You can just imagine it: a room packed wall to wall with 200+ marketers, salespeople, CEOs, and professionals quietly awaiting their online fate. Once May 25th rolls around, GDPR will have changed the way we interact with prospects and customers in the EU forever.
Lucky for all who sat in that room of the HubSpot User Group (HUG) Tel Aviv meetup on Monday, they were able to walk away with answers on what GDPR is and how best to prepare for the changes needed to be made ahead. Here’s a taste of some of the main highlights for the event!
Part #1: Amit Lavi (CEO, Marketing Envy) gives opening remarks
We started off with the basics. GDPR, simply put, is the reality that in order to protect the privacy of EU members (fun fact on that in a second), three policies must be enforced:
- You need a good reason to collect data
- You need to store said data in a safe and lawful way
- You need to allow people to delete their data from your system.
Setting in the 6 stages of coping with GDPR (shock, denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance), you can rest assured that if you’re a HubSpot user, they’ve done their job in order for you to be ready on time for these laws to come into effect. Keep in mind, this applies to all EU passport holders, including those are who aren’t sitting on European soil.
The word of the day was easily ‘consent’. You need it for your cookies (in all languages), allowing others to download your content, and you’ll need to keep a record of all of your censenting transactions. For example, say you go to a conference in France. Gone are the days of asking for a business card and follow up when you get back to the office. You’ll now need some way to record the experience that the business card was handed to you with the consent of the other party that you mean to use it to follow up about collaborations, sales, and well just about everything else. While Amit was sure to keep us laughing and on our toes, he concluded that GDPR is no laughing matter and those looking for advice on the topic should consider speaking to a lawyer to understand how GDPR will affect their business come May.
Part #2: Sinead Goggin (Senior Channel Account Manager, HubSpot)
So if GDPR stops sales team from buying lists and cold calling/ emailing EU members, sounds like there’s a lot of sales teams who are going to need a serious huddle. But before you book a time to panic together and think of what else you can do to generate leads, it may be worth inviting some marketing team members to join the party.
Sinead Goggin came in from HubSpot Ireland (the company’s European HQ) in order to discuss “Smarketing” or the alignment of your company’s sales and marketing efforts. The truth of the matter is, 54% more leads are generated by inbound efforts so these teams ideally should be in constant communication. Common language, united goals and a seamless strategy should be your first steps in getting the best leads into the marketing funnel and teed up for sales for further nurturing and conversion.
Still not convinced? 60% of the sales cycle is over before a prospect even talks to a salesperson because they’re already “sold” on what they see on a company’s website and social networks. If that’s the case, shouldn’t we all be investing more on top of the funnel content? By forming a strong alliance, marketing and sales can generate 20% more growth for a company, while a misalignment can result in a 4% decrease in annual revenue. You do the math.
In the age of GDPR, one thing is for certain. By creating a service level agreement (SLA) between your marketing and sales teams, you can begin to share a common language, plan out an end-to-end inbound strategy, and measure and report for optimal growth.
Part #3: Noa Eshed (co-CEO, Bold Digital Architects) chairs a GDPR expert panel
First of all, let’s talk about this all-star lineup. Gali Arad Kovacs (Senior Marketing Manager, Netapp), Lior Etgar (Tulchinsky Stern Marciano Cohen Levitski & Co., Law Offices), Shahar Maor (Information Security Manager, Outbrain), Omer Shmueli (VP of Legal Affairs, Como), and Eli Zilberman Caspi (Partner and Head of Data Privacy & GDPR, Konfidas) joined Noa on the main stage to discuss the ramifications of GDPR on marketing and beyond.
When Noa opening up the panel with the question, “How do companies start understanding what to do?”, Omer jumped in on the mic to utter the words that precisely set the stage for the rest of the panel. “It’s a very complex question,” he began. “First the good news, that GDPR is a kind of an opportunity, it’s not a risk or threat. If you’re bringing enough value to your customers, then your end users will be willing to pay with their data.” The bad news? GDPR can be minefield he says. Once you’ve collected data, it can be hard to find your way out of the data that you’re already holding.
So what did the lawyer of the group have to say about all of this? Lior made it clear that first and foremost, you need to offer what he called an “open approach”. As a company, it’s critical to have management awareness, and their commitment to make it happen. Like any other project or regulation that needs to be implemented, be sure to all have your resources and technical measures in place. Do that, and you’ll find everything will go more smoothly.
Another moment of reassurance came from Eli, who explained that, “it’s not written in GDPR that you can or cannot do an action that you do today, but there are new rules to these actions. The basic rule of profiling is that you have to have a clear handshake between you, the company, and the ‘data subject’ [the client]”. In short, by becoming compliance and transparent, you can explain that you’re following what they’re doing in order to offer the most personalized experienced possible.
What should you be doing with those data subjects in your CRM? Shahar stepped in to talk about data retention policies. When he first got to the digital marketing team at Outbrain, they insisted they couldn’t delete old leads since they wanted the opportunity to retarget them in the future. So what is the best practices on how long to keep leads around for in your CRM? According to his team’s research, “24 months is more than enough...because higher engagement comes from fresh leads and those who interact with your system.”
Last but certainly not least, Gali was there to shed insight on how to begin shifting through your potentially thousands of CRM leads and get ready for the big day. “Start auditing. Start looking at all your forms. Start looking at the disclaimers that you have. Change them, add them if you don’t have them...increase the opt-in tactics that you’re doing on your website.”
Looking for more insights on GDPR? You can watch the entire video here. If you want to see the answers to specific questions Noa asked, click ‘SHOW MORE’ on the YouTube page to see the breakdown by question and timestamp.
Following the panel, Amit come back to offer some more action points to consider such as forgoing obsolete practices like buying lists, being sure to withdraw consent when adding new contacts to your CRM, and offering easy and granular opt-out. All in all, it was a great event with expert speakers, an inquisitive crowd, and one lucky winner who won the raffle for a Flying Spider drone. Looking forward to the next HUG Tel Aviv in Q3!