Author Archives: bebtexas

California Consumer Privacy Act

Over the past two years, there are two regulations that have had a major impact on digital marketers – GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) and CCPA (California Consumer Privacy Act). As you probably recall, the EU law went into effect in May 2018 to ensure data protection and privacy for all individuals citizens of the European Union (EU) and the European
Economic Area (EEA) and companies doing business in those areas.
This year, we’re all gearing up for the CCPA. The Act came into effect January 1, 2020, and is reported to be among the most stringent data protection privacy laws in the U.S.
Focusing on the privacy rights of individuals, CCPA regulates the way marketers handle personal
information of California residents. If a business has over $25M in annual revenue, processes (buys, sells, receives, or shares) 50,000 or more California consumer records each year, or earns 50 percent or more of its annual revenue from selling personal information of California residents, it must comply with CCPA. CCPA also applies to companies that share common branding (name, service mark or trademark) with a business that meets the criteria. This includes marketing agencies, online payment processing vendors, and digital marketing
technology companies, for example. If your business doesn’t fall within the criteria outlined above but is a service provider to a company that does fit the criteria, you should still be
knowledgeable about CCPA requirements.
While GDPR’s roots are European and CCPA’s are in California, both regulations have had a ripple effect on businesses around the globe, forcing businesses to provide greater transparency and institute more stringent business processes around customer data.
It’s no wonder when you look at the fines. The fines for failing to comply with GDPR range from 10 million euros to four percent of the company’s annual global turnover, which could add up to billions for some companies. Businesses that don’t comply with CCPA can face a maximum fine of $750 per consumer or violation. For example, if a business collects data from 1,000
California residents without complying with CCPA, they can face fines of up to $750,000. Also, if a business doesn’t meet certain data security requirements, consumers can demand that it be fixed within 30 days or the business risks legal action. Some might think it’s easy to just suppress California contacts from a campaign list but that’s short sighted. Let’s not forget that with a population of 39.5 million, California is the world’s sixth largest economy according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis.
Both GDPR and CCPA have driven digital marketers to update back-end systems, review privacy
statements, update third party contracts, audit contact lists, and confirm subscribers. While these actions can be time consuming and costly, they create opportunities for digital marketers to elevate their presence in customers’ inboxes.
CCPA is the latest example of the rising demand for transparency of collection and management of customer data. We can likely expect other states to follow suit with CCPA and institute even more strict regulations and fines to protect consumers.
Maryland, Mississippi, New York and North Dakota have similar legislation in the works. Though a majority of the new laws copy the structure of the CCPA, there are some notable places where they diverge, which will complicate prospective compliance efforts. The most critical area is
enforcement. CCPA provides a private right of action only for the unauthorized disclosure of
unencrypted, sensitive data.  Massachusetts would extend the private right of action to any violation of its privacy law. Three of the state laws (Mississippi, New Mexico, and Rhode Island) extend a private right of action to any unauthorized disclosure of personal information, regardless of sensitivity of the data and potential risk to consumer.
Similarly, while all these new state laws try to protect consumer privacy, the degree of specificity and format requirements vary, which will likely increase criticisms that privacy policies are written in legalese and too difficult to understand.
The result is that businesses may have to implement multiple layers of protection in privacy policies for consumers in different states, even when the underlying data practices are the same nationally.
The Consumer Bankruptcy database we compile is considered public information which is gathered by the courts and is not subject to the CCPA. The BK data is regulated by the Fair Credit Reporting Act and we are not Credit Reporting Agency.
We will keep you abreast of the ever changing data collection landscape as it continues to unfold.

