GDPR Ignites Opportunity (and Risk) for Marketers

The GDPR brings both risk and opportunity when marketing and selling to European Union citizens, which leaves marketers torn.

According to a recent survey published by Marketing Profs, 50% of marketers believed GDPR would make their marketing more difficult while the remainder believed that the regulation would make their marketing better.  Perhaps, it’s a matter of seeing the same object through a different lens?

Be aware of the gray area

The true beauty (and risk) of the GDPR is that some specifications are not completely black and white. Whatever our interpretation of the rules may be, it’s what we do with our client’s data that matters most.  In Europe, attitudes toward data privacy varies between countries.  Driven by cultural and societal norms, some countries care much more about their personal information than others.  If you step beyond the GDPR rules, look at the type of data that really matters to Europeans and apply common business sense to the new rules, you’ll be able to manage the risks and enhance the opportunities.

For B2B marketers, phone numbers, emails, and names are necessary and actionable campaign data we need to reach buyers.  Based on the graph below published by BCG, Germany and France put more emphasis on phone number privacy than their EU counterparts.  Interestingly, the graph shows that around 50% of EU countries, on average, put less emphasis on email data than the US respondents.  Yet, the rules for sending emails in Europe are more rigorous than the US.

So what does this mean for marketers?

Ultimately, the reason behind the GDPR is that people want control of their data because they don’t trust others to safeguard it. As marketers, we need to work on building that trust and credibility with our buyers if we want to establish a relationship with them. So, it makes sense to view the regulation as an opportunity to implement more focused marketing tactics that provide value to buyers.

To learn how to do that when GDPR goes into effect, join our discussion with SiriusDecisions on 17 May at 2 pm BST for our webinar, Demand Generation in the Age of Data Privacy.  We’ll be talking about GDPR, what it means for marketers, and how to find and nurture prospects within the rules of the law. 

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