Thursday, December 13, 2018

And the Survey Says….

No, first off, I did not just finish binge-watching Family Feud with Steve Harvey.  I love that show, and when I was little, it was Richard Dawson as host, but personally, Steve is the best host Family Feud has ever seen.  Plus, Richard Dawson would get a harassment suit today, since he used to try to kiss the ladies. That was then, this is now.
No today, the survey says that taking surveys, as a form of earning extra money, can be beneficial, and earn you thousands of dollars ($$$$$$) ß Yep, Those things. Not only that, you can earn other things, such as gift cards, trips around the world, cars, boats, houses, and free products.  As a person who does surveys, I am going to ask you to read this before you fill out one application.  This is Tip Thursday, and this is my tip for today. By the time you read this, it will be Friday, Sorry for being late.

What are surveys?
Surveys, in its true definition, is basically, “What is your opinion or your review of a question we (an establishment) had on our mind.  It can be in the form of a Q&A, Essay, or a Cause and Effect.  Most times, it is a company who is trying to put out a filler on what a group of people thinks about a new or improved product.  Another name for a survey is a poll.  You may have seen a few in your lifetime.
Well, someone thought it would be a good idea to pay for other people’s opinion, and the idea spread like wildfire.  In some cases, sadly, it is not a good idea, and I will get to that further down the article.  But first, these are my views and tips on making money off Surveys

Tip # 1: Diversify your streams of income
I say this all the time.  Just like they tell you to diversify your financial and stock portfolios, if you are into investing, you should do the same for earning income.  What does this mean in terms of taking part in surveys?  Not all surveys are alike, and to depend on taking surveys as your only means of income or extra income can be dangerous. Survey taking does not always guarantee you the big prize, money and other rewards, sometimes they put you into a pool of other survey takers, draw a name, and if your name is pulled from hundreds of other names, you will get the money.  In other words, it is like pushing a button on a slot machine at a casino.  Sometimes you may get all 7s giving you the big payout, but mostly, you are feeding the piggy bank for someone else to win.
In addition to taking surveys, do affiliate marketing, write and freelance articles and graphic designs, offer your expertise on a skill (course selling), sell your best art and other handmade products, do direct selling, invent that new or improved product, babysit, walk dogs, or take on that second job or gigs.  All of these can guarantee a faster payout than just doing surveys.

Tip #2:  Not all surveys are the same
Some surveys have different rewards, and if you are looking for just the greenbacks (money), you may be out of luck there.  Most surveys pay in gift cards and/or product.  In other words, you may not be able to pay for your utilities with the earnings you get from surveys.  Really there is a way to do it, but it means to find a website where they will take the value of your gift card, and turn it into cash, but they also may be scammers out there who will do the same thing.  Best thing to do is if the card is to your favorite store, use it in good faith, and enjoy the item you bought.

Tip #3:  Do I smell a trap?
Unfortunately, scammers and hackers today use surveys to gather your information.  Do not take this as a sign of not doing a survey.  Remember, I am still doing them.  What I do before giving out my information is search the survey company. 
Today, for instance, I was sent in my notifications on my computer about a survey site called MySoapBox. Their payout is in gift cards and other rewards.  Right away I went to Google and typed, “what is MySoapBox?  The first entry is the one I always read first, which was by SurveyPolice, a website that tells you about a reviews survey sites by telling you if it was worth you going to that survey site.  It gives MySoapBox 3 stars out of 5.  Not bad, but I wanted more.  So, next, I backed out of it and went for another result called Work at Home No Scams.  This site tells you if the survey site you are about to visit is legit or not. It tells me that MySoapBox does not payout real money, but points to redeem for gift cards and vouchers, and if you do not want that, you can give those points to charity.  I have to wonder about the charity part.  They also say that in order to “cash out”, you need to earn about 1000 points, which is about $25 USD.  The person doing the review points out some of the bad points about MySoapBox, which is my problems with surveys overall, and I will get to that in a moment.  Overall, if you want to give MySoapBox a try, which is what I am going to do, follow the links provided (not sponsored).  If not, consider this a very good example on what to do when getting ready to sign up for a survey site.
Remember this:  If a site is too good to be true, it usually is, so do not give out any information that you do not want others to scam you for (Your name, address, phone, financial, children, and most certainly, your Social Security Number or TIN (if you are a business), and your birthday).

Why I hate surveys?
Remember a while ago in this article I said that you are not guaranteed in getting the money or the other rewards?  Chances are that you are not guaranteed that you will get to take the survey either.   Let me explain:  when a company sends out a survey, they are looking for one SPECIFIC group of people, and these people have to match the demographics that the company is looking to attract.  This could be a new product, moving to a new location, embarking on a new marketing concept, anything.  The problem is when you tell them “yes” to the survey, you are not aware of who they are looking for to take it in the first place. Let me give you an example.
A copy of an Outpost Survey note I got
When I clicked on it.  Note: I do surveys with Outpost.
Screenshot by P.Lynne Designs 
I am an African-American Female in her early 50s, and Kellogg is thinking about a new cereal concept that targets people over the age of 60.  They send out a bunch of emails, but they do not tell me who they are looking for to take the survey.  I get the email, click on the link and start taking the survey.  It is set up like a multiple Q&A (Question and answer).
Now, I am taking the survey, and it ask me a series of questions like, “What is the highest education you have completed?” “What is your income before taxes?” and “Do you have any children?”  For the education and income question, there should be a button that says, “Prefer not to answer”.  If not, back out, and do not go past go.  I do not care how legit it is, do not go any further.  I really do not feel comfortable in answering what is my birthday, but believe it or not, children and teens try to take surveys, and it is to weed them out.  In fact, the whole question portion is to weed out any outliners that may send the results in a wonky way, and analysts do not like wonky numbers, LOL.
Once you have answered the questions, the results may be in the form of “you qualify for this survey” or you do not qualify for this survey, do you want to take another?”  This is the survey site’s portion. Next, if you pass, you will get the survey right away.  Now, you got to answer the companies weeding answers.  Sometimes, they will let you take the survey questions, THEN you answer the weeding out questions.  If you meet the company’s approval, you get your reward (money, points, card, jewels, (maybe not the jewels-one can only dream, LOL)).
That’s it.  You are done.  If you get this far in the process, you have done good, but not so fast, darling, I hope you did not give out the information that makes the scammers and hackers happy that THEY got a payout.  Remember you need to do your homework and research this site before getting approved to take the survey.  It is up to you to keep your information safe.

Takeaway Tip (the final tip):  Remember:
-          Not all surveys and survey sites are the same
-          Diversify in your streams of income, especially if you are not working outside of the home.
-          Do your homework and research each survey website, for researching is your friend.
-          Do not give out information that you do not want to put out there
-          Scammers and hackers are out there watching and waiting for slipups.

If you like this post, please comment and share.  Have fun looking for surveys and be well. God Bless.  Peace

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