GDPR spells trouble for lazy marketers

Darryl Danielli
Monday, April 23, 2018

Unless you’ve been living under a stone for the past few months, it can’t have escaped your notice that in a few short weeks the biggest shake up of data regulations in at least two decades will be rolled out: the General Data Protection Regulation.

On paper, ahem, the new regulations will be seriously good news for print: primarily because mail marketing will not be burdened with same opt-in requirements as email, but also because toughening up the regulations, ironically, will further deepen the distrust that many consumers have of digital marketing – something not helped by the unfortunate Facebook data abuse scandal.

Don’t get me wrong, a well thought-out, targeted email or programmatic web ad with a compelling offer for a product or service a consumer is genuinely interested in can be as effective as, well, print.

But the problem is that digital marketing has always been perceived as more cost-effective because it can reach so many people. So, lots of marketers got lazy with their digital campaigns, because it didn’t matter; they had a huge audience, so low percentage response rates weren’t an issue.

But come the 25 May, those databases might be significantly slimmed down if the consents aren’t watertight.

And that’s why, over the next few weeks inboxes across the land will get increasingly bombarded by friendly requests from brands asking you to update your preferences’.

And as a result of heightened sensitivity around digital data abuse, when it comes to updating their preferences, I suspect a fair chunk of consumers will only opt for the trusted medium of print.

And why shouldn’t they. After all, what marketing media do you think Facebook opted for when it wanted to offer a sincere apology to its users for its data faux pas...

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