Tuesday, August 3, 2010

ToneaDay - I take it all back

Last week I wrote about toneday.  A site that allows you to rate random phrases for the emotional response that they illicit.  At the time I mentioned that I was unsure about the payout and the details they provided were vague at best.

To qualify at toneaday you first have work your way through some established words and phrases.  At the end your work is reviewed and $5.00 is credited to your account.  I reviews 245 words and phrases, saw my $5.00 balance and am awaiting a verdict on whether I am emotionally intelligent enough for a promotion to the next level (highly doubtful). 

I logged into my account this morning since it had been a few days since I'd finished my qualifying.  Now there's only $2.00 in my account and I am required to give 20% to charity (Red Cross or KIVA).  So basically I earned $0.007 per phrase.  Not quite as advertised.

I'll keep you updated but right now I'm giving toneaday a less than positive review.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

How to Make Money with AdSense

I made money blogging yesterday! Shutthefrontdoor. But don’t be jealous.

But first, some info...

I know that like in all business, you never make any real money working for someone else on the Internet. I have tried and will continue to try all hundred and fifty bazillion ways there are to bring in a little cash, God knows I need it, but my fantasy life goes like this:

Dear horrible person that I work for,

Shove it. I am making enough money on my websites to tell you to shove it right to your face because you really are a dumbass. Seriously, seriously, not smart.

See you in hell,


Followed by...

Dear babysitter,

While you have done a perfectly sufficient job at watching my child to this point, you are no Mensa candidate yourself. I’ll take it from here.

See you in never,


And some more info...

Do you guys read Dooce? Do you guys know that the estimated earnings from her blog in 2009 were $50000 a month?! We all know there is only one Dooce and I am not even trying to be her. And she has lots of readers. And I don’t. Yet. But the point of this story is that the number one source of revenue on her blog are the Pay-per-Click ads that run down the sides. You read, you see something interesting over there, you click, she makes $0.25.

Lots of moms blog, but not lots of us monetize. And if you write something that is aimed at your friends and family, you may have no desire to cash in on it. I certainly have some family members who write deeply personal blogs that are not an appropriate venue for advertisement. Its not for everyone.

But if you blog to reach a larger audience, why not monetize? Its great to make money on something you were going to do anyway. That’s why my dream job (right below no job at all) is margarita drinker.

Monetizing on blogger is easier than actually blogging. There’s a tab that says monetize! You’re set up with a Google AdSense account. Google does all the work. I don’t even know what I’m doing and I did it. Google pays out monthly once your account hits $10.00.

If you have a wordpress blog that you’d like to add AdSense to, see here --->click me!

So yesterday I made $.01 blogging. It might not sound exciting to everyone, but for me it was like the dollar bill in a frame behind the cash register. I was ridiculously excited. I didn’t even pretend to be asleep when my husband started rubbing my back last night. I made money blogging.

Anybody have a blogging for dollars story to share with me?

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Hot Tip! - ToneaDay

I am a nerd. If you’re looking for evidence, here it is: I am an NPR junkie. I listen to it every day on my commute to and from job-I-don’t-love. Earlier this week, I was listening to All Things Considered, as usual on the way to pick up the perfect babe from the previously mentioned icky babysitter. I heard a story about a gentleman who had been working in sales. He had a great rapport with his customers in person but was getting the impression that his emails were going over like a ton of bricks.

He designed a software called ToneCheck. It checks an email’s tone the way spell check looks for spelling errors. Professionally, this was fascinating to me. We are all the time referring employees to business writing courses, but they can’t teach this.

Find article here --> http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=128778526

Personally, I was interested because of how tonecheck works. It scans emails for words or phrases that elicit strong emotional responses from humans. How do they know what words bring about these responses? They pay people to rate them! Five cents per rating.

