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 Mystery Shopping, Merchandising & Demo
 Independent Contractor Networking
 Oklahoma, USA
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PamInCa
Star Contributor

CA
USA
6556 Posts

Posted - 11/27/2006 :  11:30:07 PM  Visit PamInCa's Homepage  Reply  Reply with Quote
That is great, especially after saying your office is so far away from things.

PamInCa
Author of: "The Essential Guide to Mystery Shopping"
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GossWaldrep
Contributor

Lawton, OK
USA
97 Posts

Posted - 11/28/2006 :  06:13:38 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
That is awesome Jennifer. What types of shops have to done the most of? You must do these after you get off work and on your days off then.
Go for the Gold girl!!!

Mindy
MSPA GOLD yb8rpp
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GossWaldrep
Contributor

Lawton, OK
USA
97 Posts

Posted - 11/28/2006 :  06:16:28 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
We can all use support since this is pretty much a solo gig. You other Oklahomans, tell us some success stories or how about. What is the funniest shop you ever did?

Mindy
MSPA GOLD yb8rpp
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TerryInTulsa
Star Contributor

Tulsa, OK
USA
349 Posts

Posted - 11/29/2006 :  9:30:14 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
I've noticed that shoppers in Oklahoma tend not to give up information as freely as shoppers in other states. I'm guessing it's because the good jobs are scarce and nobody wants the added competition. It would probably be different if the postings were spread out more but I see them come in waves. You work your tail off for a couple of weeks then it slows to a crawl for a few days and starts all over again.
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GossWaldrep
Contributor

Lawton, OK
USA
97 Posts

Posted - 11/30/2006 :  05:35:50 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
You are so right Terry on all accounts it appears. There are a lot of low paying shops available yet the higher paying ones are few and far between. I have been prone to only going for the ones that have a bonus attached and/or are close enough to home that it costs me very little, just my time. There are other things you will be introduced to (i.e. merchandising, demonstrations, data entry, etc) if you stay active and watch the forums. I receive a lot of information from signing up with Shadowshopper. There is a fee involved and it's definately worth it.

Mindy
MSPA GOLD yb8rpp
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TerryInTulsa
Star Contributor

Tulsa, OK
USA
349 Posts

Posted - 11/30/2006 :  10:39:08 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
I've been doing a lot of merchandising jobs. I like them, too. They pay a fair rate most of the time. I don't accept the low-paying ones unless there are two or three together. It has to be interesting and worth what little effort I have to put into it. It's nice to break up the mystery shopping with the merchandising that way I don't have to worry about suffering from burnout. I got my silver certification within a week of my first MS. It probably helped a little in getting the better shops but I really couldn't say. I know some companies won't even look at your request if you aren't at least silver.
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GossWaldrep
Contributor

Lawton, OK
USA
97 Posts

Posted - 11/30/2006 :  12:13:20 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
Terry, it sounds as though you have a good plan going. Go for the gold as soon as the class is close enough to you. It will open new doors for you.
Keep us posted on your progress and please, feel free to share things. I for one enjoy the insight others can provide as well as giving it.

Mindy
MSPA GOLD yb8rpp
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JenniferWilcox
Star Contributor

Oklahoma City, OK
USA
314 Posts

Posted - 11/30/2006 :  6:04:21 PM  Send JenniferWilcox an AOL message  Reply  Reply with Quote
I don't agree with the comment about companies not even considering you if you're not at least silver certified. I still haven't gotten certified yet, and I get about 95% of the shops I apply for. There's only one company that I have problems getting shops with, but it's starting to give me some too. I've had 3 shops with that company in the last 2 weeks. At this point in time, I don't really see a need to get certified because I already have as many shops as I can handle that have decent pay in my opinion, and I have to turn a lot of jobs down.

