It’s less than a year now until GDPR kicks in and most charities should know by now what it means for them. It shouldn’t necessarily be seen though as a burden though – charities should view GDPR as an opportunity. It doesn’t just represent a compliance change, it’s also a donor experience change.
GDPR will set new standards for the collection and handling of data. Supporters and donors will have greater control over their data and the dynamic of their relationships with charities. That can only be a good thing though right? Charities should approach GDPR as an opportunity and use it to their strategic advantage. Consider it a catalyst for rethinking and remodelling the donor experience.
The deadline for GDPR compliance is 25th May 2018. While it can’t be tackled it overnight, here are some things that charities can start doing today and a look at what some have already done.
Move To Active Opt-In
Compliant consent will need to be “explicit and unambiguous”. For new signups and donors, use unticked boxes or blank binary choices: in or out. Allow them to make their own decisions and confirm with a positive action. Likewise, start opting-in active, engaged and targeted prospects in similar ways. Whoever is addressed, give them a clear, simple and easy way to opt in or confirm consent.
Make It Clear, Make It Easy
Consent should be kept separate from any terms and conditions. It can’t be a precondition of signup unless the service requires it. Next, break down consent across the different communications. If sending a variety of emails: newsletters, appeals, updates and the like, obtain consent for each. Differentiate between any individual categories and as above, require active opt-ins. It should also be easy for supporters and donors to update their preferences, opt-out or to remove their personal information from the database entirely.
Transparency Builds Trust
Use GDPR as an opportunity to inject positivity, trust and and empowerment into the donor experience. Be open and transparent. Keep clear records of consent: what, where, when and how. Update privacy statements to outline and reflect donors’ specific consent. Name the organisation and any third party that accesses or uses their data. Despite lots of negative press in the past around charities’ governance and fundraising methods, trust in charities is actually on the rise. GDPR compliance and the passage of control to donors can only add to this. Openly acknowledging and consciously shifting this power can only strengthen donor relationships.
Charity GDPR Examples
While GDPR guidance remains quite grey, even now, some charities such as British Heart Foundation (Just a Tick) and RNLI (Keep in Touch) have already run well publicised opt-in appeals and campaigns. RNLI have even made the switch to opt-in only communications already. To charities considering their own campaigns, create them as you would any other. This is an exercise in transparency so explain what’s happening and why, and tell donors what you’d like them to do. Use attractive design, consistent branding, a friendly tone of voice and clear, concise calls to action. Over 60% would be likely to opt in again if asked so what are you waiting for?
Get In Touch
Let us know if you’d like our help setting up preference centres, redesigning landing or preference pages or running your own opt-in campaign. Embrace the changes and update your donor experience. View GDPR as an opportunity, not an obstacle, and start empowering your donors.
Alex is a Digital Content Coordinator at Copper