You probably also received tons of e-mails referring to GDPR lately. Quite often I see the message “GDPR enforces us to ask you whether we can keep on contacting you”. That is not true. GDPR enforces every organization to ask permission to start e-mailing (opt-in), and enforces every organization to allow the receiver in every e-mailing to opt-out again. If you had the “opts” right yesterday, there is no reason to ask that again. A good reason, of course, is use this GDPR occasion to clean-up the database, and get rid of old data that have no value any longer, but could create a liability in the future. But that’s not the same as blaming GDPR for having to send an e-mailing to the whole address database.
Facebook’s CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, today had a different experience in Brussels than in the US. Shorter and sharper. Europe was much better prepared, and much more eager to defend the privacy of its citizens. It’s a pitty we have not that much juridical power over an American company. Some of the quotes will probably not go unnoticed. Especially Guy Verhofstadt from Belgium must have pushed a button saying “do you want to be remembered as Bill Gates and Steve Jobs who have created fantastic value for all of us, or do you want to be remembered as the person that created a monster that is ruining our democracy.”
- View the statement of Guy Verhofstadt via this link: http://www.standaard.be/cnt/dmf20180522_03523832.
Most of the GDPR initiatives are about compliance. Privacy consultants and managers all together want to ensure a company will not get prosecuted. The efforts are geared towards being protected from claims, and to do whatever is required to avoid huge sums to be paid one day in court. For the protection of the privacy, this is a positive evolution. In the future, companies will think twice, before messing around with an individual’s personal data.
Are customers going to benefit from the privacy protection initiatives?
Let’s talk about customer service now. The attention to the legal protection of the company will probably not benefit its customer-centricity. Chances are high that the Kafka-feeling that is often associated with being a customer at a large company, will only increase. This will come very natural, by the way. Companies will set-up procedures to ensure that they respond to customer demands regarding their privacy in a correct and 100% court-proof manner. They will have done everything possible to ensure a customer or a potential customer is never able to claim whatsoever.
The procedures will be heavy. They will gradually become more heavy whenever the media will cover a show trial putting a big brand to trial. And they will cost so much manual labor that companies will not be eager to help you … many will introduce procedures that will discourage the individual from proceeding.
The result will be a discouraged individual not wanting to claim a lot of money. That’s great if you look at this from a legal & finance viewpoint. But that’s horrific if you look at this from the marketing & sales viewpoint. You do not want discouraged clients. Period. The future turn-over of the company is in their wallets.
When GDPR-compliant meets customer-oriented
Let’s look at GDPR from a non-legal viewpoint. The great thing about GDPR is that it is about people’s data. People’s data, not companies’ data. In most organizations it is about (future) collaborators and (future) clients — the individuals placing the order, not the organizations they work for. Let’s focus on the (future) clients here. It’s the same (future) clients, as the ones that are focused on in the CRM and website teams and programs. It’s the same (future) clients as the ones that are visited or followed by the sales people. It’s the same (future) clients are marketing departments are dreaming of.
Now, if we believe the world is evolving to an individual-centric world, then organizing the GDPR as well as the CRM, website, marketing and sales initiatives around the individual (potential) client, is the first step towards ensuring GDPR initiatives are also customer-centricity stimulators. It’s not too hard to do. It only requires a C-level manager to understand this and ensure the GDPR projects are aligned with sales & marketing projects. And call IDlegcy to ensure the software helps reduce the efforts from managers to comply with GDPR and create a great positive feeling about being a client at their company.
Beer and GDPR. It has proven to be a great combination on this February evening. Commanity Café gathered more than 100 enthousiastic management advisors in Palm Brewery. Keynote of the evening were GDPR expert Vincent Panis (Mazars Financial Advisory) and Mister Direct Marketing Burt Riské (Trends Business Information).
In an hour, both experts were able to bring the essentials of GDPR for advisors. Here are some of the websites (some in nl, some in en) they referred to:
- De essentie van GDPR op 1A4 (Teachprivacy)
- Publicatie in Trends Magazine n°4 (25/01)
- Bekijk hier hoe Channel 4 met zijn kijkers communiceert over hun data
Do also check the website of Commanity: