Make Money Watching TV: Viggle Tricks and Tips
What is Viggle?
According to their website, Viggle is a "loyalty program" that rewards its users for watching TV and listening to music with points that can be redeemed for gift cards, merchandise, online shopping discounts, and electronics.
For all intents and purposes, Viggle is another innocent Big Brother smartphone app. By tracking what its users are watching on TV and listening to, it makes money by selling this information to advertisers so that consumer driven digital media will continue to know you better than you know yourself.
Get Rich Quick?
First of all, I think it is important to understand exactly how much "money" you are making. Users receive one point for each minute you are checked in to a show. (Hint: if the show is a half hour long and you check in right at the beginning, you will get about 30 points.)
IMPORTANT: 30-35 points = 1 cent
Let me repeat. Between 30 and 35 points = 1 cent. This means for the cheapest rewards 3000 points = $1.00. In other words, this is not a get-rich quick scheme, scheme. It is an easy reward for doing something you were already doing anyway. I said it was "brainless." I did not, however, say the payment was actually worth your time. Perhaps it isn't.
How Does Viggle Work?
For many, Viggle falls into the category of passive income. It is actually one of the most brainless easy-money schemes I've encountered, ever. If you have an iPhone, iPad, later edition iPod touch, or any of the similar Android devices, you can download the app, which is free. Once you've downloaded the app, you will be lead through a registration process (right on your phone) where you provide basic information and an email address.
Use your Viggle App to earn points while watching TV or listening to music. You can "check in" to any show that is on currently or any show you've recorded up to 5 days after its original air date. Simply hit the "Earn Points" button from the home screen, turn up the volume on your TV, and allow Viggle to recognize the show. If you are listening to music, whether on the radio, a device, or on the TV (for example, while watching Glee) Viggle should recognize the song. Note: you can only get points for song check-ins one time, ever, so checking in to the same song more than once will not earn you any points.
How To Earn Viggle Points
If you simple wish to be a casual Viggler, I have picked up some tricks and tips to getting as many points as possible in the shortest amount of time. I'll go ahead and share what I've learned.
- Check in to any show on TV and you will receive 1pt per minute that you remain checked in. However, once checked in, you do not actually have to watch the entire show. The only thing that cancels a check in, is checking in to another show so if you fall asleep (or your phone falls asleep) you remain checked in until the show ends or until you check in to another chow.
- Every day, there are featured shows which include bonus points. They are listed right there on the app. Here's how bonus points for featured shows work: points earned per minute for "bonus shows" are multiplied by 4X, 6X, 10X or 15X. Here's a quick example: Dancing with the Stars is currently a featured bonus show worth 4X the watch points. When the show runs for two hours, if you check in from the very beginning you will receive 120 watch points and 360 bonus points, for a total of 480 points.
- There are hidden bonus points on the app itself for between 20 and 400 points. Most are for short commercials that play on your phone. Others are for movie or upcoming show trailers. I've found that at midnight EST, more of these hidden bonuses come up than any other time of day. To find them, simply click on the "Bonus Shows" icon from the home screen, and then click on each featured show.
- You can have multiple Viggle accounts per household, as long as you only have one account per person. You must sign up with different email addresses, but two devices can check in to the same shows at the same time. There is a maximum of four accounts per household.
In my first week of using Viggle, I received my first $5 reward, a gift card to Starbucks. It cost 9,000 points. I redeemed the points immediately and a gift card code was sent to my email, where I was able to register it at Starbucks.com and add it to an existing gift card.
For the first month of using Viggle I easily earned a $5 reward each week. Since then, Viggle has made some serious changes, and $5 a week for a regular account is difficult to achieve with average TV viewing. To read about these changes, click here.
Now, gift cards are no longer in constant stock. Instead, they are released in limited numbers during the primetime window. In the last several months, Viggle has released between 2 and 3 gift cards a night, between the hours of 7pm and 10pm. But you must see them and snag them quickly because most gift cards are out of stock within 5 minutes.
Additionally, it seems that Viggle is forever raising the "price" on gift cards. $5 Starbucks gift cards were only 9,000pts when I first joined Viggle, and now they are 18,500 points. Because of this, I spend my points as soon as I have enough to cash out. I try to keep my point total as low as possible, maximizing the idea that today is possibly the cheapest these gift cards will ever be again. However, because of the difficulty of snagging gift cards regularly, my account often goes as high as 45K points. This means once in a while I will be able to redeem for a $10 gift card (Papa Johns or Gap for example) or a $15 Groupon every so often.
Is it possible to cheat at Viggle? To be honest, I'm not even sure what that would mean. It's a free app that pays you for watching TV. If you are succeeding with Viggle, you are cheating life.
That said, if you are interested in more information, help, tips, and online discussion about Viggle, I found this group on Slickdeals to be really awesome. This is an online community of Vigglers who have broken down all the brass tacks of this often frustrating app. They are all about helping each other max out points, and they clearly have fun doing it. If you are thinking about getting serious with Viggle, check them out.