All posts by Graham

Moneybookers Update…. Success????

So its been a few days since I last updated about the whole moneybookers account hacked situation.  Basically they have been ignoring my emails and avoiding my questions about how transactions can possibly take place in under 3 seconds. I have tried calling, but everytime I get stuck on the phone with one of their RETARDED (I am not kidding… and I do not mean to offend anyone out there, but these people seriously have a few screws loose) staff that keep telling me to email.  They have no phone manners, talk over me all the time, and yell at ME the CUSTOMER!  Fuck you moneybookers!

Anyway, I finally got them to respond to an email this morning, but I have no idea what this means.  Anyone care to take a stab at this:

“Dear Mr. Rowlands,

We are contacting your with regards to your Moneybookers account. Please be kindly informed that we have received a confirmation back from the company that received the payments, sent out of your account without your authorization. You will receive a refund to your Moneybookers account, however, it will not be the full amount that was sent out. Please be advised that this is the best we could do, having in mind that there was a possibility that our requests were not granted. Moreover please be advised that it will take at least 7 business days, starting from today, for this refund procedure to be completed, due to the specific internal regulations of the company in question.

We hope you’ll find this information useful.

Best regards,

[Theodor]
The Moneybookers Team”

Notice how they still say nothing about the 3-second transactions!  I have emailed them for clarification.

Either way, I am gonna hold out on my smear campaign for now and wait to see what they have to say.  I could start posting the story everywhere, but I don’t want to jeopardize any chance of getting the money back just yet.  Regardless, protect yourself, change your moneybookers passwords regularly, if you don’t NEED moneybookers, don’t use them, just don’t let this happen to you!

Freerolls / Nothing From Moneybookers

I am going to run my first freeroll on my forum.  Its strange to think that I have been doing this poker affiliate stuff for almost 2 years now and have never done a freeroll.  I am running it over in my Poker Forum, so if you are interested in playing, drop by.  I will post whether it is a success or not after it is done.

As for the Moneybookers situation…. still nothing yet.  The last response I got from them was yesterday stating:

“We would like to kindly confirm that our Security Department has been notified of your case and we are now making all necessary efforts to return the funds on all transactions that were not authorized by yourself.”

This came about an hour after I found the email for the CEO and Head of Marketing / PR and copied them on one of my complaints, but still haven’t received anything from them today and the money is still gone.

Moneybookers Account Hacked – Their Support SUCKS!

I logged into my Moneybookers account randomly last night to find out that it had been HACKED!  This account is brand new (1 month old) and I have only given out my account email to two people (affiliate managers at Pokerheaven and Euro Partners) so I am very suspicious about who could have done it.  Also, I never open suspicious emails, so there is no way I got caught by a phishing scheme.

Anyway, there were 6 transfers done to moneybookers@globe7.com (some online phone company based in India) all for around $117.  I immediately tried to find a number to call them, but they don`t even offer after hours support!  What a joke that is!  I emailed their security department last night, and called them (long distance! – no 800 number) first thing when they opened this morning.  When I called they said they would forward the request on to security.  It has now been almost 24 hours, and still NO RESPONSE!  I even emailed the support email at globe7.com, but they were completely useless and told me that I should contact moneybookers when I asked them who owned that email address.  I am so frustrated because it is basically a waiting game now, and this whole situtation kept me up really late last night.  I will give them the benefit of the doubt for now, and hope they will help out, but if they do not I will be voicing my opinion of their service like crazy!

I will keep everyone posted on the outcome, but for now I will keep it low key and off the forums.  My only recommendation to everyone is be careful, because when something goes wrong, there should always be someone there to help.  I shouldn`t have to wait around like this!  This is one of the reasons why I did not even want to open an account there in the first place, but these sites said this was the only way that they could pay me.  If nothing is done in the next day or so, I guess the next step is to go to the police, but I wouldn`t even know where to start.  Anyone ever had something like this happen?

Running A Poker Forum is a Lot of Work

First off, sorry for the lack of updates.  Last weekend was my birthday so I was pretty busy celebrating.  Thanks to everyone that wished me a Happy B-Day!

As mentioned a few posts ago, I purchased Fuzion Poker on PAW.  The last few days I have been working hard on trying to build up the forum and have really realized that trying to get a forum going is a lot of work!  The forum had around 3000 members when I received it, but most of them are from a while ago, so I am trying to get them to come back and post.  My main goal with the site is to build it up into a fun little community where we have a bunch of special events for all of the members.  I don’t really expect it to make any money for a while, but if it does sooner then that is great too.