Changing Landscape for Churches

Increasing attendance is a constant challenge for every church no matter its size, denomination or location. Statistics show that over the last decade, the share of Americans who say they attend religious services at least once or twice a month have dropped by 7 percentage points.
There are changes underway within the American religious landscape. Based on a Pew Institute study published in October of 2019, 65% of American adults describe themselves as Christian-that’s down approximately 12% over the past decade. However, those who describe their religious identity as agnostic or nondenominational (known as “nones”) have grown by 5% and crosses multiple demographic groups: white people, black people and Hispanics; men and women; in all regions of the country; and among college graduates and those with lower levels of educational attainment. Religious “nones” are growing faster among Democrats than Republicans, though their ranks are swelling in both partisan coalitions. And although the religiously unaffiliated are on the rise among younger people and most groups of older adults, their growth is most pronounced among young adults.
So what does all of that mean? It means that there is a plethora of people searching for a religious home, which means you have a large pool of people who have the potential to become new church members.
One of the most effective ways to attract new faces into your church is to have them brought by someone they know. A friend, neighbor, or co-worker can provide a level of comfort and help to ease the sense of isolation that often comes when entering an unfamiliar space for the first time. Not only should you regularly encourage your members to bring new faces who could benefit from your ministry, but you should also make it easy for them to do so. A great way of accomplishing this is by combining your Easter Service with a Friends and Family Day.
It provides a unique opportunity for you to showcase your ministry to potential new members. Many people who aren’t sure if joining a church is right for them will feel at-ease knowing they are not the only unchurched people there.
In the weeks leading up to it, build momentum for the service and event. Encourage your community to reach out to the people they know. Equip them with invitation cards and flyers so that they have physical materials to share with others. Create a Facebook Event for both the Easter service and for the Friends and Family Day after. Ask your congregation to share it within their social media communities.

Send an invitation postcard to your neighbors.

Purchase a saturation mailing list of residences surrounding your church and mail invitations to your neighbors including your existing parishioners. Use the day to encourage these people to come back the following week. You might consider beginning a sermon series that day so that people know what to expect the following week.
Be sure and collect a means to contact the newcomers via email or a physical address. In the days that follow your Friends and Family Day, reach out to the individuals who came and show them that they are important to you by sending a hand written thank you note or a personal email. They’ll soon see how they can fit into your community.
Though getting people in the door is important, having a passionate and engaged church body is essential to the vitality and growth of any church. Challenge your community to get involved in the issues that are most meaningful to them. Passionate people want their work to be successful, so they’re likely to invite others to join them and see the fruits of their labor. This is an excellent tactic for organic growth.
We hope this information is helpful to you when planning your upcoming Easter marketing strategy and as always, we are here to help in any way we can.


2020 Calendars

Wait for it…….YES! Our 2020 Calendar is on its way to you. We have some gorgeous photos of the great state of Texas ready to be displayed on your wall too. Look for our 2020 Cookbook Recipes from our Annual Cookoff. It’s our way of saying, Thank You for everything. Check out a preview below, just click onto the cover:

US Postmaster General 2020

Megan Brennan, the 74th US Postmaster General announced her retirement effective in 2020, after serving in the position for five years. The task of appointing the next Postmaster General now falls to the Postal Service’s Board of Governors.  With the increase of financial and political pressure on the USPS, the selection of her replacement will be essential to the future of the postal service as a public institution.

Before the postal reorganization in 1971, the Postmaster General was appointed directly by the President of the United States. Since then, members of the Postal Board of Governors are appointed by the President and confirmed by the Senate, and the Board in turn selects the Postmaster General.

The Postal Board of Governors was unable to reach a quorum for just short of 5-years until (finally) in August of this year, the Senate confirmed three nominees appointed by President Trump. Now the Board is in a position to hire the next PMG which will set the course for the Postal Service’s future. With the retirement prefunding issue still unresolved, there is a lot of concern that the Trump Administration will pressure the Postal Board of Governors to appoint a Postmaster General who shares the White House’s views on issues of privatization.

We will keep you abreast of the search of for the 75th US Postmaster General as it unfolds.

PRC Rejects Proposed F/C Mail Increases

The PRC (Postal Regulatory Commission) has rejected the first-class rate increases that are scheduled to become effective Jan. 26, 2020.

In the Nov. 13 order, the commission stated that the proposed increases are in excess of what a price cap allows and directed the USPS to rework rates that apply to letters, postcards, printed papers and small packets weighing up to 2 kilograms coming into the United States from other countries.

The commission seems confident that the rates can be revamped in time for the planned rate change.

The commission calculated the planned first-class increases at 2.109 percent. This exceeds the 1.933 percent increase that is allowed.

The Postal Service’s board of governors is expected to revisit First-Class Mail prices, and any subsequent filing of revisions with the PRC will occur no later than Dec. 12.