ONE WAY TO TACKLE THE UNWANTED COLD CALLERS – You know what it’s like; you’ve just poured yourself a nice gin and tonic or made a cup of tea and now you’re settled down to watch your favourite TV show when the phone rings.
No sooner have you managed to utter the greeting of ‘hello’ the cold caller springs into action with offers of the day.
Cold callers are the bane of our existence, they are intrusive and highly persistent, but now there appears to be a profitable answer as one entrepreneur discovered – or so it appears.
Like most people Lee Beaumont was sick and tired of the barrage and constant persistence of the cold callers which offered him goods and services that he simply had no interest in. All Lee wanted to do was settle down in front of the TV and watch Coronation Street in peace; is that really too much to ask?
After enduring months of cold callers Lee started to look carefully at ways in which he could turn the tables, take revenge and maybe even make a few quid from his efforts.
What Lee finally decided to do was to set up his very own Premium Rate Number and since doing so has manage a turnover of £300.
According to Lee one of the worst perpetrators of cold callers came from the ‘compensation claims’ companies. After being bombarded with such calls it was then he decided to take his revenge and decided if he had to endure their incessant babble then he was going to charge them for the privilege.
Setting up a Premium Rate Number is not that difficult and it’s fairly cheap. Lee paid just £12 including VAT to set up his own 0871 number and now makes 10p per minute for every unsolicited call.
There are alternative Premium Rate Numbers you can set up, such as the 0845 or 0844 numbers but the 0871 is far more profitable; according to Lee.
From the 10p per minute charge Lee levies 9p is made, the other 1p is taken up with the service charge but that’s still extremely profitable.
Just think about it… you could answer the phone and even ask the caller to hold the line, pop off and make a cup of tea or let the dog out and all the while you are making money. Considering how profitable this is I would even venture to maybe striking up a conversation; basically anything to keep them on the line longer.
Taking the concept one step further Lee installed another phone line for private incoming calls and made sure that only his friends and family has the number. For services, such as Gas and Electric, he also gave them his premium number and whilst Lee admits that the ‘cold calls’ have now but all dried up he still makes a few quid from the utility companies.
With every ying there is a yang and the yang to this story is that premium number regulator ‘Phone Pay Plus’ has warned others against such use as they state that such a number is not designed to be used in such a way and may user may liable under their code for any breaches and could face fines.
Boo hoo… yes once again it’s OK for others to pester the buggery out of you but it’s not OK to charge for your time.
I for one take my hat off to Lee for he is obviously they type of guy capable of thinking out of the box to find a solution to a problem so many of us suffer from.
Personally I’ve always taken to simply hanging up after the first few seconds of the sale pitch but unfortunately this does not deter them or others from repeated attempts.
According to Which? magazine some 700 million cold calls are receive each and every month and that eight in ten people are victims to unsolicited calls of which half are from accident claims companies.
This is surely an intrusion on our time and therefore I would suggest the regulator changed its code of conduct that would allow people to legitimately charge for their wasted time.