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DATA FOCUS: Data pooling - Sharing is daring

The advantages and disadvantages of sharing your B2B data

Data pooling gets mixed reviews. Although there is an obvious advantage in targeting a wider audience of prospective customers who have a track record of responding to direct marketing, companies have serious reservations about putting what they view as their 'lifeblood' into an open market.

This is particularly true in the UK business-to-business market, where data pooling is still relatively new. It is more popular in the US, where it is well established in both B2C and B2B.

Data pooling provider Abacus is a case in point. The company was launched in the US in 1990 and opened in the UK in 1998, providing a B2C service. In November 2004 it launched a B2B offering.