Communications in a CASL-coloured world

What advisors can do to stay on the right side of the new anti-spam law.

On July 1, the Canadian Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL) came into force, throwing large and small organizations across Canada into a panic. But you can benefit from the rigor of being CASL-compliant by keeping your e-communications relevant so your audience doesn't switch off--or worse still switch you off--by opting out of your emails altogether.

Readers of will know that CASL has been covered before and have likely already taken action to ensure their e-communication strategy is compliant. I know it has forced me to evaluate my electronic communication activities.

While people focus on the compliance aspect of CASL, maybe we should be thinking about the impact it can have on communication in general.
The Advantage(!) of CASL

Even if an individual has agreed to receive email from you, unsubscribing is easy. Presto! You're reaching one less person! That presents an interesting challenge. In order to keep subscribers (leads) reading your emails you must create content that is interesting, informative and above all relevant to them. Otherwise they will tune you out.
If your subscribers are receiving content that's stimulating and grabs their attention, they'll start to look to you as a thought leader. In fact, this type of quality content plays a huge role in building trust with readers.

So take the first few steps to better e-communication:

* Analyze your existing list of prospects and subscribers who have agreed to receive communications from you and break them down into categories.  Start with three. Feel free to segment by assets, lifestyle or any other method that feels right to you.

* Create a separate distribution list for each category.

* Ensure that your messages specifically address the needs of each category. Write or edit content so that it is relevant to each category.

This doesn't mean that you can't use and reuse content. You can. Just make sure that it speaks directly to your target each and every time. Sending more targeted communications is good. Adopt these principles and make your communication messages stronger. That should lead to good things for your business, too.

Craig Swistun is a Vice President with CC&L Private Capital Ltd. He can be contacted at [email protected]. CC&L Private Capital Ltd. is an investment counseling firm that provides traditional and alternative solutions to high net worth individuals, foundations and endowments, first nations and trusts. More information about CC&L Private Capital Ltd. can be found online at This report does not constitute legal advice.