I had to write this post in response to continual calls at 4 AM from a call center company that is trying to get my business. A couple years ago I researched call center services for some of my businesses and talked to them at that point. 1800 We Answer has now been telemarketing me now for a couple months now and I will never do business with them. Here is why.
First way to lose a customer
Call me a 4 AM. Even though the FTC says telemarketing is only supposed to happen between 8 AM and 9 PM, yet they continue to call me at much earlier hours. An outbound marketing firm should be able to reference your billing address from the lists that they buy and not call you before designated hours. If you use a telemarketing company and they screw up like this, it is you that gets in trouble, not them.
Second way to lose a customer
Call me from a blocked or “Unknown” number. I don’t answer blocked calls and never will. You want to talk to me, then call from an unblocked number so I can determine if I want to take a call from you. What makes it worse, since they never leave a message, I can’t call them to tell them to stop calling me and that they are breaking the law.
Third way to lose a customer
Call me with an autodialer. Besides credit and collection people, who in their right mind uses these auto-dialers to call prospective customers? The one time I finally picked up because I was annoyed, I get a message of “Please wait for the next customer service representative.”. What the heck, you called me and I have to waste my time waiting for you to connect me with a real person? What busy business owner will wait on the phone to be marketed to? This shows complete stupidity in the marketing folks at 1-800 We Answer.
Fourth way to lose me as a customer
Don’t remove me from your list when requested. So finally after waiting on hold to be connected to a customer service rep, I told them outright that I don’t do business with companies that use autodialers and that they should remove me from their list. I also told them they were calling me outside the proscribed telemarketing hours. About a month went by and go figure, they started calling me again.
Fifth way to lose a customer
Ignore the DO NOT CALL list. Well after that fiasco, I put my cell phone number on the Do Not Call List. Not only did I get a call at 3:48 AM this morning, but I got another one at 3:49 AM. I do not know about you but I do not want a call from the FTC saying I have violated the Telemarketing Sales Rule. If the telemarketing company can’t even do it for their own marketing, are you sure they will protect you?
Do not do business with 1800WeAnswer. Since they can’t follow the law all they will do is get you in trouble with the FTC. If they happen to read this, I direct you to the FTC website that lays out in simple language what the law is. http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/edu/pubs/consumer/telemarketing/tel13.shtm
Make your customers feel special, not just a number to market to. This includes whether you are marketing by phone, email or social media. Give them a reason to listen to you. Respect peoples wishes not to be marketed to. Every email list I set my customers up with has a way for their customers to opt out of receiving marketing.
EDIT: Eventually the calls stopped. This was several years ago and I am unsure if they are still doing the auto-dialers. Still good to be aware of.