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Alexandra Barcelona
Director of Marketing

Is GDPR an Opportunity in Disguise?

Jan 30, 2018

By: Alexandra Barcelona

Most of the talk surrounding GDPR has to do with the hefty fines surrounding non-compliance and the blowback your business will receive by failing to abide by the EU’s the latest data protection guidelines.

One thing is for sure, GDPR will bring about a massive change in the way that data and privacy are handled now and in the future. But it doesn’t have to be all doom and gloom. In fact, the GDPR rollout can either be a positive or negative thing, depending on how you look at it.

GDPR To Help Brands “Identify New Business Opportunities” 

According to the Belgium minister, Philippe De Backer, GDPR compliance isn’t just about fines and compliance, but instead, it’s about enabling companies to get a better perspective on their data, securing said data, and managing it more effectively to reach their business goals.

“The GDPR is also about enabling companies to know what data they have, securing that data, and managing that data effectively to enable them to identify new business opportunities,” he said.

In this article, we’ll examine how brands who manage to attain GDPR compliance in time (don’t forget about that May 25th, 2018 deadline!) can leverage their compliance to differentiate themselves in their respective markets.

1. Stand Out By Highlighting Your GDPR Compliance

Those who are able to achieve GDPR compliance early on will be given a brief moment to stand out from their competitors until they get up to speed.

Most brands are currently trying to achieve GDPR compliance by May 2018, but with the fast-approaching deadline, not every brand will be able to do it in time. Those who are able to reach their compliance goals in time will be given a leg up on their competition.

One day, GDPR compliance will become the norm, but until that point brands who are first to reach their compliance goals will be able to showcase this and present data confidence and security to their customers.

2. Improve Customer Personalization and Customer Experience

The brands who succeed into the future will be those who are able to offer relevant and personalized customer experiences. Consumer demand continues to rise in favor of personalized experiences.

GDPR data collection protocols will be more rigorous, forcing you to adopt a mentality that sees your subscribers as actual humans rather than just data points.

This improved understanding has the ability to lead to more in-depth and highly-relevant brand experiences. Your marketing team will be able to act knowing that their data is up to date and exists because the customers wants to be contacted. Automatically, this helps draw a clearer line between qualified and unqualified leads and prospective customers. 

This evaluation will also force you to look deeper at your marketing stack to ensure it can keep up with the rigorous data protocols needed to remain GDPR compliant.

3. Clean Your Data To Make It More Valuable

GDPR is forcing brands to take a good hard look at their data. If you’ve been in business for a while, then chances are a lot of your data is bloated and not very valuable to your company.

For most companies doing data housekeeping probably hasn’t been very high up on the list of tasks, but with GDPR eminent it’s now booming a necessity. Sure, going through all of your customer data is going to take a while, but at the end, you’ll have a much more usable database of customer information. Just imagine what it would mean for your company when using data that is 100% accurate and up to date?

Once you have a clearer picture of your current customer data situation you can begin modifying, restructuring, and even reducing your current data load. This will help to enable more personalized and effective marketing campaigns, and can even reduce monthly data storage costs depending upon how much junk data you’ve been hoarding.

4. Avoid Bad Press and Data Breaches Down the Road

As privacy becomes an even larger concern for the public, brands who are quick to adopt GDPR compliance will see improved public perception. GDPR gives brands the opportunity to show their customers how much they value their data and privacy.

Plus, compliance will help to safeguard your company against any breaches or unauthorized use of data, which can ruin the public perception of your company. Even the threat of a potential breach, or the public knowledge that a company is doing something with your data that you didn’t condone, is enough to ruin a prospects relationship and perception with your company.

With proper data security and protection protocols in place not only will breaches be less likely, but you’ll have a process in place to swiftly handle data breaches if they do arise, which will help to diminish the negative impact such a breach could have previously had on your company.

5. Improve ROI on Email Marketing Campaigns

Since data collection and opt-in protocols will be much more strict the quality of your email list will improve. Even if your initial email list survey leads to deleting a lot of email contact this will only be a positive thing down the road. 

After all, a small and engaged list of customers is more powerful and valuable than a huge and unresponsive email list. The goal of your email campaigns should be to optimize for open rates, click-throughs, and overall engagement rates. 

As GDPR legislation stipulates, you’ll need to have a strict opt-in process, along with the ability to verify subscriber information and easily delete, modify, or move data upon their request. Beyond having improved email marketing metrics you’ll also be able to obtain more effective data about your subscribers, since they’ll be actively engaged with what you offer. This insight can be used to launch new initiatives, services or products, that you might have been unaware of previously. 

GDPR: A Unique Opportunity 

GDPR provides a unique opportunity to improve your data and relationship with your customers over the long-term. By combining higher-quality customer data with your continued marketing practices, GDPR compliance may actually end up improving your ROI over the long-term.

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​GDPR Compliance: Everything You Need to Know

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