Demystify what GDPR means for your marketing

GDPR and Marketing

Susie Bishop
30th March 2023

Do you ever have something that you'd like to send out to your current and past customers, only you pause there unsure of whether you need read up on GDPR? Today we're going to demystify GDPR when it comes to sending marketing emails and SMS messages to your customers without breaking any data protection laws.

First things first, let's get one thing straight: GDPR is not the enemy. It's designed to protect people's personal data and ensure that businesses use that data responsibly. So, let's embrace it and use it to our advantage.

Now, when it comes to sending marketing emails, there are a few things you need to keep in mind:

Step 1: Get consent

Under GDPR, you can only send marketing materials to people who have given you their explicit consent to do so. That means you need to have a clear opt-in process on your website or other channels where people can sign up to receive your emails. You can't pre-check the box or use any other sneaky tactics to get people to opt-in. In the case of physically signing up customers in person you can ask for this permission or include it in a paper form but you are required to show that you have this process in place and have been following it if requested.

There is an exception to this rule where you can opt-in existing customers automatically to marketing of specific products or services. You can't just send marketing emails/SMS to everyone you’ve ever messaged as part of your service. The exception only applies to existing customers where you are offering products or services that are comparable to the ones they've already purchased or used.

This is very interesting for anyone in the field service industry. We wouldn't like to define 'comparable products or services' but we wanted to highlight this statement from the official guidance.

Step 2: Be transparent

When people sign up to receive your emails, you need to be clear about what they're signing up for. Tell them what kind of emails they can expect to receive and how often they'll receive them. You should also provide a link to your privacy policy so they can read more about how you'll use their data. You might want to let them know that if they want to be included in future offers, they'll want to sign up to make sure they receive them to increase the number of current customers you can send emails out to.

Step 3: Keep it relevant

Once people have signed up to receive your emails, you need to make sure that the content you're sending them is relevant and valuable to them. Don't just send out generic promotional emails, personalize your content based on their interests and preferences or the services and products they are already interested in purchasing from you.

Step 4: Make it easy to opt-out

People have the right to opt-out of receiving your emails at any time, so make sure you provide an easy way for them to do so. Include an unsubscribe link in every email you send, and make sure it's easy to find.

SEND for Squeegee makes this incredibly easy as it automatically includes the unsubscribe link at the bottom of every message. If a customer presses this, their profile automatically switches to opted out so they won't appear in your opted-in audience any longer.

Step 5: Keep your data secure

Under GDPR, you're responsible for keeping people's personal data secure. Squeegee uses a secure email service provider so it is taking care of part of this risk for you by storing your customers data safely.

And there you have it – a quick guide to sending marketing materials in compliance with GDPR.

Remember, GDPR is not the enemy – it's there to help protect people's personal data. By following these steps, you can use email marketing to build trust with your customers and grow your business.