10 tricks you can play to avoid unwanted marketing calls from Financial Companies

POSTED BY Jagoinvestor ON July 15, 2013 COMMENTS (76)

We all get unwanted calls related to credit card, insurance plans, newly launched policies, to upgrade our prepaid connection to post paid and god knows what all. I am generally regarded as a “super-cool” kind of guy within my group, these callers even try to break that good part of me. However, over the last few years, I have realized that no matter what you do they still come back to you with full dedication.

Tricks to Avoid Unwanted Marketing Calls

When I posted one simple trick on my facebook wall to get away from these calls, people connected to me reciprocated back with few other tricks which they try to shoo away marketing calls. Let me share those with you, so that next time you get that unwanted call asking you for making some investments or taking some policy or whatever reason, the chance they will leave you for next few months increases.

10 tricks to avoid Marketing Calls

Before I share those simple tricks with you (which are actually shared by others with me), I want you to know that the callers will only leave you when they come to know you are a “worthless guy” or you irritate them to the core.

Trick #1 – When you get a random call from banks, insurance companies for “a special offer only for you” . Tell them – “Sir, I lost my job yesterday” . You will instantly become UNTOUCHABLE for them .. and they will leave you in peace (for some months at least)

Trick #2 –  And if a life insurance agent calls I tell them my wife is a LIC advisor. In my case, he blacklists it immediately. There is no second call

Trick #3 – I just put my phone on loudspeaker mode and keep it aside…I put in an ok intermittently… finally the other person gets bored and hangs up…!!! Donno if the job lost trick would really help, but I would listen to the offer for sure !!!

Trick #4 –  I just say I’m not interested in marketing calls and request them to add my number to their blacklist. Again if someone calls me with same request I threaten them saying I am going to raise a complaint. This has worked well for me.

Trick #5 – Once I told them this is a police officer and a body is in front of me. have u killed him/her ?

Trick #6 –  I got a call from ICICI Bank selling credit cards. I denied and he asked for a reference. I gave him the mobile number of their CEO whose contact I had from a meeting 2 yrs back

Trick #7 – When they ask “How are you today?” Tell them! “I’m so glad you asked because no one these days seems to care, and I have all these problems; my arthritis is acting up, my eyelashes are sore, my dog just died.”

Trick #8 – If they say they’re John Doe from XYZ Company, ask them to spell their name. Then ask them to spell the company name. Then ask them where it is located. Continue asking them personal questions or questions about their company for as long as necessary.

Trick #9 – Tell the telemarketer you are busy at the moment and ask them if they will give you their HOME phone number so you can call them back. When the telemarketer explains that they cannot give out their HOME number, you say “I guess you don’t want anyone bothering you at home, right?” The telemarketer will agree and you say, “Now you know how I feel!”

Super Trick #10 – Tell them – “Wait a minute, can you hold on for 10 sec … and then pass it on to your 2 yrs old kid and ask him to talk to Uncle”.

Watch this youtube video below ( and you will get some good ideas on what to do?

Ashish shares his incident

Also it reminded me my interesting conversation with one of the tele caller, when she called me to ask if need Credit card from her bank .. I was going to railway station in my office cab and was getting bored in cab as it was not my usual cab route when this call came on my cell.. I listened and interacted very carefully what she had to say for trying to get me signed for credit card.. Replied all her queries about salary, work info, company info etc without allowing her to realize that all details were fake .. then she explained what all documentation was required in order to apply for this credit card.. I then asked her many questions which made her believe that i am really interested.. However she got shocked for my reply when she asked me: Sir, when shall i send my executive to collect all the documents?
I replied in very sweet and simple voice: Next year M’am :P .. She took a pause for few seconds before she realized what had happened, then she said thank you (in frustration) before disconnecting the call …

I was on speaker phone for this conversation and I did not realize that my colleagues were listening my conversation with this lady, until, they all burst in to laughter listening my reply for her last query ..

