Focus. And Earn $75 Per Hour

By | July 13, 2014

Why They Need Us
Companies spend a lot of time and effort bringing a product to market. A huge part of this process is to make certain consumers will show an interest in their product, so companies go to great expense to collect data across all ages, genders, etc. I just recently tried a new snack cracker that is about to be released and was paid $125 for 45 minutes to eat and discuss the new product. Last week I was paid $50 for 15 minutes of my time to simply “handle” a few men’s razors and give my opinion on how they looked and felt. Last month: $50 to eat donuts and try three new flavors of Dunkin; Donuts coffee. A few weeks from now I have a two-hour study for $150 testing a new phone app for my iPhone. The icing on the cake for all of you who may be penny pinchers like me? Almost every one of these pays cash, about $75-per-hour on average.

What If I Can’t Attend In Person? Are there Phone or Online Options?
While most focus groups require you to come in person (and are well worth it as they tend to pay well) there are plenty of firms that offer phone interviews or even online work where you meet in a chat room. A few months back, the restaurant chain paid about 100 of us to meet in a chat room and discuss a new menu. I earned $125 for 1 hour of work. And it was fun.

How To Find Research and Focus Group Studies
There are many different ways to search for these studies, so you need to get creative. About 80% of what I find is available simply by visiting Craigslist. Most of these are found under ‘gigs’. The secret here is to once again just make this part of a daily routine. Bookmark Craigslist gigs, and a few times each day stop in and just spend 2-3 minutes searching for the following topics: Focus Group, Market Research, Market Study, Paid Research.

What’s also nice is these studies tend to cast out a large net, so as long as you perform a search once per day you have a very fair shot at getting accepted.

The other way to find focus groups is to let big companies do the work for you.  InspiredOpinions will link you up with focus groups so you don’t have to do any searching.

Drowning My Sorrows in Beer
I’m still bitter I wasn’t accepted to a recent beer study that paid $200. Tip: Remember, don’t try to assume you know what the recruiter expects you to say. If they ask you about your diet, don’t lie. If you like donuts, be honest. If you enjoy drinking, then don’t hold back. Nobody is judging you, and your circumstances or preferences may help your chances of being selected.

Some Additional Resources worth looking at:

Coolworkideas Nationwide Studies Forum

Quirks Marketing Research

GreenBook Market Research

Open Invitation for New Members


6 thoughts on “Focus. And Earn $75 Per Hour

  1. Betty Coleman

    You have an interesting website. It is great you have taken the time to weed out all the scam offers and are able to share with others opportunities that will help them earn some extra money. I personally have not had any luck with focus groups. I think my honesty causes me to be eliminated. 🙂

    Thanks for sharing and keep up the great work.

  2. paul Post author

    Thank you for your comment, Betty! Our plan is to create an active forum so we can all exchange ideas on what works and what doesn’t. That way, you can get a number of perspectives on how to increase your success rate in getting selected for focus groups.

    Focus groups are funny bugs, there are times when the pickings are easy and other times when I go weeks without an opportunity. It’s clearly a numbers game. I believe that where a person lives is also a big factor in the number of focus groups that one has access to. I currently live in suburban NJ and I can’t leave my apartment for a smoke without banging into a corporate park. There are lost focus groups wandering the woods around me, I think. Anyway: the closer you live to a big city, the better your opportunities for participation in focus groups are.

    Another area that I recommend to you is product testing. It can be slightly humbling to feel like a lab rat, but the money is too good to pass up. Approximately once per month I get a small test firm that contacts me, and occasionally I participate in the infamous sun tan lotion patch tests which brings me about $200.

    Once I get caught up on some other information I’d like to add to the site, I plan to make a list of all the survey sites that offer in-home product testing. There are four sites that I use that are excellent, and although the pay is not enormous, there’s not much time involved and when all is done you’ll receive $25-$50 along with lots of product freebies. A few product testing opps per month help quite a bit, now that I’ve hit my stride I have more than I can handle. Right now you’ll have to excuse me as I have an opportunity from PineCone Research that expires tonight. I need to go do that immediately or I’m going to lose a chance to make $25 bucks. (I have no problem admitting that!)

  3. Ashley

    Thank you so much for the info! I apply for online focus groups weekly but haven’t been selected to participate in one in a couple months. I never thought about looking for them on Craigslist.

    I can’t wait to read your product testing post. It’s been a while since I tested a product but I really enjoy it. Pine Cone Research is my favorite. I’ve only received $3 for each product that I’ve tested for them but I have tested some nice products.

    1. paul Post author

      Ashley Craigslist is priceless! Just make sure you form a habit and go there a few times a day? Its like they come in waves and they do go fast! Ill go 2-3 weeks with nothing and then in one week have 3 potential opportunities. Last month I did great with them! My favorite was the coffee tasting.. 15 minutes, 3 cups of some strong new blend and $50. A few weeks back I also was paid about the same to ‘handle’ mens razors. I thought for sure I was going to have to shave so I came in all scruffy- but no, they just wanted me to hold them in my hand and talk about how comfortable they felt. I was upset because the same day I had the razor study? there was another available the same hour to spend 15 minutes recording my voice on a new smart phone that reduces background noise.. I choose the razors because it was closer to my home! but the hourly pay for these studies is fantastic by any standards!

      I dabble a little in some local companies that do product testing? but I draw the line and refuse to do more risky studies that involve taking experimental drugs. Some of those pay huge money but where do you draw the line? I have tested sun tan lotions quite a bit over the last year and make $200 a month for about 6 quick 5 minute visits each month. Food tasting, Sniff tests, and whats cool is once you get in good and they realize you are reliable? They keep calling you back.

      I cant wait until we start up the forum.. Not only do I have a lot to share? but also a lot I can learn from you folks. I need more- who doesn’t? : )

      I just remembered something? Our site is new but once we grow and I can give you a laugh at my expense? Ill share a gig I did last year? I was paid to be an acting extra in an episode of a TV series called ‘My Dirty little Secret’. I ended up getting a decent part- it was great! My family got a huge laugh on that one. I was upset because the initial job was $50 for 1 hour work being part of a church congregation. They picked me to play a more important role? I ended up working all day for that $50.. I wanted the money, not the tv exposure.. Life is funny : )

  4. Ashley

    It seems like they would have paid you more than $50 for a whole days work. I don’t live near a big city but have done a few online focus groups. I’m excited to look into Craigslist so I can do more. I’m hoping to find some online groups advertised on there.

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