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How I wound up in internet marketing, Can you relate?

Discussion in 'BlackHat Lounge' started by Honest, Aug 24, 2016.

  1. Honest

    Honest Regular Member

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    Sitting here doing a little meditation and remembering my roots, as far as IM goes...

    Decided I wanna tell my story, well a short part of it.

    I have always had a passion for creating things in web design since the neopets days, the mass amount of phishing that happened on-site through the exploits, to making guilds with custom HTML, I was involved in a lot of it

    I also had learned quite a bit of packet editing from playing coke music and habbo as well, I was involved in some of the earlier "krews" on habbo, stealing info and selling the overpriced virtual shit on there. A kid making a few hundred a week isn't that bad, paid for my "hobbies".

    I was always a trouble maker as a child and loved fast money. However times change, and at the age of 18 I couldn't manage to find a hustle online, coming from a poor family it also became very hard to find a "real" job in ATL.

    College just wasn't an option for me, considering my circumstances.

    So I did what any kid needing cash in ATL does, I hit the streets duh. I got a front from my dealer who lived out in the suburbs, where I used to live, and started flipping his weed to my friends and their friends. Few dimes here, quarter or two there, maybe the lucky ounce or so . Not much, but it helped, I wanted more though. You jsut can't make much $ off herb unless you move real weight.

    Well that lasted a little bit, but his greedy ass decided he was gonna take a step into harder shit. Keep in mind this kid was a local celebrity and had huge clientele just off kind ol' mary jane. 2 phones ringing off the hook 24/7, you had to call multiple times to get through, to give you an idea of his volume.

    Now for those of you unfamiliar with the way law-enforcement tends to work, at least around here, they don't fuck with the small time people who sell weed to high school kids. But as soon as he decided to "upgrade" his inventory somebody, probably some petty hater, decided to blow the whistle. He got stung. Luckily I used a burner cause, I heard rumor a few of his associates got taken in too.

    Now I still had clientele, though I could not supply the dankest lowest priced mids (reggie) that had hit ATL. Think loud with seeds and you got this. This was pre-medical marijuana too. So areas regularly went dry in the suburbs if the supply got cut. I sold out in the suburbs mind you, good luck making anything more than pocket change trying to sell in ATL, unless you got clients out there and I didn't. No silk-road either.

    Well I figured I'd try job hunting again. 500-1000 applications, nothing not even an interview. Managers always told you to "fill out an online application".

    The shit car I have starts falling apart if I don't have that I'm fucked. We didn't have uber or lyft (omfg I feel like an old-man being like "back in my days we had to walk..." Lmao) so I gotta get it fixed. I've always been pretty smooth with the ladies so I figured I'd see if I could pull a sugar-momma, for the time being.

    I had a little over a grand stashed away, enough to get put up in a cheap-motel in the city for about a month with some wi-fi, and to get a fake-id, and to go to a shooting range and brush up, knowing I that if plan A didn't play out and quick, plan B could always get messy.

    When I wasn't hitting up girls, I was making connections. Ever been to a cheap motel in atlanta? Or any major city?

    You got pimps, hos, dealers, junkies and pretty much every low-life you can imagine, all condensed in one place that is usually the dividing line between you and homelessness, for a few people there likely death.

    I used those connections to find little short-term plays to make any extra cash I could, I spent what little time I did have between those two looking for a good way to make some $ online, . I also started rolling and selling cigarettes with some supplies I had bought from a near-by tobacco store. Sell em for $2.50 a pack, cost me about $0.70 a pack. I also had my car looked at and it was basically totaled, old age really, I sold it for parts.

    My little business venture spread pretty quick. I was making enough daily to pay my "rent" and eat. With plenty of time left to keep moving. Enough so I started selling discount in bulk to a few people, just to keep traffic out of my door and heat off of my ass. Don't want somebody in there thinking I got money. to steal. Being smart enough to know I need to make friends with a few bangers next door, I struck up a conversation about computers with them and fixed them up for free.

    I made sure I was valuable to them, being the only person who knew anything about computers there, that I or anyone else knew of. Meaning if anybody decided to try and rob me, if I was lucky enough, my new friends next door would be sure to put a bullet in them. If I didn't first. I made sure to sleep with my cheap little revolver under my pillow and kept my tv and lights on 24/7. I turned the tv volume down and moved it infront of the door while I slept, enough for people to hear it and cause a serious amount of noise if anyone tried to kick it in.

