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Why GDPR means you MUST ramp up your Inbound Marketing.

April 25 2017

Attention Marketers.jpgBy now you have heard of GDPR. You’ve probably had conversations about what it means for your business. If you haven't had this conversation, you need to have it rapidly. It also means you need to invest in Inbound Marketing. 

You can find out more about GDPR in this Insight Blog Series.

Let's be clear, GDPR goes live on 25th May 2018 and will have huge implications for marketers. Here, in my opinion, are three of the biggest:

You can’t email anybody unless you've got their explicit consent.

So no more relying on dodgy data lists and asking them to ‘Opt-Out’ if they don’t like getting emails from you.

You have to prove that you have got their consent.

So you must know how or when they clicked the ‘Opt-In’ button. If you can’t prove this when asked, then you can’t use this data. By the way, if you email your database asking them to ‘Opt-In’ you might also be breaking the rules. Flybe got fined £70,000 for getting it wrong.

You can't bundle your ‘Opt-In’ consent.

In other words you can’t force people to consent for marketing communications when they are doing something else i.e buying your product or service.


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Time for a deep clean of your data

Expect to see a reduction in the size of your usable email database. In many cases marketers are going to have to make the tough decision to just expire old data. They need to shift from an Outbound Marketing mindset and stop clinging to data that's no longer legal or compliant.

It’s time to recognise the truth that always existed. Just because you've got a million contacts in a database doesn't mean they're all valuable. If you're honest about things there's probably a huge proportion of these names who haven't clicked or engaged in any of your content for a long time.

Now is a great time for a deep clean of your data.

Expect to see more investment in Inbound Marketing

GDPR should herald an increase in spending on Inbound Marketing techniques. If you are new to Inbound Marketing, then read this.

Inbound marketing is about bringing people to you rather than chasing them down. It's like a magnet. Post GDPR implementation, marketers will need to think harder about how they are going to get people to visit their site or other digital estates. For example, it might mean more of an emphasis on SEO to become more discoverable in search. It might mean more investment in building up social followers (by definition an Opted-In audience :-))

No more one-size-fits-all content

Quality content is at the heart of any Inbound Marketing. Being known as a destination for useful, quality content will help you grow your email database.

But to work it needs to be a genuine knowledge exchange. I predict that marketers will spend more time working out what their customers actually want in the form of content. So they create content that truly speaks to the interests and needs of different personas rather than taking a one-size-fits-all approach.

Power-up your marketing automation

I'm a certified Hubspot user and I love it. So I can see how Hubspot is going to get more and more relevant for the simple reason that it provides incredible attribution to show what content or what channel is most likely to attract new email subscribers.

Time to cosy up to your subscribers

Imagine, even if you have some awesome ‘Opt-In’ data - you are at risk of them ‘Opting-Out’ at any point. If they do, you can't reach out to them again and ask them to come back! So this means MUCH MORE effort spent on retaining your subscribers. Again Hubspot can help streamline and automate more personalise communications.

You still have time to get your ar@e in gear

GPDR will mean big changes for many businesses. You still have time before it fully kicks in. So I suggest you make use of this window to develop an inbound strategy and start getting the infrastructure, technology and processes in place to build an ‘Opted-In' subscriber base.

If you need any help or advice on Inbound Marketing or Hubspot marketing automation, then please don't hesitate to get in contact.