Don’t just address compliance as part of your marketing strategy – embrace it

James is editor in chief of TechForge Media, with a passion for how technologies influence business and several Mobile World Congress events under his belt. James has interviewed a variety of leading figures in his career, from former Mafia boss Michael Franzese, to Steve Wozniak, and Jean Michel Jarre. James can be found tweeting at @James_T_Bourne.

Session When it comes to marketing, trust is sometimes considered something of a dirty word. Pre-GDPR, it was almost laughable. Yes, you can trust us not to hawk your data to any Tom, Dick or Harry going. You can also trust us that our product does exactly what we say it does, and that you won’t get a few bills down the line because you neglected to read the small print.

The wheels are in motion for those who blatantly transgress, though the cogs can take a while to whirr. For the likes of Google et al – a €1.49bn EU fine here, a €4.34bn fine there – this type of open wallet surgery only causes a glancing blow.

GDPR aimed to change all that. Yet many weren’t convinced. Go back to August 2018, when a study from Demandbase found 80% of marketers were concerned that martech vendors would expose them to legal risks. As this publication previously opined, complexity and confusion still reigns.

But opportunity awaits. Trust and transparency can be the new currency for those looking to take a step forward. Data is ultimately “something that’s entrusted to you” as Chris Slovak, VP at Tealium, told Business News Daily in February. “This is an opportunity to reevaluate how you treat your customers and prospective customers. It requires a different way of thinking, and an investment in data and the tools to manage the data itself.”

Yet ensuring trust and compliance isn’t just a series of checkboxes and draconian measures, or falling into the trap of thinking once you’re certified the work is done. The customer is always right, after all – and with the current social and digital landscape, they have more power than ever.

Writing for Marketing Week in July, Claire Feeney, director of OneTrust PreferenceChoice, explained that marketers need to offer various options. Instead of unsubscribes or opt-outs, offer customers the chance to ‘opt-down’. A preference centre should include other opportunities, such as frequency options and customised customer data questions, as well as important access to privacy policies and rights information.

“The way we market has fundamentally changed,” Feeney wrote. “Because of new privacy laws, marketers have been forced to operate with customer consent and customer preferences at the core of their strategies. Those who embrace this new way of thinking won’t just survive but thrive in the world of modern marketing.”

OneTrust in particular is focusing a lot of resources on ‘going beyond’. Take this article from April around ‘going beyond privacy’ for instance. Again, it emphasises how ‘laying off the pedal on all strategies and tactics’ once compliance is achieved can be a fatal error. “The opposite is true,” the company wrote. “Privacy laws are constantly being updated with addendums to the original rules.

“More importantly, consumers are moving more and more towards supporting companies that allow them to be in control of how their own data is used.”

The goal therefore is not to simply address compliance, but embrace it. Feeney will be speaking at DMWF Virtual on September 16 to explore ‘going beyond compliance’, offering the three best ways to build trust with your audience.

Attendees will learn about:

  • The current privacy and ecosystem landscape for marketers
  • Going beyond compliance requirements to preference strategies
  • The top strategies to build trust with your audience

Find out more and register for this session here.

Interested in hearing leading global brands discuss subjects like this in person?

Find out more about Digital Marketing World Forum (#DMWF) Europe, London, North America, and Singapore.  

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