Ever seen a toddler on one of those child leashes? They’re straining as hard as their little sausage legs allow, desperate to run free, talk to strangers and create a crayon masterpiece on the nearest wall (or lick a squirrel – one never can tell).

That’s kind of how we imagine marketers must feel when it comes to compliance. Their creative hearts (bless them) are bursting at the seams with technicolour campaigns they want to bring to life. As for us lawyers? Well… We’re the leash. It may not be the most fun role in this analogy, but someone has to protect the consumer (and the squirrels).

Anyhoo, this whole tug-of-war situation got us thinking about the gripes that usually come up when the unstoppable force of a marketing team meets the immovable object that is compliance…

‘Lawyers are party poopers.’

Look, none of us wrote ‘burst bubbles and rain on parades’ on the list of things we wanted to do when we grew up. But the heart of compliance is ensuring that the consumer is never lied to, tricked or misled by a business – unintentionally or otherwise. If we’re being buzzkills, just know it’s all in the name of consumer protection.

‘Marketers thrive in the grey area.’

More like the bedazzled-rainbow-confetti-cannon area, where everything sounds just a little too good to be true. Rein it in, guys. Intriguing, good; misleading, bad.

‘Lawyers take everything literally.’

You’re punny and we know it. We’re sorry for destroying your wordplay with our Hammer of Literality. But – again – we’re here to make sure the consumer gets the right message, loud and clear. Let’s set the GPS for that sweet spot where creativity meets clarity.

‘Marketers see the tip of the iceberg.’

You know what’s super fun? Getting an email from the marketing team that starts with ‘Quick question…’, when answering that question would take longer than watching all three Lord of the Rings movies – and the director’s commentary. Asking a lawyer a ‘quick question’ is like when your law client asks you to ‘just Photoshop Carol into the picture because she was sick that day’. Let’s stop triggering each other.

‘Lawyers don’t speak like humans.’

We couldn’t agree more. Unnecessary legalese and old-school fine print is for the birds. (Actually, did you know that if you read most fine print backwards, you invoke an ancient water spirit that causes your bathroom tap to start dripping obnoxiously the second you get comfy in bed?) That’s why at Novation Consulting, we’re all about simple, clear communication and speaking like real-life humans – not law-bots.

‘Marketers post first and ask questions later.’

Curse whoever it was who first said, ‘It’s better to ask for forgiveness than permission.’ That’s all well and good when you’re unashamedly eating the last chocolate-chip cookie, but it’s kind of a big deal when it comes to compliance. Run your sh*t by your lawyer first. We promise they won’t bite. Unless you have cookies on your person.

Want to watch us playing nice, live? Then get your tickets to Cookies, Cats and a Light Sprinkling of POPIA. This fun event, co-hosted with the content-marketing heroes of 2Stories, will cover everything you didn’t even know you didn’t know about using adtech and martech in a POPIA-compliant way.

When? 25 May 2022 | 14h00–17h00

How much? R650

Where? The comfort of your own home or office (so, pants optional). We’ll be live-streaming the event. The link will be emailed to you on receipt of payment.

Get your tickets here.

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