Monday, April 6, 2009

Jenny has made $2,200 Profit! Read her guest post below...

Howdy Money Saving Method readers! My name is Jenny and I am an avid Money Saving Methods follower. I stumbled across Carrie's blog back in September and was immediately drawn in by all of her wonderful money saving (& making) methods! I had been curious about doing online offers and once I read Carrie's testimonials, I immediately jumped onboard. After asking her many questions and reading through her instructions and experience, I did my first offer.

I am happily married with 2 young children, a stay-at-home mom and a crazed couponer. I really wanted to be able to supplement my family's income and online offers has really afforded me this wonderful opportunity! I am not a blogger (I know many of you will wonder that!), although I am learning and seeing that blogging is also a wonderful way to contribute to your family's income as well!

Since starting my first offer at the end of September 2008, I have profited over $2200, with over $1200 being from I-Deal offers. And, this is without doing offers for 2 months over the holidays! I have another $2100 (not sure of the exact profit margin yet) in the works right now.

My I-Deal offers break down like this:

$500 (two $250) gas cards (pictured above) - $413.77 profit (I-Deal Top Notch)
$500 Visa gift card - $395 profit (I-Deal Top Notch)
$500 (two $250) KMart gift cards - $415.01 profit (I-Deal eMarketSolutions)

Currently, I am working on the offer featured at the top -- the $500 gift card to Olive Garden (I chose to received gift cards to Chili's instead and I am guessing this will come in the form of two $250 gift cards again, but I am not sure). This is through I-Deal Jasper Marketing.

Some of you are probably thinking you don't want or need $500 to the Olive Garden or Chili's. Let me give you some ideas on this. First of all, Olive Garden gift cards are part of the Darden Family of restaurants, which means they are also good at Red Lobster, Longhorn Steakhouse and Bahama Breeze Island Grille. Chili's gift cards are also accepted at Macaroni Grill, On the Border and Maggiano's.

My husband and I try to have a date night at least once a month. Well, we generally like to go out to eat and will easily spend $25-$30 (or more!) doing that. Having a $250 gift card means that we have a free dinner out once a month for 8-10 months! Always check your gift cards terms and conditions, but I have found that most of the time these gift cards do not expire and do not charge any fees.

Another idea is to try and sell your gift card for cash. Craigslist and eBay might be some options here. Of course, you are not going to get the full value, but you can still make a good profit by doing this. I like to get $220-$225 cash for my $250 gift cards. One more option is to try and trade your gift cards. I'm sure there are many sites online to do this. I am personally a part of a trading board where we trade coupons and the like. Posting on this board resulted in me trading one of my KMart gift cards for a Macy's gift card (same value). I don't have KMart in my area or I would've loved a KMart gift card for everyday shopping, buying birthday and Christmas gifts, etc.

I personally like getting cash as my payout, of course! Who wouldn't?! But, this isn't always an option. Be creative and think about how a $500 gift card to one place or another can benefit your family financially.

If you are brand new to doing online offers, I-Deal is definitely the company to start with. They are the easiest, pay the fastest, and you will have a smaller investment.

Now, here are my top pointers for the I-Deal websites:

1.) DO NOT DUPLICATE OFFERS....with the parent company (within 6 months). This is where it gets tricky! Many people have gotten DQ'd (disqualified...not to be confused with Dairy Queened -- yummy!) because they have (probably unknowingly) duplicated offers from the same parent company. Thanks to Rachel for coming up with most of this list (link to FB list of related companies post) of companies that we have figured out that are related.

2.) If your offers do not approve by day 11 (day 1 being the day you signed up for your offers) replacements! (You can also wait until day 22, but as of late they have not been crediting on that cycle.) I-Deal does not do manual credit like Nuitech and Netblue (which we will be talking about over the next few days so stayed tuned). So you need to be prepared to do a few replacement offers. Typically you have to do 1-2 replacements. There are times when I haven't had to do any -- yeah! But, don't be surprised or disappointed if you have to do a few. (As a side note, the clock starts ticking from when you put your email address have 60 days from this day to get everything completed. I suggest doing offers within a few days from signing up to not risk going past this timeframe.)

