How to Deal with Telemarketers
1. If they want to loan you money, tell them you just filed
for bankruptcy and you could sure use some money. Ask, "How
long can I keep it? Do I have to ever pay it back, or is it
like the other money I borrowed before my bankruptcy?"
2. If they start out with, "How are you today?" say, "Why do
you want to know?" Or you can say, "I'm so glad you asked,
because no one seems
to care these days and I have all these problems, my
sciatica is acting up, my eyelashes are sore, my dog just
died . . ." When they try to get back to the sales process,
just continue on with telling about your problems.
3. If the person says he's Joe Doe from the XYZ Company, ask
him to spell his name, then ask him to spell the company
name, then ask where it is located. Continue asking personal
questions or questions about the company for as long as
4. This one works better if you are male: Telemarketer: "Hi,
my name is Judy and I'm with Canter and Siegel services....
You: "Hang on a second." (few seconds pause) "Okay, (in a
really husky voice) what are
5. Crying out, in well-simulated tones of pleasure and
surprise, "Judy!! Is this really you? I can't believe it!
Judy, how have you
BEEN?" Hopefully, this will give Judy a few brief moments of
terror as she tries to figure out where the heck she could
know you from.
6. Say, "No," over and over. Be sure to vary the sound of
each no, and keep an even tempo even as they're trying to
speak. This is the most fun if you can keep going until they
7. If MCI calls trying to get you to sign up with their
Family and Friends plan, reply, in as sinister a voice as you
can muster, "I don't have any friends . . . would you be my
8. If they clean rugs: "Can you get blood out, you can?
Well, how about goat blood or HUMAN blood - chicken blood
9. Let the person go through their spiel, providing minimal
but necessary feedback in the form of an occasional "Uh-huh,
really, or, "That's fascinating." Finally, when they ask you
to buy, ask them to marry you. They get all flustered, but
just tell them you couldn't give your credit card number to
someone who's a complete stranger.
10. Tell them you work for the same company they work for.
Example: Telemarketer: "This is Bill from Watertronics."
You: "Watertronics!! Hey I work for them too. Where are you
Telemarketer: "Uh, Dallas, Texas." You: "Great, they have a
group there too? How's business/the weather? Too bad the
company has a policy against selling to employees! Oh well,
11. Tell the Telemarketer you are busy and if they will give
you their phone number you will call them back. If they say
they are not allowed to give out their number, then ask them
for their home number and tell them you will call them at
home (this is usually the most effective method of getting
rid of Telemarketers). If the person says, "Well, I don't
really want to get a call at home," say, "Yeah! Now you know
how I feel." (smiling, of course...)