Post-GDPR Era: Is Personalization Possible?

Téa Liarokapi

Téa LiarokapiContent Writer for Moosend

Monday, December 2, 2019

In this day and age, marketing is everywhere and it’s an essential part of every business plan.

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This is why there are so many marketing platforms to choose from that can offer options on email marketing and marketing automation.

But what can you do with the data you have in your database on these platforms?

And how can you use hyper-personalization and create the perfect personalized email without violating any GDPR regulations?

What is GDPR compliance?

According to the GDPR regulation that took effect in May 2018, which applies to all businesses that have transactions with EU citizens whether they’re located in the EU or not, companies need to be very clear on how one’s data is used.

What’s more, the consent form needs to be right there where it can be seen and there needs to be absolute transparency at every step, as well as the choice for user’s to opt-out, if they think they need to.

Of course, this goes for cookies as well, seeing as those got classified as personal information. And with hefty fines for non-compliance, it’s no wonder that marketers were at a loss.

But personalization is not impossible, even when a company needs to follow those terms.

The new opportunities

Being GDPR compliant doesn’t mean that you can’t gather user data, it just means you can only gather the data of people that are willing and interested to share their data with your company.

Therefore, the ones that see the clear benefit of your product are the ones that would be interested.

GDPR serves as an early pruning tactic, ensuring the prospects who wouldn’t benefit from it, those that either wouldn’t be interested or would be acquired through cryptic tactics, such as buying email lists, obsolete (or as good as).

This means that GDPR can actually help you see your team reach the KPIs you’ve set from the beginning and gain people’s trust by being completely transparent with what you’re going to do with their data.

Let me show you exactly what I mean:

Source

This cookie consent form is very hard to miss, as it pops up just when you start browsing the website.

It clearly states how and why the website needs cookies, as well as their intended use. And if the visitor needs to know more, there’s the “About cookies” button.

“86% are concerned about their data privacy, and 79% of consumers believe companies know too much about them.” - SmarterHQ

 

Therefore, building trust and being completely honest about what your cookies are being used for is something that you need to do.

Don’t be greedy

Gathering all data “just in case” and then not being careful with its use, thus giving plenty of users anxiety, was the reason why GDPR happened in the first place.

So, even though GDPR, when used correctly, can be a goldmine when it comes to personalization, it clearly requires “data minimization”; brands and companies can’t collect as much data as possible anymore.

This is where small, clear and concise forms come into play.

Optimize and gather as much data as needed and refrain from asking for more than you need.

For example, when you’re offering something small like a free quote from a moving company, you can’t ask for a job title. It looks fishy.

However, a job title or a company name will be needed when your freebie is, say, a free case study download.

If, however, you’re not sure how much information you need, you can always ask for customer feedback. This’ll drive maximum engagement, you’ll know precisely what you need and you’ll gain precious insight into what your customers expect.

The last thing to remember

All in all, prospects demand personalization. They don’t just want the data to be taken from them.

Rather, they’ll disclose information willingly, if that means they get a better, more personalized experience.

Personalization is - and always will be - possible after GDPR, especially since people are willing to give up data to get something tailor-made to meet their specific needs.

All you need to do is be transparent.

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