Many years ago a simple phone call from a telemarketer led to me getting a badly needed job.
Nowadays, my interactions with Telemarketers usually consist of me realizing that it is a Telemarketer and explaining I don’t have time. Or if they refuse to listen simply hanging up.
But back in the days before I had children and thus more time on my hands I would occasionally actually listen to what they had to say to find out what they were selling.
On this particular occasion, I answered the phone and started to listen to the person describe how their company sold customized freezer packs to their clients. While there was only the two of us and we actually were not living on much money at the time, the concept seemed interesting.
So I decided to have the sales person come and visit our house to explain the plan in more detail. As it turns out, the person on the phone had neglected to mention to us that there was a minimum purchase amount that unfortunately we were nowhere near being able to afford at the time. Perhaps they were simply looking to be able to say they had booked an appointment for that week.
While we were talking with the salesperson, I mentioned this was not something we could afford at the time as I was currently actually looking for work. It just so happened that they were actually looking to hire more telemarketers and he asked if I had a resume available which I promptly gave him and he set up an interview for that week. I was actually somewhat dreading working a telemarketing job again, being handed a legal size sheet of paper with a script and a page from a phone book and told to start calling around trying to convince people to buy something.
The interview went amazingly well, and the best part that script I mentioned, well at this place it was an 8.5 X 11 sheet of paper instead which was just a suggested template to follow with some key points that needed to be addressed in our calls. We were encouraged to develop and change it as we saw fit and were trained to understand the company’s vision, etc so that we had that memorized to simply speak to people in a more natural way.
Which I spent the next few months doing until I moved on to something else. But there were times when a conversation with a with potential customers became a little too personal shall we say.
That day started out like any other shift crossing off phone numbers as I went. We had been having a bit of a tough time in this current community as many of the people living their either lived on a farm or ranch or were hunters etc. So trying to sell large packages of meat for their freezers to these folks was just not happening. It was becoming a bit mundane but not to worry as this one caller sure made the evening interesting.
I introduced myself and explained that I was calling from “Advantage Plus Food Services”….and that was as far as I got before this gentleman exclaimed, “Your calling from Advantage Plus Prostitutes” I tried to correct him and explain what we were selling but either he didn't hear me or chose not to listen as he repeated again “Your calling from Advantage Plus Prostitutes”. Not knowing if he was simply pulling the chain of the telemarketer or if he was drunk (we very often got asked to deliver liquor to people) I simply replied sorry sir that is not what we are selling and hung up.
So, at the very least that one call led to employment for a few months, they were a great company to deal with and discussing those interesting calls made for some good times during coffee breaks! Years later, it is still funny to look back on that experience.
Do you have a funny story to tell about a telemarketing call?
Prompt #3: Describe a memorable experience you had with a telemarketer.