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Mystery Shopping and Five Guys Burgers: A Winning Combination October 29, 2009

Posted by Ann Michaels & Associates in Uncategorized.
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It’s no secret that Five Guys Burgers uses mystery shopping – if you’re expecting to learn which company shops them though, you’re out of luck.

An article was published last July that highlights reasons why Five Guys Burgers is so successful; one component is mystery shopping.  You can read the article here.

What I like most about their concept is that they are using mystery shopping to catch the good, not the bad. That is the key to a successful program. If companies are using it for a “Big Brother” approach, it is doomed to fail. We always guide our clients to use it as a positive tool, and most (if not all) include an incentive or bonus program for high performance.

What is the takeaway for a mystery shopper? Quite simple: remember that your goal during a shop is not to find people doing things wrong, or providing bad service. You serve as an objective, third party source of information. Your job is to simply look at the business based on the company’s standards and culture and report what you find and experience. It’s that simple.

The article highlights the importance of mystery shoppers to be their “eyes and ears in the field.”  It’s nice to see how different companies use mystery shopping, and drives home the point that mystery shoppers play an important role in a company’s success.

Until next time…happy shopping!

Cashier’s Check Scam – FTC Fines MoneyGram October 28, 2009

Posted by Ann Michaels & Associates in Uncategorized.
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Good news for the mystery shopping industry! On October 20th, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) fined MoneyGram $18 million and have been ordered to launch an anti-fraud program. This is related to the cashier’s check scams that we posted about late last year.

The FTC stated that “that the company allowed its money transfer system to be used by fraudulent telemarketers to bilk U.S. consumers out of tens of millions of dollars.”  Between 2004 and 2008, approximately $84 million was wired through the use of fradulent telemarketers and other con artists.

While this is not solely focused on mystery shopping, it has been a huge problem across the board. This is great news, and hopefully the first step in solving this issue.

You can read the entire press release from the Federal Trade Commission.

Until next time…happy shopping!

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