I’m totally trying it out right now so more to come on this. I’m still in the qualifying phase so I’ve got unanswered questions about pay out. It looks like the minimum payout is $75 and that you are required to give 10% of your earnings to a charity listed on the site. The top rater yesterday had rated over 7000 phrases that day, so it has potential.

If you’re interested in trying this out, leave me a comment and I’ll send you a referral. So far so good for me. Its fun and easy.

Anyone else tried ToneaDay or Tonecheck? Have a review to share with me?

Monday, July 26, 2010

How to Make Money Selling your Stuff on Craigslist

I recently came into some baseball tickets. They were great seats in the club level, accompanied by free parking under the stadium. I love baseball. I love $8 beers. The team is actually pretty good this year. Oh, and the game starts in six hours. And I have a baby.

So needless to say, the acrobatics required to line up a last minute sitter, re-analyze my budget to make room for the $8 beers, and find three baseball lovers who were free that evening to accompany me seemed a little overwhelming.

But I would not be wasting the $250 plus dollars worth of tickets. I sold them on craigslist.

Craigslist has been around for about ten years and I have used them for to buy, sell, apply for jobs, and post jobs at my real life job. Its free to post most ads and you can buy, sell, or trade almost anything. So I offered my last minute tickets up to the craigslist Gods to see if I could make a quick online buck.

To post an ad on craigslist, you need an account. The process could not be any easier. You need a valid email and a phone number. You can confirm by text message. Then you just write a quick tag line (4 Club Seats for game Tonight!) and a short description of what you are selling. You can include a photo if you think that will help. Ads are posted anonymously and responses are forwarded to your personal email. Then the email offers start coming in!

I actually got six inquiries about my tickets for a sporting event that was set to begin in less than six hours. After a bit of negotiating I sold my tickets to a gentleman named Darrell for $150. I wasn’t going to use them anyway and the price seemed fair for both of us.

I agreed to meet Darrel’s wife and children at a restaurant close to the stadium for the ticket exchange. We met in a very public place, lest she rob me at knife point. I gave her my tickets. She gave me the cash. We both left happy.

A few days later I got an email from Darrell thanking me for the tickets and letting me know that his family had a wonderful time at the game. He also wanted to be contacted directly if I had more tickets to sell. Another satisfied customer.

Selling your unwanted stuff on craigslist is a great way to make some extra money online and its pretty exciting. I give it an A+ for turning the stuff you already have into online money.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Surveys I Heart - Opinion Outpost

Surveys I Heart - Opinion Outpost

This is my love letter to Opinion Outpost. Taking surveys online is a well-known way to make some extra money. There are literally hundreds of sites to sign up for. I’ll provide a full review later but let me just sum it up for you here. I love Opinion Outpost.

If you’ve never tried an online survey before, the low-down is as follows: sign up for site, enter some basic demographic info, get surveys sent to you by email. Most sites reward you with points. The points per survey varies. Points equal cash. After you’ve accumulated some minimum number of points, you request your pay out. Super simple.

Write this down ---> get a separate email address for your survey memberships. You’ll thank me.

I love Opinion Outpost because they send me about 8-10 surveys a week. About 1/3 of the time I qualify. The surveys usually take about 20 minutes and the payout is usually about 30-50 points. At Opinion Outpost, 50 points equals $5 dollars, which is the minimum payout.

They pay by check. Mine always arrives much more quickly than advertised.

When you are not selected for a survey, Opinion Outpost gives you three options. You can make a small donation a charity of choice, enter to win a weekly cash prize, or spin the wheel for $50. I actually won the $50 once. I literally jumped from my seat with joy.

If you’d like to make some online survey money, try Opinion Outpost!

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Make Money as a Text Chat Operator

IDid you know that you can get paid for texting? Sounds dreamy, right? Well, there’s a catch (umm, obviously). You’ll be texting pervy dudes in England.

I don’t recall where I first heard of text chat operators. I’m sure it was in one of the zillion blogs I read about how to make some online cash. I was well aware when I started investigating these positions that the “chats” were of the adult variety (unless you read tarot and I will absolutely blog about reading tarot online in the future = will try anything).

