By Mary Kennedy
Are telemarketers driving you crazy? Calling at all hours of the day and night, interrupting meals...
I'm sure the answer is a resounding YES.
But don't despair. I have a solution for you. First of all, you can sign up for the Do Not Call Registry.
But this is just the start. And I haven't found the Do Not Call registry particularly helpful. I have signed up repeatedly and still the calls continue. So what to do?
Easy. You fight back!! How do you fight back? You write to the sponsors!! This is the only approach I've found effective. You can google the name of the offending caller and find out which organizations are paying this company to harass you. Then choose half a dozen of their clients, go to each website and hit the "contact us" button. If possible, choose someone in fund-raising or media relations. They're more likely to take your request seriously. The last thing they want to do is turn off potential donors.
A few hints about your e-mail. Be polite. (even if you have to grit your teeth) After all, I'm sure some of these non-profits have no idea about the tactics these companies are using.
Be clear and specific. Mention that you are being called several times a day, even though you are registered with the national Do Not Call List. Tell them that you have requested your name be removed from their "call" list and yet they call you repeatedly. Be sure to stress the fact that this constitutes harassment and that this makes it much less likely you will ever contribute to their organization. (If you are currently a contributor, so much the better.)
Start out your e-mail by saying, "I am a contributor to _____ and agree with your mission." (if you really are) If not, see below.
Start by getting right to the point. "I wanted to alert you about the harassing, parasitic telemarketing practices of XXX, who poses as a fund-raising company for organizations like your. XXX keeps calling us several times a day despite our repeated requests that they take our number off their lists. XXX's shoddy business ethics and total disregard for the people they keep harassing are working against your very own interests. We're certainly put off supporting your organization in any way. If you intend to run an effective fundraising campaign, with donors devoted to your cause, we strongly recommend that you do so without XXX's counter-productive input. My phone number is XXXX and I would like you to ask XXX to take me off their call list. Maybe they will listen to you (you pay them), they will not listen to me. Thank you."
Try this and I think you will be pleased!!All the non-profits I wrote to contacted me and apologized. And they guaranteed that my name would be placed on a "master" do not call list with this dreadful telemarketing company. Persistence pays off. I no longer get these infuriating calls. I hope this strategy works for you and you have a happy, quiet home life once more.