Onto the type of shops I do... I love doing banks. I'm not sure why, but I get enjoyment out of them. It's making me realize what banks I would like to have an account with in real-life and which ones to avoid completely. I also do quite a bit of mall stores and home decor type stores. I've found 4 MS companies I really love, and I'm doing tons of shops for them. Plus, I take shops here and there from other companies when I see something that strikes my interest. I think I've done shops for a total of 19 different MS companies now in just 3 months. I throw in fast food shops in between all the banks and other shops, so I usually plan it out where I'll do a couple/few shops in the morning in a certain area and find a fast food shop in the area for lunch, and then I do a few in the afternoon... then I go to work at my full-time job at 3:30 p.m.

On my days off (which are normally two business days) I'll do up to 10 a day (basically just as many as I can get). I have a week of vacation starting this Monday, so I'll be doing tons of shops next week. I've already got 25 scheduled for the next week & a half, and I plan to get more.

The funniest thing I've ran into so far happened last week. I was doing a business/casual store for women. I walked in, and I was the only customer in the store. The three workers basically just ignored me, and they started having a conversation about what else but Mystery Shoppers, and the conversation lasted almost 5 minutes. The manager was telling the other two exactly what the mystery shopper would be checking for, and she said the shopper would be in the store sometime in the next few days. She told them the shopper should be dressed in really nice business clothes, and there I was wearing casual clothes, which is common for about 1/2 their normal customers. When other customers entered the store, the workers swarmed the ones in really nice business clothes, ignoring me and the other women in casual clothes. So they spent almost 5 minutes talking about mystery shoppers and even more time helping who they thought would be the shopper, instead of actually helping the mystery shopper. I was biting my lip so hard not to laugh at them.
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JenniferWilcox
Star Contributor

Oklahoma City, OK
USA
314 Posts

Posted - 11/30/2006 :  6:47:17 PM  Send JenniferWilcox an AOL message  Reply  Reply with Quote
Oh yeah, I've some pricing audits in addition to the mystery shopping, but they were very easy ones. I'm not sure I'd ever get into the merchandising or demonstrations. As I tell my husband, I like MS'ing 'cuz I like to pretend to be someone else sometimes. I've done several shops during which I've pretended to be pregnant, that was fun! (I can't have children, so it's probably the closest I'll get to being pregnant )
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GossWaldrep
Contributor

Lawton, OK
USA
97 Posts

Posted - 12/01/2006 :  08:04:45 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
CIA does pay well except they require you to do a teller and a customer service audit each time. I have done a number of audits for SSNET who pay well and a simple teller audit is required.

It all depends on the area you are performing your MS as to whether it is worth getting the silver and/or gold certification. Some of the smaller communities will offer assignments to only certificate holding MSers. By persuing a certificate allows the MSer much more flexibility and in many cases, first dibs on the better assignments among other benefits. It is definately something to consider.

Mindy
MSPA GOLD yb8rpp
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JenniferWilcox
Star Contributor

Oklahoma City, OK
USA
314 Posts

Posted - 12/03/2006 :  5:03:58 PM  Send JenniferWilcox an AOL message  Reply  Reply with Quote
I signed up with CIA and they never contacted me to do work. I sent an e-mail asking about it and got a reply saying they were going to send me assignments, but they never did. I'm not too upset about it though because it appeared to me that their shops were going to be more work than what I normally do on my bank shops.
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GossWaldrep
Contributor

Lawton, OK
USA
97 Posts

Posted - 12/04/2006 :  06:19:09 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
I find that every day presents educational lessons that provide more insight to the world of MSing. I have performed enough shops for CIA to know that the work involved is only as much as you make it. Use of hidden recorders makes many assignments much easier when it comes to completing the reports.

I think it would be great if more of you Oklahoman's would share the tools you use to perform assignments. I sure have picked up some great tips in making the reporting process much easier.

