Much like every other industry in the global marketplace, healthcare marketers must follow a variety of laws and rules regulated by government agencies. Failure to stay in compliance can be a very costly mistake.
Privacy laws and regulations are a dynamic issue for healthcare marketers, so let’s take a closer look at some of the regulations every marketer needs to be thinking about: The General Data Protection Regulation and Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography and Marketing Act of 2003:
The General Data Protection Regulation went into effect May 2018 with the intent to protect data and ensure privacy for internet uses. While GDPR doesn’t apply to marketers focused on US consumers, it is making waves around the globe as other nations consider similar legislation. For example, California’s own controversial consumer privacy law is scheduled to go into effect January 2020. As we’ve highlighted in the past, GDPR prohibits companies from using personal consumer data without proof of consent and also grants consumers the right to access and transfer their own personal information, as well as the ability to correct or diminish information deemed false.
“GDPR prohibits companies from using consumer data without consent.”
All healthcare marketers should rethink their strategies based on GDPR, mostly by evaluating the data they collect and the reason for gathering it in the first place. Though the California Consumer Privacy Act’s future is uncertain, marketers are likely to see a limited GDPR-type law from Washington.
Healthcare marketers who rely on an email strategy must also comply with the CAN-SPAM Act. According to the Federal Trade Commission, this law is a set of rules designed for commercial email which establishes the requirements for content within messages. It also gives recipients the right to stop receiving emails from certain parties that are using email to market or promote a product or service. All companies that refuse to comply with the CAN-SPAM requirements are subject to penalties that can reach more than $40,000.
Some of the main rules to remember include:
- Don’t use deceptive subject lines or misleading headers. Your email address and routing information must be accurate, and your subject line must reflect what the message will contain.
- Identify the message as an advertisement. Make it clear that your email is a part of your marketing strategy.
- Give recipients the business location. Your valid postal address must be visible in all emails.
- Give recipients an option to stop receiving emails. Recipients must be enabled to opt out of emails if they want to.
- Honor all requests to stop receiving emails. Honor all opt-out requests within 10 business days.
- Keep track of your marketing campaign regularly. If you outsource your email marketing, keep track of the strategy to ensure the company is complying with CAN-SPAM.
Safety, security, and compliance should be top priorities for healthcare marketers. At HealthLink Dimensions, we can provide services to help you clean and standardize your marketing data, to help improve marketing effectiveness and compliance with standards. For more information about a solution that’s designed for healthcare marketers, contact us directly today.