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Do you know how legal issues affect your digital marketing business? As online advertising becomes more effective, you may seek to promote your clients through:

  • social media; 
  • websites; and 
  • search engines. 

Although there are many legal issues that your business must consider, this article will explain the five key obligations you need to regard when running a digital marketing business.

1. Privacy Law Obligations

Just like your clients, your marketing business will have its own privacy law obligations to consider. If you collect personal information on your clients’ behalf, you will need to establish a privacy policy which explains: 

  • what information you are collecting; and 
  • the purposes of collection. 

You will also need to store data securely and only for the length of time that you need it. 

Your clients may also provide you with their customers’ personal data, which you may need to treat in accordance with their privacy policy. If your clients ask you to do so, make sure you review their privacy policy to ensure you know how to follow it.

2. Terms and Conditions 

Your marketing business needs a clear set of terms and conditions for the services you provide. If you sell your marketing services to clients online, you will need a click wrap agreement agreement setting out key details.

A click wrap agreement is simply a virtual prompt that allows website visitors to accept your terms and conditions digitally. 

Your terms and conditions should cover:

3. Consumer Law and Marketing 

When promoting your clients’ products and services, make sure that your advertisements will not mislead consumers. Misleading and false advertising can include representations of the:

  • nature;
  • price;
  • quality;
  • quantity; or
  • suitability of the good or service.

Another issue to be wary of is bait advertising. This can occur when you advertise a product at sale price but do not have sufficient stock to meet customer demand. 

Finally, the law prevents businesses from sending spam marketing messages. This means that you must have received consent from individuals before contacting them. You also cannot send them an excessive number of messages. If you send emails on your client’s behalf, your client should communicate to their customers that it collects email addresses for use by their marketing provider.

4. Intellectual Property

If you use other content creators’ intellectual property (IP) (such as their music, art or photographs) to assist in your advertising, ensure that you have the appropriate permissions or licences to use them. 

For example, you may wish to seek a licence from APRA AMCOS to use music belonging to the original artist. APRA AMCOS is an organisation that represents and licenses the work of composers and musicians.

Merely changing a piece of work by a certain amount will not necessarily avoid copyright infringement.   

5. Competition Regulations 

A competition run to advertise a company’s products or services is known as a trade promotion. If you run trade promotions for your clients, you may require a permit, depending on the states or territories in which you run the competition. This will depend on whether the trade promotion is a game of skill or game of chance, where it is being run and the total prize pool. You will also need to establish trade promotion terms and conditions, which set out:

  • who the promoter is (whether it is you or your client);
  • who can enter the competition and whether there are any age or location restrictions;
  • the timeframe for the competition;
  • requirements for entry; 
  • details about the prize; and
  • how you will notify the winner. 

Key Takeaways

Your digital marketing business needs to consider many legal issues. In particular, you should ensure that: 

  • your privacy practices are up to date; 
  • your contracts protect you from liability; 
  • you comply with consumer law requirements; 
  • you do not infringe upon others’ IP; and 
  • you have the permits required to conduct your business. 

If you have any questions about the legal issues affecting your marketing business, contact LegalVision’s marketing compliance lawyers on 1300 544 755 or fill out the form on this page


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