UNDERSTANDING THE COVERT VIDEO AND MYSTERY
And How You Can Make Up To $500.00 Per Assignment for An Hour Or Two's Work!
By Ralph Thomas
Every once in a while, cutting edge technology merges with an older type of business service and breaths both new life and a new twist on an old type of service that creates a new and booming trend. Mystery shopping combined with obtaining covert video is the latest big boom. Any private investigative service can easily get involved in these types of highly lucrative assignments.
Mystery shopping has been around for a long time. Conventional mystery shopping services have been integrity and honesty shops on retail chains, bars and restaurants. These have historically paid $25.00 to $50.00 per shop. Their main purpose was and still is generally to make sure employees are honest and not stealing. However, there is a new kind of mystery shop that makes use of covert video recording. This is done for training purposes for employees and sales staff. These are high end mystery shopping assignments which will usually pay from $200.00 to $500.00 per assignment. The mystery shopping service will usually pay out from $50 to $150 for these types of cases to the actual mystery shopper and more if you have your own equipment.
There is a group of Dallas/Fort Worth private investigators that have pioneered this type of mystery shopping service using covert video with very successful results that now seems to be steam rolling into a national trend. When this small group of investigators started this type of service, they competed with each other to see how MUCH they could obtain for their services. We all know that in the world of competition, that usually works the other way. That is, professionals tend to reduce pricing. But this highly unusual service was going the other way. That is, instead of slashing prices to compete with each other, these investigators were going to test the market and see what the top rate was that they could charge.
Businesses that use such a mystery shop would include:
New Home Builder Sales Offices
Fitness And Health Services
High End Retail Sales
When the mystery shopper conducts the assignment, he or she is covertly video taping the assignment. The client then uses the video taping to determine how a sales person is performing with actual potential customers. There are a number of reasons why a business would want and need this type of service.
Seven Reasons Companies Use Covert Video Mystery Shopping Services
1) Training: The mystery shop covert video is used to rate the sales presentation on the sales staff. It will help them identify areas that the sales staff needs help on and help the business determine if the sales person has learned the sales presentation properly. It gives the business a yardstick of measurement for areas of improvement on the sales presentation.
2) Suitable Sales Position Determination: The covert video mystery shop can be used to determine if the sales person is suitable for the position. We all know some people are suitable for direct sales presentations while others are just not. Sometimes it is difficult to determine this by a company and the covert video helps them determine if the sales person is suitable for the position.
3) Honesty: While the focus is usually on training and improvement, honesty of the subject can also be determined. It’s important, for example; that sales staff that are showing new homes not to tell potential home buyers lies about the homes they are showing for obvious reasons which could later come back to cause problems. Examples of this would be a salesman telling prospective home buyers that they will never have a utility bill over $150.00 or that the builder has plans to build a swimming pool and tennis court for the community when they do not.
4) Litigation Protection: The fact that some businesses like this will conduct covertly video taped mystery shops provides a certain type of protection when it comes to litigation. That is, they can claim that they do monitor their sales staff through periodic mystery shops, which provides them protection on negligence matters.
5) Obtaining A Better Customer Prospective: You know the saying that you cannot see the forest because of the trees has a lot of meaning when it comes to certain types of businesses in the modern business world. With nationwide chains, it is sometimes hard to determine exactly what local prospects think of a given product or service. Covert video mystery shopping gives the chain a way to see what potential customers think first hand.
6) Pinpointing Company Policy Problems: Large companies often employ new company policy to increase business and/or cut costs. A covert video mystery shop will give the business an instant snap shot of how potential customers feel about these new policies.
7) Service Monitoring: In today’s business world, service has become more important than the products a company sells. In many major industries, competing companies offer the same products. The only difference is the service provided that goes along with the product sale. Covert video mystery shopping helps the business monitor customer service.
