A History of Abuse
In the 1980s saw the rise of unwarranted calls and aggressive telemarketing ploys by companies in North America to homeowners and consumers in an attempt to boost revenue. Without a regulating body to control the industry it led to abuse by innumerable scammers, fraudulent practices and unethical robo-callers.
According to the Ad Age Encyclopedia of Advertising, the growth of telemarketing boomed from half a million to 4.5 million, it was reflected as well in the growing number of US call centers and offshore from 80,000 to 565,000. Films like "Boiler Room", "The Wolf of Wall Street" and "Glengarry Glen Ross" would further cement its reputation as an unethical environment managed by unscrupulous confidence men.
The TCPA is Born
Enacted in 1991 under the Bush administration, the Telephone Consumer Protection Act restricted solicitations via telephone and utilization of automated telephone equipment. The law regulates automatic dialing systems, robo-calls, text messages and fax machines by requiring proper identification and caller information as one of its provisions.
The provisions outlined in the TCPA policy would cover prohibitions such as disallowing companies from calling before 8:00 AM and after 9:00 PM, it would prevent solicitors from using artificial recordings, autocalls with multiple lines, unsolicited ad faxes, and sound boards, and most important of all, contacting emergency lines covering hospitals, healthcare facilities or calls that charge the recipient.
Violations would incur into hefty fines where the consumer would sue the caller up to $500.00 for each call made. Should the violation be considered willful, the damages for each violation would result in costing over three times the original rate totaling to $1,500.00 for each .
While the "Do Not Call" registry was mandated by the TCPA back in the 90s, it was only in 2003 that it was fully established. This registry would protect registered consumers from unsolicited calls from outbound cold callers. Telemarketers would be required to produce written consent from consumers should they choose to call anyone in the protected list. The policy would eventually lead to the 2013 Philadelphia Federal Appeals Act where consumers could revoke their consent to receive calls, the CAN-SPAM Act that targets offshore calls and faxes and the Junk fax Prevention Act of 2005 where the nuisance advertising faxes would be regulated.
Why Smart Outsourcing Prevails
It's easy to judge telemarketing and cold calling as duplicitous practice without realizing its humble origins. Yet, like door to door sales or any marketing practice, anything that shows potential will always be ripe for abuse. This is why "Smart Outsourcing" is here to stay, this business approach complies with the FCC mandates, considers consumer protection a priority, offers businesses an effective solution while inhibiting scam companies from ruining the industry's reputation.
This is why it is highly recommended that before dealing with telemarketing and offshore companies, to assess how they utilize their leads, comply with local and national policies and adhere to the TCPA and FCC requisites. When you run with a legit telemarketing company, you partner with a company that can protect your business and take it into new heights.
To know more about how the DNC Registry and Smart Outsourcing give us a call.