5 Digital Marketing Realities in a Post-GDPR World

August 28, 2018

By Kirsten Oelrich

The General Data Protection Regulations have brought about significant changes in the ways businesses operate and interact with consumers. It shifts the balance of power to consumers by giving them expanded rights to modify, delete, and receive a copy of the data any organization holds on them.

To master marketing in a post-GDPR world, marketers should elevate the importance of privacy as part of their data-driven initiatives. Marketing strategists call for a multi-pronged approach. Marketing experts suggest auditing your current marketing activities, including what data is collected and how it’s processed. The next most important step should be coordinating closely with your legal and privacy teams. Also, it is important to think about how you can use a pivotal moment like the GDPR to engender value and trust in your future engagement with customers.

GDPR will compel marketers to be more thoughtful, transparent, and respectful of the data they collect and use. That will go a long way toward rebuilding trust with consumers at a time when many have grown skeptical and weary over highly publicized incidents of misuse of their personal data.

As we work together to implement laws like the GDPR and advance deeper, more meaningful relationships with customers and prospects, there are a few basic things to remember. Here are 5 things you must remember as a marketer in the post-GDPR world:

1. Consent is sacrosanct

You should be courteous to those who connect with you through your digital touchpoints. Just because they made a purchase, doesn’t mean they want your email newsletters as well. It’s a common misconception, that thewant all the marketing materials along with the digital receipts opted in for, so don’t simply assume it. Remove pre-ticked boxes of consent for future contact in your email. It should also be understandable. As per the GDPR’s accountability principle it is imperative to keep the records of consent. Remember to respect the decision of the people who have opted out. Create a suppression list and delete the rest of the information of those who unsubscribe.

2. Transparency is imperative

The GDPR requires you to be explicit about the data being used. You must ensure to tell the visitors to the website about how you plan to use their personal information. Enlighten them on how you plan to share the data or use it with third-parties. It should be clear and simple enough to comprehend, not full of jargon. Information and communication related to the processing of personal data should be easily comprehensible and accessible to the person.

3. Data hygiene is unavoidable

It is essential to clean or scrub your data to remove any incorrect, incomplete, or duplicate data. Irrelevant and unnecessary data are supposed to eliminated as per the GDPR. Data hygiene is good not only for compliance but is also good to increase your click and open rates. For the data to be processed, just use information that are relevant, adequate and essential. Personal data collection, storage and usage should be limited.

4. Look out for your customers

Personal data is erased as easily as it was provided. “The right to be forgotten” is provided to the individual by the GDPR. At the end of the day it is their choice and decision. It is important to know where and how your data is stored. You should have a process in place, so as to respond just in case someone asks to have their personal data deleted. Complying to the customer’s requests will assure you the satisfaction and trust of the customers.

5. Maintain the sanctity of subscriptions

The ‘unsubscribe’ function in the email newsletters and other communications have been around for a while now, in fact since PECR came into law. You must be very clear about what exactly are you unsubscribing from, or else it would apply to everything. So, it must be apt and precise to the communication they are receiving. Offer them the option to check or uncheck their preferences instead of opting out from all.

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