The Cellpocalypse is Coming!

By Lee Ernst

That’s right, the Cellpoca­lypse is com­ing — and if you’re not pre­pared you could risk los­ing the right to con­tact almost 45 per­cent of your cus­tomers! Mobile phones are now the pri­ma­ry num­ber for many of us, and that affects your deal­er­ship more than you may know.

On aver­age, between 40 and 50 per­cent of phone num­bers list­ed as “home phone” in your data­base are actu­al­ly mobile phones and about 45 per­cent of total appoint­ments made from an aver­age dealership’s out­bound appoint­ment set­ting calls (sales and ser­vice) come from call­ing a cell phone.

That’s why it’s absolute­ly imper­a­tive that you obtain pri­or express writ­ten con­sent by Octo­ber 16, 2013. The Fed­er­al Com­mu­ni­ca­tions Commission’s recent rule changes pur­suant to the Tele­phone Con­sumer Pro­tec­tion Act, state you MUST obtain pri­or express WRITTEN con­sent for all “auto dialed or pre­re­cord­ed tele­mar­ket­ing calls to wire­less num­bers and for pre­re­cord­ed calls to res­i­den­tial lines” start­ing on this date.  The term “auto-dialed” can be inter­pret­ed pret­ty broad­ly and includes things like lever­ag­ing your CRM, so basi­cal­ly, it’s good bye to call­ing cell phones!

So just obtain writ­ten con­sent! Essen­tial­ly any con­sumer acknowl­edge­ment is rec­og­nized as a valid sig­na­ture as long as you clear­ly and con­spic­u­ous­ly dis­close to the con­sumer the con­se­quences of con­sent. It can­not be ambigu­ous and can­not come with a catch. And what con­sti­tutes a valid sig­na­ture? A voice record­ing, email, web­site form, tele­phone key press or text opt-in from the con­sumer would all be con­sid­ered a valid sig­na­ture.

There’s only a few months left to save near­ly half of your cus­tomer con­tacts, not to men­tion near­ly half of the appoint­ments you reg­u­lar­ly gen­er­ate from out­bound calls. You must begin the wire­less cus­tomer con­tact restora­tion process now, to ensure the future of your busi­ness.

Lee Ernst is Agent of Cus­tomer Com­mu­ni­ca­tion Intel­li­gence at DMEau­to­mo­tive, the indus­try leader in sci­ence-based, results-dri­ven auto­mo­tive mar­ket­ing that pro­vides a range of mar­ket­ing ser­vices to the biggest and most inno­v­a­tive auto­mo­tive orga­ni­za­tions in the indus­try. For more infor­ma­tion, email [email protected]m.

*The infor­ma­tion pro­vid­ed here­in is for edu­ca­tion­al and infor­ma­tion­al pur­pos­es only and should not be con­strued as legal advice. Read­ers should always obtain the advice of inde­pen­dent legal coun­sel relat­ed to their own spe­cif­ic and unique cir­cum­stances.



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