The Impact of GDPR on Email Marketing: What You Need to Know.

As of May 2018, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) has been in effect, regulating how businesses handle personal data within the European Union (EU). One area that has been significantly impacted is email marketing. This article will review the impact of GDPR on email marketing and what you need to know to ensure compliance.

Impact on Email Marketing
Under GDPR regulations, companies must obtain explicit consent from individuals prior to collecting, processing, or storing their personal data. This means that email marketers must have clear consent from individuals before adding them to an email list. Businesses must also provide explicit opt-out options to individuals who no longer wish to receive emails.

Marketers must also pay close attention to the way they collect consent. GDPR outlines that consent should be obtained through both affirmative opt-ins and granular opt-ins. Consent should also be freely given and not dependent on any other actions, such as providing goods or services.

Additionally, GDPR requires that companies have a clear and transparent privacy policy, which outlines how personal data is collected, processed, and used. This policy must be easily accessible, and individuals must be made aware of any updates or changes.

Non-compliance with GDPR email marketing regulations can result in hefty fines up to €20 million or 4% of the company’s global annual turnover, whichever is greater.

Tips for GDPR Compliance in Email Marketing
To ensure compliance with GDPR regulations, email marketers should consider implementing the following strategies:

1. Obtain explicit consent: Businesses must obtain explicit consent from individuals prior to adding them to an email list. It’s important to clearly outline what information will be collected, why it’s being collected, and how it will be used.

2. Provide clear opt-out options: Marketers must provide clear opt-out options for individuals who no longer wish to receive emails. Unsubscribing should be made easy and straightforward.

3. Review and update privacy policies: Companies must have clear and transparent privacy policies that outline how personal data will be collected, processed, and used.

4. Keep accurate records: Businesses must keep accurate records of consent obtained from individuals, including when and how it was obtained.

5. Monitor third-party compliance: Companies must ensure that any third-party vendors who handle personal data are also GDPR compliant.

The GDPR has significantly impacted email marketing, requiring businesses to obtain explicit consent, provide clear opt-out options, and maintain transparent privacy policies. Non-compliance can result in hefty fines. Marketers should implement strategies for compliance, including obtaining explicit consent, providing clear opt-out options, and keeping accurate records. They should also ensure that any third-party vendors handling personal data are GDPR compliant. By following these guidelines, businesses can ensure compliance with GDPR regulations and maintain a positive reputation with customers.

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