By Jeff Fotta
Telephone marketing laws have always been complicated and hard to follow. Recently the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) proposed changes to the “Do Not Call” (DNC) program that would make it harder for marketing and sales calls to connect to potential customers. The result would further complicate contact center compliance. Under the constant threat of ever-increasing fines and stricter enforcement, businesses that rely on outbound marketing need specialized marketing privacy compliance tools and advice. It’s nearly impossible to keep up on your own.
We’re seeing more and more companies adopt cloud-based compliance-automation technology and integrate do-not-call and business rules into their call center platform to take the guesswork out the regulations. However there are a number of benefits to automating your contact center compliance technology, and doing so allows you to take advantage of the opportunities for engaging consumers across multiple marketing channels.
Here are three reasons why you should pursue compliance automation:
1. Stay Out of the Regulatory Crosshairs: Automated compliance technology checks every dial against state, federal, and other do-not-call lists, applies any available exemptions, and either allows the call or blocks it automatically. It also updates this process in real-time to adjust to call curfew, time zone, daylight savings, holiday, and state-of-emergency restrictions associated with every dialed number to ensure all calls are performed legally. This means that you have bulletproof protection against all calling regulations and the resulting brand damage that can come from non-compliance.
Automated compliance technology provides tools for enforcing internal policies as well, helping to onboard staff and instill a compliance-focused environment. Furthermore, automated compliance technology is flexible and can adapt to your needs as they change. Cloud-based, real-time call blocking validates each call request for permission to continue. No list scrubbing is required.
2. Manual Compliance Takes Time Away from Growing Your Business: If your compliance isn’t automated, think of all the time and resources you spend having to constantly stay on top of the latest regulations and update your rules. You’ll need to either cultivate a legal expert in DNC or hire one of the handful who are actually specialists if you go it alone. Wouldn’t it be great if you could use that time and money to actually build your business? When you automate compliance, you free up an incredible amount of time to ensure that risk is reduced and go after your markets aggressively to hit up the best prospects and close deals.
3. Expand Your Marketable Universe: Most people view FCC regulations as a hindrance to their business, but think of it this way: Due to opt-in and consent regulations, you’re actually getting a more focused group of people to call, who, by opting in to communications from your company, are more open to hear about the product you’re selling. So instead of blindly calling people who have no interest in your company or product, you’re zeroing in on the most likely prospects. When done correctly, this approach builds loyalty to the brand and strengthens affinity and cross-selling or upselling opportunities.
What Does All This Mean? Companies that want to be 100 percent certain they are not in violation of applicable laws, regardless of dialing method and equipment, should consider an automated, real-time, and always-current compliance service that integrates with their internal systems. Maintaining a dedicated staff of specialized attorneys and software developers to stay on top of complex and constantly changing federal and state regulations – or doing so yourself – is cumbersome and ineffective.
Proactively addressing the changing regulatory environment will help companies reap the rewards of phone-based marketing. This is in sharp contrast to those firms that ignore the regulations and risk damage to their brand or those that completely stop phone-based marketing. Automated compliance technology allows your business to effectively leverage a marketing channel that has proven to be effective and able to reach the consumer, whether they’re at home, at work, or on the go.
Jeff Fotta is president and CEO of Gryphon Networks.
[From Connection Magazine – Sep/Oct 2015]