If you are a sales agent for a financial services or insurance company, it is imperative that you take steps to comply with the requirements of the new do-not-call law.
Implemented Oct. 1, 2003, the rules set requirements for outbound telephone marketing to contact prospects or make sales. The Federal Communications Commission, the Federal Trade Commission and the states are enforcing the laws, with fines and penalties for noncompliance of up to $11,000 per violation.
The good news is that it is possible to comply.
So long as you institute the right procedures, using the telephone under the new privacy rules can be a safe and effective way to identify prospects and make sales.
How can an agent comply? The question comes up repeatedly in our work with insurance firms. The following are the key steps.
The first and most important rule is to refrain from calling consumers on the National Do-Not-Call Registry.
Since June, the federal government has been accepting and tracking the home telephone numbers of consumers who do not wish to receive sales calls.
Currently, there are 54 million phone numbers listed on the National Do-Not-Call Registry. This represents nearly one-third of the 166 million residential phone numbers in the United States. Any sales calls made to consumers listed on the registry may be subject to a fine of up to $11,000 for each such call.
The rules also place several other requirements on individuals who make outbound sales calls. Specifically, anyone placing a sales call to a consumer at a residential phone number must:
Purchase and access the National and State Do-Not-Call lists and refrain from calling any consumer phone numbers that appear on these lists;
Record the phone number of any consumer who requests to be placed on your company-specific Do-Not-Call list, and make sure no one else in the company calls that number for 5 years;