The U.S. has a similar rule, known as the existing relationship rule. The existing relationship rule nullifies the do not call rules if a company has an established relationship with a consumer. According to the FTC, there are only two instances in which a business can contact a person on the do not call list:
A person has purchased, rented or leased goods or services from the calling business, or if a financial transaction has taken place between the business and customer. The rule has an 18-month time restriction. A person has made an inquiry or submitted an application (requesting a quote for example) to a company. The time restriction for contact is three months after the initial inquiry.
Caution Cold Calling In addition to the existing relationship rule, there are several other guidelines to follow when taking a cold-calling approach for customers. Companies must compare state and federal call lists (in addition to choosing just one) and federal do not call registries. Companies must also keep a personal business list of consumers who requested not to receive calls. If a consumer has D U C TA L E S
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given written or electronic consent a business may call them even if they appear on the do not call registry. Also, companies must check the registry every 31 days to ensure their do not call list is up to date and accurate. Cold calling has a lot of rules and regulations and may not have a high return on investment. Don’t worry, if you’re interested in finding new clients, there are other alternatives to cold calling consumers. “There are many things you can do if you want to attract customers and market your business,” said Worrall. “Join NADCA, a local chamber of commerce and social media sites. I’ve gotten a lot of work through NADCA referrals and review sites. Find out where your customers are looking and make sure your business appears high on the list of Google searches.” How about recruiting new customers using deeply discounted coupon sites, like Groupon? “I recommend staying away from Groupon,” said Worrall. “Most customers equate Groupon and air duct cleaning with fraud. It’s also important to be proactive in your community. Get involved with trade boards, chambers of commerce and other community groups. It’s more personal and more rewarding than telemarketing.”
Alternatives to Cold Calling/Telesales 1.
Join a professional organization like NADCA.
2. Connect with your community by participating in or sponsoring town events.
3. Get your business listed on
Google Maps, Bing Local and Yahoo local.
4. Build business social media profiles (Facebook, Angie’s List, Instagram).
5. Check out the competition and see what they’re doing well.
6. Ask customers where they
heard about your business to determine where you’re getting the highest return on investment.
7. Ask customers to refer your business to their neighbors and friends.
To access the National Do Not Call Registry or for more information, visit www.donotcall.gov/faq/ faqbusiness.aspx.