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Simon Washbrook

Hard Opt-in Vs Soft Opt-in – What’s The Difference?

No, we are not talking Brexit, we’re talking about opt-in marketing data and how there are more options than you may realise. As a general rule you should only send your marketing (not just email marketing) materials to a contact who has directly consented to receive them, and what you send them must be relevant to what they opted in to, this is called a ‘Hard Opt-in’. Although, not many people realise that there is a another way to grow your database using Soft Opt-ins…

Soft Opt-in

The Soft Opt-in rule, is for where an individual has provided you with their contact information and has not opted out of receiving any information from you. This can be done via any of the following methods:
  • If an individual has ‘Engaged in the Negotiation of a Sale’
    • i.e. requested a Quote or asked for more details about a product/service
  • Personally submitted a contact form via your website
  • Passed you their business card to start a Sales Conversation
  • Connected with you on a B2B networking website
    • i.e. LinkedIn (Click HERE to find out how to export your Contacts Data from Linkedin)
Although it should be noted that this information can only be used to Market related products / services in your business and you must always give the contact the option to Opt-out easily on all of your communications.

Hard Opt-in

A Hard Opt-in is where the contact has specifically indicated a desire to receive the Emails at the point at which the contact information was submitted (e.g. by ticking a box in an HTML form).

Best Practice

Whether you have contacted someone via a Hard or Soft Opt-in, you should always send them an Email, confirming that they are opted in, how often you expect to be Emailing them and what they should expect to receive in the Emails. I also strongly advocate giving them a very clear Opt-out option in the main text, rather than in the footer of your Email (which is where it is commonly placed), as this reinforces that you want to send relevant information to them in the future.

popcorn is a smart, easy-to-use and efficient platform that not only helps you compose beautiful emails and newsletters but also helps you manage your sales funnels and leads. If you would like to test popcorn and see if it could help improve your email marketing game, you can sign-up for the free trial here.

Enjoyed this article? Comment below or read through our blog for more sales and marketing insights.

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Hard Opt-in Vs Soft Opt-in – What’s The Difference?
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