New iconectiv Messaging Service Addresses Mobile Marketing Regulations
April 05, 2017
The FCC (News - Alert) is changing the rules for marketing text messages through the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA), in an effort to better protect consumers. Consequently, telemarketers will be under increased pressure to get proper consent before sending messages or else incur a minimum $500 fine for each unsolicited contact they reach out to. Clearly, those penalties could add up pretty quickly and companies are looking for ways to continue marketing via text messaging while remaining compliant.
A new service was announced this week that will address those very issues, and iconectiv (News - Alert) has rolled out its Right Party Verification for Messaging solution for mobile marketers, messaging aggregators and contact centers. The service is designed to help organizations achieve their goals of delivering targeted, omni-channel communications to customers while remaining in compliance with the evolving TCPA rules.
As part of the comprehensive iconectiv Messaging Solution, the new service hones in on mobile numbers, and particularly those transferred from one service provider to another, which can easily run afoul of the FCC’s new rules. Since approximately 97 percent of text messages are opened within three minutes of receipt, iconectiv is striving to protect mobile marketing outreach and ensure its customers remain compliant and avoid hefty fines.
The FCC changes are being made in response to the 2015 Bipartisan Budget Act, which amended the TCPA by permitting calls to a consumer mobile phone if they were to collect a debt owed to or guaranteed by the U.S. The FCC is now attempting to roll back those changes in an effort to better protect consumers. The revised Act would require businesses to have the explicit consent of mobile number owners before sending messages to that number. Fines would quickly escalate from the $500 starting point, rising to $1,500 per contact for successive violations. With approximately 45 million mobile numbers reassigned in the U.S. each year, remaining compliant could be a major challenge for many businesses and problematic for those that rely on mobile messaging for outreach and communications.
“When managed correctly, text messaging is a powerful tool that delivers the right message into the hands of the right people,” said Scott Puopolo, executive vice president, information solutions, iconectiv. “Handled badly, it can alienate customers, damage brand integrity, and lead to costly fines.”
The new Right Party Verification for Messaging service addresses those issues by keeping businesses’ contact bases up to date, including mobile number transfers. The service flags and identifies at-risk numbers using real-time number data to help companies avoid using them. This ensures omni-channel communications are not interrupted and companies get their marketing messages and communications delivered to the right customers, without running afoul of the FCC regulations.
“Opt-in text messaging has become an essential communications tool for many businesses and brands - so initiatives such as the iconectiv Right Party Verification for Messaging that help ensure the right messages only go to the right party with guaranteed privacy are a welcome addition to help mobile marketers protect their customers and enhance ongoing engagement while increasing mutual value,” said Sue Rudd, director networks and service platforms at Strategy Analytics (News - Alert).
Edited by Alicia Young
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