Wednesday, 23 April 2008

What's the catch?

Yesterday evening, I heard my phone ringing when I was in the loo. I rushed out and ran to my room to take that call. Who knows, it could be a really important call.

"Hello, are you Madam XX XX XX?"

I really don't like calls like this. It can only mean one thing. So, I replied very reluctantly, "Yah..."

"Have you received the $1,000 shopping voucher?" the girl on the other line chirped merrily.

When I quizzed her "What voucher?", it gave her just the right opportunity to launch into her 5-minute spiel without catching her breath.

"Remember my colleague called you recently? You did a survey? Now you're one of the lucky few selected by our company to receive a $1,000 shopping voucher. You can buy make-up, electronic goods.... and there's another set of $500 voucher coming and..... yadi yadi yadi... this is NOT a timeshare!"

Now, I have heard marketing talk like this a million times. Knowing how tough a cold-caller's job is, I used to answer their questionaire thinking that I was doing these folks a favour, thinking they'll get $5 for every questionaire completed. It doesn't work this way anymore.

If you are kind and understanding, they will file you under the 'gullible and easy' list and get their eloquent representatives to call back to 'close the deal'. Hah, I have heard the "You're the lucky winner of..." too many times! Sometimes I even get lucky several times in an hour.

I would really like to humour them but 9 out of 10 times, the calls come when I'm driving through heavy traffic, lugging 10 heavy bags of grocery, dashing to my car in the pouring rain, in the shower or taking a nap.

Anyway, I've lived long enough to know there's no free lunch in this world. So if I'm in a good mood, I ask, "What's the catch?" but mostly I just say, "Sorry, I'm not interested." and quickly end the call.

I still think cold-calling is a really tough job.

9 comments:

The Real Mother Hen said...

Oh that's so annoying!
While I was reading this, my printer suddenly gave up on me... now the bloody last page isn't printable, so I selected "clean printer head" and it said "can't print clean printer head" - what the... if I have the sales call now, I would have no problem chopping the lady's head off! :)

Blur Ting said...

Oh no! I completely understand how you feel. Your hubby better stay far far away for now :-)

WaterLearner said...

Once a guy called me to say that I have won an Olympus Camera, I said,"Thanks! I really appreciate your calling. Please keep the camera as my gift to you. Bye!"

As he was asking,"Why Miss...."..

I hung up the phone. It might be rude. But I guess that was the only way to go. I am never lucky. I never win in lucky draws.

seagrape said...

years ago, back in the days when i had a landline, i kept getting calls that i won a cruise. to claim my prize i had to arrange a meeting with a salesperson. dave and i thought it would be entertaining so we met with this young woman (a college girl working part time) who ended up crying out loud in our kitchen because we let her talk for two hours and chose not to spend $2000 on pots and pans to be entered in a drawing to win a cruise. after packing up her stuff she said..."you wasted my time i wont even send you the entry voucher for the contest."

Blur Ting said...

Water - Yah, you've done the right thing. It saves you and the caller lots of time.

Blur Ting said...

Seagrape - You guys are funny!But Oh wow, the girl should not expect to close a sale everytime she makes a presentation. I mean $2000 on pots and pans is alot of money!

We have lots of cases here where the sales people go door to door selling very expensive pots and pans or vacuum cleaners. Many housewives ended up buying under pressure and when their hubby return from work, they get a big scolding! I think door to door selling is now banned here. Thank God!

Amel's Realm said...

Yeah, tough job, but I'm afraid I also hated those kinds of calls. Back in Indo I had it many times while I was working at home. And I got grumpy when the person who called me wouldn't take no for an answer and kept on offering different things.

But some of them were nice enough and knew how to read "the signs".

One time I had the time of my life, though, during one phone call like that. The person offered me some type of insurance policy and after she/he had finished talking, I said, "No, thanks, I've bought one already from my Dad. He's an insurance agent."

That really shut him/her up HAAAAAAAAAAAA HAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA HAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA...

Nick Phillips said...

Well, on a free day, I've been known to actually make them give me the whole 10 minute sales pitch and at the end of it all, I'll just say I'm not interested, thanks and hang up. That'll learn 'em ... LOL!

Amei79 said...

Most people pretend dont understand their language, they will give up if fail to communicate.

or some just "halo-halo-halooo--, pardon...i cant hear u...", pretend the phone line is no good.