Thursday, June 7, 2012

Here, try this!

      I really love product test sites.  One of the reasons is that I love to talk.  Anybody who knows me knows that.  I like to talk about everything.  One of the nicest things is that when you join online sites that value your opinions on the products that they give you to test, they like hearing what you have to say about it, good or bad.  One of the other things most of my friends know about me is that they shouldn't ask for my honest opinion unless that is what they want to hear.  I don't tend to sugar coat things and if I am really unhappy about something you would hear a lot of things you might not be ready for.  These companies dig that,  and they dig me too.  I am active in three different groups that reward your opinions and insight into new products with free items you test and keep in return for a review.

      The first is called Crowdtap.  They offer hosted parties and sampling opportunities to members of their community.  There are lots of fun activities and really quick surveys that you complete to find campaigns that you are interested in and that you would enjoy.  I was invited to host two parties with them which I will be planning and sending out invites to soon.  The first is called "America's next Wooliteer" and in it they give you samples of the new Woolite Extra Care Dark to hand out to your guests, along with trivia games and party suggestions of activities.  They also have different challenges where you can earn points that go toward your account's bank that you can redeem for prizes like t-shirts and gift cards.  This is an example of a photo challenge I completed for Woolite to earn points.

      You don't have to put so much effort into it, but I had an idea for a beaded logo and I ran with it!  You had to take a photo of a tortured item of clothing that could've benefited from special care.

      I also have been tapped to host a McCormick Grillmates party where they send you an assortment of dry rubs, marinades, spice mixes and sauces to inspire a backyard BBQ this July!  I can't wait for that one, and Andy is excited about it too.  I was also invited to a pre-release party of Madagascar 3, but I had a scheduling conflict.  Hopefully I will get to see other screenings in the future because I love movies!  If you'd like to find out more about Crowdtap, here is a link for you.


      I am also a member of Smiley360.  Smiley360 is a nice little site where they ask you an initial bunch of survey questions and try to match you to campaigns that you would like to try.  They email you when they have an opportunity and you can join things that you think are right for you.  I am currently testing L'Oreal Youth Code Day/Night cream for Smiley360.  I received my mission and got a really nice sized jar of the cream to keep and try.  From what I understand sometimes they do blind tests where they send you unmarked products that only list the ingredients so you can try them and give the manufacturers your honest evaluation.  Before I joined they did a campaign like this with Vaseline Intensive Care Moisturizing lotion, and the testers who took part received the initial sample and after the "reveal" an additional branded product to keep.  They do more than beauty products - they sample everything from Knorr soups to Breathe Right nasal strips.  Hopefully I will get another Smiley360 campaign soon!  Here is a referral link.—Be Heard. Be Happy.

      Last but not least is my favorite so far BzzAgent.  BzzAgent is exciting.  I have loved participating in the Bzz campaigns and they have a really well tailored survey that lets you get started right away.  You can Bzz your opinions on Facebook, Twitter and many other social media sites.  You also have direct links with the manufacturers and along with the test products they send you guides on sharing your experiences and give you coupons to let your friends try out whatever product you are testing.  My first experience was a high value coupon for Lindt truffles I could send to friends I thought would enjoy them.  There was no test product, but it was a familiar brand and the coupon was a good one.  You build your Bzz score and as you share more and tell more people about your experiences to build brand bzz you get more campaigns.  I received a great Bzzkit from Dr. Scholl's Massaging Gel Insoles which contained a free pair for me to try in my work shoes and also lots of $5 off product coupons so I could share the product with friends.  Again, it was a brand I was familiar with and already like so it was easy to express my thoughts to the company.  My Dr. Scholl's Bzzkit looked like this.

      I have also been fortunate to get a special Bzzkit for Kindle owners.  I receive a pre-launch copy of Oliver Potzsch's new novel The Dark Monk and also his original novel in the series The Hangman's Daughter.  It just arrived yesterday and as soon as I am finished I am going to start it.  Bzzing about a book?  Awesome!  I also just found out that I was accepted to a John Freida campaign to try a version of their Frizz-Ease Sheer Solution product that is lightweight for people with fine hair.  I look forward to that because although I have used the product many times to style wigs, it was always too heavy in my hair and weighed it down.  I love free products - they are like awesome little gifts that pop up from time to time.  (Just today in my mailbox I got a coupon for a free 64oz. juice from Old Orchard, Always Radiant samples with a really cute wristlet purse, Tully's brand K-cups for my Keurig brewer and a Clif Builder's Bar in their crunchy peanut butter flavor.  All of those were just random freebies I signed up for on Facebook - how cool is that?)

      Okay - I know BzzAgent sounds great - If you are interested in an invitation to join leave a comment on this post and I will shoot you an email with the information, or just go to BzzAgent and sign up to get bzzing!  (P.S. they are looking for testers for lots of really awesome stuff like BE wines and a company that sells juicers as well as pretty party ware from Mozaik, and charity related campaigns like Live Below the Line.  There is really something for everybody!)

      Alllllrighty then!  That's the lowdown on the three big ones.  I also applied to host a game night from a site called House Party but still haven't been confirmed.  I also occasionally do Vocal Point which offers some "try and tell" coupons and opportunities.  The Always offer I received today actually came through them.  You don't have to write a review, but they encourage you to interact and to enter their contests for full sized products.  Later this week I am going to talk about all of the wonderful things that have randomly shown up on my doorstep and how you can go about getting them for yourself if you need a little bit of extra joy heading your way.

      Much Love and lots of summer sun and fun.  Have a great weekend!  (I'm going to start early because I'll be done with work by 11am tomorrow - yay!!)


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