The GDPR And How It Affects Your Subscriber List

The GDPR privacy policy and how it affects Australian marketing

You may have heard of something called the GDPR Privacy Policy which is coming into effect, affecting the EU. Maybe you have brushed over this thinking it doesn’t affect us here in Australia. But, if you have clientele or email subscribers from the EU then it does affect you.

What is the GDPR?

The GDPR stands for the General Data Protection Regulation which takes effect on 25 May 2018. It affects EU, or European Union, countries. It has been introduced to give greater protection to personal information with stricter policies on how it is collected, stored and used.

How Does This Affect Me?

If your subscriber list includes subscribers from the EU or has the potential to include people from these countries, then you need to comply with the new laws. Failure to do so by 25 May 2018 could result in hefty fines due to breach of privacy.

The new law basically states that you can not legally email any member of the EU if they have not specifically given you permission to do so. An EU member opting for your freebie without physically consenting to subscribe to your mailing list will now be a breach. If your freebie is as a result (or thank you) of subscribing to your mailing list and you have a double opt in confirmation to confirm this action, then you will be ok as they have willingly signed up to your mailing list.

What If I have EU people on my List Already?

You will need to email your subscriber list (anyone from EU or an unknown location) and specifically invite them to join your mailing list or ask them if they are happy to remain a subscriber. If you do not get confirmation from them, you will need to remove them from the list.

What Changes Should I Make To My Marketing Process?

In order to ensure you are 100% compliant for both EU members and the privacy act in general, you need to make sure anyone subscribing to your list has given consent. If you have a freebie and you would like people to be included on your mailing list, you need to have a separate tick box so they can acknowledge this.

Also make sure your emails have an “unsubscribe” button so people can freely unsubscribe if they want to.

Good practice is to not spam your mailing list. Regular content that is useful to your list will keep them subscribed.


This new policy only applies to EU members at the moment, but don’t be surprised if other countries follow suit. Privacy is something that should be taken seriously and as a business you must ensure you abide by all privacy laws. If you don’t have a privacy policy on your website, you can access a generic Australian privacy policy here that can be customised to your business.

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To learn more about privacy policies and T&C’s for your website, you can read my blog on the subject here.

Disclaimer: I am not a lawyer and this information is to be used as an awareness guide only. It has been collected through my own research. If this policy is likely to affect you, please seek your own legal guidance or conduct your own further research to ensure your business complies. Affiliate links are used in this post.

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