28 December 2012

Coca-Cola's Core Approach To Mobile Marketing Highlights Need For Vigilance In TCPA Compliance

Website MediaPost spoke to Kim Siler, mobile brand strategist, global connections at Coca-Cola, about the company’s broader mobile strategy. Of note were Ms. Siller's remarks about the importance that SMS ("short message service") text messages play in Coca-Cola's global mobile marketing efforts:
MP: Is SMS, because of its universality, still the core of Coca-Cola’s approach to mobile marketing?

Siler: It is one that our team pushes throughout Coca-Cola. It’s a ubiquitous format you can use to reach 98% of consumers and…it’s much more personal and much more integrated into what a consumer is already doing in their daily lives. So it is a very big part of the mobile marketing mix. We look at a wide range of platforms and outlets in mobile, so it’s not just SMS.
If SMS is important to a company like Coca-Cola, the guess is that it will be (and is) an important component to the mobile marketing strategies of many other companies as well - whether that company is a large corporation or SMB. 

As more companies utilize SMS, however, they should be mindful that the Telephone Consumer Protection Act ("TCPA") regulates the use of automatic dialing devices to make calls to mobile devices by sending SMS text messages to individuals. The penalties for TCPA non-compliance can be severe, and may include the risk of statutory damages, class action lawsuits, and regulatory fines.  We recently wrote about two TCPA class actions, where a federal judge in New Jersey denied company motions to deny class certification in the lawsuits.

As SMS text message campaigns increasingly become a core part of many company marketing strategies, any business using this type of consumer outreach will be well-advised to make sure its internal policies, procedures, and practices regarding are in line with the law.

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