New Unsubscribe Laws, The Rise of First-Party Data and Zombie Emails

The world of technology won’t slow down, not even for a global pandemic. Our monthly roundup is here to make sense of the big topics that are relevant in the marketing world right now. Continue reading to learn how these issues could impact your business.  

In short, the big topics are… 

  • New unsubscribe laws set to clean up the horrible mess that is spam emails. 
  • The rise of first Party data, and why? 
  • Dead or Alive? Email Marketing

New Unsubscribe Laws 

No fine print 

On April first, our existing regulations under the Spam Act 2003 concerning email marketing were subjected to change, this wasn’t a prank.  

These changes came after an extensive number of angered consumers reported to the ACMA and the ACCC, confusion around unsubscribing from certain company’s email marketing.  

The spam act was developed mostly to protect you from receiving those emails telling you, YOUR LAPTOP HAS A VIRUS ⚠️ or how you can lose 10 Kgs in 1 day. However, regulators will not fail to penalize genuine businesses that fail to follow the rules. 

This is not breaking news; it has been a legal requirement for a long time that consumers must be able to unsubscribe directly through sales email.  Consumers however have become pissed off by company’s whose unsubscribe links require them to run a marathon and a half just to unsubscribe. Some companies have been using deceiving techniques to prevent consumers from easily unsubscribing, and it has led to customers becoming extremely frustrated with the time and effort it takes just to unsubscribe. 

The update to the Spam act is an attempt to clarify the requirements for companies unsubscribing processes and prevent these misbehaviors.  

Small change, Big consequence…  

You might read this and think pff same old. HOWEVER, these new regulations mean it is CRITICAL that your company is complying completely and accurately.  

Any variance from these new concrete and clarified rules will result in more than a slap on the wrist. In the past large companies *cough cough Woolworths, have acquired millions of dollars in fines for some pretty minor f*** ups in their marketing emails.  

Although these F*** ups are usually the result of a harmless mistake, for companies sending a lot of email marketing these mistakes become a major annoyance to consumers. Making you, well, a little annoying. 

To avoid paying hefty fines for carelessness, ensure both you and your email marketing team have comprehensively read the latest version of the Spam Regulations 2021 (Cth) before sending any sales emails.  

To simplify that document the new regulations clarify that… 

A consumer cannot be required to 

  • use a premium service to unsubscribe 
  • Pay an unsubscribe fee 
  • Create a new account or log in 
  • Provide more personal information 

Triple check that your sales emails follow the criteria above. Then check again! 

Ensuring all your emails are reviewed and tested before being sent, is your best shot at avoiding being tripped up by these new regulations. 

A happy list is a healthy list. Unsubscribing is a part of your customer experience. Make it pleasant! 

It’s uber important to keep a keen eye on your unsubscribe rate. While you’re at it make sure you are tracking these crucial email marketing metrics.

The Rise of First-Party Data  

Consumers are catching on; they know we are watching. For years third-party data has been the be-all-end-all. However, third-party data’s days are coming to an end, and it’s time to make your first-party data shine.  

First-party data for those that don’t know, is data you have collected directly from your audience. You own this data, now it’s time to own it in your marketing strategy.   

First-party data is domain-created and is used to optimise the online shopping experience. This data can be used to provide better product recommendations and also customize the content you are exposed to.  These features feel less invasive than the old third-party cookies and are more convenient for your consumer.  

Third-party cookies are created by advertisers to drive e-commerce sales, this type of data is collected with the aim of retargeting consumers with personalized advertising based on previous online behavior. The data’s inaccuracy is also another one of its downfalls, failing to create accurate and constructive demographic segments.   

The Beginning of the End

Over time this has become less helpful to the consumer and more stalkerish. Deterring both customers and retailers from its use. Leading to what will be the rise of first-party data.  

third party data is used to generate that creepy target advertising that gives off a serious Big brother vibe. First-party cookies are there to enhance your website experience, not to find out what your customers had for breakfast. 

While a lot of brands still use third-party data, the time is now to be building a viable first-party database. Get ahead of the crowd, and ensure you are enriching your first-party database. Gain a greater range and collect precise/ reliable data. 

This will enable you to…  

  • Strategically reduce cost per sale 
  • De-risk innovation through proper customer research 
  • Enhance conversion rates 
  • Improve overall customer experience 

Your owned data is true and provides a much more complete picture of the consumer. Don’t waste your time with the guessing game that is third-party data. Bend the odds your way and play the game you know with first-party data.   

Want to squeeze more conversions out of the data you own? Book in a 15-minute chat with a MI Academy expert and we’ll spill the beans!

Read more about the impact of first-party data in our Power Retail article.

Is Email Marketing Dead?

Are you seeing enough revenue from your email marketing? 
 
For years marketers have been announcing email’s death. Thanks to the growth of social media advertising, the old guy might look it. 
 
A look at recent data studies from power retail, however, has shown the dead are rising. 
 
Email’s contribution to e-commerce revenue has increased over the past 3 years from 12.17% to 15.58% in 2021. Email ranks 4th, still higher than most other channels, including social in the most revenue conversion. Meaning somehow email is still kicking! 
 
So why is it dead for you? 
 
Learning to understand and use your first-party data is the key to resurrecting your email marketing. 
 
The innovation of google analytics and other analytics tools using AI are the solution to unlocking the power of the email medium. These tools allow marketers to create targeted and segmented email marketing. In today’s retail environment customization is critical to engage your target consumer. 
 
Through the use of triggered, abandonment, and segmented promotional emails, the conversion of email marketing to revenue could be much greater for your business. 
 
Most importantly make them legal! Use email responsibly. Keep your emails relevant and choose an appropriate frequency. Don’t Be responsible for email’s death! 


As always the internet is abuzz with miracle marketing strategies and new emerging technologies. But if we want to get down to the crux of things, to be successful you need to own your customer data, use it in a way that is respectable (and legal!)

We will be back in a month or so with another roundup, in the meantime check out some of our previous round-ups!

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