Getting old phone numbers

14 replies
I've heard of contractors getting the phone numbers of other contracting businesses that went under. Sometimes the owner dies and there is no one to take the business over. Other times the business isn't doing well enough and the owner decides to call it quits even though calls are still coming in.

Those legacy calls can be very helpful. I have a friend whose father died over a year ago and he still gets around 5 calls a week, and these are good calls from repeat customers or referrals.

Has anyone ever done this? What method have you used to find the numbers and acquire them in order to get the to forward to your own number?

I was going to start by keeping my eye on the state licensing board and the minutes from their monthly meetings to see which companies gave up their license.
#numbers #phone
  • Profile picture of the author thet
    Personally, I'm not calling for it to be banned nor am I ranting and raving about it like the OP is. My only contention is that it's not some conspiracy that people hate telemarketing. They hate it because it's one of the most intrusive forms of advertising and it genuinely annoys them.
    Those legacy calls can be very helpful. I have a friend whose father died over a year ago and he still gets around 5 calls a week, and these are good calls from repeat customers or referrals.

    I saw you had some strong opinions about Telemarketing. But you don't have a problem taking over a phone number from a dead guy for repeat costumers or referrals?

    Business is Business. But I find this way more akward then taking action yourself and go get your own costumers.
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    • Profile picture of the author Electrical
      Originally Posted by thet View Post

      I saw you had some strong opinions about Telemarketing. But you don't have a problem taking over a phone number from a dead guy for repeat costumers or referrals?
      Yes, no problem at all. Should I have a problem with it???

      Business is Business. But I find this way more akward then taking action yourself and go get your own costumers.
      Is it good business to get upset about the truth and then follow someone around and harass them because they were honest with you?

      Is me telling you that the general public dislikes telemarketing calls really so bad that you would come here and crap on another thread just to complain about it?
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      • too funny.

        love business, and irony (the timing of this post from the other),

        they are made, from human nature itself.
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        • Profile picture of the author Electrical
          Originally Posted by kirbymarketingconcierge View Post

          too funny.

          love business, and irony (the timing of this post from the other),

          they are made, from human nature itself.
          And here is his partner in crime, I should have known...
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          • Originally Posted by Electrical View Post

            And here is his partner in crime, I should have known...
            you are so funny. another conspiracy you see?

            come on guy's laugh it off.

            I'm not judging anybody.

            lived long enough

            remember Claude's reply in that other thread???
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  • Profile picture of the author umc
    I can see where this could work, but if you took the time and money that you would spend in hopes of someone or someone's business kicking out on you and put it elsewhere I wonder if you wouldn't get a better return.

    As for telemarketing, I hate it when they call me, but I also did it for years and ran a multi-million dollar phone room so although people in general hate it the fact can't be denied that it is effective. Same with lots of methods that I don't like. Honestly waiting to swoop in on other's misfortune seems "icky", but it might be worthwhile.
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    • Profile picture of the author Electrical
      Originally Posted by umc View Post

      As for telemarketing, I hate it when they call me, but I also did it for years and ran a multi-million dollar phone room so although people in general hate it the fact can't be denied that it is effective.
      I agree with that 100%. As I was quoted above, my only point in the other thread is that people genuinely dislike getting telemarketing calls and any laws made against it weren't just from a big conspiracy. But some people took the truth to heart and got their feelings hurt.

      Honestly waiting to swoop in on other's misfortune seems "icky", but it might be worthwhile.
      Why is it "icky" to buy phone numbers no longer in use? Is it any different than buying a high PR domain from a company that went under?

      If you were buying domains for a PBN, would it make any difference to you if the previous owner died?
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      • reminded me of an old seinfeld episode.

        with new york apartments so scarce, read the obituaries for upcoming vacancies.

        so real, so ironic, and yes icky too.

        correction - I am judging. but human nature, not looking to single people out
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  • Profile picture of the author umc
    Hey man, it just feels that way to me. We don't have to agree. Kind of like telemarketing. I hate it when someone calls, others like it. Your mileage may vary. I feel like my time would be better spent elsewhere. I get the logic that you used, but there are plenty of marketing strategies that work that I'd feel weird about. Watch a show like Shark Tank and you'll see that some investors have personal feelings that get in the way while others are all about the bottom line. Both are obviously successful.

    Happy hunting for those numbers. I have no idea how you aquire them. Maybe they go on some list like expired domains or maybe you have to call the dead guy's family and ask for a transfer. It is an interesting concept.
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    • good post UMC

      I have heard of this before, but don't know of a way to get those phone #'s.
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  • Profile picture of the author bizgrower
    Somebody is going to get that phone number - might as well be Electrical.

    It's really a question to ask the phone companies because they assign the numbers.
    I have no idea if you can get in line for a number for a business that is about to close.

    Dan
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  • Profile picture of the author socialentry
    I'm going to order pizza today, anyone have any suggestion?

    Hmmm pizza!
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  • Profile picture of the author BDazzler
    How is this different than buying expired domains that still get traffic? As long as you are providing a good service and not defrauding anybody ("I'm sorry - Smith Contractors is not at this number any longer - We are Jones contractors perhaps we can help you") I don't see a problem.
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  • Profile picture of the author Sully1975
    Originally Posted by Electrical View Post

    I've heard of contractors getting the phone numbers of other contracting businesses that went under. Sometimes the owner dies and there is no one to take the business over. Other times the business isn't doing well enough and the owner decides to call it quits even though calls are still coming in.

    Those legacy calls can be very helpful. I have a friend whose father died over a year ago and he still gets around 5 calls a week, and these are good calls from repeat customers or referrals.

    Has anyone ever done this? What method have you used to find the numbers and acquire them in order to get the to forward to your own number?

    I was going to start by keeping my eye on the state licensing board and the minutes from their monthly meetings to see which companies gave up their license.
    My father drug me in 2006 or 2007 to some electrical contracting marketing seminar off by the Philadelphia airport. It was one of those electric university chase nothing but residential spiels. Anyhow, they spoke of doing just this. But they said look for people with big Yellow page ads whom went under. This was back in the day when the book somewhat mattered. You wanted those double truck pages (full color left and right) ads with the number as people didn't easily pitch phonebooks back then.

    The presenter mentioned something about a department that sold these numbers in the phone company.

    The best way to find out who died is the supply-house each week as well as the inspectors, the boards are too slow.
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