I made sure that i stretched this conversation for at least 40 mins so i could cover most part of my destination :) ..


Pramod shares his daring incident

Once I get a call from ICICI to buy insurance (ULIP) though I did not want to buy but I was free so to pass time I asked the girl why should I buy insurance. Her reply was that you can save for my children and if something happens to you then your wife & kids will get money. She told me that it is a must for married men to buy insurance. Now it was my turn I told her that I am unmarried (I lied ;-) ) so she said “aap shadi to karoge hi to insurance to reqd hi hoga” I asked if she was married on which she said no. Then I asked “Madam aap mujh se shadi kar lo. Engineer hoon, 6 Foot ka jawan hoon, Kamata bhi hoon. aur tab mujhe insurance bhi chahiye hoga” Shockingly she said “Sir, why are you joking.” I said “no! I am serious. It’s a win win situation. Mera ghar bas jayega aur aapki policy bik jayegi. So when can I meet your mother? ” She put up the phone & since then I have got no call from ICICI.


Sunil Date shares his amazing incidents

I got a phone call asking me if I required a loan. (Old days not now). I replied ” Yes I am intrested in intrest free-non refundable loan. ” Unfortunately the poor thing could’nt understand the joke.

I got another call from a tele caller. She ” Sir your number has been selected by a lottery and you are invited to such & such hotel on ..at .. for a presentation. And a free gift is awaiting you”. I ” If you want to give me a free gift then why don’t you visit my office and give it to me ? I will visit the hotel for the presentation after seeing the gift” .

I got another similar call . She “Sir you number has been selected by a lottery and you are invited to such & such hotel on ..at .. And a free gift is awaiting you.” I “Will you be there ?” She flustered ” No sir. My boss will be there” I ” Then I am not intrested”.


Note – We understand that marketing calls are made by people due to their job and target pressure. We in no way disrespect them or trying to make fun of them. With this post, we just want to communicate the pain the other side goes through and few tricks shared by others to avoid those unwanted calls.

Do you have any incident to share with us?

76 replies on this article “10 tricks you can play to avoid unwanted marketing calls from Financial Companies”

  1. Nagaraju V says:

    Most of the times what I do is tell them that I already have the product they are trying to sell… Saves time and effort 🙂

    1. Nice .. i have done that couple of times !

  2. Rahul says:

    Since I got my new Motorola Razr Maxx, I have started saving their numbers and just dont pick the call the subsequent time they call, now that I have a huge memory and huge(er) memory card, The first time they call I politely refuse sometimes and sometimes I ask them how they got my number and threaten to complain, but the calls keep coming :(.

    1. Haha .. but how many numbers will you save !

  3. sudheer says:

    Hi Manish,

    I agreed with you that everybody facing this issue. But I don’t agree with all of your tips. First if you really don’t want to receive any of those telemarketing calls you should not give your phone every where. Second the person who is calling you to market their product is also an employee. He/She doing their job. You people think speaking to these callers waste your valuable time, that is true. But if you continue to speak with them for your time pass, please be realize that you are cheating and wasting other employee who is doing telemarketing. If you are not interested in their products you can tell them same on initial conversation and cut the call. It will save your time and as well theirs.

    Note: I’m not a tele marketer and I have also faced these calls during my busy hours.


    1. Yea Sudheer

      I agree with you , note that this is just a fun post . We really dont want to make any one life measerable !

    2. Chudheer says:

      That’s such an unwholesome and underwhelming comment. People who are doing jobs of calling up unsolicited know exactly what they are getting into: unsolicited calls. If they had any respect for my time, they won’t have taken up this job. Taking up this job which involves wasting people’s time, and complaining about such tips is like, taking up a sailor’s job and complaining about sea breeze being bad for your health.

      If you think that not giving your phone number “everywhere” will protect you from getting the calls, then you have no idea how data sharing works amongst spammers. Besides, as someone who is so fit to give others the advice, how come you have also faced the calls in your busy hours too, as mentioned in your note?

