“Leading businesses are already showing how it is possible to build trusted, personalized customer relationships based on transparency and personal data control, while driving business profitability in the process.”

1 year on: The Impact of GDPR on Brands

Reading Time: 5:29 minutes

By Atul Tuli — VP & Head of Customer Experience, Southeast Asia, SAP


18 Months, and many still struggle with GDPR compliance

Data is an asset to every single business. And ever since General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) enforcement started in May 2018, customers have been taking back control of their data – and choosing which companies they want to interact with.

One-and-a-half years later, many companies are still not on top of the transparency that was required for GDPR or other regional data privacy compliance. And for businesses that have attempted to comply, many are not hitting the mark. Already there has been more than 200,000 reported cases of GDPR breaches in Europe this year – with fines amounting to €56 million or more!

Clearly, the issue is serious. But GDPR needn’t be just an all-round inconvenience or a pain in the neck. There are many more regulations such as the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) as well as Brazil’s Lei Geral de Protecao de Dados (LGPD) coming into effect in 2020. So, instead of looking at data privacy regulatory compliance as a burden, market leaders are seizing these opportunities to transform customer experience.

Let me share three important reasons why. And then I’ll show you how.

GDPR is an opportunity: Here’s 3 reasons why

  1. Consumers demand a personalized, omni-channel customer experience: Our research has shown that 63% of customers are more willing to engage with companies that deliver better customer experiences. And 91% of customers will buy from competitors if they do not have satisfactory experiences.
    In fact, customer experience will soon overtake price and product as key brand differentiator. The estimated year that’ll happen: 2020. That’s a month from now.
    With customer experience being the new battleground for businesses, data is the key to winning the war. In that regard, GDPR / data privacy compliance is the ideal opportunity to redefine a company’s approach to data while accelerating the business.
  2. Consumers demand more transparency and control: We’ve also found that two-thirds of consumers don’t trust brands with their personal information. And the number one reason why consumers leave brands? They don’t know how brands are using their personal data.
    This alone is compelling enough for businesses to pay urgent attention to how they should be harnessing GDPR compliance as an asset to win customers.
  3. The world – its regions and markets – are becoming more regulated: GDPR came into effect on May 25, 2018. Just shortly before that, in June 2017, China’s Cyber Security Law came into effect. This was preceded by the Russian Federation’s Personal Data Protection Act – which came into effect on September 1, 2015. Other privacy and data security regulations include COPPA, Privacy Shield, CASL, CAN-SPAM, and HIPAA. Now, with 2020 upon us, the CCPA will be going into effect on January 1 and LGPD will follow suit in August.
    There’s no escape from the fact that the world is becoming more regulated. Rather than deem GDPR compliance as a stumbling block or hindrance, businesses who harness the opportunity to identify and engage customers in a secure environment, simplify their journeys, and protect them and the business from risk will stand a much better chance to win.

These businesses lead the way

Leading businesses are already showing how it is possible to build trusted, personalized customer relationships based on transparency and personal data control, while driving business profitability in the process.

It starts with customer data management.

A. Maxim Integrated delivered 10x more digital storefront revenue

Take Maxim Integrated, a Fortune 500 company and a leader in the analog semiconductor market. With a series of data privacy laws coming into effect, Maxim knows its customers are becoming more discerning about their digital experiences and the data they share online. As such, it sought to remove this friction. And offer digital engagements that boost sales and promote brand advocacy. The company also saw this as an opportunity to lay a foundation for future success.

Maxim assessed their options and saw their chance in a customer experience solution on the cloud. The company went ahead with implementing the solution, and it proved a spot-on decision. Maxim delivered 10 times more digital storefront revenue – which is significant. But the wins don’t stop there. Maxim also expanded its customer base through enhanced customer identity and access management. Plus, the company future-proofed its success by gaining deeper customer insights that fuel enhanced product innovation – leading to more trusted, personalized and contextualized customer experiences.

B. FranklinCovey scales its business and keeps data secure

This market leader offers executive coaching and educational tools for professionals worldwide. To grow the business, it needed a deeper understanding of their customers, but also faced new challenges with data protection.

The cloud customer data management solution it selected helped the company enter the Chinese market and expand at the scale it needed. It also enhanced data security, addressed regulatory requirements, and helped offer more personalized experiences to their customers.

Transforming customer data management: The how

The key intent is to put people in control of their data and to honor customers’ preferences and consent across brands and channels. By gaining people’s trust as a customer-first organization, the business can better turn anonymous online visitors into loyal customers, even advocates.

Here’s how companies should approach customer data management:

  • Strengthen customer trust. At each permission-based touchpoint, use customizable, preconfigured workflows to capture customers’ consent and preferences. Store versioned consent records in audit-ready vaults.
  • Give customers control.Use self-service preference centers to allow customers to exercise their data rights under GDPR and other regional data protection regulations. This will empower customers to manage their own experiences.
  • Streamline data management. Ensure that consent and preferences are consistently enforced throughout the customer lifecycle. This enforcement should span across every channel, brand, and region through centralized, simple, and secure data governance and orchestration.
  • Balance privacy with personalization. Customers are beset with unlimited choices. They want less complexity and more relevance in their online experiences. In line with that, capture preferences and consent from the outset to deliver trusted, bespoke experiences. Also, personalize for the right reasons. It should ease decision-making moments for customers and deliver genuine value where and when they need it most.

The time is now !!

Businesses need to act with urgency to take control of how they manage customer data. This informative whitepaper by Tim Walters, vice president and content lead for The Content Advisory, expands the framework and outlines the opportunity ahead.

The pressure to move ahead is very real. We are in a reality where consumers can easily choose the next best service provider if their needs are not met. Combined with consumers’ heightened awareness of privacy and security issues, your business needs to act now to honor their customers’ consent and preferences, or your competitors will. We would love to partner with you and show you how.

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