An extract from ICO & DMA guidance on B2B Direct Marketing

These rules on consent, the softopt-in and the right to opt out do not apply to electronic marketing messages sent to ‘corporate subscribers’ which means companies and other corporate bodies eg: limited liability partnerships, Scottish partnerships, and government bodies. The only requirement is that the sender must identify itself and provide contact details.

Corporate subscribers do not include sole traders and some partnerships who instead have the same protection as individual customers. If an organisation does not know whether a business customer is a corporate body or not, it cannot be sure which rules apply. Therefore,we strongly recommend that organisations respect requests from any business not to email them.

In addition, many employees have personal corporate email addresses (eg, and individual employees will have a right to stop any marketing being sent to that type of email address by unsubscribing or making a formal request to the sender.

The information below summarieses where legitimate interests is appropriate.

‘Live’ phone calls where there is no
TPS/CTPS registration or objection
Post/direct mail to business contactsYes
Post/direct mail to consumersYes
Emails/text messages to business contactsYes

Business-to-business (B2B) marketing(defined as limited, public limited companies and public bodies such as schools and hospitals) are not covered under PECR, which means that you do not need prior consent in order to send emails or SMS communications. Marketers are therefore able to use legitimate interests for B2B marketing campaigns.