3.) Once your offers approve, print out your certificate and mail with delivery confirmation --- VERY IMPORTANT! If your account isn't upated in a few weeks, you have no way to prove that they received the certificates without delivery confirmation. Advice taken from Carrie -- I mark 2 weeks on my calendar from the day I know they received it and if my account hasn't updated by then, I contact them. I tell them I know they received my certificates on such-and-such a day and ask when can I expect my account to be updated? Usually, they will update it within a few days.

4.) Once your account has been updated and it shows you are approved by the sponsor, sit back, relax, and wait for FedEx to show up! My cards have typically been coming within about 2 months from when I signed up.

For more information on how to get started, check out Carrie's detailed information under online offers. There, she has spelled everything out in great detail. Be sure to take note of her organizational tips!

Tune in tomorrow when I will cover Nuitech!


Would you like to join Jenny and myself in completing an IDeal offer this month? Feel free to click here or on the image below for your $500 Gift Cards as well. As always, please read my Online Offers webpage, IDeal instructions and IDeal FAQ's.

Are you a reader, like Jenny, who has benefited from one of my methods? Feel free to email me about doing a guest post. They are always welcome.

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Anonymous said...

Great info, where can I find that compiled list of related companies?

Tribal Talk said...

Thanks Jenny. I have been hesitant to do another IDeal because I did two within two weeks of each other. I know that I need to wait to do another IDeal (with the same sub-company) until it has been six months, but is that 6 months from the start date of my last one or from the date I received the gift card?

Where is the "FB list of related companies post"?

Thanks for all you do!

Jenny said...

Hey Everyone, the list is on Facebook. Go to the Money Saving Methods discussion board and then to the topic "IDeal Related Companies". If you have any companies to add, please let us know by posting!

Tribal Talk, to be safe, Carrie says she waits 6 months from when she receives her gift cards. I don't think we know absolutely if it is when you start the offer or receive the gift cards, though.

Carrie @ said...

The 6 month date is so confusing.

And, it is probably 6 months from when you sign up, but I am one of those cautious individuals...and I always wait 6 months from when I receive the last of the $1,000.

So, for example, if you do $500. 2 months later you do another $500...I wait 6 months from the last one.

BUT, I am not positive. And, really, it is probably best to try and do 2 very close together, so you don't have that long to wait before you can start your next $1,000

For everyone trying to get to Facebook, I have a link on the bottom of every post that will take you to Facebook.

Tribal Talk said...

Thanks for putting together the list of IDeal related companies, Rachel and Jenny. This will help us veterans attempt another offer and hopefully not get DQ'd.

Anonymous said...

I am very upset this morning and I need someone to help me out. I am freaking out. I completed one of these online surveys through Top Notch. I began at the end of March-the last Sat. At the time of beginning this it listed no referrals needed and only 4 Platinum offers need to be completed. NOw it says need a referral and 8 Platinum need to be completed. When I check my status it still says Ineed 4 though. Also I had to do 1 replacement offer so I did the Discover More card. I was approved, but do I need to receive the card and make a purchase before this being approved too! Please give me some info on this!! I am freaking! I have put so much time and energy into this!


Carrie, I called the number you listed on your site and left you a message!

Anonymous said...

Oh, here is the link for the offer!

Is this Top Notch? What is it?


Carrie @ said...

Hi Anne,

It was nice talking to you this morning.

For everyone reading, what happened is that Top Notch changed the terms for her offer.

But, when she logs into her actual account, she is grandfathered in to her original she is fine.

I did advise her to copy this page so she has proof, should it ever be needed.

My advice to EVERYONE, is copy everything.

For example, if you go to my sample spreadsheet, I have my main sheet, but after that I have additional tabs.

the first tab is for the site yo are doing. I copy the page I signed up ( screen print or whatever ), the url and I copy paste the terms/conditions.

You want this, because companies can change terms at anytime. You always want proof of what you did.

In addition, I do this for each offer I sign up for within that site.

It sounds like alot of work, but really it only takes a few extra moments to a copy/paste.

And, odds are, you wont need it. But, every once in awhile, you just may. And, you don't want to be blindsided. :-)

Thanks for calling, Anne! And, glad everything is still OK on your account.

Steph said...

I recently started a Top Notch offer also and I knew when I started that it required 8 Platinum offers. It is a lot, but it's for $1500, so I though that was OK. I missed the part about 2 referrals, but I think I just overlooked it. Now, I'm trying to find 2 people who will go through the process with so many offers. I chose this one because I didn't wnat to have to find referrals and I am kicking myself for not reading closer!!

Carrie @ said...


Yes, any IDeal offer over $500 requires referrals.

In fact, some of their offers for only $500 also require referrals.

You always want to check this at the very bottom of the sign up page before starting.

Usually, the best way to get referrals would be family/friends. The problem begins when they, too, need to find someone. Eventually, someone is at the end and loses.

And, that isn't fun, either.

Personally, I just like Do It Yourself sites the best.

Anonymous said...

The two offers I thought were partners were both approved. These were the two I told you about on the phone. They were for the Mineral Elements (Natural Body Scrape) and Berry SLim MD. Both were approved on my account. What should I do now?
There is still one more Platinum offer I am waiting for. I signed up for all these offers on March 28th. Should I contact them, or wait it out?


Steph said...

Lesson learned. I'm working on recruiting a couple of people, but if I can't, it will stink to be out the money I spent, but I will know the next time - I can just subtract it from my profit on the next deal :)

Andrea @ Mommy said...

Jenny - great guest post! I so need to get on one of those restaurant offers. I never thought about holding them for a date night! Makes paying a babysitter much easier to stomach!!

joelle said...

I always gear up to attempt one of the online deals but chicken out. It seems confusing when you have to sign up for so many trial offers and keep track of when to cancel. What sites don't require the referrals? thanks for all your hard work.

Carrie @ said...


Aaahh...but so worth the confusion to get free money!! :-)

If you treat it as a job, stay diligent and organized, it actually isn't very hard at all.

In regards to referrals, most of the ones I list do not require referrals.

There are a few IDeal ones, those that are over $500..and a few $500 ones...that require referrals, but just check the terms before you start.

Renee said...

Is there any way to list the related sites somewhere besides Facebook? I'm one of those behind-the-times, non-Facebook people!

Thanks so much!

Carrie @ said...

Unfortunately, I am not allowed to list companies, suggest which offers to do and not to do, etc.

Hence, others have posted the list on Facebook..not me. :-)

Anonymous said...

I just wanted to post, I can't figue out how to post on Facebook (i'm a newbie), anyway onlingo and living christian are the same (go figure). I got dq'd for them I guess as they were the only one with a romote similar return address.

Anonymous said...

Okay, so if I do this and I sign up for a trial offer or an ongoing program... do I have to do it until I get my gift card, or can I cancel before the trial period is up or after a month of being charged. Does that count or will I be DQ'd?


Carrie @ said...


Each company is different...depending on whether you do an IDeal, Nuitech or Netblue.

Read the instructions for each different company to determine the requirements for individual offers.

For example, Nuitech requires 60 day membership to each offer but 2, so that will more than likely go beyond the trial.

But, with IDeal, their main requirement is to not duplicate offers.

With Netblue, they have a pop up for each offer that tells you the requirements..

summer said...

okay, so let me get this straight... (first timer...) for example the deal i was trying for had an option for the tooth whitening, but said if i return the product within 15 day free trial i may be dq for prize offer? so... is this the case?

Carrie @ said...


Since that particular offers states that, I wouldn't do it.

I doubt you get Dq'd, but you probably just wouldn't get credited.

I would try another offer.

Anonymous said...

when are people getting "dq'd" w/ Ideal. Not after they get they send in their claim certificate, I hope?

Laura said...

Hm... I'm new at this and very confused by the 6-mo. thing. That sounds like we can only do two IDeal offers a year, but it looks like Jenny's had great success with several deals. What am I missing...?

Carrie @ said...


You can do 2 ( up to $1,000 ) per IDeal Sub company.

So, for example, go to the Online Offers webpage in my left side bar.

Once there, if you go thru all the IDeal offers in that left side bar, you will see there is IDeal - 123 Click ( you can 2 ( up to $1,000 ) per 6 months...or 4 a year ), then you can do the same with IDeal - Marketlabs and the same with IDeal- Top Notch, etc, etc, etc.

Let me know if that doesn't make sense.