GDPR is a hot topic among marketers everywhere as the deadline to become compliant looms large. Despite the wealth of information available about steps to take, what GDPR covers and exactly what constitutes personal data, there is still
some confusion and concern.
Whenever new web-related regulations are introduced they tend to cause a stir but to-date none have threatened such significant financial penalties for non-compliance. Although GDPR affects 99% of all companies in the EU, there are inevitably some that are going to be affected more than others. Those companies that rely on intrusive marketing tactics for their lead generation efforts are likely to be hardest hit and will have to make more adjustments to their marketing efforts than the majority.
One of the key areas of confusion seems to be around inbound marketing and how GDPR will impact this relatively new lead generation practice. Such was the lack of clear understanding that it took Hubspot, the world authority on Inbound Marketing, until early this year to issue a definitive statement on how the new regulations would impact use of their marketing platform.
Because Inbound Marketing is predominantly used for B2B marketing, it was initially thought that GDPR didn’t apply. We now know that to be incorrect.
If an email address contains no specific information relating to a person eg. email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org the GDPR legislation does not apply. As soon as a person’s name is involved eg. email@example.com , the regulations apply.
Rather than trying to decide which contact forms you should add GDPR text and opt-in check box to, we suggest that for now you include them on all of them.
Does that mean lead generation through Inbound Marketing will become less effective due to people opting out of being marketed to?
It is likely that you’ll see a reduction in the number of people you can contact but on the plus side, those people who do opt in are indicating a stronger interest in your product/services.
Inbound marketing is about leveraging value ie. creating content resources so valuable and relevant to your target persona that they’re compelled to download them. If your marketing message, landing page, copy and offering are so strong and relevant that it makes absolute sense for your visitor to complete your contact form, why would they choose to opt out?
In summary, for your inbound marketing campaigns to not just survive but thrive beyond GDPR’s May’s deadline your focus needs to be on creating even more quality and better relevance. Tighten your targeting, dig deeper into what makes you persona tick, A/B test your landing pages and make sure that your content downloads are as useful, valuable and interesting as they can possibly be.
In other words, give your audience no reason to opt out.