New regulations significantly tighten rules around consent and proof of consent, with potential fines up to £10m

The new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) was passed in May 2016 and is enforceable on 25 May 2018.

In a recent speech, the UK Information Commissioner highlighted that it is likely that GDPR will be live before the UK leaves the European Union and, irrespective of Brexit, personal information will need to flow between the UK and Europe.

What does this mean?

The new regulations dramatically change how sales and marketing organisations collect, handle and process information. There are significant changes to the rules for obtaining valid consent for the processing and use of personal data, including email addresses:

  • Consent must be freely given, informed, and explicit.
  • The opt-in process has to be provable.
  • And, your prospects must understand what they are signing up to receive from you.
  • Consent cannot be assumed. Inaction, or inactivity (the fact that someone hasn’t opted out) will not be valid as an indication of consent.

Take action now

Irrespective of Brexit, organisations that don’t already have opted-in lists need to get to grips with the GDPR and take action now to ensure compliance by May 2018; companies who don’t comply could be liable to penalties up to £10m, if they continue to market without consent.

Whilst this may feel overwhelming, taking the right steps now will prevent major issues later on. Early movers and brands that demonstrate best practice in this area will improve the quality of their customer interaction, increase trust and confidence in their brand, and build their competitive advantage.

Help is available

We have worked with organisations of all sizes, both in the UK and internationally, to support a wide range of data cleansing and enhancement requirements, including multilingual campaigns. We can quickly call through your data to:

  • Capture clear unambiguous consent for your marketing communications.
  • Establish a robust audit trail around consent for compliance purposes.
  • Verify and validate existing email addresses and obtain opt-in consent.
  • Append new opted-in email addresses to contacts in your database.
  • Build new opted-in lists to match your specifications.

In addition, as we call, we can carry out a full refresh of your data, validating and enhancing existing records (job title, role, responsibility, decision making contacts) and profiling contacts to capture valuable insight to increase the relevance of future communications.

Marketing only to those individuals who are receptive to your offer will make your marketing communications more effective, increase conversion rates and ROI, and reduce churn. It is an opportunity to reactivate lapsed accounts, build a deeper understanding of customer interests and generate new business from your existing data assets.

In the longer term the GDPR presents a great opportunity to get your data in shape.

Contact us today to find out how we can help

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GDPR at a Glance

  • Clear and plain language must be used
  • Consent must be freely given, informed, specific, and unambiguous
  • The individual must agree by a clear affirmative action
  • Pre-ticked boxes or silence will not equal consent
  • Profiling must be notified clearly and separately from other information
  • The right to object to marketing must be made clear