GDPR is on everyone’s lips as the deadline to become compliant fast approaches. Although there is still a lot of fear, confusion and concern about GDPR most companies seem to have at least a grasp of what is expected of them.
Whenever such a big change is introduced certain industries and companies feel it more than others. In this case, those companies whose lead generation consist of cold calling, unsolicited emails and direct mail are likely to be hardest hit. For the end user that’s fantastic news and it’s one of the key reasons that GDPR has been implemented – to protect the general public from ‘nuisance marketing’.
So what about inbound marketing? What is the likely impact of GDPR on those companies that leverage useful content resources to capture contact details?
Because Inbound Marketing is most commonly used in the Business-to-Business arena, it was long thought that GDPR didn’t apply. We now know that is incorrect.
As a general rule of thumb, if an email address is generic eg. firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com the GDPR legislation does not apply. However, as soon as a name is involved firstname.lastname@example.org, regardless of whether it is a business or personal email address that falls under the new GDPR rules.
Because it’s difficult to know which of these email address types is going to be entered into the contact form on your landing page, our recommendation would be to include the opt-in copy and check box on all of your contact forms.
So does that mean Inbound Marketing is going to become less effective because lots of people will choose to opt out of being marketing to?
In some cases the number of contacts you are able to market to will decrease but only if your inbound marketing efforts are poor or mediocre. Inbound marketing is about leveraging value. It’s also about creating content resources that speak so directly and accurately to your target persona/audience that they would be foolish to not download it. If you create a first impression so strong that it makes absolute sense for your persona to complete your contact form, why would they choose to opt out?
If you want your inbound marketing campaigns to survive GDPR your focus needs to be on creating quality and relevance. Tighten your targeting, research your personas more thoroughly, A/B test your landing pages and make sure that your content resources are as useful, valuable and interesting as they can possibly be.
In other words, give your audience no reason to opt out.
Instead of thinking about GDPR as a threat, start seeing it as an opportunity and the catalyst for you to become a better inbound marketer.