If you haven’t heard of GDPR by now, you’re clearly not checking your in-box often enough!
GDPR represents a massive change in the way that companies have to handle data about their customers, and it’s being introduced right across the EU to give customers more rights and protections.
It’s meant to control how data is used and stored by switching the onus from opting out of direct marketing communications to opting in.
If you have a customer database, then what it effectively means is that you have to contact every customer whose information you hold to check that they still want you to keep that data, and to ask if you can carry on communicating with them.
If that customer says no, then you have to stop processing their data for direct marketing and, even if they say yes, you still have to give them the option to opt out in all the future communications you send to them.
What’s significant here is that customers have to make a positive choice – such as ticking a box or agreeing over the phone, and you have to make it clear in plain language exactly what they are signing up to. As I understand it, if customers don’t reply, then that has to be taken as a No and you have to remove them from your list.
Whilst GDPR obviously has the best interests of the consumer at heart and will hopefully put an end to data being shared between businesses when customers haven’t agreed to that, it does mean that it will be easy to lose touch with even your most loyal customers if you don’t approach the new rules in a positive and proactive way.
At Mila, we’re emailing all of our customers at the moment to ask them to opt in to our communications from me, our marketing and technical teams. We don’t want anyone to miss out on receiving the information they really want and value so, if you have received a GDPR email from Mila recently, please take the time to reply. You can opt in to receive our communications by clicking here.
The GDPR rules officially come into force this Friday so you can obviously expect to be getting an awful lot of e-mails this week (not just from Mila!). If you haven’t contacted your own customers yet in compliance with GDPR, then you really have only got a few days left.