Scarborough Research Sent Me $1 Cash in the Mail

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My husband was sorting through the mail yesterday, tossing spam and setting bills aside for closer review. Then he picked up an envelope addressed to “Current Resident” from a company called “Scarborough.” He’s not sure what inspired him to actually open it, but he was glad when he did because he found a crisp, new $1 bill inside. My husband is the sort of guy who picks up loose change off the ground, so getting a free $1 bill is a huge thrill for him.

Once upon a time I received 2 $1 bills from a market research company called Knowledge Panel. At the time I was unemployed and doing a lot of online surveys to make extra money while I looked for a new job. I signed up for the Knowledge Panel (read my full review here) and did surveys with them for a couple years, earning me hundreds of dollars, until I got a job and didn’t have time to do the surveys so they kicked me out of the program.

$1 Bill in the Mail from Scarborough Research

Because of that experience, when this $1 bill showed up from Scarborough Research, I was intrigued. The envelope had a letter asking us to complete a short enclosed survey and promised to send us $5 cash in return. This made me extra interested because the survey was less than a page long and I love getting money for minimal work. My husband was a bit skeptical though and neither of us are interested in signing up for any new research panels right now, so I decided to do some investigating.

So I started Googling for Scarborough Research to see what came up. I got varying results, from people who received calls from them and got paid to complaints from people who can’t get them to stop calling.

After poking around a bit and looking at their website, it’s pretty clear that they are a legitimate market research company and are actually run by Nielsen–the company known for Nielsen TV ratings and the TV boxes that track shows watched in certain households. I have no problem with that. My only issue is we don’t like to receive phone calls for surveys–we would rather do them online at our own convenience. By providing them your phone number, you opt in to receive phone calls about future surveys.

Since I read plenty of examples of people receiving the $5 for the follow-up survey, I think it’s worth trying out. I’m going to have my husband fill out the survey and send it back.

This is an invitation-only panel, so if you’re interested in joining Scarborough and doing phone surveys that pay up to $50, definitely send back the survey when you get it. If you’re not interested, just keep the free $1 bill and throw the rest away.

I will update this post if we receive the $5 payment from Scarborough.

Follow-up Update

We received the follow-up mailing from Scarborough on May 18th (about 2 months later) and it included a crisp $5 bill just like they promised.

$5 bill from Scarborough Media

We were very surprised that they sent us a bill and not a check and overall we were pleased that this was legitimate and we got paid. So far my husband has gotten one call from them (that he missed) for a survey, but he’s excited to earn more money from Scarborough.

Make Money Online Reading Emails: MyPoints

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I recently received an email from MyPoints thanking me for being a member for 17 years. MyPoints is the first site I ever joined to make money online when I was 13 years old. And I’ve been earning Amazon.com gift certificates from them regularly every since. They are hands down my favorite website for earning money online and one of the few I still use now that my schedule is too busy to spend time on sites with low payouts.

So what’s so great about MyPoints? They offer tons of ways to earn points online so it’s easier to accumulate points quickly, and many of them do not require you to spend money.


How to Earn Money through MyPoints

Here are the big ways you can earn through MyPoints:

  • Shopping Online – Click through before you shop online and earn points from your favorite retailers
  • Reading Emails – Yes, MyPoints sends out emails that you get points just for reading! Emails are worth 5 points each, which you earn by clicking a link in the email.
  • Printing Coupons – You know those coupons you usually print from Coupons.com to save money at the grocery store? MyPoints offers the same coupons, except you get 10 points for every coupon you redeem. Save money and earn at the same time.
  • Search the Web – It’s as easy as it says–search the web and earn points.
  • Take Surveys – Take easy surveys about products you use and quickly rack up points
  • Watch Videos – MyPoints has hundreds of videos you can watch to earn points every day

MyPoints also has a referral program so you can earn extra points when your friends signup.

My favorite part about MyPoints is they make it so easy to earn points without spending any money. Obviously, if you do a lot of online shopping, you’ll earn points a lot faster. But it’s not hard to earn just by reading emails, watching videos, and searching the web.

What Can You Redeem Points for on MyPoints?

One of the best parts of being a MyPoints member is that you have so many options to redeem your points. They mainly offer gift cards, but one of their options is a Visa Prepaid Card, which is good as cash and can be used anywhere that accepts Visa.

The awesome gift card rewards they offer include:

  • Amazon
  • iTunes
  • Best Buy
  • BP for Gas
  • CVS Pharmacy
  • Kmart
  • Shell Gas Station
  • Safeway
  • Target
  • Walmart

If you’re very frugally minded (which I expect you are, since you’re reading this site), you’ll see they have a lot of awesome redemption options that allow you to spend money on groceries, household essentials, and gas for your car.

I hope by now you can see why MyPoints is one of my favorite sites for earning money online. It’s easy to sign up and start earning without spending a dime. Give it a try and see how quickly you can earn awesome gift cards.

Signup at MyPoints.com

Tiffany’s #1 Favorite Survey Site: Pinecone Research

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I know I haven’t posted in awhile about any great money making sites, but I saw Pinecone Research is open to new signups, and this is one you have to get in on if you’re into filling out surveys!

I joined Pinecone Research back in 2003 when they still paid $5 a survey via checks. I was still in high school and felt so silly going to the bank to deposit all of these $5 checks, but I’ve made a lot of money from them over the years.

