Legal Issues to Avoid in Your Digital Marketing Strategies

Legal Issues to Avoid in Your Digital Marketing Strategies

In the present-day business world, digital marketing is essential for survival. Most people turn to social media and search engines for information on products and services they might need.

Forward-thinking businesses understand this and develop strategies to approach these perspectives customers where they are most likely to be found.

Even though the internet makes the world a global village, one must be careful about legal issues associated with marketing strategies in this space.

According to the Law Office of Scott C. Thomas, a firm with a competent Criminal Defense Attorney Near Orange County California, although most business-related cases are civil, they can transcend to a criminal suit.

Data privacy violation

Digital marketing requires direct contact with potential clients/customers. The collection of data can be done directly or indirectly.

For companies with websites, it is possible to collate users’ behavior such as pages they visit and their phone model including social interests.

Newsletter sign-up forms can also help to collect email addresses for email marketing; therefore, used data is directly collected.

All of this information can be used in direct ad targeting. Likewise, leveraging platforms like Google Ads, Facebook Ads and Instagram Ads gives access to customers’ data already collated by the platforms; therefore, used data is indirectly collected.

As much as these processes look straightforward, they can result in legal issues.

To avoid this, make sure to include a Data Privacy section on your website. If your business is likely to be patronized by people within the European Union (EU) nations, your data privacy policy must be General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) compliant.

In its earnings report for July 2021, e-commerce giant, Amazon, disclosed it was fined about $847 million for violation of the GDPR in its handling of customers’ data.

Similarly, WhatsApp in September of the same year was handed a fine of $255 million due to the way it shared users’ data with Facebook.


People’s works are readily available online and in a bid to assemble the perfect materials for digital marketing, companies are liable to make use of copyrighted works.

  • Image copyright

Image is appealing and attention-grabbing but using images of people with consent can land your company in trouble.

Most of the time, it is advisable to get the full consent of the copyright owners before the usage of their work. You might be lucky to get away with it as they might not know especially if you are not in the same country, but it would be costly when you get sued.

There are numerous online platforms for free images and others you can pay for the right to use the pictures.

Also, when using images from royalty/copyright-free platforms, read their terms of use. Some platforms, though royalty-free, require the image’s owner to be credited when used.

When sued, the fine for image copyright infringement can cost as much as $150,000.

  • Video copyright

The owner of a video does not need to register for its copyright before he can sue you for its use without permission. No matter how well a video tells the story of your brand, if it was not filmed or created by your team, avoid using it.

There are exceptions in this case such as when the video is used for educational or informational purposes.

If this does not apply to you, hire a team to produce your video or search for videos published under the Creative Common license.

Owners of these videos have certain requirements that must be fulfilled before their work is used. Most of the time, they demand you credit them in your post.

  • Audio copyright

This is one of the most tricky copyright laws that any brand should avoid. When it comes to audio, more than one artiste may have the copyright to the sound.

Since artists may be signed to record labels, getting the license to use the audio might require reaching an agreement with all the copyright holders. Failure to do this might result in getting sued by other artists or record labels despite obtaining permission from one of the artists featured in the song.

  • Plagiarism

This is important if you are considering content marketing in your promotional strategies. Only hire reputable companies you are sure will not copy others’ work.

Aside from getting sued for plagiarism, the media coverage of such development can significantly damage your brand’s reputation.

It can also result in de-ranking of your site’s visibility when the plagiarised contents are reported to search engines.

Misleading adverts

Online advertisements are required to be true and in no way constructed to deceive consumers. For example, if your business promise to make a refund, it must fulfil the promise to the concerned customers.

For health-related products, all claims must be supported with evidence and required certifications.


What’s New in the World of Digital Marketing?

Digital marketing has shifted wildly in the last couple of years, making this an entirely new landscape for advertisers. Whether your company is newer or you’re trying to set yourself up for the best year possible: these are the top trends hitting search engines this year. 

No-Click Searches on Google

Google has recently boosted no-click searches as a way for users to find answers without having to visit the websites. This can be rough for companies for obvious reasons, which is why you need to create value within your site that will entice people to click anyways.

Although it can be hard to pin down every search and keyword, it’s a good idea to know your main keywords so that any information around them will make viewers see the value in your site so they’ll click anyways.

Google Verified Listings for Local Companies

Google has changed how local businesses appear in their searches, which can complicate things for companies that don’t have a physical address. Google boosts companies that have verified their physical location. If you’re able, try to verify your company with Google as soon as possible.

These companies get boosted ahead of others in an effort to curb Ghost Kitchens and companies that work through drop shipping, which can be a major blow to some small business owners.  

The Hands-Off Approach

Many companies realize there’s a lot of SEO and digital marketing that’s changing every year and now every month, and it’s a full-time job just to keep up with that. Instead of making their entire business into them tracking these numbers and trying to keep up, many companies are turning to an online marketing agency.

The right agency takes over knowing what trends are important, what search engines are offering you, and what you need to keep in mind while creating an ad. Taking the work out of your hands, they help your company succeed without having to worry about investing all of the time needed to learn the trends. 

Voice Search Popularity

How people search when they’re typing is a language all its own that’s been developing over the last thirty years. How we ask for things while talking is entirely different. When typing, you might search ‘ice cream near me,’ yet when asking via Google Home or Amazon Alexa, you’re far more likely to phrase it as ‘hey Google, where’s the nearest ice cream place?’. This means that the keywords you need to use will need to shift with this, covering both voice search and typed searches.  

Reviews Are Boosting in Importance

Reviews and word of mouth have always been important factors in ensuring your company succeeds, but in 2022 they’re more important than ever. Not only are companies with more legitimate and good reviews popping up sooner in results, but they’re also getting more emphasis from search engines. If you don’t have your company available for Google Reviews, you could be placing yourself out of the race before it even begins.

Advertising Is Shifting Rapidly in 2022

Whether you’re starting your company this year and want to advertise the best way possible: or your company is older, and you want to fix your failing advertising, it’s vital to keep up with this constantly changing landscape. Keep these shifts in mind when planning your next advertising campaign.