Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Guerrilla warfare with Telemarketers

Just Say "NO" to Telemarketers

Guerrilla warfare with Telemarketers I thought I might lose the annoying telemarketers when I discontinued my land line phone and went strictly to a cell phone. It didn’t work out that way at all. I signed up on the “No Call” list and I think it doubled my calls. Most telemarketing firms use a tactic called “predictive dialing” so as not to waste the telemarketers’ “valuable” time while waiting for you to pick up? Their computer auto-dials your number, assuming it’ll take you an average 2-3 rings to pick up, and switches you over to the next available telemarketer when you do. Instant hang-ups and the delayed response typical of a telemarketing call result from this predictive dialing. My favorite call lately is a womans voice recording that says (for the 100th time), “This is your last chance. The warranty is running out on your car!” No kiddin’ lady. I’m driving a 1994 Buick LaSabre with 225,000 miles on it. Sign me up for this one—and bolt that satellite TV dish to the roof. A common practice of these low-life telemarketers is to call the elderly repeatedly and establish a relationship with them. The telemarketer will become a “friend” to a lonely old person, using this “friendship” as leverage in high-pressure sales.Here are a couple of tactics that will help you fight back when attacked at dinner hour by aggressive telemarketing companies. • Act interested, but slowly turn down the volume on the phone as you talk (or, failing that, back slowly away from the receiver). The telemarketer will probably turn up his/her headset volume to compensate. Then, when you return to full volume and asked to be taken off their call list you’re sure to come in LOUD AND CLEAR.• My personal favorite ploy is to fight fire with fire. It is not hard in this day and age to track down the owner or CEO of a large company. With a little detective work you can actually find their home phone numbers online. You can often kill two birds with one stone. Find out the name of the company that is calling you (usually a telemarketing firm). After you hear the shpiel you know the name of the company they represent. Do your homework and find a phone number for the highest ranking official you can. Worst case scenario, call the company and demand to talk to the CEO. Explain that you are going to be calling them several times for every call you receive. I guarantee they will do an extra scrub on their computer database just to make absolutely sure they are rid of you. My last target was the CEO of Sprint (at the time, Gary Forsee). Sprint was aggressively after the guy who had my telephone number before it was assigned to me. I tried explaining the situation to every knucklehead that called. I was getting three calls a day. I never did get Gary’s home phone number, but I was able to reach his secretary. A short conversation with her and the calls stopped immediately. If you have a lot of time on your hands and you just want to mess with telemarketers, I suggest you buy “Revenge On The Telemarketers: Round 1” CD by Tom Mabe. You can pick up a lot of pointers listening to Tom’s recordings. If you do all the above and begin to enjoy yourself, please be warned that when the phone stops ringing you can get very lonely and bored. -Keep Smilin', Dick E. Bird

1 comment:

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