members about special offers?

Not at all. First, we should recognize that both of these consumer-protection measures are really good news. Few people appreciate receiving nuisance or unsavory junk mail, and putting reasonable restrictions on e-mail marketing may actually increase the likelihood of legitimate e-mail marketing getting through. By following the rules and learning what makes e-mail get stuck in spam guards, we can ensure that our promotions reach members’ inboxes.

The new FTC regulation focuses on four areas: unsubscribing, legal mailing addresses, definitions and responsibility for joint promotions. But for credit union marketing departments, the most important provision relates to honoring requests to unsubscribe.

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