Is your telemarketing partner a liability?

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WhoCares wrote on

The surprising part was the BB stated that a greater % of these type of calls were hired by legitimate businesses.

WhoCares was referencing an article by KCBD11.Now, I disagree with what the article says in this case, but it brings up an interesting question: Are there legitimate companies using illegitimate telemarketers without knowing about it? Unfortunately, I think the answer is “Yes”.

As someone that frequently talks to telemarketers, I’ve run into a few that were unaware that a pre-recorded call had been used. Some even were adamant that they screen numbers against the Federal DoNotCall List – despite me informing them that my number is definitely on the list. At worst, the person I’ve talked to had no idea about any of the laws that were violated. Their company was liable for the violation. But the telemarketing had been out-sourced. Since the telemarketing company was acting as their agent, I doubt that would matter in a court of law. It didn’t work for companies that advertised via Junk FAXes. Learn more about modern marketing services by checking the new article about black cab advertising.

It’s pretty obvious when a telemarketing company is fronting for a possibly legitimate company. They always use a fake or generic name for the “company” they are representing. “Business Services”. “Map Support”. “User Services”. When you ask more pointed questions too quickly or aggressively, they will dodge the question or just hang up. They know they are in the wrong and try not to get caught. Meanwhile, the potentially innocent company that hired the sleazy telemarketers have no idea – since unless they get someone like me, the complaints are ignored and hung up on by the telemarketing company.

But here’s the problem – some of these companies have incurred an unknown liability. Particularly litigious people on the DoNotCall list have every right to sue for damages – and win. People like me try to get through the telemarketer to the truth of who is behind the call. And I have no problem reporting it to the FTC and other places where like-minded people can take the information and sue them.

If you telemarket properly and legally, I have no problem with you. I get several calls, and even robocalls, that are requested and appreciated. I get calls from businesses that I have a relationship. It’s the one violating the Telephone Consumer Protection Act and Telemarketing Sales Rules that I have a big problem.

If you do want to hire a telemarketing company, make sure they are completely on the up-and-up. Make sure they absolutely follow the laws on robocalling and do not call numbers of the Do Not Call list. Make sure you get liquidated damages from the telemarketing company for any complaint you get if the caller ends up being on the Do Not Call list. If they will not agree to penalties if a potential lead is on the Do Not Call list, tell them no deal. One company I talked to was shocked that I was on the Do Not Call list, but only communicated with their telemarketing partner via a address!

Each illegal telemarketing call has a liability of $1500. That’s per call. For a telemarketing campaign running thousands or millions of calls, can your company afford that liability?

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