So, I got a bizzare phone call today.
It started as innocently as any other telemarketing call. I checked the CallerID (thank you Vonage), and the caller was Conde Naste Publications. I figured it was worth picking up, in case they were calling about a magazine subscription of mine or something. Little did I know they would give me the hardest laugh of my day.
The girl on the phone had a pleasant voice, but really sounded very disinterested in her job. She was clearly reading her script, and here’s how the conversation began:
“Hello, Mr. Blankenburg? This is Jenny from Dial America. I’m calling in regard to your subscription to Cookie Magazine.” (My wife is the subscriber, but I know you’re gonna make fun of me anyways.)
Ok, so her software told her which magazine I have been subscribed to, and that we have let the subscription run out. She also knows my name, gender, and presumably my address, etc.
Now, I’ve always thought that it would be a great idea to know things about the person you’re talking to when in this role. For example, if you’re calling someone, and you know their address, why not comment on the weather in their area? Surely you could rig up some web service calls to weather.com and away you go. “My goodness, it certainly has been hot in Phoenix lately, right Mr. Jones?” It gets the callee talking, which is the best way to make a sale. Get someone to talk about themselves. People just love it.
Anyways, so here was Jenny’s personalized pitch to me (keeping in mind this was most certainly scripted):
“Mr. Blankenburg, I’m calling from cold, rainy Columbus, OH. How’s the weather in Westerville?”
(I did some research. They have a calling center in Columbus.)
At this point, I couldn’t help but laugh. “Um, it’s cold and rainy? I’m 3 minutes from Columbus.”
“Oh, yeah. I guess you’re right. Sorry about that.” *Click*
She hung up on me! That’s funny stuff.