You might have seen your marketing team wailing, pulling their hair out or quietly rocking back and forward in the corner recently. This is because something called the GDPR is coming into force and it's going to change the face of B2B marketing as we know it. And as we all know, if it affects your marketing it's going to affect your sales. So here is what you need to know about the GDPR.
The GDPR: The Basics
The General Data Protection Regulation applies to any organisation that handles EU citizen's personal data. Now this – at present – includes personal business email addresses because it can identify an individual. The new regulation says marketers have to get prior consent before they start marketing to them.
In short: someone has to confirm they've agreed to your marketing communications before marketing are allowed to send them any emails. Which is a tough ask. Particularly for those sales teams that rely on email marketing to drive new leads to their pipeline.
The good news?
The GDPR doesn't effect telesales. This is still an opt-out methodology, so you can call as many prospects that land on your website as you like. Your marketing team, too, will survive. There are several tactics they can take to get contacts to double opt-in.
Running events, inbound channels such as social media, and content marketing can all draw in new leads with form fills. Contacts that double opt-in are also more likely to respond well to your marketing (and therefore sales pitch) because they are interested in what you have to say.
The bad news?
Double opt-in marketing lists are, naturally, smaller. So you're going to have a smaller pool of prospects from marketing, though they will be higher quality. It's the age-old debate of sales vs marketing, quality vs. quantity all over again. This time with just a GDPR title attached. As a result, you'll have to put more effort into pulling in your own leads if you want quantity.
It's almost as if the sales funnel we've all come to know and love is shifting on its head. In recent years, marketing has started to work on the lead nurturing aspect with the likes of automation while sales focus on the close. Now it appears sales might need to focus on the lead generation as well as close while marketing push prospects through the pipeline.
Of course, that's just a theory at this stage. For now, we must all prepare for the GDPR together. Find out what you need to know about the GDPR and how it's going to affect your business to get a better idea of what to expect.
By Alison Chambers, Content Strategist at CommuniGator Group Ltd - marketing automation platform for lead generation. Find out more here. For more sales strategy tips from the lead generation experts, check out CommuniGator's latest articles. For more like this visit our website.