Telemarketing & Compliance: What marketers need to know

August 6, 2021


While digital, social and content remain hot topics in marketing, personal connection is still a large component part of business development and marketing campaigns. While in-person connection has been put on pause due to COVID-19, businesses are relying on phone calls to add direct human communication to build trusted relationships. However, with privacy regulations on the rise, companies must follow requirements for how consumer data is collected and used for communication through different channels, including over the phone.   

Join our upcoming webinar: Who’s Calling? Honoring Consent & Privacy in Telemarketing  

Telemarketing in the United States is governed primarily by two statutes. First, the Telephone Consumer Protection Act of 1991 (TCPA), 47 U.S.C. § 227. In addition this  the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has authority to collect complaints and institute enforcement actions against violators of the TCPA. The state of Florida also recently passed a “mini-TCPA” statute that went into effect earlier this month that regulates telemarketing at the state level. 

There are also requirements evolving at a global level, more specifically throughout the EU and in Asia. All 27 EU Member States and the UK have implemented legislation addressing B2C (Business to Consumer), B2B (Business to Business), exceptions to the obligation to obtain consent, and DNC (Do Not Call) lists, with most countries providing guidance. Beyond the EU, most countries in Asia pacific have legislation covering B2C and B2B marketing as well as penalties for infringement, although guidelines are scarce.

Telemarketing complaints and lawsuits are quickly growing. The value of personal interaction to influence prospects can’t be overlooked when it comes to marketing.  So you have to ask how can this crucial marketing channel be effectively implemented while remaining compliant with telemarketing legislation?

An intro to Telemarketing Legislation 

Understanding the complexities of telemarketing law is challenging. Under federal law, telemarketing is defined as “the initiation of a telephone call or message for the purpose of encouraging the purchase or rental of, or investment in, property, goods, or services, which is transmitted to any person.” 47 C.F.R. § 64.1200(f)(12). Complying with state and federal telemarketing law requires constant attention to the evolving regulatory and litigation landscape.

Important United States telemarketing laws

Under the TCPA, individuals are empowered to file lawsuits and collect damages for receiving unsolicited telemarketing calls, faxes, pre-recorded calls, auto-dialed calls, voice calls as well as SMS messages sent by telemarketers. Sellers and telemarketers must comply with the TCPA, along with other applicable state and federal laws, or face significant monetary penalties. 

Telemarketing practices in the United States are also governed by the Telemarketing Sales Rule (TSR). The TSR requires material information about a seller’s or telemarketer’s goods or services to be disclosed to consumers during marketing calls. Telemarketers face civil penalties of up to $16,000 per TSR violation if material information is not disclosed before the consumer pays for goods or services. Pursuant the TSR, the National Do Not Call registry was established in 2003. The Do Not Call Registry allows consumers to place their phone numbers on a list to stop most unsolicited calls. 

Florida’s new telemarketing bill CS/SB 1120

Florida recently enacted a bill that updates the Florida Consumer Protection Law and the Florida Telemarketing Act. The bill was unanimously passed by the state legislature and creates what is essentially a stricter version of the TCPA. Florida’s “Mini-TCPA,” represents a serious risk for every consumer-facing entity that does business in Florida and interacts with existing and potential customers through telemarketing, text messaging and direct to voicemail transmissions.

To learn more about the TCPA, as well as the Florida Telemarketing Act and the Florida Do Not Call Act, sign up for our upcoming webinar. 

How OneTrust PreferenceChoice helps 

OneTrust PreferenceChoice delivers technology that enables brands to empower consumers with control over their data, leading to better segmentation, personalization, and brand loyalty—all while making privacy compliance simple. Companies can put consumers in control of how their data is used with consent and preference management. To ensure your telemarketing campaigns are fully compliant with the TCPA and the new Florida CS/SB 1120 regulations, sign up for the webinar and contact the OneTrust PreferenceChoice team today.

Follow OneTrust on LinkedIn, Twitter, or YouTube for the latest on consent management.

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