BzzAgent is a marketing company that works on the word-of-mouth advertising approach. The company consists of a troupe of over 275,000 volunteers or agents that "buzz" certain products and services. Their task involves creating written or video reviews after offering free samples to as many people as they know -- or don't know. They're asked to host get togethers to promote assigned companies, and hold public events (like BBQs at the park) to attract attention.
In order to reward their efforts, they earn points which are redeemable as coupons. "MyPoints lets you collect Points for shopping online, which you can then redeem for gift cards," the company says. "You can also rack up Points by taking surveys, searching the web and reading emails." But the highlight for the BzzAgents, 70% of which are female, are the freebies.
They are not, however, required to pretend to like a product they don't; they're required to state their associated with a marketing firm with each demonstration, and if they don't like the item they've been given, they're free to express that. Other companies try the word-of-mouth approaches but use stealth or undercover tactics which don't require them to tell others they were hired; when companies do this, they often lose customer loyalty.
The "try before you buy" offer is always tempting; consider how the samples at Costco and Safeway boost sales for new products. There are so many new items hitting the market everyday, it's hard to know what to try. When one company offers a free sample, their success rate is a lot higher than their competitors who don't.
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