Sunday, June 27, 2010

Telemarketers Send the Wrong Message

Ring, ring. I check the caller ID. It is a telemarketer. How do I know? I recognize the name – or lack thereof. And as soon as I identify myself, the caller hangs up in my ear. I know what they want. They want to speak to my boss. It isn’t going to happen. My boss does not take calls from salespeople. She hired me to do that.

There are three problems with the callers hanging up so abruptly.

First – It is physically painful to me. The disconnect often causes a loud clang in the receiver that hurts my ear.

Second – It is discourteous and I don’t do business with people that are rude.

Third – It indicates the caller has made some assumptions. The caller assumes that if he hang up and tries again, a different person will answer. OK. Let’s say that I am busy so an associate picks up the call and then tries to pass the caller to the boss. The boss will not take the call and the telemarketer is no further along than before. Another assumption is that I am a mere receptionist. Guess what – the mere receptionist can prevent anyone from speaking to anyone else. In addition, in a small office like ours, the receptionist is also the office manager. I make many buying decisions independently plus recommendations on the really big purchases. Get me angry and you go nowhere on your sales pitch.

I doubt telemarketers think of these things. They just start speaking when the computer completes the connection. However, the marketer is the one who disconnects the call. By doing what they do, over and over again, they tell me that they truly are not trying to sell me anything at all. They are just logging calls while telling me in effect “the company I work for is so awful that one should never buy anything from it because it hires people like me.”

Somehow I doubt that is the message any reputable company wants me to receive.

Computer calls next time.

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