Multi-level marketing research
One of my favorite marketing research vendors is a San Diego firm that specializes in Internet panel surveys. The panel is SurveySavvy.com, managed by Luth Research. What makes SurveySavvy different from most other online panels is that they pay a small amount of cash to every survey respondent, instead of entering them all into a sweepstakes drawing that leaves 99.5% of the respondents unrewarded. This has the effect of boosting SurveySavvy response rates to an amazing 25%-30%, rather than the 1%-2% other panels might achieve.
There's one other cool thing about SurveySavvy's panel rewards. Panelists who invite other people to join the panel also receive a cash incentive ($1) when those referrals complete surveys! What a fantastic way to build a panel with the "snowball" method.
When I was employed by ICR, I never promoted the SurveySavvy panel here. While we partnered frequently with Luth Research, they were still our competition in some ways.
However, now that I'm no longer on the vendor side of research, I have no hesitation to invite my readers to take advantage and sign up for Luth Research's SurveySavvy panel and start getting paid regularly for EVERY survey you complete with them. If you click this link, you may register for SurveySavvy as my referral, so I'll also earn a dollar when you complete a survey!
If you like the experience SurveySavvy offers, you can then start to build your own pyramid of referrals, so that you too will earn money even when you're not personally completing research surveys.
(Disclaimer: I have already earned a few hundred dollars over the years with this program, and Luth Research has not asked me personally for this endorsement. It is my personal recommendation.)