How to succeed at video mystery shopping

Advancements in technology have increased both the popularity and prevalence of video assignments in recent years.

Many people find mystery shopping to be a thrilling job. The ability to walk into a retail establishment or other business posing as a normal client when you are actually an undercover secret shopper is an exciting change of pace to the everyday customer experience.

The thrills don't have to stop there, though. Some people like to kick their secret shopper jobs up a notch by applying for other even more ambitious assignments. Video mystery shopping may be one of the most complicated jobs in the industry. Advancements in technology have increased both the popularity and prevalence of video assignments in recent years. Applying for these kinds of jobs is a great way to boost your skill level as a secret shopper.

How do they work?
Secret shopping companies hire people to complete video assignments as a way to get a raw and unfiltered view of a business' customer service experience. Because the assignment depends on capturing video while still maintaining complete anonymity, standard video recording equipment is often insufficient for the job. As a result, the provider will usually supply you with undercover video recording equipment at no extra cost to you.

Being able to successfully complete a video mystery shopping assignment is a great skill to add to your arsenal. For those interested in having a go at it for the first time, here are a few keys to success:

Get certified
The Mystery Shopping Providers Association provides certification workshops for anyone interested in mystery shopping. While certification is not required for secret shopper jobs, you may want to consider the option if you're interested in applying for more complex assignments. By completing a workshop with a leading mystery shopping organization, you will gain expert insight and an advanced skill set that can lead to a competitive edge in your ability to receive video assignments. You can also list your certification on your resume when applying for future jobs, no matter the level of difficulty.

Practice
Video assignments require a variety of specialized skills. For instance, it requires capturing high-quality footage at the proper angles - all without revealing yourself during the process. The task is often much harder than it seems. Try practicing on your own before you start applying. 

Cover your tracks
The undercover recording equipment you receive from your provider will likely have various wires attached to it. Make sure you wear clothing that will properly conceal the wires and prevent any store clerk or representative from catching onto your real identity.