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  1. #1
    GPWA Dan is offline Former Staff Member
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    Default Affiliate Interview Series | Dave - dschall

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    Age: 38

    Hometown: Farmington Hills, Michigan

    Living in: Zeeland, Michigan

    Favorite Food: Crab legs or lobster tails

    Must Read Book: Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions, by Dan Ariely

    Sites:
    casinodave.com
    casinodave.blogspot.com
    baseball-systems.com
    sportsandscores.info
    sportsguy.info
    sportsnewsblog.info
    plus about 300 others

    When did you launch your sites?

    Casinodave.com was launched in 2005, and the others started a few years later.

    All your sites overlap, with the common denominator being sportsbook-related content. Do you feel the sites complement each other, or is that even an issue?

    If I were promoting them more aggressively I would feel that the sites complement each other very well.

    Profitability aside, which of the sites is your favorite?

    Easily Casinodave.com.

    What was your goal in setting up baseball-systems.com, the most specifically labeled site?

    Before I started baseball-systems.com I was researching four or five different baseball betting systems. Baseball-systems.com was going to be the site where I logged all my research for each of the systems. I later decided each system would be on its own site.

    Our research indicates that you’ve been an affiliate for about 10 years. How did you become involved in the industry?

    Multiple events led me to this industry. Before becoming an affiliate, I was a computer network engineer for a government-contracted company. I had many years of experience and many different certifications (and about six years of college), but did not have a degree. Apparently government contractors can charge more if their employees have a degree, so my employer asked if I was interested in completing my Bachelor’s in Information Technology, which I was.

    Along with the job and being a full-time student, I was also a small-stakes poker player. Playing multiple online sit-n-go tournaments (up to 12 at the same time across three 20" monitors), I became very proficient and built a nice bankroll. Always trying to improve my game, I would regularly visit the 2+2 forums, where I read about online casinos that had signup bonuses.

    Initially I was very skeptical, as I thought all online casinos were a scam. But multiple trusted members of the forums were having no problems with winning or withdrawing money from these sites, so I took $200 from my poker bankroll to give online casinos a try.

    Around this same time, in May 2005, my wife and I were blessed with our first child. I took two weeks off from work to help out as much as I could at home, taking late-night feeding duties so my wife could sleep through the night. When my wife and son were sleeping, I signed up and played at many online casinos. During those two weeks, from signup bonuses and winnings, my $200 online casino bankroll turned into nearly $10,000.

    I told a friend about how much success I was having, and he was also very skeptical. But the bigger my winnings got, the more interested he became. So I explained how it all worked and made him a list of sites that I had tried out and withdrawn from. A few short weeks later he was having similar success and was very happy; he suggested I start a website.

    Still going to school full time to finish my degree, as luck would have I learned HTML and how to build websites in my next class. Our final project was to build a website from scratch, and I built what would become casinodave.com for school and got an A! While building the site, I studied many other online casino sites and learned about being an affiliate and how it all worked.

    How long did it take for you to start earning money?

    I was making some affiliate money from CPA deals right away, but that did not last long, however, as most of my players were winning.

    Are you a one-person shop or are you part of a larger organization?

    My brother has worked with me for about the last five years.

    Describe your work environment. Do you work from home or in an office? If you work from home, how often do you get to see and interact with other people in the industry?

    I work from home and have a dedicated office with two 26" monitors. Between Skype and Gmail chat I interact with other people in the industry every day.

    What are the most common search terms that land people on your sites?

    Hard to tell these days with Google changing so rapidly and not providing most search terms. For many, many years I was number one for “blackjack bonus” and “blackjack bonuses” and lots of other blackjack-related terms.

    You've been playing blackjack for more than 20 years. What is it about the game that you love so much? Do you prefer to play live or online?

    I like that the house advantage is so small compared to most games at the casino. I would much rather play live than online.

    Are you a card counter? Have you ever been kicked out of a casino?

    No and No.

    What traits do you look for in an affiliate manager? How about in an affiliate program?

    Owning multiple sites, it is really easy to see which affiliate managers are basically spamming the same e-mail to as many sites as they can find. I like affiliate managers who do things differently. For affiliate programs, I look for a long history of happy players and happy affiliates.

    What’s your preferred method of communication with affiliate managers? Do you like to talk on the phone, by e-mail or via Skype?

    E-mail for initial conversation and Skype to hammer out details. One great thing about both is that they automatically give me a log of everything discussed. Being ADHD, I need this desperately. I hate the phone to the point where I don’t even have a voicemail setup, so no one can even leave a message.

    What prompted you to join the GPWA? How has it helped you?

