Posted on 31st May 2018

Direct Mail is set for an industry boom under new GDPR regulations

What’s the fuss with GDPR?

GDPR emphasises transparency, security and accountability by data controllers
GDPR Image

The data landscape is now changing under new General Data Protection Regulations or GDPR, which came into effect on the 25th May 2018.

GDPR is designed to give customers more control over how their data is used by organisations and ensures that sensitive information is kept secure. New data laws encourage greater transparency, presenting the valuable opportunity to improve customer relationships and put best-quality data practices at the heart of the organisation. This means that GDPR should be good news for both customers and businesses, helping to improve cyber relationships and data security all round.

There’s no shortage of information available about how GDPR impacts businesses with online databases, underlying the need for consent, security and transparency. But what about Direct Mail?

Direct Mail for the Win! Unscrambling Legitimate Interest

The ICO (Information Commissioner’s Office) has released a statement confirming that Direct Mail or postal marketing may still be allowed without the explicit permission that is required for digital and email marketing.

A statement posted on the FAQ section of the ICO website (Source: ICO, 2018) states:

“You won’t need consent for postal marketing… you can rely on legitimate interests for marketing activities if you can show how you use people’s data is proportionate, has a minimal privacy impact, and people would not be surprised or likely to object.”

Legitimate interests can include your own interests, third-party interests or commercial interests (Source: ICO, 2018). This means that as long as organisations can identify a legitimate interest and are confident that individuals’ data is used reasonably and has a minimal impact on privacy; then Direct Mail can remain an effective method to target customers and create positive relationships.

Put simply, processing under legitimate interests involves ensuring a balancing act between business interests and individual consumer rights. It’s therefore essential to identify and document why you might process personal data based on legitimate interests for Direct Mail.

We know Direct Mail is effective and valued by customers (Source: DMA, 2017), so GDPR compliant processing – and demonstrating key potential benefits to end consumers – can lead to successful Direct Mail initiatives.

How can Plum Ideas help?

It is essential to regularly cleanse your data to ensure your business is GDPR compliant. Under new regulations, the immediate goal is to guarantee that you will not market to anyone who has opted-out from receiving information.

If you would like any more information about GDPR and how this will affect your business, get in touch today with the Plum team and we will be happy to advise.

Our team specialise in running Direct Mail campaigns for the likes of huge brands including NIVEA, Red Bull and Neopost. As many forms of communication are subject to strict regulation under GDPR, it’s a great time to start adding Direct Mail to your marketing strategies.

Why not drop us a line at or call us on 01384 697980 to find out more?