In 2003, Congress passed the Do-Not-Call Implementation Act. The act created a national do not call (DNC) registry that consumers could use to block unwanted solicitations.
Many companies see DNC compliance as a pain that prevents them from reaching potential customers.
Call centers can complain all they want, but they still cannot call numbers on the DNC registry. Instead of complaining, take a more optimistic perspective by seeing DNC compliance as a way of keeping your business’s reputation clean.
Understanding DNC Compliance
Complying with DNC means that you have to follow several rules that potentially build a wall between you and some consumers.
To stay in compliance, you should:
- Update your DNC list at least once per month.
- Never place sales calls to numbers on the DNC registry.
- Create a written policy that instructs employees not to call numbers on the DNC.
- Know the state laws where your call center is located.
- Only give employees numbers they can call.
- Record all DNC requests that come into your call center.
- Keep records of your attempts to comply with all DNC regulations.
Additionally, your call center needs to follow telemarketing sales rules that include:
- Restricting sales calls to the hours between 8 a.m. and 9 p.m.
- Training call agents to immediately identify themselves and your organization.
- Accurately disclose information about the products or services you sell.
Types of DNC Lists
The FCC handles requests and complaints related to the National Do Not Call List. Many states also have DNC lists that give residents added benefits.
State DNC Lists
Some states automatically update their lists to match the national registry. Others require residents to add themselves to the state list.
Since you can’t ensure that the national list includes everyone on your state’s list, you should request copies of both documents. Otherwise, you run the risk of calling someone on a list that you do not have.
Internal DNC Lists
Your call center shouldn’t annoy people who don’t want to receive calls from you. If you continue calling people who don’t want to hear from you, then your company could develop a bad reputation for pushiness or intrusiveness. These days, people can post all of their complaints online and easily flag and block your phone numbers. Even a few upset people can tarnish your reputation.
Not everyone who asks you to stop calling them has a number on national and state DNC lists. You should value their requests, regardless.
Create an internal DNC list that includes all of the numbers of people who have asked you to stop calling them. It doesn’t matter whether their phone number appears on official DNC lists. It makes business sense for you to respect the person’s wishes.
3 Benefits of DNC Compliance
Some companies hate the DNC list because they believe that calling more people will lead to more sales. If you have that attitude, then it’s time to rethink your perspective. You actually get several benefits from DNC compliance.
1) Build a Better Reputation for Your Business
DNC compliance shows that you respect your customers and the law. By staying compliant, you help build a better reputation for your business.
The alternative means that your business will get a bad reputation that could become local or national news. When that happens, you have a lot of hurdles to overcome before you earn your customers back.
2) Avoid Getting Your Outgoing Numbers Labeled as Spam
Dozens of reliable smartphone apps give their users opportunities to report phone numbers that annoy them. If your outgoing numbers get flagged, then they will eventually get marked as spam or blocked entirely.
Once your numbers get marked as spam, you lose the opportunity to contact a lot of people. Who wants to answer a phone call from a number that comes with a “scam likely” warning? The typical person will ignore your calls.
When you treat people respectfully, though, you make it less likely that your numbers will get flagged. It may sound counterintuitive, but honoring DNC requests actually makes it easier for you to contact more potential customers.
3) Avoid Litigation and Fines
Violating DNC rules can cost your business a lot of money. According to the FTC, the commission has taken action against 141 companies and telemarketers suspected of breaking rules. As a result, the FTC has collected $52 million in civil penalties and $72 million in redress.
When a case goes to court, you never know how much money you could lose. In 2017, a federal court ordered Dish Network to pay $280 million in fines for calls that violated the Telemarketing Sales Rule.
Reaching Clients That Refuse Calls
The DNC list does not forbid you from contacting consumers. It just prevents you from calling them. People on the DNC list don’t want phone calls and text messages, but that doesn’t mean they hate all forms of communication.
Using a Multi Channel Approach
Adopting multi-faceted marketing campaigns will help you clear hurdles created by the DNC. You still have the right to reach out to people via other channels such as these.
- Digital Ads
- Print Ads
You can’t deny that the DNC registry creates some difficulties for companies that rely on sales calls. DNC compliance, however, offers more benefits than trying to resist the rules. Stop thinking about the DNC list as a challenge. Start thinking of it as a way to expand your branding and marketing campaigns.