I am still getting to grips with the real impact of GDPR on B2B Marketeers (nearly there I think!!), BUT one thing is for certain so far....many tech companies need to change their approach before May!

We will all need to be much smarter and more creative when targeting new prospects, and mass email targeting of cold contacts is a no-no. Despite this, I still have 2 or 3 conversations per week with people who ask if they can just buy a list of contacts from us!

Many tech companies pitch GDPR as a sales opportunity, and every month they offer up seats at their latest GDPR briefing, but I worry that too many of them haven't thought through their own use of personal data. The rules DO extend to B2B and aren't just there to stop big companies from selling consumer data, or charities from harassing old ladies.

I believe that part of the issue in our industry, stems from the source of Marketing Funds. The vast majority of money flows from large US based corporate marketing budgets and follows their global guidelines. The US is much less aware of GDPR and for years, I think it has been easier for Partners to get an ineffective, email based campaign approved by the MDF system, than something that is more creative or perhaps unusual. Success is usually measured based on quantity, not quality. They pump out 1000's of emails and are happy with a 5% click through. Quantity is easy to measure, Quality, less so. I feel sorry for local Execs who spot a unique and innovative campaign suggested by a quality, trusted Partner but then get rebuffed by "Corporate".

After 25th May, Distributors and Partners who rethink their B2B targeting strategy, adhere to GDPR AND get their campaign smoothly through the MDF system will steal a march on those who fail to adapt.