phone number scamming

Phone Number Scamming – Cold Call Sales

Like everyone with a phone, I’m a victim of phone number scamming. I’m constantly getting numbers from callers I don’t recognize that repeatably ring my bell and yet don’t leave voice mails.  In other words…from telemarketers.

In one especially nefarious phone number scamming strategy, callers spoof their caller ID so that the number appears to be a local caller… someone in your neighborhood as opposed to a sales person in a call center in India.

Last week I got a call from a (301) 518 -XXXX phone number. That’s the same first 6 digits of my phone. I figured it was spam so I let it go to voice mail. Three calls and zero voice mails later I decided to text the number.

Here’s how that went down:

I called the guy… we laughed and then it got me thinking.

I use a great phone screening product called TrueCaller (check it out). I like it because although it downloads all my contacts…. it downloads every other user’s contacts and then uses that database for caller ID. For example: Let’s pretend John Doe was a True Caller user and John’s wife Jane Doe was one of the contacts on his phone.  When Jane calls me, my true caller working on my cell phone would display Jane Doe’s name.

Nice feature…

But the best part of TrueCaller is that when I get a call from an annoying telesales person, I can identify them as a telemarketer and block their call. This blocks the caller from ringing my phone and sends them directly to voice mail. Even better, if multiple people block that telemarketer’s number, they are then labeled as a spammer. After being marked as a spammer that telemarketer will forever be highlighted in red as a spammer when calling TrueCaller users.

Herein lies the problem. If some telemarketer is spoofing my phone number as they were in the example above, and a number of people report me as a spam caller… nobody will ever answer my calls.

Hey wait…. that explains why no one ever answers my calls.

Cold calling Telesales is becoming an increasingly ineffective sales strategy. In order to get calls through to human type people, these spam callers are using less than scrupulous techniques. Spamming a number is just one of those techniques.

Here’s the thing, if you’re going to try to start a relationship with me by lying to me (like spoofing my number) I’m not ever going to do business with you anyway. You know when a 301 number calls me and the Mahmoud, with his South Asian accent tells me his name is Scott Adams…. that doesn’t create the basis for a long term trusted relationship.

It’s like the people I use to meet on Match.com who posted 15-year-old pictures and lied about their age to get a date. Lying is a major reason that relationships end and not how they should begin.

Check out this post on Predictable Revenue and why it’s no longer effective: The Systematic Failure Of Predictable Revenue