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INTERNATIONAL MARKETING: Law and legislation

A combination of EC legislation and local developments is leading to marketing laws across different European countries gradually becoming more closely aligned. However there are still some marked differences between member states in their legislation in this area. Accordingly, for marketers seeking to roll out campaigns and initiatives on a pan-European basis, legal clearance can still be a significant challenge.

There are a number of areas of marketing practice where different European countries still have remarkably different legal regimes.

The most striking of these is the area of sales promotion. It remains the case that certain promotion mechanics are wholly illegal in some countries but completely acceptable in others. A free prize draw, for instance, is a common form of promotion in the UK for incentivising customers, resellers or distributors, or as a data capture mechanism. But in Norway and certain other countries this mechanic is not permitted.