Mindy
MSPA GOLD yb8rpp
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TerryInTulsa
Star Contributor

Tulsa, OK
USA
349 Posts

Posted - 12/09/2006 :  9:27:37 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
I must have been riding a real streak of luck last week! I didn't have any shops or merchandising scheduled for Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday, which is very odd for me. I usually do one or two shops every day during the week and leave the weekend jobs for the shoppers who have to work full time all week and want something for their off days. When the snow started to fall I almost panicked, but then I pulled my assignment sheet and saw that I didn't have anything set up until Friday and that was just one shop. Then the second wave of snow started and I got in touch with the scheduler for my lone shop and asked if I could move it to Monday. They didn't have a problem with it so I got to stay safely at home and play in the snow while I shoveled my driveway. It was almost as good as a vacation for me. I used the free time to set up an out of town trip for later this month. I decided to go somewhere for a few days and maybe do some hiking
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GossWaldrep
Contributor

Lawton, OK
USA
97 Posts

Posted - 12/10/2006 :  04:33:42 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
Sounds like a plan. Wherever it is you are going, did you know you could let your schedulers know and you could possibly get some shops to do there if your interested.
Enjoy.

Mindy
MSPA GOLD yb8rpp
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Sue Br.
Star Contributor

Oklahoma
USA
660 Posts

Posted - 12/31/2006 :  7:15:55 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
Hi Karen,

Welcome to our group. I live in Sallisaw so Iím only 30 miles from you. I do Tahlequah shops all the time; in fact I did a Park Hill gas station shop just last week.

There are tons of shops in Muskogee and with that city having only about 5 major streets itís really easy to get around. I make lots of money in Muskogee. I have now expanded to Fayetteville for extra shops.

I have three gas station shops in Tahlequah next week. The shops are out there you just have to sign with every company you can then check them frequently and the money will roll in.

Good luck


quote:
Originally posted by Karen W

I'm a newbie in the Tahlequah area. I have my first shops this weekend! At first, I only wanted to do the Tahlquah/Muskogee area but it seems there aren't too many shops here. I also added Tulsa to my list and thought it might be worth the trip if I had several shops on the same day. I'm just trying to get my foot in the door. Anybody else thinking that way? Has anybody done any apartment shops in the Tulsa area? I don't know what all is involved but they seem to pay a little more than other shops.

ETA - I checked my email and have another shop scheduled for this weekend! That will be three shops and one audit. I think it's an audit anyway. I'm excited. I would love to hear from other shoppers in the Muskogee/Tahlequah area.


Sue
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GossWaldrep
Contributor

Lawton, OK
USA
97 Posts

Posted - 01/01/2007 :  06:11:00 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
HAPPY NEW YEAR to all you Okies out there.
Welcome Sue! Great to have another MSer in OK contribute to the cause.

I'm really looking forward to sharing with more OKIES so I'm confident there will be more who identify themselves in this OKLAHOMA forum.

I wish you all the very best for the new year and lots of

Mindy
MSPA GOLD yb8rpp
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JenniferWilcox
Star Contributor

Oklahoma City, OK
USA
314 Posts

Posted - 01/09/2007 :  5:05:14 PM  Send JenniferWilcox an AOL message  Reply  Reply with Quote
There's something that's starting to bug me, and I was wondering if everyone sees this or if it's just me... There's a bunch of companies that are shopped in other states but not in Oklahoma even though we have the companies here in the state too. There's companies I see listed for other states all the time, but not for here. I really want to shop them, but I just can't seem to find them here.
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GossWaldrep
Contributor

Lawton, OK
USA
97 Posts

Posted - 01/10/2007 :  06:08:19 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
My only suggestion is to register with those companies regardless if they have anything listed in Oklahoma. Territories are constantly changing and so are the companies that are shopped.

If anyone else has any advise and/or suggestions, it would be great if you would share.

Together we are stronger......

Mindy
MSPA GOLD yb8rpp
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Sue Br.
Star Contributor

Oklahoma
USA
660 Posts

Posted - 01/10/2007 :  06:26:44 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
I find it frustrating also when some states get the good shops. There is a FF fish place I would love to shop and they are being shopped in AR. but not OK. I go to the Volition shop posting forum and if I am not registered with that company I register. I got a shipping job just the other day doing that.

Advice? register, register, register!

Sue
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GossWaldrep
Contributor

Lawton, OK
USA
97 Posts

Posted - 01/10/2007 :  06:48:23 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
There are Long John Silvers shops being offered in Oklahoma right now and as soon as I can remember who is offering them I will post it....lol.

Mindy
MSPA GOLD yb8rpp
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