As a Marketing Consultant, I’m always thinking about how to get a good, quality, prospect lead. But I’m also a consumer that hates getting unsolicited phone calls. Oddly, I find it an invasion of my private space because answering a call instantly stops the momentum of whatever task I was working on. Caller ID certainly help me screen calls, but it doesn’t help me block unwanted calls.
I especially hate those annoying, pre-recorded messages. Occasionally I’m tempted to hang on the line waiting if I’m offered a number to press to get removed. I’ve discovered that most times there is no such option so now I just hang up immediately.
Fortunately the National Do Not Call Registry is a way to help reduce the annoying distractions of unwanted sales calls on your home or mobile phone.
How To Stop Unwanted Calls…
It’s managed by the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC). Basically you add your phone number to the national list. Reputable marketers agree to take that data, compare against their own telemarketing lists, and suppress the people who’ve requested not to receive sales calls.
It’s very easy to add your mobile or home phone number:
- Go to https://www.donotcall.gov
- Add up to 3 mobile or home phone numbers along with an active email address.
- You will receive an email for each phone number you submitted.
Subject line: “National Do Not Call Registry – OPEN AND CLICK on Link to Complete Your Registration”
You must open each email and click each confirmation link within 72 hours to complete this step otherwise your number(s) wont be added to the do not call list. If you don’t get the email, be sure to check your email spam/junk mail folder in case it was misfiled. If you have more than 3 phone numbers to add (your parents, your kids, etc.), simply start the process over again. It will accept the same email address again.
Fortunately, your registration will no longer expire after a period of time (like it used to). According to the website:
Telephone numbers placed on the National Do Not Call Registry will remain on it permanently due to the Do-Not-Call Improvement Act of 2007, which became law in February 2008.
Of course, there’s no guarantee that it stops all unwanted telemarketing sales calls, but you should experience a noticeable decline when reputable marketers updated their contact lists.
Finally, whenever you do receive an unsolicited sales call with a live human on the other end, simply be polite and say:
“Please remove me from your contact list. Thank you.”
While we’re on the issue of privacy, follow these steps to remove your Spokeo listing.
That’s it. Hope you find this helpful.
This has been a very popular blog post since I first published 5+ years ago. Since the daily bombardment of telemarketing calls is worse than ever before, I think it’s fair to say now that the United States “National Do Not Call Registry” is a paper tiger and there’s no evidence it is effective. Huge disappointment.
HOWEVER, Please do some research and check out the various call blocking services and smartphone apps that might help you reduce the unwanted phone solicitations. Check out NoMoRoBo, they have a free solution for personal (not business/commercial) use.
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I think it’s increased because of Elections. I get marketing calls from 6am to 10 pm . Can’t wait till November’s over !
"Complaints to the government are up sharply about unwanted phone solicitations, raising questions about how well the federal "do-not-call" registry is working." http://www.usatoday.com/money/business/story/2012…
I have my cell phone and my home phone on the "DO Not Call " list and it does not stop the spammers and the con artists from calling. I get 7-8 calls a week on my cell phone and more than a dozen on my home phone from a phony agency that claim they can lower your rate. If I ask to be removed or speak to a manager they hang up right away. Sometimes they get abusive on the phone and "demand" to know if you have a credit card. I am also bothered by a place that calls repeatedly and wants ot install a "free" GE home security system uin my house. I have reported these calls to the Ohio Attorney General and tried ot get the nubers blocked by AT&T, but the number they call from changes every time they call. I have gone online and the complaints against these people fil pages. AS far as i can tel the "Do Not Call" list has no teeth in it.
I agree with you that there doesn't seem to be any obvious "Do No Call" enforcement and punishment. Supposedly, responsible marketers participate. Unfortunately that doesn't force the rest to follow best practices. Nor does it stop all the B.S. political calls, which are conveniently excluded.
So we use Caller ID to screen calls, particularly any that looks like a toll free number or labeled "Private." If I do pick up and get an unsolicited telemarketing caller, I politely tell them: “Please remove me from your contact list. Thank you.”
How do residents in Canada stop unwanted marketing calls from 702 area codes? We have a Canadian "Do Not Call" list and the American registry doesn't seem to accept Canadian area codes to register.