My plans so far are to offer a bunch of prizes and rewards to the posters on the site to get some of them back posting again.  Some things I am doing to do this, is by making a minimum number of posts so that members can see all the special site promotions.  I will run a few freerolls (any affiliate managers looking to help out, let me know), then eventually try to get a league going.  There are a few good members there already that are posting quite a bit, so IMO it is off to a decent start.

Unfortunately this means that I have spent countless hours working all week (18 hour days) and am currently averaging only 4 hours of sleep per night.  I knew it wasn’t going to be easy, but I like the challenge.  If anyone has any suggestions I would love to hear them!

I am also going to have to put a little work into the SEO for the site to try and get it ranking a lot better.  I will keep you posted on how things are working out with the forum and think this will be a great case study.

Make Money with Squidoo Lenses

Many affiliates are using squidoo lenses to rank very quickly for different terms and promote different poker sites.  Since Squidoo uses some excellent internal linking and their leneses come SEO optimized, you don’t really need any SEO or design skills to get started.  I was relatively new to the whole process but I finally thought I would give it a shot tonight (after being inspired by a post made by JohnH on PAW).

So, I went to Squidoo and created my account.  It took no more than 5 minutes to sign up, and I was already to start making my first lens.  I decided to keep it on topic with this blog, but yours can be about different poker sites, players, or whatever you prefer.

It took me about 25 minutes to create, but by the end I thought I had a nice page of information about poker affiliate marketing.

I am not sure it will even do anything for me at all, but I will try and keep an eye on my stats to see if it works.  Using these lends is a great way to drive traffic to your own sites, get free links, or even promote affiliate programs.  Lots of people are making a ton of money using these, so what are you waiting for!

What a Busy Week

So as mentioned in my previous post, I have been taking some Project Management Fundamentals courses for the last few days.  I finally finished the in-class stuff, and passed with flying colors (23/25 on the Final exam).  The class was very interesting and taught me a lot of things that I can apply to my online businesses.  Running a project is almost identical to running a small business.

I booked my trip to London for Cap Euro on Wednesday.  I am really excited for this trip as I will get to meet up with all the PAW people I met in Vegas, as well as some new ones.  If you aren’t going already, I would highly recommend checking it out.  I think this is gonna be one of the biggest conferences yet (thats my prediction)!  Right now we are trying to plan a nice dinner as London is home to many of the World’s Best Restaurants.

I have really let a lot of my sites slip this week by not updating them enough.  I hired a writer though so things should turn around soon, she was just having some issues this week.

Anyway, I am really going to try and write more affiliate tips in these articles, so stay tuned.  For now, I definitely recommend anyone trying to get started in this game should learn as much about SEO as possible.  Go out and get Aaron Wall’s SEO Book, as its a great book with tons of information and its really cheap (ONLY $79) considering all the information that it contains.

Taking Some Project Management Courses

Hey All, I hate to start off with a lack of updates already, but I have been taking a Project Management course for the last few days.  I think this course will be beneficial for my current job as well as all my affiliate sites.  I really didn’t realize how much work PM’s actually do.  It is a lot more difficult than I thought.  Eventually I want to get my certification, but that will take a little longer.

Also, am working with some other people on some top secret projects which I will release in due time.  I think they could be pretty amazing, and have a ton of potential, but it will take some time to get everything up and running.

Hopefully in the next few days I will get some better posts up here, but for now I need to get back to studying.  Thanks for stopping by!  Graham.

The History of Bankroll Boost

For those who don’t know me, let me give you a little history about how I became a poker affiliate.

It all started about a year and a half ago.  My friend and I were talking about ways we could make money online and he suggested promoting poker sites.  Considering we both loved to play poker, I thought this would be an interesting idea, so we gave it a shot.  We created a really basic site, where we planned to give away a portion of our commissions in the form of products (books, poker chip sets, etc.) to players in exchange for their signup.  This didn’t last long, because for one it took our site over a month to get listed in google, and we were wondering where all the traffic was. (thinking it would just come rolling in).  I posted on PAW that I NEEDED HELP, which is when I got some of the best advice I have ever received from another PAW member, offyourface.  His advice really helped me take the blinders off and make some drastic improvements to my site.  Without some of his amazing suggestions I probably would not be where I am today and much of the advice I received in that thread is still on the site today.  I started adding tons of content and all my free time was spent working on the site.  My friend was starting to lose interest because the site still was not making money, so we made a deal and I bought the whole site from him.