    I joined the GPWA to find out more about the industry – to find out which casinos to promote and which to avoid – straight from other affiliates. It has helped greatly with meeting other affiliates. While I might not have many posts in the forums, I have had thousands of private messages with other affiliates. Between buying and selling domains, buying and selling websites, and selling direct advertising on the GPWA, this has easily led to six figures’ worth of business I might not have otherwise conducted.

    A few years back you had some interesting things to say about content swapping. Do you still believe that trading articles is generally a good idea?

    This must have been a long time ago as I don’t recall this. It can be a good idea if you know and trust the person you are trading with. If they are trading you spun crap to put on your site it might do more harm than good. If you are just starting out it can be a great way to keep costs down.

    What do you like about the industry?

    I really enjoy interacting with all kinds of people from around the world from all walks of life.

    If you could change one thing about the industry, what would it be?

    I would get rid of the UIGEA. Before that came out the whole industry ran so much more smoothly. The U.S. government is so frustrating when it comes to online gambling. Forty-nine out of 50 states have casinos or lottery, which are legal. Some online gambling is legal, like horse racing and fantasy football, but how dare you try to play blackjack or poker online. What?!

    The UIGEA forced many great foreign companies, companies that are publicly traded and very reputable, to not accept U.S. customers. Most of the safest places with the best software to play at are now unavailable for U.S. players. NETELLER closing their doors to U.S. customers has made it very difficult to conduct business. PayPal allows gambling transactions in many countries, but not in the U.S. If either NETELLER or PayPal were available to process gambling transactions that would be a great start.

    What do your family and friends think of your work as an affiliate?

    I think they are mostly amazed and confused.

    Do you gamble online? If so, what do you play?

    Pre-UIGEA I played a lot of blackjack and poker. Since then, not much at all.

    How long do you give yourself for answering e-mail? What e-mail tips can you offer?

    Sometimes I spend all day answering e-mail if it is important. I start out the day checking my e-mail, and quickly delete/archive anything unimportant. Before I go to bed I usually check e-mail on my iPad, not to read but just to delete/archive.

    Tip: Create rules to send e-mail you need but don’t read automatically to a designated folder to help declutter your inbox.

    How do you manage your “to-do” lists? Do you use any special software to help you out?

    Poorly . . . just a pad of paper and a pencil.

    How much time do you devote to SEO and/or social networking in order to drive more traffic to your sites?

    I do zero social networking. I’m rarely on Facebook and don’t have a Twitter or LinkedIn account or any other accounts like them. I would consider most of the services I offer to be SEO related.

    What’s the most difficult thing about running your sites?

    Keeping everything organized. What with domains expiring and making sure servers are paid, seeing what advertising deals are expiring, chasing affiliate payments and making sure sites are up and running, it can be a struggle at times.

    What’s the best thing about running your sites?

    I love being able to work from wherever, setting my own hours, and the lifestyle that this has provided.

    What do you do to stay in shape – both physically and mentally?

    I like to play basketball with my kids. I also like puzzles and games; I really enjoy figuring out solutions to a problem.

    When you need to get as far away from work as possible, where do you go?

    My parents and my aunt and uncle own two cabins next to each other on a lake a few hours from my house. It is out in the middle of nowhere and so quiet and peaceful, I love it. Twenty minutes away from the cabins is a really nice casino where I have had great luck as well.

    What’s your favorite vacation spot?

    Disney World with the family. I love seeing my kids’ faces light up there. Without the family, definitely Las Vegas for all the obvious reasons.

    What’s your all-time favorite movie?

    The Usual Suspects. The movie has great storytelling, and lots of twists and turns. Just when you think you have it figured out . . . awesome ending.

    If you could invite any five people, living or dead, to dinner, who would they be?

    1. My grandpa, who died unexpectedly when I was in high school. Would love to catch up with him.

    2. My best friend, Derek, because I don’t see him enough since I moved.

    3. big fish (Ben) from the GPWA, to thank him for convincing me to become a full-time affiliate and helping me make it happen.

    4 and 5. Aaron Wall of SeoBook.com and Hayden Miyamoto of NoHatDigital.com so I could bounce some ideas off of them.

    What are three things that nobody knows about you?

    1. I have a sports card collection with well over 100,000 cards.

    2. I cannot roller-skate.

    3. I love watching "Dateline NBC – Real-Life Mysteries."

  2. The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to GPWA Dan For This Useful Post:

    Doolally (28 November 2015), ocreditor (13 November 2015), sweetbet (11 November 2015)

  3. #2
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    Great interview. It's amazing that you are managing 300+ sites. I have enough trouble managing a handful of sites
    Sweet Bet - Reviews of reputable online casinos, poker sites, sportsbooks & bingo halls
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  5. #3
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    Miles_FTA is offline Former AM
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    Great interview. Dave your a Legend

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    Great interview

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