Facebook Marketing: Legal & Regulatory Compliance By David M. Adler, Esq.

Image representing Facebook as depicted in Cru...
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AllFaceBook Presents AF Expo San Francisco June 27-29, 2011

COMMERCE & MONETIZATIONFacebook Marketing: Legal & Regulatory Compliance

The use of social media for marketing and advertising purposes is one of the fastest growing areas for business and marketers. The advent of social media sites like Facebook provides the opportunity for authentic interaction and engagement with customers. Therefore, it is no surprise that it is being used as a marketing tool by companies large and small to help them achieve their strategic goals. But with every technological development and opportunity, new legal and business risks present themselves. Understanding and minimizing these risks will help you maximize the opportunities. A best practices approach to social media marketing involves having the company’s philosophy, methodology, and guidelines captured in a comprehensive written policy that is clearly and regularly communicated to the employees, and regularly updated to keep abreast of new developments, opportunities and evolving legal guidance. Attendees will learn how to identify the legal issues and develop policies and procedures to keep informed about the current technology, marketing strategies and regulatory compliance.

Everyone at AF Expo shares a belief that the Facebook experience represents a paradigm shift in the way that marketing professionals identify, engage and convert customers. In the past, marketers had to conduct research to locate customs and to determine their wants and needs. Once these were identified, you needed to convince your customers to value your brand, understand your product/service and ultimately purchase what you were selling.
Facebook changes all of these assumptions. It offers an interactive platform where customs are actively engaged in seeking out the brands they are interested in – whether individually or through trusted networks, tell brand owned what they do and do not like about their brand and tell marketers whether they are open to receiving more information. Interestingly, the platform allows marketers to continue the conversation even when the customer has nominally disengaged (through trusted networks).
Like everything else, with great power comes great risks. Facebook marketing that is thoughtful, respectful and legally compliant is extremely effective. [give examples] However, marketing efforts that fail to understand and account for the requirements to maintain legal compliance can be a fixated.
In the beginning one could poke, like and comment. But what happens when you can purchase? Facebook is rapidly becoming a platform to identify, locate, contact and transact business with consumers of goods and services, both physical and virtual, using currency that is both physical and virtual.
My presentation will identify and explain the risks for Facebook marketers, grouped  into three risk categories, “The Three Cs” of Facebook marketing: