MailChimp and GDPR: When and How to Send a Re-permission Email

MailChimp and GDPR: When and How to Send a Re-permission Email

Today you’re going to learn about the GDPR
re-permission email campaign. Here’s what we’re going to cover – When do you need to
send out a re-permission email? My three considerations that will help you decide; and how to create
and send out a GPDR compliant re-permission email using MailChimp. I’ll be sharing with
you some expert examples of what a really good re-permission email looks like. Plus
you’ll be able to download my exclusive GDPR Email Marketing checklist. In my last tutorial
I showed you how to set up a GDPR-compliant sign-up form for all future subscribers opting
into your Lists. Today I’m going to show you what you need to do with the subscribers that
are already on your Lists. This is because the Regulations apply to all EU subscribers
regardless of whether they opted in before or after 25 May. We’ve got a bit to cover
so let’s dive in. Step #1 – it’s a bit confusing, isn’t it? According to the GDPR you don’t
need to send out a re-permission email to subscribers, “if the manner in which consent
has been given is in line with the conditions of this Regulation”. To help you decide whether
consent has been given in line with GPDR I’ve come up with my three key considerations.
#1 – Positive Opt-in. Do you have a record of positive opt-ins from all your subscribers?
This means a subscriber has taken positive action to confirm they’d like to receive your
emails by clicking on a Subscribe button and confirming their instructions by way of a
double opt-in. Or they may have simply put a tick or a check in a box to confirm their
wishes. Your Email Service Provider will have a clear record of exactly how and when a subscriber
opted into your List. If you don’t have a record like this then you need to send a re-permission
email. If you’ve ever manually subscribed someone to an email List on MailChimp, for
example, there will be an “Admin Add’ in the ‘source’ column of your subscriber records.
Up until now that has been absolutely fine but the GDPR will not consider this to be
positive consent and you will need to run a re-permission email campaign to those subscribers.
If any of your email opt-in forms have included pre-ticked boxes you will also need to run
a re-permission email campaign since this doesn’t comply with the Regulations. 2 – Separate
Consent for Separate Things. In my last tutorial I explained that if you were going to be sending
different types of email marketing campaigns you need to allow your subscribers to choose
exactly what sorts of campaigns they’d like to receive from you. I showed you how to add
granular options to your sign-up forms to allow your subscribers to choose. This particular
sign-up form from Selfridges is a perfect example of how to collect ‘granular consent’
from subscribers. So if you have added ‘granular’ options to your sign-up forms you’ll need
to send a re-permission email campaign to all your current subscribers since you need
to give them the same choices as you’ll be giving your future subscribers. 3. If in doubt,
send it out! If you’re in any doubt whatsoever about when and how a subscriber opted in to
your List then send them a re-permission email campaign. If you’re worried about irritating
your subscribers with too many emails then just incorporate the pertinent paragraphs
from the re-permission email into a campaign that you were going to send them in any event.
So now that we’ve covered all of that, let’s take a look at the actual template that MailChimp
have provided. To find this template you need to click on the “Create Template” button,
go to the “Themes’ tab and click on the dropdown menu. You’ll see right at the bottom there
are two subscriber alerts; click on this and select the “GDPR Subscriber Alert” template.
Like all MailChimp templates you can fully customise this one to add your own brand colours,
style and personality by clicking on the Design tab. You can upload your business logo at
the top. You’re free to use MailChimp’s suggested body text or you can add your own paragraphs;
it is entirely up to you. Similarly the button text on your CTA is also customisable. Once
a subscriber clicks on the CTA button they’ll be directed to the “Update profile form” on
the MailChimp Form Builder. Again this form is fully customisable so you can edit it by
adding some body text or upload an image if you prefer. So that it is absolutely crystal
clear to your subscribers what they need to do you might want to include a short paragraph
of instructions asking them to – select which type of email they’d like to receive from
you; put a tick in the appropriate box; and then click on the ‘Update Profile’ button
below to save their preferences. You might also want to include a link to your privacy
policy, cookie policy and terms, if appropriate, just to be absolutely honest and transparent
with your subscribers about how you will use their data. Once you’ve sent out your re-permission
emails you’ll need to start segmenting your email Lists in exactly the same way as I showed
you in my last tutorial so that you only send out the right emails to the right people.
So I hope that answers a few of the questions I’ve been sent recently, and thank you so
much for all your wonderful feedback. To download your free GDPR Email Marketing checklist you’ll
find the link in the Comments box below. And for any more information about email marketing
and GDPR please refer to the ICO, the Information Commissioner’s Office, and I’ll leave another
link in the Comments box below so you can check them out. As usual if you enjoyed watching
this tutorial please give it a like and subscribe to my Channel so that you don’t miss out on
any more email marketing tips. I’ll see you in the next tutorial


  1. Do you have any questions about this tutorial? If so please let me know by adding your question in the comments box below.

  2. Hi Nicky, thank you for the video, it made life easier to say the least. However, heres a little challenge i have. So i created a test list with my details, sent the email and (as a subscriber) clicked on the update settings. i tested this 3 times with the following outcomes. Test 1, i opted to Update Settings, went through to the "update settings" URL and just clicked Update Profile. Outcome – went back into mailchimp and my record was still there (obviously) but there was no indication or log of me as the subscriber opting the update my profile. Test 2, i did the same, only this time i added my number. Outcome – Brilliant, as this updated my test list with the additional information. Test 3 – I chose to Unsubscribe and as you can guess this updated over to my MailChimp test list. So, here's my question: there will be a large number of subscribers who will do nothing with my GDPR Update Profile email, how then do i differented those subscribers who have volunteered to hit the Update Profile button and update their Profile to the ones that do nothing with the email? is there a section within the list which clarifies who has decided to update their profile to those who have done nothing with it? I know you can see a log of the activity in the individuals subscribers profile but all this show is a log of who has be sent the email, time and date and who has opended the email with the time and date. However, it does not tell me whether or not they have taken an action or not. Is there a place within the subscribers profile or in Mailchimp which records this action and if so, do you know where it is.

  3. Hello there

    Have now found this video which is GREAT! However, the call to action button in the template doesn't seem too go anywhere.. Mailchimp says the page is missing. It should be going to UPDATE_PROFILE as in your video but cant see any link there… can you please help!

  4. One more thing from me.. how will it show that they have given their permission on the list from the UPDATE PROFILE button link… I've just sent this out to our list and am now wondering how I'll track it within the list! Thanks Nicky.

  5. Hey Nicky, thanks so much for the video – I've always used a double opt in AND tell my subscribers on the thank you page and privacy policy that I may be sending out offers since day one – do they need a re-submission for this? I'm so confused πŸ™ thank you so much

  6. This is a very helpful video. Thank you. I have one question, please. I edit our surgery newsletter which provides information for the surgery patients. We are using the free version of MailChimp. There is no marketing and so I have edited the form appropriately in terms of the tick boxes. I sent a test email and everything is fine, except, having clicked the button in the email to Update settings, it says "Change your preferences" at the top of the form where the person would enter their name, email address, etc. "Change your preferences" is not an appropriate heading for us, but I cannot find this anywhere to amend.. For example, it would be better if "Change your preferences" was "Update your settings" or "Complete your details.I would be grateful if you could advise. Many thanks.

  7. Hi Nicky, my question is similar to Catherine's, how will we know when people have resubscribed? We don't have segmented lists – we just send one kind of email to everyone with newsletters about upcoming events, but many addresses were added to the mailing list manually, so we need to get positive consent now according to GDPR. So how will it show in our list when they have resubscribed – and how do we go ahead and delete everyone else after 25 May if they have not resubscribed? Or do we start a new list entirely? Rather confused. Thanks for any help.

  8. Another question – how do we add a link to the 'Update Profile' page in our regular Newsletter email? We plan to send a dedicated Please Re-subscribe email too, but need to send out an Upcoming Events Newsletter asap too. Thank you!

  9. Hi Nicky, your videos are really helpful and well paced. I have a question about the call to action/update settings. I copied the url from the sign up form – there is no call to action on the update button nor is the button going anywhere. Can you advise me on this? I see there are similar questions below. Thanks a lot.

  10. HI Nicky, great video, Do you have any idea why my update profile form doesn't work ? I have followed all the steps, did a test but no luck ? I always have this msg below.
    Come, Watson, come! The game is afoot. You've stumbled upon a missing page, but the evidence is elementary. We're on the case.

  11. Thanks so much for your help. It has taken me ages to get my head around this and I couldn't understand if our old subscribers were opting in after I sent the new GDPR opt in email. However I have just checked in the optin segment I created and discovered they are!! Happy days.

  12. Great video. I sent out an opt in email last week and wanted to follow up another email this week to those that didn't sign up, just wondering how I target them without resending to those that have opted in from last weeks email.

  13. This was really helpful, thank you.

    I have two questions.

    1. If I understand correctly, if I follow the guide, these emails will go out to everyone on the list, but I only actually need to send to the 'admin added' subscribers. If that is correct, is there a way that I can send only to them?

    2. Currently, I have two distinct lists, but maybe some subscribers common to both. I have a luxury travel blog, where one list is for people who are interested in travel, and another is for people in the travel industry. Am I OK to keep it like that (I can't help but think it would a headache to try to change it), or should I really have them all under one list, with segments for each?

    Thanks for any pointers.

  14. Great tutorial and very interesting about not needing to get re-subs if postive action was taken in the first place to get the sub πŸ™‚

  15. John Rogers
    Sent out a "please confirm your subscription" form as separate campaign. Clicking the " confirm" button goes to update details form, with email hint at top, email box to tick, and a button to confirm.
    Upon clicking this it took person direct to our website. There was no confirmation at all!
    What's wrong there?
    I send out to 300 in a botanic garden newsletter. Next newsletter is due out in mid June. If I have made a mistake shall I add a template to newsletter? And how do I get it right?

  16. What do you do if some of your mailing list ignore the re-permissions email? Do you have to give it a certain amount of time and then delete them from your list?

  17. Thank you, very helpful. How do I separate the ones that gave consent from the ones that didn't? Is there a segmentation field?

  18. Hi Nicky, great tutorial! However, when I send a test e-mail to my address and click update settings it states that the site can't be reached. What have I done wrong when creating the sign up form?

  19. Dear Nicky, your post has been very illuminating for me; thanks again from Italy! Just a quick update about the re-permission email. I sent it out this morning with subject "From Gianni at Walk About Italy. Goodbye forever? πŸ˜₯" and so far I gathered 200 consents (out of a list of 1700+ emails). Quite frustrating to loose all the potential guests. I am planning to re-send to non-openers tomorrow morning. Any suggestion to increase the numbers? Grazie πŸ™‚

  20. Thanks Nicky loved both videos and have shared with peeps. And I've a question. I'd set my 're-consent' form up to arrive this morning, tick. But having copied myself in, etc, and made my selections for all, tick. But going into MC reports I can only see who's opened it this morning not who's gone through and selected. Dilemma. Any suggestions please?

  21. What if you are just starting out and are gathering would-be client emails? Do you simply send them an email asking if you can contact them with future emails?

  22. How can you tell if somebody has resubscribed, I can see if they have unsubscribed but I can't tell if they have subscribed.

  23. Hi Nicky – Your infor is very useful, thank you! But I FACED A PROBLEM: I sent an email to my list and client just sent me an email back saying that she got an email from me to confirm that she wants to stay on my list but when she entered her data and marketing preferences on the GDPR compliant form she was informed that her email address is already there..what did I do wrong? My VA is on holidays, and I am looost πŸ™‚ Myself I got several emails from MailChimp different accounts to confirm subscription and I always see that when I click to "CONFIRM' button I got redirected to the page where the data is already filled in and partially encrypted… I would appreciate your help! Thank you, Alena

  24. Hi Nicky, great video thanks, very clear, I have a problem though. I created the Update profile form, integrated it with a button on my outgoing template email, turned it into a campaign, and sent it to a test group (2 users), So far so good. When they click on the button and accept their current profile details, they are put into the new segment I created within the list. Again, all good. But the "Date Added" and "Last changed" dates have remained unchanged, and the Source column still says Admin Add, so they have consented to the new list but that isn't reflected in my records. They've just gone from one list to another. Where did I go wrong?

    One other thing is, after creating a new segment I can still see the number of original subscribers by the List name at the top, but cannot seem to access the original list any more, can you point me in the right direction? Many thanks.

  25. Hello! Thank you for your video. I've found it very helpful. Could you please tell me what will happen to people who subscribe to a list but don't tick any group?

  26. Thank you, thank you THAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAANK YOU!! And especially for answering the posted questions. Found everything I needed. Very kind of you!!!

  27. NICKY!!! I do have one last question for you. We have 2 separate databases for 2 different eNewsletters; 30% of the people are in BOTH databases. Would recommend that I merge both databases together and send one email, vs sending two separate repermission campaigns?

  28. Great videos! Super helpful!!
    Now I wonder how can I check who gave their consent to keep receiving the newsletter, and who did not?? I can see something when I export the list of contacts into Excel file (CSV). But I believe this is not the best way. Any clue? Thanks!!

  29. Great video Thank you very much!
    Some people did not react on the gdpr mail. I would like to resend a reminder to ONLY those who did not react. How can I do this in MailChimp?

  30. Hello! Thank you for your vdo. If I did not send out Re-permission email before May 25th, 2018, in this case, I have to delete all my EU email lists right? If I want to send out my email marketing campaign today. Thank you very much.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *