GDPR Emails You Actually Want to Read

With GDPR finally(!) upon us, we hope all you fellow email geeks are faring okay! The European Union’s privacy law has certainly created a lot of anxiety, excitement, and buzz. And for us here at Email Design Workshop, it also created a unique opportunity: we got to compare a flood of emails that all sought to tackle the same challenge—updating users about changing site policies. We surveyed the many, many GDPR emails in our inbox and plucked some that stood out. The design-savvy privacy policy, terms of service, and opt-in emails we found fall into three design categories:

  • Simply styled and effective
  • A little bit artsy
  • Tongue-in-cheek

As always, we hope to inspire you with this roundup of emails. So, let’s have a little GDPR fun!


Wait—what is GDPR again?

GDPR is the General Data Protection Regulation, a privacy law established by the European Union “designed to harmonize data privacy laws across Europe, to protect and empower all EU citizens data privacy and to reshape the way organizations across the region approach data privacy.” In other words, instead of having different privacy laws in each EU country, now there’s an EU-wide standard that’s enforceable as of May 2018.

In the email world, companies with EU-based subscribers need to make sure they’re GDPR compliant. This resulted in, as you’ve noticed, a massive influx of GDPR emails. They fell into two main categories: (1) ones that notified readers of updates to privacy policies and terms of service, and (2) reconfirmation campaigns asking subscribers to opt-in.

If you want to read more about GDPR, we included helpful links at the end of this post. But, for now, let’s see how these GDPR emails looked. After all, good design means good communication, and when it comes to these “legalese” emails, this often goes a long way.


GDPR Emails: Simply styled and effective

Hinge

Subject: We’ve updated our Privacy Policy and Terms.

Hinge GDPR emails

Hinge does a really nice job of personalizing this email and making it super easy to read. The ultra-narrow fixed width, generously-sized text, and use of bolded, numbered sub-headers all converge to make this email super sleek and user-friendly.

Coursera

Subject: Notice of Privacy Policy Updates

Coursera GDPR emails

Coursera employs similar techniques as Hinge to make its email simple, ultra-readable, and well done. The “boxed” effect of the blue background border is a nice touch, too.

Timex

Subject: Your trust is important to us.

Timex GDPR emails

This is the only GDPR email we spotted that used a modular design with background colors to delineate information. It’s a great example of how a simple design tactic can improve comprehension, as readers see clearly labeled pieces of information one at a time.

Your Majesty Co.

Subject: Reconfirm your subscription to keep receiving our newsletter

Your Majesty Co. GDPR emails

Here’s a great reconfirmation email from Your Majesty Co. that couldn’t be simpler. (You can probably guess the thing we love most about it.) The purple bulletproof CTA button practically jumps off the page—it’s impossible to miss—which, of course, is the whole idea.


GDPR Emails: Just a little artsy

Topo Designs

Subject: Update to the Topo Designs Privacy Policy

Topo Designs GDPR emails

With the brevity of its statements and great formatting, Topo Designs makes it easy to understand the updates that have been implemented. But the PRIVACY POLICY header at the top of the email is also a nice touch. And the hero “art” helps drive home the main point and makes this email easy to understand at a glance.

The Muse

Subject: Important Updates to The Muse’s Terms of Use and Privacy Policy

The Muse GDPR emails

This is a super friendly—if not wordy—email from The Muse that feels almost like it came from a buddy. To match the decidedly not cut-and-dry tone, the brand added an illustration at the top that incorporated the GDPR logo. We’re into it.

Edenspiekermann

Subject: You’re in Control (Action Required)

Edenspiekermann GDPR emails

Like Topo Designs, the hero image/banner in this Edenspiekermann email says it all. And this is even more important in a reconfirmation campaign that’s asking readers to act. Plus, Edenspiekermann incorporated artwork for each supporting article—a welcome invitation for readers to click.

Penguin Books

Subject: We’ve updated our Privacy Policy

Penguin Books GDPR emails

Leave it to the literary folks at Penguin Books to take their GDPR email to a whole other level. We’re into the Harper Lee quote and the opening line, which stands out as being more than a “We respect your privacy” opener!

Uber

Subject: Updates to Uber’s Privacy Policy

Uber GDPR emails

Like most of the emails in this category, Uber added a neat hero image to help convey its message, and we dig it!

Code Academy

Subject: Update to our Privacy Policy

Code Academy GDPR emails

 

Saved the best for last! The elegant header in this Code Academy email looks great and communicates well—we love how the deadline was included (and the millennial pink, naturally).


GDPR Emails: Tongue-in-cheek

Sidetracked

Subject: No action needed! (Unless you want to unsubscribe)

Sidetracked GDPR emails

Sidetracked Magazine got a little playful here, and while the style isn’t for everyone, it is a breath of fresh air.

Reformation

Subject: PRIVACY POLICY UPDATE

Reformation GDPR emails

Here, Reformation kept it short, sweet, and silly.

Bullish

Subject: Yet another Privacy Policy Update, plus a doggo meme

Bullish GDPR emails

Here is the only GDPR email we received (from Bullish) with a meme. You’re welcome. 🙂


Hungry for more GDPR info? Here are a few GDPR articles we found useful!

And, visit our GDPR Emails Pinterest Board for more design ideas!

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