      If telling the people to stop calling and not being interested in the product would have worked, there won’t be this article. Please think before you post such drivel.

      1. Jagoinvestor says:

        Hey, it’s not in support of those unwanted calls :). It’s against it. Kindly read the full article please .

  4. Sri says:

    Do we really think at all from the perspective of the people making those calls? Do they enjoy making those calls everyday for hours together? I believe they are doing it for their livelihood and should be respected as much as you and I are for whatever we do. Whenever I get such marketing calls, all I do is tell them that I’m not interested and most of the calls end there. If they still continue discussing.. say No thanks and disconnect. Why should we make their lives miserable?

  5. Neelesh says:


    Do you have any stats on what is the % of success rate of such cold calls.
    I presume it should be definitely +ve, otherwise the practice would have been discontinued.

    Nowadays Automated Calls come from Airtel DTH – if you suspend for few months – then you are in trouble (It doesn’t have emotions)


    1. True . but what is your comment all about ?

  6. gris blika says:

    Once I come to know it is a cold call, I ask them to call back after some time as I ‘am busy now’. I then record the number as Barack Obama, Michella Obama, Manmohan Singh etc.
    Now I have the entire Indian Cabinet and US senator list in my contacts.
    And I love to watch the faces of my friends and acquaintances when my phone announces the caller’s name!

    1. That was a good one . Thanks for sharing that !

  7. King says:

    I also dealt with this kind of call..
    when i was working in STC as fresher in 2006 ( abbreviation of company jumbled 😀 ) They used to call all the desks and the unfortunate caller called my extention. I told that My name is some XXXX ( not my name ) and asked me if i need a loan. I said yes i need 1 crore uppes to buy a villa. They asked me what my salary was i said iam a director and i get 50 lakhs / the caller girl felt very happy and she told she will send her rep to collect docs and fill forms. i said yes and told a different address of the same company. that company has around 10 branches all round the city 🙂 and made them go to each and every branch. in furstation they again called my extenion. i Answered in a differnt voice and they enquired that they want t speak to the persion with other name ( said above). i told them that they have mistaken and no one with that name works here. poor rep guy he wasted his petrol and roamed bangalore all day long….

    1. Haha .. That was really a great one . I think your trick deserves to be in top 3 !

  8. Mohit says:

    Here how I deal if they don’t understand simple “NO” :-

    1) If someone calls for credit card, I asked for detailed features, after 10 mins I said I am currently using XYZ card with more features, if you are interested contact my ABC friend to get it.
    2) If some calls for Personal Loan, I always said I want 5cr 🙂
    3) If above mentioned tricks don’t works, I simply say please read loudly all the term & condition written on term & condition page.

    Trick 3 always work for me 😉

    1. haha .. good one !

  9. Suhas says:

    I used get the calls from crdit card companies very frequently and I got fed up with them then I used a couple of tricks and they stopped all together. Some incidence I remember…..
    Once I had got a call from girl and she was saying the card has good cash back offer. I told her I am not interested in the card and she was saying “you at least listen to the offers ”
    So I gave a chance for her to convince me.
    The first advantage she said is If you book a movie ticket I will get 5% and I politely told her I don’t have a girl friend to go for movie so that option is ruled out. She said you can go with your friends and I said I don’t waste 95% of money to get 5% cash back. Also I enquired which is good movie now days which she saw recently. She didn’t answer it.
    Then she moved on to lure me with Dinning discounts shopping discounts. Petrol surcharge waiver and my answers were same I don’t have a girl friend so don’t ride my bike/car, don’t go to malls son no shopping & don’t eat out. She was giggling on the phone and knew what I was pointing her to but didn’t gave up and Then finally I asked if she really want me to buy she should recommend me some single ready to mingle and I will take the card so that’s like a win win approach. If she sends the forms through her i am ready.
    That movement she said “I think you don’t want the card and I said “you took so long to understand. I told you in beginning.”
    The height was after some time I got a call from one more female and she had given reference of previous call she had been arrogant from beginning. But the call was for again selling the card and I posed the same thing to her and she was very angry on me and finally disconnected the call.

