Telemarketing or telesales is the direct marketing of products through orders taken over the telephone. Products can be advertised in full page magazine or newspaper ads, television, radio, junk mail, or (a particular annoyance) cold calling or robo-calling. Where the product is advertised in a venue other than cold or robo-calling, a toll free number to place an order is provided, and sometimes a snail mail address, or these days, a website. MasterCard and Visa accepted! Call NOW! Or send $19.95 to Canton, OH or Camp Hill, PA and we'll throw in as a bonus, three FREE Turnip Twaddlers and a Magic Car Wax Wand!
 Examples of telemarketers
- Kevin Trudeau
- Ronco, who used to sell everything from vinyl "Disco Fever Mega Hits" type records, to gimmicky kitchen gadgets.
- That company in Canton, Ohio
 Scams and woo
Telemarketing is a notorious hotbed for such things as:
- Diet woo and bodybuilding woo, especially unproven dietary supplements and cheaply made, ineffective exercise devices.
- Automotive woo
- Kinoki Foot Pads, laundry balls, Turnip Twaddlers, and similar products.
- Use of anonymous, difficult to trace robo-calling by politicians at all hours of the day and night to attack opposition candidates.
- Sweepstakes, often geared toward selling magazine subscriptions, which unwitting consumers buy on the mistaken notion it will make them more likely to win the jackpot.
- Automobile warranty scams.
 Automobile warranties, Rachel and other scams
For several years in the 2000s, people across the United States received billions and billions of robo-calls claiming "your car warranty has just expired" and offering to extend that warranty. This was actually a scam - the calls were placed entirely at random with no knowledge of whether the consumer's car warranty had expired, and they were selling a third-party warranty, not extending the auto manufacturer's warranty. This scam finally came to the attention of the U.S. Senate in 2008-2009 and like typical cockroaches, the main perpetrators behind this scam scattered and the calls stopped.
One of the companies involved, the St. Louis, Missouri based National Auto Warranty Services which later changed its name to U.S. Fidelis, collapsed late in 2009 and both it and the robo-calling company they contracted with, Voice Touch, remain entangled in multiple lawsuits from state and federal attorneys. Another of the companies selling car warranties was Irvine, California based Credexx Corporation, also known as Auto One Warranty Specialists, who have also been sued by several state attorney generals.
Most of the automotive warranty calls disappeared after late 2009, only to be replaced by another nusiance: "Rachel from Cardholder Services". After a couple of years of robo-calls from "Rachel", they have largely subsided. Now the latest scam, as of late 2011, is calls claiming your car loan application was approved, and requesting additional personal information, an obvious phishing tactic. Curiously this latest scam does not use robo-calls, but rather live calls that sound like they are from a call center in south Asia, although they claim to be "in New York".