Are You Talking To Your Friends Too Much about Mystery Shopping? (And Why You Should Stop)

As a mystery shopper, we are all periodically reminded about the reasons not to talk openly about mystery shopping to friends and family. Unfortunately, these times that remind us not to blab about mystery shopping typically occur after we have already opened our mouths. If you have been considering telling a friend or family member about mystery shopping, here are a few good reasons why you may want to reconsider:

Do You Want More Competition? In many parts of the country, mystery shoppers have a difficult time getting the assignments they truly want, and this is largely for one reason – competition. The truth is that in many areas, there are too many mystery shoppers competing for assignments already. The result is that many great mystery shoppers are forced to work on less than desirable assignments if they want to find work to do. When you tell other people about mystery shopping, inevitably one of two things will happen. First, the people you tell may want to try mystery shopping for themselves. Second, they may pass along the word to some of their friends and family members. You may think you are only adding one new mystery shopper to work in your neck of  the words, but you can’t control who that person talks to. So you may end up adding several more mystery shoppers. This only creates more competition for you in getting jobs.

Get A Real Job. Every mystery shopper knows that mystery shopping is definitely a real job. Sure, we don’t sit at a desk all day staring at a computer screen and heading to big corporate meetings in a conference room. However, there is real work that gets done, real issues that arise during our day to complicate our  jobs, and real money to be earned. However, in many people’s eyes, mystery shopping just isn’t a “real job.” There are a few people that you may choose to tell about your job that may simply roll their eyes at your job.

Watch Your Cover. The world is an incredibly small place. Think about how many times in the last month or two that you have bumped into a neighbor, a friend, or even a long lost buddy from  your high school or college days at the store, a restaurant, or even out at the park. The world keeps getting bigger, and yet it remains incredibly small, too. What’s more, people love to talk about interesting things, and mystery shopping is certainly an interesting topic. When  you tell a few friends or family members about your job, you never know who they will tell about your gig. If you aren’t careful about telling people about your job, you may just find that your cousin Joan’s best friend’s son, who you met at a holiday party a few years ago and recognizes your face, is the checkout clerk on the grocery store you are mystery shopping at and heard that you are a mystery shopper straight from Joan. It sounds like a stretch, but the fact is that you bump into people all of the time in places you never expected to see them, and  you never known who they’ve been talking to or what they’ve been saying!

Certainly there are some rare times when you will want to tell a friend or family member about your job. Perhaps your neighbor is having trouble making ends meet and can’t seem to find a job anywhere. Your compassion in sharing your source of income with your neighbor will certainly be appreciated. However, there are definitely so many reasons why you shouldn’t share info about your mystery shopping job with any and every one.