    2nd incidence I remember I got a call from again a girl but this time I told her I am new to this credit card thing and have a lot of cash money to dispose off and can they take all that money and give as credit to people through credit card. I told her I am ready to give cash back to her in the same manner her bank is offering and they can keep the interest on it if they wish. The very next moment she disconnected the call.

    3rd incidence is recently I got a call on my office landline and the female said I had been selected for special credit card then she was asking my details and I counter questioned If I had been selected then how come she does not have any of my details for which she didn’t have any answer.
    Then I told her I already have cards and she will waste her time with me. But she was insisting and I thought no option but to let me convince her .So I told her that taking more cards will effect my credit score (thanks to Jagoinvestor) and she was acting very smart and said sir you don’t worry we will take care of it. Then I tested her Knowledge on CIBIL with all sort of questions and she was totally dumb to answer them.
    Lastly she could not convince me and said till now she was thinking she was smart to sell the cards but today she accepted her defeat but still insist me to buy it. Then I said If you want to waste more time, for me to convince you we can start over again and she said thanks and Disconnected.
    If I receive any calls from Guys I simply say wrong number…………… 🙂

    I feel sorry for all that but some people don’t understand a simple “NO” first time and they become too pushy then no other option is left. If you disconnect they keep calling until you tell them something weird.

    1. That was very entertaining 🙂 . I read your full comment and you have shared in detail what you did 🙂 . Lots of ideas can be taken from there. Thanks for that !

  10. Rahul says:

    When i get a call regarding loan/credit card, i will tell i am a student pursuing MBA and i want the loan/credit card to pay my college fee. The line will get disconnected immediately. 🙂

    1. Yea . I did that many times 🙂

  11. Sundeep says:

    When I get such a call, my standard answer is

    Press 1 for English
    Kannadadalli mathadalike 2 otti

    Then they talk some more… I keep silence and then say

    Invalid entry, Please press 1 for English…

    By then, they will cut the call!

  12. Shankar says:

    Funny…but damn u guys think its so easy to make fun…I once used to do telemarketting…nd bloody rip people apart who dont respect…Better to politely refuse than try any of these…

    1. Yes Shankar

      Its always the thing one has to do . These tips are only when you have done it 50 times and the other side still does not stop .

  13. Gaurav says:

    Now a days LIC Jeewan Saral Policy and Real Estate related calls are in demand !!

  14. ThatsMagic says:

    DND : Do not disturb, an initiate by TRAI (Telecom regulatory autherity of India)

    The fact that only the PURE mobile services should reach consumers rather the “xxckin” calls

  15. ThatsMagic says:

    Its awesome, anything manish wrotes becomes popular. wowsome 🙂

    So much commnets for such articles, thats pretty cool.

    BTW, dont you think the TRAI provides DND service which makes you the safe at first before even calling any tele marketting.

    1. But that does work in reality, only papers !

  16. Rocky says:

    You removed my comment
    This is not done

  17. Rocky says:

    I didn’t like your article
    Please don’t make fund of us
    It really hurts me and make me fill that I am doing something wrong

    1. Hi Rocky. I didnt remove it , The comment was in moderation , which is now approved.

      You dont have to feel bad, even if its your job . The post is all about the environment of target selling and how some people are irritated by frequent unwanted calls despite telling many times not to call.


  18. Gayathri Iyer says:

    Nice Article… Though feel for the people who are at the receiving end of it.. 🙂

  19. Nataraj says:

    I use a simple trick:
    1. If they say, they offer loan, i ask for Fixed deposit options
    2. If they ask for investment, I would check for loans,
    3. If they talk about credit card, I would say income in 10k per month and an advocate by profession
    4. if they talk about insurance, I would check about term insurance and health insurance for individual of 70.

    they would just bump off.

