Article

Privacy Policy Changes Need Love Too.

Andrew Kordek

In many organizations there tends to be a lot of moving parts in many areas of the company. One such moving part which doesn’t seem to garner that much attention internally is when companies make changes to their privacy policy to better reflect their strategy as it relates to tracking and targeting. When changes are made, there usually isn’t much fanfare and most of the time customers or subscribers are never informed.

Given the time that we live in and the sensitivity around people’s privacy and permission practices of organizations, it might be time for companies to buck up and inform their base of changes. This is especially important if you are making a substantive change to the last accepted policy such as the sharing of information with third parties.

For companies that chose to inform their subscriber base, they are faced with multiple options in how to communicate it:

  1. Site – Organizations can add content to the site to make it visible to everyone that is a repeat visitor letting them know that there is a change and direct them to a page to learn more.
  2. Pre-Header in email – Adding a snippit of text at the top of their promotional email driving the reader to a landing page which again details out the changes
  3. Dedicated email – If the changes are pretty substantial, then a sending out a dedicated email describing the changes along with a link to learn more or even an FAQ can really act as sign of transparency for the organization
  4. Blog Post – Assuming that the company has a blog that is current, it might be a good opportunity to ensure permanency and transparency in its communication
  5. Social Media – Given the privacy debacles in the past of social media sites, informing your fan or follower base of these changes again signals transparency
  6. Mobile – If you have a mobile app or a mobile program, pushing a notification won’t take too much time or effort

Some people would look at the above list and chose one, but I am of opinion to chose them all. I believe that in the area of privacy and permission over communication is not as bad as under communication. People want the answers and those folks that consume information through multiple channels would appreciate the level that you went through to let them know of changes. Imagine being on the backside of under communication and having to back peddle in social media and the press…..to me, its not just worth it.

The key takeaway here is that if you plan to make changes to your privacy policy, also have a plan on how you intend to communicate it. Companies often under estimate how seemingly small changes can have a dramatic effect on their customer or subscriber sentiment. I think in todays sensitive climate, I would rather be accused of over rather than under communicating in a situation like this.

About the Author(s)

Andrew Kordek

Andrew Kordek is a Co-Founder of Trendline Interactive.

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