The story of a business startup + contest.

Last summer I quit my job (yeah!) and started a one-man Market Research company that specializes in programming online surveys. I’m good at the programming part. My problem is that my consumer panel is too small. I need more people to sign up at my website so I can run the fun surveys. But I’m not pitching you for that, I have a story to tell.

So I started advertising in Google. I have text ads running on a bunch of keywords like survey, consumer panel, survey cash, and others. But the ads are only netting me 30 registrations a day. Booooooo. You let me down, Google! Or maybe my ad just sucks. (This is one of the better ones.)

Get paid for your opinion
Join our consumer panel.
Thousands interviewed daily.

Help me write a catchier ad. Give me something catchy, something culturally significant, where you look at it and say, “Yes. That’s brilliant. That’s revolutionary and culturally significant!” This is your moment to shine, you kings of men!

Here’s the rules, haiku-like in their rigidity:

Bolded line 1 (maximum 25 characters)
line 2 (maximum 35 characters)
line 3 (maximum 35 characters)

The best ad wins a $30 gift certificate previously gifted to my cousin! (He’s never going to come by my apartment to exchange Christmas presents anyway.)

[Note: Google ads are paid for per-click so a better ad doesn’t actually save me any money.]

Cool business idea Bluetrust.

A few comments:

  • what’s in it for survey participants? I do Rate the Music because I like music. I can’t believe I’d ever make much doing surveys about laxatives or oven cleaner. An alternative is in the ads below.
  • think segments. Do you want college students? Do you want working married people? Do you want single adults?

Win a plasma TV!
Baseball season starts soon.
Need your opinions on sports topics.

$1,000 U.S. Savings bond!
Weekly drawing in our online survey.
Stock, bond investors needed.

Win $100 for spring break!
Five weekly winners through April 15.
Surveying college students on food & beverage topics.

Win a 200% increase in Spam in Your Inbox!

– not you personally Blue. The above is just what I immediately think when I see those survey things.

Got Opinions?
Use them to make money!
Be a Consumer Surveyor


The Economy Bites
A little extra can’t hurt.
Make Money doing surveys!

But I agree with Mooney, you’re better off if you’ve got something additonal to offer your potential surveyor.

Most of the time it’s entertainment surveys, like for Warner Bros wanting to see if anyone’s seen Kangaroo Jack (and intends to purchase the DVD), or whether anyone’s buying Friends season #3. There’s always other concepts though, I’ve done surveys for vitamin water, car commercials, viagra, health insurance, padlocks, anti-virus software, heck – you name it. But these days it’s mostly entertainment and IT studies.

The survey participants always make something. If it’s a particularly tough group of people we’re screening for (like IT managers) we’ll offer everyone an incentive, like $25. If it’s an easy survey and anyone can qualify, then we offer each person an entry into a giveaway, like 13 $50 prizes or whatnot. I like to keep the odds of winning near 1 in 40.

These ads aren’t bad. I like them all.

So far Welby’s winning because his economy ad is clever and much better than my current ads. But I agree that mentioning a a giveaway for new signups is a good idea. I just need to earn some money to be able to support it.

Maybe I could raffle off something cheaper like a MP3 Player?

Thanks for your help! These are all really good ideas.

Any other suggestions?

Well now, since I’m ahead, it is time to consolidate my position.

Like to spout off?
Try getting paid for it!
Online Surveys for cash and prizes

Win an MP3 player!
Just for giving an opinion!
Consumer surveys = extra money

Hey Blue, you never announced a winner.


When the thread died, I emailed the email address in your profile telling you that you had won.

Anyway, let’s try this instead: send an email to and I’ll reply back with your amazon code today.

Thanks for your help!