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What corner offices should be asking their optimization teams with GDPR

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June 16, 2018

GDPR isn’t a tedious compliance issue that costs time and money; it is an opportunity to strengthen your consumer audience, provided you have the right optimization programs in place

What was once a trickle of GDPR-related news became in May 2018 a torrent of privacy notices and updates. Consumers, who had long ago forgotten the number of sites they had subscribed to, were suddenly flooded with emails proudly announcing that their site was now GDPR-compliant.

For a time, it looked as if complying with government regulation was cool. If you could afford the effort and treasure to comply with GDPR signaled your company had its operational act together. Often, overlooked in all the work to comply with the regulation was: what does it mean if GDPR really works?

Simply put, GDPR is setting the stage where consumers will be able to tell companies what information they can use and how they can use it. Yes, it’s clunky and as a result, creating a payday for lawyers worldwide. But as Chris Goward, who runs GO Group North America, says, “GDPR is really a gift to smart companies who can create highly-personalized experiences for their customers.”

Consumer privacy is good for business.

Chris Goward, Managing Partner, North America

He’s right. When traffic becomes a commodity, it is consumer engagement that is the currency.

I also love Francesco Rocchi’s, director of marketing at MotionPoint Europe, point of view on GDPR. He says in an article on Martech Advisor, Providing an honest, targeted and personalized experience on your global digital channels can signal to customers and prospective customers that not only do you value and respect their attention but that you’re using data to provide them with a better, more useful experience.

Here at the GO Group, we specialize in building powerful personalization and experimentation programs for our internationally-present clients. We’re neither a direct data controller or processor as defined by GDPR. Instead, as a consultancy powered by the leading optimization agencies worldwide, we optimize your digital business based on the data you share with us. 

We take that seriously, which is why we wanted you to give you…

Five questions to ask your optimization program

#1 When it comes to the grey areas – the uncomfortable ones – do you and your experimentation programs share the same spirit of the law?

GDPR is as ambitious as it is ambiguous. What you define as legitimate interest or consent may be very different than those running your marketing and personalization programs.

If you’re looking for a way of gauging alignment when it comes to the regulation, the vendor checklist created by Optimizely is a helpful conversation starter.

Our GO > KonversionsKraft team in Germany created a similar checklist in German.

#2 How secure is your experimentation program when it comes to handling your customer’s data?

Your experimentation solution handles the data you turn over. Who handles them?

#3 Would you stake four percent of your company’s annual turnover on your optimization team’s data security safeguards?

Whether you are building an internal centre of excellence or running an acceleration program for a critical part of your business with a third-party provider, the previous question escalates in its importance. You’re relying on their data security to handle your customer’s data.

In the event of a breach, as you know, consumers won’t blame the service provider, They’ll punish you, making alignment to the regulation and ensuring security safeguards are world-class all the more important.  

#4 What type and level of insurance does your experimentation provider have in place?

While most companies carry cyber insurance to protect their own business, many may not have given enough thought to the insurance policies owned by their experimentation provider.

Sure, your organization isn’t likely liable for a breach by your external experimentation partner, but that may be of little financial comfort when you need it most.

#5 Are they capable of spinning gold from GDPR?

GDPR may seem like a compliance burden that suffocates traffic. That perspective fails to harness the zeitgeist surrounding individual data rights smart companies recognize today.  

Progressive companies that partner with experimentation providers capable of revealing deep customer insight – by running quantitative and qualitative optimization programs – will thrive. Those that focus simply on mitigating the regulation’s impact misread the spirit of the law and our time, consumer privacy is good for business.

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André Morys
Managing Partner, Strategy, Germany
GO > Konversions Kraft
[email protected]

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