GDPR – 1 year on

It has been a year since new rules about GDPR changed the way that businesses could let potential customers know about what is on offer.

At Visit Isle of Wight, we wanted to ensure that we adhered to the strict guidelines laid down by the government.

Of course, this meant our consumer e-newsletter, which is sent out every two weeks to those interested in finding out about the Isle of Wight, was suddenly reaching a smaller audience.

image from the latest e-newsletter

However, in the 12 months since that change was implemented, Visit Isle of Wight has been working hard on promoting the consumer e-newsletter and encouraging new sign ups.

Since that day in 2018, we can now say that people subscribing has leapt THREEFOLD to a current mailing list of over 20 000 people.

Many positives have come out of this necessary piece of work, but one of the key highlights is the open up rate of the newsletter. Before GDPR, the average open up rate of the consumer e-newsletter was 19.3% – this has now leapt to an average open rate of 35%.

That in itself is staggering, however, it gets better – at a 35% open up rate for the Visit Isle of Wight e-newsletter, it smashes the industry average open up rate of just 14%!

This means that we are now getting ‘quality’ views of the e-newsletter, people who actually want to see what we have to say!

image of backend of e-newsletter provider – addresses

What is the reason for this great result?

The GDPR rules have forced Visit Isle of Wight to take a fresh look at the way we encourage potential visitors – new and existing – to sign up and find out about the UK’s number 1 holiday destination.

Competitions are always a great way to encourage people, and Visit Isle of Wight has worked with some fantastic Island businesses to offer amazing prizes, and we will continue to do so.

Visit Isle of Wight has also been maximising sign up using other marketing methods, giving the chance for people to add their details – to find out more about this beautiful Island and what it has to offer.

image from the latest e-newsletter

While there has been a huge increase in sign up, we haven’t been resting on our laurels…

The marketing team at Visit Isle of Wight is always looking to improve the e-newsletter. This has recently included a revamp of the way it is presented, to make even better use of images that show off the Island.

Jill Harlow is the Data and Web manager at Visit Isle of Wight:

‘This significant increase in e-newsletter subscribers and the open rate over the last 12 months demonstrates the high level of interest in holidays on the Isle of Wight. We will be continuing to grow the e-newsletter list and maximise the digital marketing opportunity to promote the Isle of Wight.

Jill Harlow

As a Wight BID levy payer, businesses are entitled to a free web page on

Our newsletters direct people to our website, therefore it is vital for businesses to ensure that their information on the leading destination website for the Island is up-to-date and includes the very latest offers and deals:

‘The possibilities for Wight BID levy payers are huge, and the e-newsletter offers one of the best ways possible to get your product and offer directly in front of people that want to see it.’

Jill Harlow

There are occasional opportunities to advertise in the e-newsletter. To find out more, email Jill Harlow –