How often does someone call you from a company you already deal with (or a friend deals with) to make you an amazing offer?
How often do they insist on closing the sale right there on the phone, expecting you to hand over your ID number and banking details (they already have your cellphone number)?
How do they identify themselves? Do they already have access to your account details with that company? (Say for argument’s sake, “MySkinnyBody” gym or “MarvellousConnections” mobile company?)
Let’s say it’s not a scam. Let’s say the actual company is behind this. (We believe them because after all they told us things out of our account that the company would surely never disclose – would they?)
Let’s say you accept the offer, and something goes wrong – e.g. the company takes a lot more out of your account than they said they would.
How do you prove this?
“All our calls are recorded.” Have you ever yet tried getting a copy of one of those recorded conversations out of a company?
I’ll give you a hint: I tried. They never ever turn them over to you. It would probably take a court order plus an audit, and then it’s doubtful that the recording would be “found”.
The most plausible reason for this is that they can’t be bothered to wade through tens of thousands of recorded conversations to try and find yours – if they don’t have a proper logging system for the calls. The second possibility is that it’s BS and they never did record the phonecall, but are only saying it to put the customer at ease. The last (and rather sinister) is that they do find the conversation and listen to it, and decide not to share it because it proves they were in the wrong. It ties right in with missing dockets.
Going through this process after the fact usually only results in pain and anger, and a company notching up yet another customer complaint.
I call this a post-mortem. Too late is too late.
The point to cut this whole process short (and avoid being scammed, in the bargain) is at the telephone call.
“Sorry, I can’t talk to you, I never do business on the phone. Send me an email, here is my address.”
OF course they are prepared for this and have all sorts of answers ready, generally based on making you feel sorry for them personally (the rep). Be not fooled: They get trained for this.
Be strong. Persist. If they refuse to do business with you in writing, refuse to do business with them.
If they get difficult, ask them for their personal ID number, car registration number and banking details in return. After all, fair is fair, right?
But we nailed it this morning:
One is never prepared for them when they call.
So what one needs to do is, prepare. Rehearse. Cold call? Rehearsed line.