My Data Protection Diary, 1st October 2020

Welcome back to the fourth installment of my data protection diary, I am happy to see you again!

Being passionate about the world of Marketing, I feel’s only right to dedicate a page of my Diary to this sector.
Dear Marketing professionals, I’d like to share my experience with you and highlight the valuable information I’ve learned. It will help you to continue doing a great job while respecting key data protection principles.

In the last six months, with the explosion of the pandemic and the increase in people working from home, many companies have concentrated their efforts on their marketing activities. If you are wondering why, the answer is because the best way right now to develop and strengthen business relationships is through digital and virtual communications. Isn’t it?

Since we can no longer organise and participate in events, efforts have been concentrated in the realm of tele/cyber communication as our commitment is to achieve optimum visibility for the company we work for. But, sometimes that has led to ignoring the importance of which types of data we collect, how we collect them and what data we share in the marketplace.

Being an integral part of this sector, and working with Kellie and Regina, data protection experts, I was immediately curious to understand how it’s possible to balance excellent marketing work and remain compliant with data protection.

So, if you’re still reading, I guess you are, like me, curious to know what the possible risks are for us marketers and what the possible solutions are to manage them.

Well, you are reading the right diary entry!

In this blog page, I tell you about a fantastically informative session I had with Kellie, who’s passionate about the world of data, and me, asking about how this affects the world of marketing... it was incredible! Let's start with the first question.

G.P.: Marketing is the set of techniques that allow you to achieve your goals: the positioning on the market of a brand (image objectives) or a product (sales objectives), obtaining the maximum profit, translated into the greatest possible number of customers. The use of new online tools to identify new and potential customers, that allow us to achieve our goals, turn out to be excellent solutions for Digital Marketing. What is the risk of using this kind of software, Kellie?

K.P.: Good questions, Giulia. So Before choosing a new online tool, make sure you read the privacy policy carefully and understand:

  • What data is collected about you and your customers
  • Where the personal data are stored
  • How long the software provider keeps personal data about you and your customers
  • Make sure that the new software is safe and that your data and those of your customers are not shared or sold to third parties

Once you have considered these recommendations, you can take advantage of new software that allows you to identify new customers.

G.P.: Thanks, Kellie for this insight. Staying on the subject of "customers", I would like to ask you another question. Numerous marketing experts use, through web research, or buy, through brokers, long contact lists containing personal data and emails of potential customers.

During the current period, these contact lists turn out to be a great solution for many companies, but in relation to data protection what are the risks, Kellie?

K.P.: This is interesting! During the lockdown, sale of potential customer lists increased but bought-in lists need to be legit! Before you take advantage of that data, you need to make sure that people on those lists are notified that you are using their data.

Also if you bought that list from a broker or other Marketing experts, make sure that the personal information was obtained in a lawful manner. The list of individuals should have agree that their data is used for marketing purposes and know their data is available on that list. My recommendation Giulia is to never use a list of which you do not know the origin, or that you are not sure if the use is legitimate.

G.P.: Wow Kellie, all this is handy to know. Certainly, the visibility of a brand is important, but transparency towards customers data must be as well.

K.P.: That's right Giulia, transparency is one of the fundamental requirements of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Being transparent in the processing of customers' personal data sometimes leads to less visibility for the business. However, the added value that your company obtains for caring about personal data will distinguish it within the market ... making it stand out in the long term. Always remember, Giulia, to specify the reasons you want process the personal data of prospects and customers before you use their data for marketing activities. It may be necessary to ask for their consent, or in some cases, you may be able to rely on Legitimate Interests. Always consider the impact on their privacy before making that decision.

G.P.: Thank you Kellie, for this amazing lesson and for sharing with me your practical advice.

My dear marketing colleagues, are you considering all these aspects when you pull together your campaigns?

If you want to get more detailed information and be reassured that you’re acting in accordance with the GDPR, check out Kellie's training sessions tailored for marketing experts!

Thanks for reading my fourth diary entry... see you soon with my next topic.


The information and remarks provided in this article represent insight and guidance for best practice which is correct or valid or appropriate at time of publication.

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