Arguing is a Poor Telemarketing Sales Technique

Do you ever find yourself staggered at just how poor some sales people truly are?

In many instances, the only differentiator between you and your competitors is your customer service. Sadly, it seems that some people simply don’t get that – well, either that or they don’t care!

Do Not Call means Do not Call

I receive countless sales calls, both at home and at work. I usually ask the person if it’s a sales call and if they say yes, my stock response is to inform them that the number is registered with the Telephone Preference Service (TPS) or Corporate TPS (same as the TPS, but for businesses). These are services that both individuals and companies can register with to prevent unsolicited sales & marketing calls – a “Do not call” list, if you like. This usually prompts any one of a number of responses, including being hung up on, or the more polite “I’m really sorry, I’ll amend our details immediately, so you are not called again”.

Every such call is a breach of the law, though I don’t tend to report these “short and sweet” instances to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), that is unless they continue to persist calling. However, this morning, I received a cold call at work, from a company that I have never heard of, asking if we take card payments. Upon asking if this was a sales call, the chap responded “No it’s not a sales call – I’m not selling anything”. Of course, I could tell straight away that it was, since his patter was typical, so I knew he wasn’t telling the truth. I thus gave my stock response “You do know that this number is registered on the Corporate Telephone Preference Service file and as such, I do not wish to receive sales calls”. His response was “Well on this occasion, the CTPS file has failed YOU”.

Talk About a Poor Telemarketing Sales Technique

Checking whether your number is registered with the service is simple, so whilst we were in the midst of our opening sentences, I logged on to the TPS Online website and was very quickly able to see my number listed. I thus informed him that I had just checked and that he was, in fact, flouting the law. “Well”, he said all cocky and triumphant, “as we rent the card machines out, you don’t own anything and as such, it’s not a sales call!!!”

Steve looking confused about Clean Data

The absurdity of that comment was phenomenal (he was still selling a rental agreement!), yet he continued to argue his point and contest my assertion that he might be incorrect in his belief. Now, I’ve been the victim of many a poor telemarketing sales technique, but arguing with your prospect is just about as stupid as it gets. I must admit, it didn’t take long for me to zone out! Sometimes I hang up, sometimes I play games with them (you get your kicks where you can in this industry!), but on this occasion, I carried on what I was doing and just allowed him to rabbit on. Maybe he thought that I would warm to his cocky charms and buy … sorry … rent one of his machines! Needless to say … I didn’t.

Dear Information Commissioner …

Now that person I did report to the ICO – clearly he is either following a company script that pays no regard to the law, or he has taken it upon himself to adopt a more “maverick” approach to his sales calls. Either way, I wouldn’t be true to my trade if I didn’t take the necessary actions in those instances!

Notwithstanding the complete disregard for the TPS, it just begs that question why would you argue with a person you are making a cold call to? What type of sales person thinks that arguing with a prospect would lead to a sale? I buy from people I know, like and trust, so if you want to sell me something, build a relationship up first. Don’t disrespect me by lying and arguing with me. That, I promise, will land you in trouble.

If you want to check whether you’re listed on the TPS or CTPS, or if you wish to register your telephone number, click HERE – you will need to list every telephone number you do not wish to receive unsolicited sales and marketing calls on (landlines and mobiles can be listed)