  20. Pradnya says:


    Request you to instal a twitter widget on your site. I wanted to share this on twitter, but couldn’t do immediately 🙂
    It is hilarious. Having said that, as a summery trainee during my undergrad days, I was actually asked to make tele-calls. So I can vouch for the fact that such responses can be heartbreaking for tele-callers, since they are usually into late teens or early twenties. A polite ‘not interested’ always works better.
    But after I completed my education and started working, I have been to the opposite side as well, being bombarded by such calls, despite updating my number in national do not call registry. At times, I am tempted to reply back in the manner you’ve mentioned above, but I mostly don’t because my teen-summer job is still etched in my memories… 😉

    1. Its now there on the left hand side of the article !

  21. Z says:

    One day I received a promotional call from Dr. Batra, offering hair solution package. I told them I am bald, but have hairs at other places! Do they have any package offering for that? The operator hanged immediately, and I never received anymore calls!

    1. Haha .. nice one !

    2. Rehan Siddiqui says:


  22. Ashwin says:


    When I get calls, I just play along, until they ask me what my salary is.
    “Rs 10,000.”
    Only Rs 10,000, Sir.”
    “Yes boss, now tell me if I’m eligible for that credit card or not?”
    and then the guy hangs up.

  23. N Annamalai says:

    The people who make these calls are poor employees. They do it for their bread. They haven’t voluntarily come to this profession. They have nowhere to go and that is why they do this. (The other alternatives for them are only begging or robbery.) Getting a call or two a month is not a major irritant. (How many you receive from your wife daily!) Empathise with them. Help them if possible.

  24. Padmesh KC says:

    Hi Friends,
    Really liked the post. Thank you very much for such a post at right time when these are at its peak. As someone said, its their job. Its also true that they are disturbing others.
    I sometimes, give answer as 1kg carrot is xxx, oil is xxx. Give some rates and answers which are irrelevant. They will disconnect.


    1. Thanks for sharing that !

  25. Bhushan says:

    I know these calls are a nuisance, particularly when you get them during odd time (during afternoon nap !!), but we should remember that the caller is also a human being – may be less fortunate than us and hence has ended up in this job, which he/she also doesn’t like to do.
    I do get 1 or 2 calls per month and I always address the person and tell her that i am not interested (” Hi Anitha, I already have a credit card and I do not need one More”). They almost always close the call saying thank you. Just imagine from their side. They would have called 15-20 people before calling you and have got insults and vulgarity/fun thrown at them by amost everyone and how much they like you for being polite. Let us try to be polite before we get mad at them.

    1. Hameed says:

      well said Bhushan,

      Humans can show mutual respect.if they continue to do this again and again then we throw the discriminations at them

    2. bharat shah says:

      and sometimes the call may be useful to you.

    3. Anand says:

      Cant agree more Bhushan…. Yes I too agree that these calls are irritating but I believe it wont take much effort from our side to tell one simple polite sentence – “Sorry, I’m not interested”. I’ve observed nowadays that the moment you tell this sentence, the caller disconnects the call at their side with a mild ‘thank you’.

      As they say – “Be kinder than necessary because everyone you meet is fighting some kind of battle”

      And for these telemarketers, the battle is of survival. They get their bread only by their job of calling up people.

    4. Pareshx says:

      These humans/callers gets the heat but its not for them. We are frustrated with their Bosses/Companies but we cant get them so get their foot soldiers eventually they will get the message as all the calls are always recorded and somebody must be listening to it, meanwhile sorry folks pls bear with us as we bear with you.

  26. Sahil Bhatia says:

    I installed ‘TrueCaller’ software on my phone and after that, these unwanted calls automatically get disconnected by the software. In 20% cases, when they are not disconnected, I can see name of the company/person to which the phone is registered too and then I simply don’t pick the call 🙂


    1. Thansk for that tip Sahil !

    2. penchala kumar says:

      But the problem with true caller is that all your personal contacts will be at stake. Once you install, they access all you contacts with name & store it in their database.
      There was a article on TRUE CALLER recently in ToI i guess.