I’m not sure if I’ve mentioned this, but I am a mostly happily married woman, the full time working mother of a seven month old, and a taker of both birth control pills and Lexapro. I’m only mildly (read:not at all) interested in recreational sex, so why I ever thought that I might pursue it professionally...

I did some research, decided that the entire thing was a little shady, but heck, I had nothing to lose, so I found a company to sign up with. Most people get started with Text 121 so I thought I’d start there. I also liked that they allowed your to work online at your convenience. Some of the other companies had assigned shifts. The application process was a little cumbersome. I had to email them expressing interest and then fill out a 12 page application/contract.

I had the option of signing a contract for either 2000 or 3000 text per month. The pay rate is higher for the 3000 text option ($0.03/text vs $0.05/text) so I went with the higher paying option. I read reviews from folks who were easily completing 10,000 text so I thought I could handle it. It is important to note that if you don’t fulfill your contract for the month you don’t get paid AT ALL.

The next step in the application process was the questionnaire. This was the last step for me. The idea was that these were some sample text you might receive and you are to send your sample responses. Well all of the sample questions are about penises. And it was a little too ick for me.

So that’s where my personal experience ends. I will say that there are tons of negative reviews out there for this one, so I’m going to count myself as better off.

Have you tried it? Make any online texting money?

Friday, July 23, 2010

Becoming a ChaCha Guide - My Review

One of my many on-going plans to make extra money online is by becoming an Guide on ChaCha. For anyone unfamiliar with ChaCha, its a mobile search engine. You can text them a question, a real person texts you back an answer. I would be the aforementioned real person.

I did some research before I got start and found that lots of moms seemed to be making a couple hundred bucks a week or so, which would be a score for me at this point. I went to www.chacha.com to check it out.

If you’re interested in doing this, you’ll need a reasonably fast computer, high speed Internet, and Mozilla Firefox. Check, check, and check. So off I went to www.chacha.com. I clicked the Become a Guide link and voila! I’m lead to a page that says “Wanted:Clever Moms” - sign me up!

I fill out the requested info - name, addy, email, W-9 info, the usual. Then there a short video on the history of ChaCha. Take a short quiz (I passed) and you are through the first hurdle. I was accepted into Expeditor training school and on my way to earning some cash. Expeditor training consist of several short videos plus quizzes. Its all pretty simple. As a final test, I logged into the ChaCha employee site and try my hand at some simulated questions.

As a ChaCha Expeditor I make $0.02 or $0.03 a question, depending on how productive I am that month. Its pretty easy to whip through the questions. I average about $3 or $4 an hour. Its not a lot, but its really a pretty fun job (and that’s more than I get paid for sitting on facebook). They pay you on a debit card from First Internet Bank of Indiana. They do have a cool Pay Me Now feature.

The best thing about ChaCha is that you can work whenever you want. They send email notifications during high traffic times, but you can log in and work whenever its convenient for you!

My opinion, ChaCha is a legit opportunity to earn a little extra money. Not enough for me to quit my full-time gig, of course. But it will pay for a couple of margaritas a month. If you’re sitting on your laptop doing nothing anyway, try becoming a ChaCha guide.

Have you tried being a Guide at Cha Cha? How did it go?

I hate the babysitter

Ok, so I don't actually hate her. I just wish I didn't have to see her like everyday. So I'm trying some new things. I'm going to try to make some money some online. Maybe just some extra cash to start. Maybe enough to reduce my hours to part-time. Maybe my first million. We'll see.

I'm starting this blog to share my experiences with all the other moms out there who are also at work, reluctantly. If you're reading this from your office, I feel your pain. I've got lots of ideas to bring home some online money. Follow along, see how it goes. Maybe I'll make some serious online cash, maybe I'll find something to fill the hours from 8 to 5 that I now spend on facebook.

Wish me Luck!