Discover's Speed-Reading Sales Technique Means You Can Get To "No" Faster

A zealous Discover rep tried to get Richard to sign up for a “protection program” by speeding through the details of the agreement as fast as possible—you know, the fine print part that makes it clear you’re agreeing to a paid service. When Richard made it clear that he wanted to hear the details again and that no, he hadn’t agreed to anything, the rep hung up on him. Discover, maybe you want to have a talk with your reps about their sales techniques.

I received a call from a Discover card rep today offering some information about some new program they’re offering regarding being able to freeze your account, saying that they’d be mailing me an info packet. This rep was speaking so quickly, he was making the disclaimers on car dealer ads on the radio sound drawn out. I had to ask him twice to slow down and repeat what he’d just said.

The second time was after reading what he called a “30-second” spiel about the conditions of the mailing where I heard the words “payment protection” mentioned. Nothing had been said about this previously, so I asked him to repeat the end of his spiel. He said, “We’ll be mailing you the information in three to five business days for your review. This constitutes your approval for enrollment in payment protection. I said, “I absolutely did not approve anything to be done to this account,” and he HUNG UP!

Richard called Discover and made sure they had a clear understanding that he hadn’t agreed to anything, but he shouldn’t have to do that on an unsolicited telemarketing call. And as Richard points out, there will be impatient customers who end the call at the wrong time or with the wrong phrase who will end up being signed up against their will:

What galls me is that I’m positive the fast reading of that statement was designed to disguise the bit about “your approval for enrollment in payment protection,” so that some impatient or less-attentive customer would just say, “Yeah, fine” simply to end the call and end up enrolled in something it wasn’t made clear they were enrolling for.

When you start wishing you could sign up for a program to protect yourself from the credit card company, you know they’ve pushed their sales techniques too far.

(Photo: Getty)

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