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How Does the GDPR Affect Your Email Marketing?

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06 Jan 2021

With the evolution of the digital world, new laws are made in order to regulate things and make the internet a safe place. One such law is GDPR. Let’s see what GDPR is and how it affects email marketing.

What is GDPR?

The European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation is a privacy law that unifies data privacy regulations of the European Union states. It is a law on data protection and privacy in the European Union and European Economic Areas.

Previously each member state had its own data privacy laws that governed the collection and usage of users’ personal data. GDPR changed that and provided a single law that governs all user data generated within the European Union. It doesn’t only apply to EU-based businesses, but it also applies to any business that is collecting, analyzing, or using data of users based in the European Union. Every such organization must abide by the GDPR or face the hefty penalties which might leave a considerable dent on their earnings.

What does it mean for different companies?

GDPR has changed how different companies work with user data, how they work together with third-party providers, and how they collect and use data. GDPR has significantly impacted marketing departments that use user data for different activities. One of the most affected areas is email marketing.

How has GDPR affected marketing strategies?

GDPR or General Data Protection Regulation, as evident from its name, focuses primarily on user data and privacy protection. It means that the users are in power when it comes to the collection and usage of their data.

Among these provisions, some of the granted rights are:

● Right to consent to data collection

● Right to know how the data is being used

● Right to know why the data is being used

● Right to request the removal/deletion of that data

● Right to inquire about any data breach and details of what data might have been compromised

These provisions might seem basic and simple but implementing them proved to be a tricky task for different companies, especially for the USA based ones as privacy laws are not that strict in the USA. This has resulted in the marketing teams closely monitoring and reviewing their policies in order to avoid any inconvenience caused by any conflicting clause. There is no avoiding this law and all the marketing teams are therefore shaping their new policies accordingly.

One of the most highly affected areas is email marketing.

How Does GDPR Affect Email Marketing?

Email marketing has been easy to implement in the past as it is used as a technique of reaching out to new customers and promoting a business. But with the GDPR in force, a number of factors should be considered beforehand.

The companies now need to make sure that the customers provide complete consent before sending them emails. It also means that the subscription process should be more thorough and the users should be allowed to provide their complete consent and an option to unsubscribe whenever they want. They should also make sure that there is no involuntary subscription and no one except the subscribers receive any unnecessary emails.

The following measures can be helpful in making sure that user consent is provided:

· Use A Double Opt-In Method

This means that the users should be provided with clear details of what they are subscribing to, not once but twice. This confirms that the users are interested in receiving emails and did not end up subscribing by mistake. If a customer enters their email and subscribes to email service, they will have to go to their email and confirm once again

· Provide Easy Unsubscription Method

Any user should be able to unsubscribe from emails easily at their will any time they want. The unsubscription method should be easy and straightforward.

How Can I Do Email Marketing Under GDPR?

Even though the GDPR has changed the dynamics of email marketing, you can still do successful email marketing, just make sure to keep the following in mind:

· Revisit Your Contact List

Check where the contacts are located. Make sure you have the consent of everyone on the recipients' list.

· Know Your Contacts

Make sure you know who your subscribers are and that you used a double opt-in method. Track how you ended up with these contacts, make sure you know where and when the information came from.

· Get Permission

Make sure to get proper consent and the permission of new subscribers. Use a double opt-in method. For existing contacts, make sure that you acquired proper consent. If that is not the case, get additional permission again in order to avoid any future inconvenience.

· Review And Disclose Your Data Policies

Make sure that the customers know what data you are collecting along with how the data is being used. Inform the users about the ways you collect data and provide a clear privacy policy so that the users are aware of all the data being collected and its uses.

How Can You Use This To Your Advantage?

You should view this GDPR law not as a restriction but as a guideline that can be used to shape out better email marketing strategies not only in the European Union but the whole world.

One of the important features of GDPR is that it provides clear guidelines on customer data collection and usage. So as long as you abide by the rules and the subscription forms take proper user consent, you can remain GDPR compliant. You can easily continue to target and make a profit from the European market while also gaining the trust of customers by following all the guidelines.

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