The 25th of May has come and passed, but still data protection is the topic of many conversations, from the water cooler to the boardroom. You have cleansed your databases and ensured that your security is up to scratch, but what now? Am I alone now? How do I market and build my business in an uncertain age of GDPR and the E privacy directive?
SMEs may feel that they have gotten the short end of the stick when enterprise businesses have bigger budgets to purchase technology and hire legal teams. SMEs can also thrive and grow their businesses with a GDPR compliant strategy. Marketing is not dead, it is just fairer and safer for your prospects.
Below we detail 3 ways you can still market and grow your SME business:
How can you help me?
A misconception about GDPR, is that you cannot send business emails to prospects….ever. But this is not the case. You can send an email to an individual’s commercial email address once your message is related to their business. This does not mean you can scrape emails from websites and add them to your email newsletter list. But you don’t have to stay quiet you can tell them about your business if it will be of benefit to them.
However remember, if they opt out you cannot send them anything (and allow them the option to in your email).
Customer is king!
Wonder why you have been receiving emails but you have not opted in. That is because you are a customer of these businesses, and as a customer they can market to you. You may send direct marketing emails to your customers without opt in consent if they are a current customer – they have purchased from you or used your services in the last 12 months. However as always you cannot contact them if they have opted out. It is always cheaper for a business to keep a current customer, rather than win a new one so this is good to focus on your customer base.
Create content, and they will come!
Outside of 1 and 2 it is important to start building an inbound machine. Content creation and SEO can drive people to your website. When you can’t access them, they may come to you! SMEs may feel they do not have the budgets to create content, but it is easier and more cost effective than it sounds. One thing that thriving SMEs have is knowledge to share. Think about the questions your future customers are asking, and answer them! Searching for topics? Look to your sales reps, customers and sites like Answerthepublic.com to find the topics that will DRIVE prospects to your website.
Remember marketing isn’t dead for SMEs, it is more important than ever. SMEs have a story to share, and GDPR will not hinder them. Just remember to be respectful with prospects’ data and their inboxes.