10 Ways to Answer a “Cold Call” to Ensure You Never Get One Again

9 months ago

“Hello, we have an offer for you that is better than any offer you’ve ever gotten...” If you still don’t know what a “cold call” is, you’re a lucky person. All these calls from banks, beauty salons, and other companies can make even the most patient person seriously irritated.

1. Say that you’re underage and you can’t make such decisions yet.

A caller is supposed to believe the words of the client. So if they say they are legally incapacitated, the caller can’t disagree. Usually, not a single company has the right to work with such people — only with their parents and caretakers.

Another reason why a company can’t contact a person is if they are underage. Even if you speak in a low adult voice that you are a minor, a cold caller can’t disagree. Most likely, the person won’t argue with you because they don’t want to deal with teenagers.

2. Remind them about the law.

If your country has laws regarding such companies’ activities, they may need to have a written agreement with the costumer in order to contact you. Of course, they don’t have such an agreement, and will usually justify their violations with the excuse that you or one of your friends must have shared your number. Don’t hesitate to ask them to exclude your phone number from their database.

And in order to stop them from calling you back, warn them that you will record the phone call because they don’t respect the law on access to information and protection of personal data.

3. Pretend to be bankrupt or a criminal.

The point of all “cold calls” is to get your money: if you tell them that you are poor and bankrupt, the caller will quickly hang up. If someone is telling you that you have won a free trip to Hawaii, you can inform them that you have a restraining order and you can’t leave the country.

4. Install a special application.

There are applications that can track the origin of the call. For example, you can use the Truecaller, which tracks every call from an unknown number. The application searches the number in its own database of marketers, scammers, and other people you don’t want to be contacted by. If a certain number is on the blacklist, the app won’t let you accept the call. It will save you time!

5. Waste their time.

In a very short period of time, cold callers need to get a lot of positive words out on a service or a product which is why they don’t like it when a potential client wastes their time.

As soon as they present the service or the product they are trying to sell, don’t rush to refuse the offer. Show your interest instead. And after their sales speech ends, ask them to say everything from the very beginning because you weren’t concentrating enough and missed most of it.

6. Use your imagination.

If you’re a brave person, there is a way to entertain yourself. When they ask you, “How do you wish to be addressed,” say something like, “Mr. President.” You will instantly notice how much more attractive their offer will sound. “Mr. President, our bank offers you the best conditions.” You can use your imagination here and say that you’re Steven Spielberg or Chewbacca.

7. Pretend to be a legal entity.

“Hello, we want to offer you our new products!” “Hi, this is the Johnsons Law Firm, how can I help you?”

All corporate phone numbers must be deleted from the database. It is obvious that after such an answer, they will be the first to hang up, not you. But if the conversation is still long, you can say, “Please, hold, I will put you through to the expert,” and just keep the call on hold.

8. Tell them it’s against your religious views.

Here is another fun way to waste the caller’s time. Even if you are an atheist, just say that your religion doesn’t allow you to use their service. They will most likely not argue with you.

9. Pretend to be a foreigner.

Wondering how to finish a conversation with someone fast? Tell them that you moved to a different country and their offer is no longer appropriate for you. Another option is to pretend to be a person from a foreign country who doesn’t speak the language.

Yes, you might have a local last name, a terrible accent, or might even speak a language that doesn’t exist. They might suspect that you are not serious. But most likely, they will decide not to deal with such a funny person.

10. Repeat 3 times, “I am not interested.”

On cold calls, there are instructions on how to work with objections. They usually have just 3 answers in their scripts. So, if you repeat, “I am not interested,” 3 times, they will run out of possible answers and will have to end the conversation with you.

What do you usually do when you get a cold call? Tell us in the comments!

Please note: This article was updated in February 2023 to correct source material and factual inaccuracies.
Illustrated by Marat Nugumanov for Bright Side


I try not to pick up a phone when someone calls me from the number I don\t ave in my contact book..
I always respond to them only in my mother tongue Kannada. If they respond to me in Kannada and offer some loan, I ask for huge amount like 10 to 12 CR, if they continue to know the purpose, I respond it is required for for smuggling activity or
To buy some Naga Mani (rare stone) and to sell for huge amount etc...Etc..

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