6 Great Email Lessons From the GDPR Deluge of 2018

6 Great Email Lessons From the GDPR Deluge of 2018

These emails, prompted by the European data protection and privacy law that took effect May 25, asked us to confirm our interest in continuing to receive email from the sender. “[Action Required]: GDPR” or “[Important Notice] Please Confirm Your Subscription.” If you have an engaged audience (or audience segment) that reacts well to catchy non-specific subject lines, you can try that approach. But, for less engaged segments, clarity around the action makes sense. This is the audience you likely want to keep in your database. Stick with the email distribution address that’s worked in the past. Also, I get nervous when I receive an email from an individual (I don’t know) asking me to take an important action. Don’t send multiple requests too close together Most of the emails I received were either “review a privacy policy” or “stay or confirm subscriptions,” and sometimes companies sent both emails. Do act promptly after response If you email a forewarning that if they don’t act, they will be removed/unsubscribed from your database, the next logical step would be to follow through promptly. Remember, every non-requested email in a person’s inbox is one more reminder they can unsubscribe or mark it as spam. Content Marketing Institute invites you, one of our engaged readers, to grow your relationship with thousands of your fellow content marketers and to learn from some of the brightest in the field.

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email-lessons-gdpr

A few weeks ago, your inbox was probably stuffed with GDPR emails. Mine was.

These emails, prompted by the European data protection and privacy law that took effect May 25, asked us to confirm our interest in continuing to receive email from the sender. Many asked us to review and accept new privacy policies. Some thanked us for being loyal subscribers. Some begged us to stay subscribed. Some let us know how so-and-so brand can help you, as a marketer, ensure GDPR compliance, avoid fines, and make millions of dollars using their tools.

A few warned we’d never get another email (please, say it ain’t so) unless we took action.

I even got an email from my mom asking if I knew anything about “this whole GDPR thing.” Bottom line, inboxes were flooded.

On the bright side, the onslaught means companies viewed the new law as an opportunity to reevaluate their business processes, work out a GDPR-compliance plan with their legal teams, and reaffirm audience interest in their content. On the not-so-bright side, some companies simply blasted out emails to anybody they could scrape from their databases. That’s never a great practice – and might have violated the law that prompted the email in the first place.

I’m not a lawyer. I am not giving legal advice on GDPR compliance (if you’re concerned about that, work with your company’s legal team).

Instead, I’m using the torrential GDPR outpouring to illustrate some do’s and don’ts for email marketing.

Don’t include a CTA that leads to a dead (or wrong) end

One email I received included a call to action with these options:

I clicked opt out and landed on a page with no opt-out option. I left all checkboxes blank and submitted the form. Then I received a thank you … for opting-in. What?

Do explain in the subject line the action required

If you require someone to take an action, emphasize the action in the subject line. “[Action Required]: GDPR” or “[Important Notice] Please Confirm Your Subscription.”

action-required-subject-line

If you have an engaged audience (or audience segment) that reacts well to catchy non-specific…

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