Free Samples! New Service Sends Products in Exchange for Opinions

Founder Jeremy Reid believes PinchMe's limited-choice approach delivers more engaged consumers and reliable feedback to companies testing new products. Members can only choose 1 of every 3 product samples presented each week. If for example, six samples are presented, only two can be requested.

Said Reid, "We're making you consciously decide . . . whatever you take, you actually want the most. You appreciate it a bit more and that then leads to a much better engagement with the product, and higher rates of trial receives a higher rate of conversion."

Makes sense. But currently, the limited number of participating brands means users will inevitably be forced to select products they wouldn't otherwise choose. One week for example, I had space left in my PinchMe box for an extra sample. Problem was, the only one left to choose was diaper cream, which I had no need for, but had to select in order to have that week's box sent off. Still, it was fun to sample products I wouldn't otherwise know of, like Gevalia's Caramel Macchiato K-cup coffee or Lady Gaga's "Fame" perfume.

While users' demographic data does provide insight to participating companies about who is sampling their product, PinchMe is still in early stages and it remains to be seen how effective it will be in converting all those free samples into purchases. Still, for the curious consumer, it's a simple way to try new products gratis.

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