      1. And Truecaller was hacked also , if I remember correctly!

  27. Vasu says:

    I used to ask them from where they got my number. Whatever their answer may be, then I tell them that “my phone’s call recorder is ON and I am going to lodge complain against your company. ” Call then get’s disconnected immediately and now a days I just don’t get those kind of calls. 🙂

  28. Rishabh says:

    One of my friends once said yes to a woman offering a loan. Details? He wanted a 300 Crore loan to construct a flyover from his house to his workplace.

  29. abhilash says:

    My personal opinion is that it is not much of a problem. I personally have received many unsolicited calls but I just end it with a polite “Not Interested.. Thank You”. If one ever got duped into buying a product through such calls, I would say that it is that person’s mistake and not the caller’s. As the note at the end of the article says, they are just trying to do their job.

    1. pattu says:

      Could not agree with you more.
      “Not Interested.. Thank You” is intelligence and civility. Other replies are merely smart. I would prefer intelligence over smartness any day.

  30. Sanjeev says:

    I got a call for retirement policy and the girl said sir if you invest 4000/- per month you will get 1 cr after your retirement.

    My ans. :- Nice offer but make it reverse give me 1cr today and take 4000/- PM from me till my retirement.

    She simply disconnect the call. 😛

    1. penchala kumar says:

      haha…i will try it next time…

  31. Shib says:

    Well, companies, esp Banks are working their way around DND by calling in pretext of dealing with an existing customer… they say you have a account or credit card, and then offer to do some financial planning, ie sell mutual funds, demat accounts, etc.
    Nowdays, when they call, I keep a list of all my grievances against them, let them know that “I was interested in their products” but “didn’t buy due to their lackluster services”.

  32. Suresh K Narula says:

    My replies:

    Sir/Madam, Before the proceed the next, you would not talk about your credit card, loans and insurance etc. then I am ready to hear you.

    Sir/Madam, This product has already purchased by me as someone has called me yesterday for the same.

  33. Santanu says:

    Hi Manish,
    A very useful and enjoyable post. Really like the last point specially and I will try this next time with my kid.

    1. Yea .. try it . I once tried it

  34. bemoneyaware says:

    Interesting answers..
    What would be there reaction is you tell you are financial blogger?

    1. Tell them I am from SEBI 🙂 – “Are these kind of unsolicitated calls still going on, which company are you from?” , that would have more power!

  35. Sohil says:

    My replies::

    Sir credit card?
    I stay in Dharavi ,do you have guts to give a card?

    Insurance policy?
    The moment my family knows i have insurance..i will be killed immediately..My son is jail already in harming me.

    Lottery won?
    I dont do such misdeeds of participation in lottery..i am allah sa darna wala banda….By the way do you know what the bets going on for india pakistan match?

    Bank Loan?
    Yes i need loan of biggest amount..I just broke a deal for my house and shifting abroad..I need loan…yes i need..Give me the highest amount.Also ill passed 30% to you..DO i fast i will leave the country in 15 days.

    Gas heaters sellers?
    Yes instal one in my society.I always wished a NAzi type Gas chamber for my society committee members..

  36. pattu says:

    I am curious to know two things:

    1. How serious a problem is this? That is can others share how may such calls they receive per week on average?

    2. Is this related to credit card usage? I don’t have a credit card and I never receive any calls. My wife has one. She uses it occasionally, and after each use there is such a call. I simply tell them we are not interested in any offer and we are left alone until the next time the card gets used.

    1. Pattu

      1. Its a great headache for many salaried employees in big organisations and those who carelessely write their mobile phone numbers anywhere asked, once leaked, it gets spread with your whole profile and companies know this may be a potential “bakra” . I have myself got one call per day for a big tenure. many others can confirm theirs

      2. Its not just credit card but for any kind of offers, it can even come from your bank for various things ! .


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