The end of one-to-one marketing?

Are you ready for one-to-none marketing?

You might have already heard about the proposed EU overhaul of the way consumer data protection is regulated. As both consumers and a business, we welcome this modernisation of our data law – much of which pre-dates the internet era.

But the proposals currently passing through the EU could have potentially devastating consequences for your business

As the proposals currently stand it will become illegal to

* send a mailshot           * send a promotional email           * make a telemarketing call

to any named individual either at home or at work without first obtaining their explicit consent and being able to prove that you have done so.

Quite simply it will mean the end of targeted direct marketing in the UK.

The proposals:

One-to-one marketing to become opt-in across the board

This would rule out any direct contact with your customers/prospects unless you can proove explicit consent. This could mean the end of targeted online ads, direct mail and even email communications

Prohibition of profiling

You would no longer be allowed to target marketing at specific customer profiles, meaning you could end up wasting time and money communicating to thte wrong people.

You’d also be banned from gathering customers data without explicit consent, making it difficult to tailor their experience with your company.

The right to be forgotten

Individuals will be given the right to ask for the complete removal of their details from your computer systems. Although in theory this sounds like a wonderful right for consumers, this could become a logistical nightmare to businesses and could end up costing a fortune to administer.

How can we stop this happening?

The best course of action is to write to our MEPs. Before becoming law the new data protection proposals have to be approved by the European Parliament. Each region of the UK has several MEPs. The contact details of these MEPs can be seen here: http://www.europarl.org.uk/view/en/your_MEPs/List-MEPs-by-region.html

All that’s needed is a brief letter or email to each of the MEPs that represents your region describing what your company does, how many people it employs and the impact this legislation would have upon you.

Whatever your view NOW is the time to make it known by writing to your MEP.

More details of the EU’s proposals can be seen on the Direct Marketing Association’s website: http://dma.org.uk/eu-data-protection/the-proposals-at-a-glance

The end of one-to-one marketing?