EU Data Regulation: Bitesize 3 Point Action Plan
The new EU data regulation will have a huge impact on the future of B2B marketing. The changes are fast approaching, yet many companies who will be affected are unprepared.
In its most simplistic form, the EU Data regulation is essentially a massive restriction on the way data is collected. Website users and consumers will have greater control over how their personal information is captured, used and held. The restraints on the use of personal data (name, email, direct line etc) are likely to alter the way we manage our b2b marketing forever as unfortunately no distinction is made between business and consumer.
By following our 3 point plan below you can ensure that your marketing practices and procedures are prepared and ready for the changes in advance.
By obtaining informed consent you secure the right to keep personal details for existing customers you have within your database. Existing clients therefore remain contactable via phone or email and personal information such as their job title can be retained for future use.
However this does not solve the issue of contacting new business. Computer IP addresses are also regarded as personal data so permission must be obtained in order to store website activity. Web analytics and various online marketing tools rely on the ability to monitor user activities, without the required consent such methods for examining ROI etc will be ineffective.
Invest in a content marketing strategy. Beneficial for both existing customers and new business prospects, content marketing provides a reason for continued and sustainable engagement. The right content will attract your target audience and enable you to gain consent for further interactions and lead qualification.
Ensure that an ‘opt-in’ option is necessary to access your knowledge documents etc and try to keep content original and relevant to trends.
Allocate more of your marketing budget to b2b telemarketing activities, the one medium relatively unaffected by the EU data regulation changes. Telemarketing is an extremely effective method of lead generation, yet often it only accounts for 4% of marketing budgets*. Although effective for communicating with existing customers, using email campaigns and direct mail to create new business will be challenging. B2b telemarketing has proven that basic information such as a company switchboard number and a job title can generate millions of pounds in new business deals. Most importantly the initial data required will be legal to store and use under the new data regulation.
Dont wait, act now.
Although the EU data regulation will not become law for some time it’s important to prepare and assess how your company will be impacted. Careful planning should ensure that the effects are minimal, especially in regard to communication with existing clients. For new business development, originality and creativity will have even greater importance as the race to capture informed consent becomes determined by content quality.
*Source: B2B Barometer, 2012.