Navigating the murky waters of LinkedIn GDPR with LinkedIn Outreach

The Power of LinkedIn 

Who wouldn’t want to directly sell their product or service to over 500 million members worldwide? Business to Business marketing has never been so good! As a social platform, LinkedIn provides a plethora of marketing and sales growth opportunities. The fast-growing network is committed to ‘connecting the world’s professionals to make them more productive and successful.’ Is it THAT powerful? Yes, it is. For a start, it enables users like you and me to connect with old and new contacts based on our common business interests, industries, and workplaces. At the click of a button, we can link up with potential prospects to shout about what we have to offer. We can harvest our growing network of LinkedIn contacts to develop and bolster our entire outbound marketing strategy. From a Human Resources perspective, LinkedIn gives us the power to identify, approach and headhunt top performers across the industry to construct and professionally enhance our teams to be the best they can be! While LinkedIn may be bursting with valuable information and endless opportunities, it is not without its restrictions… Say hello to GDPR

What is GDPR?

Unless you have been living under a rock for the last few years, you will have heard about The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). From May 2018 onwards, new obligations were introduced to data processors and data controllers to protect the personal information belonging to EU clients and prospects. That means no more data mining websites and bulk emailing cold, impersonal communications in the hope that someone might take up your offer! As menacing as it sounds, failure to comply with these regulations can land you in very deep water with fines of up to 4% of annual worldwide turnover.

HOW DOES LINKEDIN OPERATE WITHIN GDPR?

When users sign up to LinkedIn, they are agreeing and expecting a two-way flow of communication with other members. In respect of GDPR, LinkedIn is the data controller and processor and as such is wholly responsible for protecting the ‘personal’ information of all its members. Business contact details also fall under this ‘personal’ category! So as long as the members are communicating on LinkedIn with fellow LinkedIn contacts, all is well – no law has been breached. If however, you decide to download your LinkedIn contacts to your email system, that is a very different story. Upon downloading prospect details from LinkedIn, YOU become the data controller. With this great role, comes great responsibility! As data controller, it is your responsibility to ensure GDPR compliance. ‘Cold selling’ email marketing activity generated from your downloaded LinkedIn contacts will result in legal proceedings, heavy fines, and a bad reputation!

Consent V’s Legitimate Interest

The waters are truly murky and the only way to navigate through is to be sure your prospects have consented to receive your marketing material – or that you have a legitimate reason to believe your information will be considered valuable by the prospect. You could perhaps hinge on the ‘legitimate interest’ of networking as surely that is why people sign up to LinkedIn in the first place? However, best practice would be to keep it on the network. If you must take it off LinkedIn, you must first ask permission from the prospect. As long as your communication does not breach the privacy of the prospect or cause them to object to the contact, then you should be ok. Be warned – you must have an opt-out process at all times. As soon as you take on the role of data controller, you are legally obligated to protect the data always. This applies to receipt, collection, storing, amending, disclosing and destructing the data.

The possibilities are endless!

For a lot of businesses, the need for GDPR compliance has somewhat restricted their freedom of outbound marketing activity and competitive positioning. However, with LinkedIn, there is a real opportunity to embrace and engage in targeted social selling on a scale without breaching GDPR. Finally, a social media channel that we can integrate into our marketing strategy to ensure we are targeting those prospects most likely to be fruitful. The problem is, with so many members it requires a great deal of technical expertise and time to manage and dedicate to social selling via LinkedIn.

At Growthonics we like to make life easy! We have developed a bespoke piece of social selling software that allows us to maximise the LinkedIn capability to the advantage of our client’s marketing strategy.

1. Quality Leads

Our software allows us to filter and collate information from over 500 million LinkedIn contacts based upon your bespoke criteria. From here, we can use this information to generate leads. Promising leads! Our software’s ability to focus on your target prospects results in higher open and click-through rates and promising future sales growth. Through increasing engagement and personalisation of communications, your campaigns concentrate on nurturing and building stronger prospect relationships. What’s not to love?

2. Time Saving

As soon as we establish your prospect criteria, we go straight into cruise control. Multiple campaigns can be automated to operate across various market segments – while still maintaining that personalised ‘you matter to us’ feel.

3. Better Insights

We don’t expect you to just take our word for it though. Each campaign comes equipped with up to date metrics to allow you better insight into your connection volumes and response rates. Campaigns can be tweaked in real-time in response to what your metrics tell you. The more you understand your market and prospects, the more successful your campaigns will be

4. Compliance

Take the worry out of the outbound marketing GDPR quagmire – we are 100% GDPR compliant! You don’t need to worry about breaching GDPR rules with your outbound marketing. Our social selling tool ensures we keep your outbound communications within the LinkedIn platform and adhere to GDPR at all times

There are over 500 million prospects just waiting to hear about your opportunity! Get in touch with our Marketing Team to kick start your campaign TODAY.

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