How Covert Video Mystery Shopping Works
An Actual Example
In the last month the National Association of Investigative Specialists monitored the work of a young female who went to work for a mystery shopping company that seemed to have a huge amout of apartment complex mystery video shops from several different clients. This shopper was paid $200.00 per assignment. She used a covert video purse camera with a 40 hour digital video recorder concealed inside the purse. She was able, in a matter or three or four days able to complete 11 assignments working just part-time each day. She only had to go back on one assignment to do over becuase she throught that the video camera was one when it was not. The rest of the shops went very smoothly and took an average of fourty-five minutes to an hour.Her pay amounted to $2,200 for a few days of part time work. Not bad at all. If this person would have obtained these accounts herself, we estimate that the client was billed about $400.00 per completed assignment which would come out to about $4,400.
Unlike a conventional mystery shop in which the shopper looks for all kinds of things, the covert video mystery shop has one goal in mind. That goal is to covertly videotape the activity which gives the business a view of the business from the customer’s perspective. Once the mystery shop is over, the mystery shopper simply provides the client with a copy of the covert video.
There are several products on the market that will enable the shopper to do this. These would include:
|Covert Video Purse Camera
Covert Video Button Camera
Covert Video Pager Camera
Covert Video Cell Phone Camera
Covert Video Briefcase Recorder
Although many of these products can be used with wireless connections to a video recorder, the ranger you need to do this with wireless transmission is sometimes a problem. New micro video digital recorders are now small and compact enough to hide right on the shopper and right inside products such as a purse, legal folder or briefcase that have covert video cameras built right into them.
In order to offer covert video mystery shopping services and obtain clients, you MUST have the right equipment. Since these assignments sell for between $200.00 and $500.00, the equipment pays for itself the first time you use them. If you do not want to go after clients for this type of service, mystery shopping services who offer covert video shops will usually be willing to use you as a subcontractor. Since many of the clients this type of service is used by are businesses that are national in scope, most covert video mystery shopping services are more than willing to hire others throughout the country as subcontractors. Subcontractors are usually paid from $100.00 to $200.00 for each shop they complete. However, they are usually required to have their own equipment for obtaining the video shop. Any way you look at it, the hourly rate is good. You can do the arithmetic yourself. If these cases take an hour or so to do and you can obtain between $100.00 to $500.00 per assignment, you can see that the hourly rate is well above the normal rate. In short, it's quite lucrative and the field is uncrossed right now.
Below is a review of some of the covert video equipment used by covert video mystery shopping services and some other aids and resources to get you on the fast track to making $250,000 per year in covert video mystery shopping services.
With Smart Micro Video Camera That
Pictured Below Are Three Different Types Od Micro Mini
Recorders That You Can Hide Anywhere And Are Suited For Covert Video Mystery Shopping
Pictured Above, From Left To Right
NEW MICRO MINI
40 HOUR POCKET SIZED DIGITAL
VIIDEO RECORDER WITH SCREEN
Your Ultimate Covert Video Recording Solution! Amazing Pocket Size is only.
5.1” x 3.3” x 1.3” With Built-In Monitor
SMALLEST! ULTRA MINI DIGITAL VIDEO RECORDER
Up To 6 Hours Recording Time With SD Card With Built-In -Flash Memory And LCD Screen!
Amazing! Only 3 3/4 Inches Wide, 2 3/4 Inches Long And 3/4 Of An Inch Thick!
You Can Hide This One Almost Anywhere!
MICRO MINI DIGITAL
SIMPLE TO USE AND ECONOMICAL- UP TO 6 HOURS RECORDING TIME!
Compact recorder is only 4 1/2 x 3 1/4 x 3/4 in size!
WIRED MICRO VIDEO CAMERAS
CMOS Black and White
On Sale Now! Only: $59.95
CMOS Full Color Camera Set
On Sale Now! Only $79.95
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By Ralph Thomas And Fay Faron
NAIS SPONSORED EGroup
Mystery Shopping Business and assignments is booming! Private Investigators and mystery shopping services are obtaining from $200.00 to $500.00 to mystery shop and obtain covert video coverage of apartment complexes, car dealers, home builders and other types of businesses. These mystery shops are used by the business to pinpoint areas of training and performance with customer service. This group is made up of people and businesses in the mystery shopping business or those who want to get into it. This group is sponsored by The National Association Of Investigative Specialists, Inc. but you do not have to be a member to join (although that is recommended)
To join go to:
Or just send an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Copyright: 2004, Ralph D. Thomas
All Rights reserved.