Many of us get annoyed when a telemarketer calls us. This is understandable. When I moved to Mesa Arizona in 2001, I would get many calls a day from telemarketers and bill collectors asking for the last person who had my number. It took numerous calls and emails to have some peace and quiet.
I now work for a telemarketing company. This is not a career for me, and I am not going to work in this industry for too much longer. However, the job market is not good, and this is the best job I could find for the time being. It is currently my primary source of income. Until I find a better job, I get fired, or I can significantly increase my income from my stand up comedy and my writing, I will stay put for a while.
Working at a telemarketing company has actually been a great educational experience for me. Many people get extremely rude and upset when I call them. Others resort to unoriginal and played out tactics to try to upset me. I will cover a few of these and tell you why you shouldn't do them.
1. Hooking up a fax machine and activating it when a telemarketer calls.
I actually do find this annoying. If the volume is turned up, it hurts my ears. However, keep this in mind - the telemarketer has your telephone number. He or she may return the favor... at four o'clock in the morning.
2. Yelling obscenities on the phone.
You've lost your cool, and you've let me ruin your day. Keep in mind, it very likely was your dumb ass that gave your phone number away. You insulting me or cursing at me isn't going to ruin my day... I'm used to it. In fact, me and my coworkers are very likely laughing at your stupidity.
3. Pretending to be interested to waste the telemarketer's time.
We do find this tactic slightly annoying. However, keep in mind YOU are actually wasting your time. Keep this in mind if you still choose to do this: we are still getting paid. You are not.
4. Asking "Why don't you give me your phone number so I can interrupt your dinner?" or one of its variants.
Believe it or not, this old "joke" does not get any funnier after it's done for the 5 millionth time. Come up with something original and funny instead. All of us could use a good laugh.
So how DO you stop or avoid telemarketing calls altogether? Follow these steps, and you too will be on your way to having very few, if any telemarketing calls!
1. Register your phone number at https://www.donotcall.gov/
I think everybody should know about this government service by now. However, just in case you didn't know about it - you're welcome!
2. Give your cell/home phone number to your friends and family ONLY.
Get a secondary phone line to give to businesses that ask for it. I use Google Voice - it is free, and I love it! Also, if you just type "free voicemail" in your favorite search engine, you'll have a lot of other options at your disposal.
3. Politely ask the telemarketer to put you on the "Do Not Call" list when they call.
Saying that you're not interested, or hanging up on the telemarketer won't guarantee that you won't get a return call. However, when you say "put me on the do not call list", the telemarketing company is legally obligated to not call you again unless you give them permission. It is also advisable to get the company's name and address, and the name of the person that called you. Any reputable company will have no problem with giving you this information. If they refuse to give you this info, or continue to call after you told them to stop, file a complaint with the FTC and your state Attorney General's office.
If you really want to stop telemarketing calls for good, I actually have an AWESOME solution. Why not publish articles or write a book that will help people who work at regular jobs become financially independent so they can quit their day jobs. If you write something excellent that helps me like this, I guarantee you will not get a telemarketing call from me ever again.