Now they pay $3 a survey via Paypal, plus you get entry into their sweepstakes.

What is so awesome about Pinecone? Here’s a few of the high points:

  • You qualify for every single survey they send you and will never screen out
  • Every survey you take earns you $3
  • You will be paid via Paypal within a week of taking the survey. There is no minimum to cash out.
  • You will frequently be selected to try products from home and get paid for every follow up survey

If that’s not enough to convince you, then there’s nothing else I can say. This is the best site for surveys, period, and they’re hard to get into, so sign up now while they’re recruiting.

Here’s the stats:
Info Required to Sign Up: Name, address, email, general personal statistics
Sign up bonuses: None
How money/points are earned: Earn a sweepstakes entry and $3 for surveys. They also send shorter qualifying surveys which give you a sweepstake entry.
Value of survey/action: $3 for surveys. Sweepstake entry for qualifying survey.
Earnings for disqualified survey: You never disqualify for a survey.
Referral Program: No.
Redemption options: Cash via Paypal. I believe they will also send checks.
Time redemption takes: Within a week via Paypal.

Knowledge Panel Frequently Asked Questions

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I’ve gotten a lot of traffic lately from people who want to find out more information about the Knowledge Networks Panel, who sends out snail mail invitations to lucky households that are invited to join their panel. Even better, the invitations always include $2 in cash.

I’ve been a member of the Knowledge Panel for two years now and I still love it. I’ve made hundreds of dollars from them and I really think they’re one of the best panels out there. Unfortunately they are invitation only, so you have to be one of the lucky households to receive their mailed invitation.

Since this panel is so popular and mysterious, I get a lot of readers coming by the site and asking questions about the panel. Unfortunately I am so busy now that I don’t have the time to answer each and every question, especially since I’m asked the same questions over and over. I decided to compile this post of the most frequently asked questions I get in the comments and my email inbox into one place so everyone can find the information easily.

Disclaimer: I do not work for Knowledge Panel and I am not affiliated with them in any way. These answers are based off of my experiences and the information on their website. If you have any further questions or problems with your account, please contact the Knowledge Panel directly.

Is Knowledge Panel real or is it a scam to get my information?
Knowledge Panel is a real opinion research company started by two Stanford University professors in 1998. They will be collecting information from you in the surveys, but it’s all for research purposes and you will be compensated. I’ve even post proof of receiving checks from the panel. If you want to learn more about the panel, visit their website. You can also read my review of the panel.

How do I sign up?
Unfortunately your household must be selected by the panel and receive a special invitation in the mail. There is no other way to sign up for the panel.

How will I get paid?
From the Knowledge Panel site:
If you have Internet access at home, you will be given 1,000 points for every survey you complete. Every time you get to 25,000 points you are sent a check for $25.
You can still join even if you do not have Internet access at home. We will provide you with a computer and give you free telephone dial-up Internet access for as long as you remain a member. We do this because we need to represent all households in our surveys.

See proof of my payment.

Are you sure the checks are real? Is it just a scam to get my bank information?
Yes, the checks are real. You can cash or deposit them like any other check. I’ve been depositing their checks for two years with out any problems, none of them have bounced. You can even check out some pictures of a few checks.

I don’t have internet and they’re sending me a computer. Do I get to keep the computer? What can I do with the computer? What if I stop answering the surveys? Is this mine to keep?
I have my own internet access and computer, so I do not participate in this part of the program and I don’t have anymore information about it. Please contact the panel directly with your questions.

I am having problems with my account. Can you fix it?
No, I don’t work for Knowledge Panel. Please contact their very helpful customer service team via email or phone.

If you have any questions other about Knowledge Panel, please check their FAQ.

Make Money Online: Earn ECBs on the CVS Advisor Panel

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This panel is a bit different from the other ones I’ve reviewed so far, but if you shop at CVS, it’s totally worth it to join.

The CVS Advisor Panel is run by CVS to get feedback from shoppers about the store, products, and services. In return for your opinions–which shape future programs and services at the store–you will receive ECBS that can be used like cash at any CVS store.

The unfortunate thing about this panel is they don’t send out many surveys and there’s no regular schedule either. There could be months with no surveys and then you’ll get a few surveys in a row. That’s just how it goes.

The great thing is, even if you don’t qualify for the survey, you’ll still be rewarded with $2 ECBs for trying. I once completed a 20 minute survey that rewarded me with $15 ECBs, which was fantastic. You receive the reward as soon as you finish the survey–just print it out and take it to the store.

In order to sign up and earn rewards you need to be an ExtraCare Card member (free to sign up, plus it earns you all those great savings at the store).

The panel is great for CVS shoppers and I recommend giving it a try. You never know when one of those $15 ECB surveys shows up in your inbox.

Here’s the stats:

CVS Advisor Panel Stats:

Info Required to Sign Up: ExtraCare card number, plus the typical info.
Member eligibility requirements: Must have a CVS ExtraCare card to earn rewards and be 18 years of age or older.
How money is earned: Filling out surveys about CVS.
Value of survey: Depends on the survey, somewhere between $2 and $15 ECBs.
Earnings for disqualified survey: $2 ECBs.
Referral Program: No.
Redemption options: You earn ECBs as soon as you finish the survey, which you can print and use at any CVS store right away.
Time redemption takes: Instant.
Cash value of points: $1 ECB = $1

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