Then came one of the biggest turning points in my site’s history.  Just over a year ago I had the opportunity to attend the Casino Affiliate Convention in Las Vegas.  I won the trip package from a contest run by the Poker.com affiliate program.  Basically, I had to redesign my site in a way to give better exposure to Poker.com.  There were many entries, but my site was selected as the winner.  They gave me the money to pay for my flight and hotel, and being the deal savvy person that I am, I got my trip for around $800 (staying at the Hard Rock one night, and Bally’s (kinda ghetto) the other.  With the remainder of the money I invested in my site (bear in mind, my site was making peanuts and this was more money then it had ever made).  In Vegas I met and hung out with some amazing people.  Most of the time Brandon Berndt (now affiliate manager at Chan Poker) let me tag along with him and introduced me to many people, but I also got to hang out with Jeremy Enke, Kyle Healey, Greg Powell, Justin Goff along with many other great people that I still talk to all the time.  These guys were and still are some of the best in the industry and I formed some great relationships from that trip with all of them.  Whether we were at the Stinky Fish Poker (the site that never made it) party to hanging out in Greg Powell’s room at the MGM hotel I had a great time in Vegas and still remember it like it was yesterday.

I took home a lot of ideas from Vegas and (when I recovered from all the partying) I started to go really hard and work on my site.  I invested the money mentioned previously in a new design from my homeboys at Alance and also bought some advertising space on a few sites.  I continued to read up on SEO and studied other sites to see what they were doing well, then implemented these strategies into my own site.

Since then, my site has continued to grow and I am sure it has a lot to do with many of those mentioned in this post.  Thank you all!

I will end this post with some of the best advice I have received/can give to those starting up in online marketing:
Content is King – The more content you have on your site, the more easier it is for the search engines to find you.
Find a Niche – My site is a bad example, but I have several other tiny niche sites that make a fair amount of money.
Learn SEO – SEO is the single easiest way to advertise without spending any money…. well maybe a little
Design Your Sites for the Customer – This industry is very competitive so you want to attract your customers quickly, because the BACK button is only a click away.
It Takes Money to Make Money – Sometimes you’ll have to spend some money to make money.  If you invest early in your site it will make things move much faster.  But remember when spending your money, do it smart, and do some research.
That is all I can think of for now, and don’t worry, I will elaborate more on all of these later on.

Razzaments and Other Stupidness

Yesterday when I got home from work (aka Hell) I had a ridiculous urge to play poker.  Since it was payday from many of the sites, I did one thing that no affiliate should ever do, started to gamble with my commissions.  I started off playing some 8/16 Razz for around 5 hours.  It was a lot of ups and downs, but when I finished, my bankroll had dropped from around $450 to about $350.  I decided enough was enough, after all it was Friday night, and called up my friend to go out.

Sure enough, about 20 minutes later I was back at Full Tilt, this time in the 8/16 Limit poker.  I donked off the rest of the money in about 30 minutes (I got sucked out pretty bad on the river more than twice), and was now without a bankroll (or any money to pay some people that I owe for content writing) and furthermore, the money that I had worked hard all month to get.

I created this post in hopes that someone would learn from my stupidity and not gamble their hard earned affiliate income away.

Busy Day – Bought A Site + Lots More!

Fuzion PokerToday was extremely busy.  I started off the day (on 4 hours sleep) by heading to work.  While there I was checking out PAW (on my break of course ;)) and I came accross a site for sale.  The site is called Fuzion Poker, is 2 years old, has a bunch of backlinks, as well as a poker forum with almost 3,000 members.  Knowing how fast sales on PAW can go, and that several other affiliates with big budgets were inquiring, I figured I had to snatch this one up quickly.  I found the seller’s MSN details in their profile and added them right away.  Within minutes we negotiated a price, and the site was officially mine.  I had been looking for some sites to develop for a while, and this one seemed to fit the bill with a nice brandable domain name.  I may turn this site into a little test project, and will try and post some results here.

I spent the rest of the day trying get through this online Project Management course that I am currently taking, but could only really finish 3 chapters with all the distractions.  This means I now have to do around 8 tomorrow….oh boy!

After work, my girlfriend came down to visit me (she lives about 1 hour away) and we went out for a nice dinner and a movie.  We went to see American Gangster, because I had been dying to check it out, and it lived up to most of the hype.

Got home, watched some TV for a bit, kicked the girlfriend out (props to Jeremy who gave me the idea for the strikethroughs – I like them!) my girlfriend decided it was time for her to go, then started back to work online.  A friend of mine sells some seriously balling cars and was looking for a website to be created.  I quickly registered a domain for him, set up his email, and made a basic page saying the site is under construction.  I will let you know when its finished.

I updated some of my sites, played a little poker over at Full Tilt Poker and here I am now writing this post (didn’t want to let this thing start to slip after only 1 day!).  Anyway, time to go to bed now, will write more later.

Remind me to cut down on so many BS details for future posts.  I am still learning about this blogging thing, and eventually it will be more entertaining, I am just running on empty right now.