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CTPS: time to take our heads out of the sand

The Corporate Telephone Preference Service (CTPS) has been around for a couple of years now, but have marketers really come to terms with its repercussions? Do we really appreciate the limitations that the CTPS is placing on companies' ability to innovate and expand their businesses?

At the time the CTPS was introduced, Stephen Timms - the minister responsible - responded to the negative reaction of the direct marketing community by explaining that its aim was to help small businesses tackle sales calls that were a distraction to running their business. In effect, it was to function as an extension of the previously established consumer TPS.

This objective is laudable, but the consequences of the CTPS have extended beyond the small business community. For example, one issue in particular that is stirring up the emotions of the telemarketing community is that bigger businesses are registering their numbers - on both a piecemeal and wholesale basis. These organizations have plenty of resources to answer calls, and benefit from the full range of gatekeepers and technology to field appropriate or inappropriate enquiries.