Lead Generation and GDPR – All You Need to Know

The financial success of any company is the direct consequence of how much new business there is. And what I mean by new business is sales. But, for the sales cycle to be continuous, there has to be a database of people ready to be contacted. In the sales world, we call these people “leads”.

Now, as any salesperson will tell you, contacting new leads can be a painful process. An inherent part of it is getting hung up on, people regularly saying they’re not interested and some even getting outright angry at you for contacting them. But, sales is a numbers again, after all.

Out of the 50+ people you may call during the day the harsh reality is that almost all of them won’t give you positive feedback. That’s why it’s integral to update the Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system with new leads. By maintaining a constant flow of fresh leads, you’ll always have a new person who is potentially interested in doing business with you.

What is Lead Generation?

Gathering a list of new potential people you can contact is called “lead generation”. Now, it used to be that any person could go on the internet and through some good old fashioned market research find the personal information of the people they want to contact. But when the new General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) laws came into effect, this all changed.

Nowadays, to be able to put a person into a list and contact them, they have to consent to it first. This can be done in several different ways. One of them is through the signup form on your website. If the person signs up for your mailing list and ticks the box to be sent promotional material then you’re fully covered by GDPR.

Lead Generation and GDPR

Another way can be to give people access to a whitepaper or a similar informative material, and in return have them provide you with their email. For example, you can provide them with an in-depth guide about lead generation and GDPR, but they have to consent by leaving their email and ticking the little white box.

Note that while once upon a time email consent meant something different than it is now. Something that is now unacceptable with the new GDPR laws is to have the little white consent box automatically ticked. The person has to be aware that they are agreeing to be sent promotional material and this has to be clearly stated right next to the checkbox. So, next time you’re planning your next email campaign keep this in mind.


All in all, lead generation is an essential part of finding and doing new business. Without it, you’d be rehashing the old leads who are either unavailable to reach or uninterested. But, with the General Data Protection Regulations, there are certain rules that you have to abide if you’re located or operate anywhere within the European Union.

Long gone are the days of mass email spam. Now it’s all about approaching people who have explicitly said they’re interested in hearing more from you. Follow these rules, and your business will be booming with new contacts that want to learn more about your business and you will be respecting their privacy at the same time. It’s a win-win situation.

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