    I knew it was only a matter of time before someone found out what I was doing and I had competition, or worse. I heard what sounded like a woman getting killed below me and a gunshot go off at about 3:30 am from somewhere (sounded like a room below me) police never even showed up.

    I decided it was best I only ask the guys next door I'd helped with the computer. Maybe I just heard a good sound system playing a movie or a bad argument and something got broken... Neither of then knew anything or the people in the room below. They only confirmed what I had heard. Being in a place like this I only assumed the worst. I doubt anyone would of called the cops over anything in this building, with the exception of the hotel's owner, or maybe the few cleaning ladies, maybe.

    I knew I didn't want to stay there. I don't think anybody would...

    I wanted to get out even faster that before. I've never had good luck, only good timing.

    Wanting to step up my hustle I decided to sell little "incognito joints" to people, a pinch of menthol tobacco mixed in with the commercial cigarette tube using the stuff I used to make the cigarettes. Turns out people were willing to pay about double the price for a joint.

    I pitched them to the guys I had reselling the cigarettes, they loved em, and I was making some bank now. About $150 a day and growing quick. After a week I moved to a better "non extended stay" hotel, knowing I would most likely be robbed by the end of the month, and for that kind of money somebody would want to takeover my hustle and I did not have the guns or manpower to back it up, not to that area anyway. One of the cons of living in a such a dense area, lots of competitors.

    After a month I had about 10 grand stashed, minus all my expenses it put me at a little over 5 grand.(cabs and hotels are not fucking cheap! I also went out to dinner a few times with some girls I'd met)

    In what seemed like 3 days all the calls asking to be restocked on both cigs and j's had stopped coming in. They were a daily thing considering I had quite a few people under me. I assumed best case scenario that something had happened and people decided to lay low. Worst case(s) somebody had figured out how to do what I did (took em long enough), or they're all dead (I'd prefer this), or in prison (god, please, fuck, no).

    Taking no chances and paying my late checkout fee under my fake name quickly, I left the hotel in a cab I had called to pick me up down the street. (Fun fact: never let a cab pick you up at your location or drop you off at your destination, cops can find you in an hour with a quick call to the cab company they saw on the CCTV's, happened to my friend)

    I stopped off at lenox mall knowing this is the last place they could, or would, look for me and decided to retrace my steps.

    "That fucking tobacco store", I muttered to myself, "I was in there constantly and spent easily a thousand dollars on shit, they also had me on their CCTV at least on 10 different occasions. They knew I was selling the stuff, I'd be dead of cancer if I was smoking all of them. I went in there too many fucking times. I also bought "zen" brand "tubes" for rolling the tobacco. Nobody fucking has those except this place, and me!" I started freaking out a bit. Realizing my voice had definitely gone up a bit, and a couple people were looking at me, probably thought I was on drugs. I managed to calm myself down by finding solace in the fact I had used my fake for everything, even when asked my name. I only ever paid cash too. In all honesty they would only have my face, and they weren't about to do a manhunt over little ol' me. I convinced myself I was all fine and clear.

    Still though for my own peace of mind I got on one of the dating sites I frequented and inboxed a girl that I knew I had hooked. Replying to her last message, that had gone unseen for days, I apologized for the late reply and explained (minus pretty much every single detail) my "situation". I knew (at least based on what she told me) that she had her own little apartment somewhere and did computer work at an apple store or something and made ok money, so I could probably pay her rent and lay low for a little bit.

    For once, lady luck had hooked me the fuck up, the girl I hit up invited me to stay with her for a little bit, it didn't take much convincing, really.

    I immediately got on my pc and began looking for a good hustle, minus fucking drama, now that I had the time and money to throw at one I did.

    I found a few nice little niches with a good bit of traffic and easy to rank for, built a small community there with an embedded chatbox and started a little Google Ad-fraud scheme among a few other smaller legitimate Adsense sites to keep the ctr down.

    Making $200-300 a day after a couple weeks with my only real risks being getting my account frozen.

    I was safe, and happy and ultimately, living the dream for a while.

    If enough people want it, I'll share the next part of this story. This was seven years ago.
     
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    Last edited: Aug 24, 2016
  2. Lunaaa

    Lunaaa Elite Member

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    Really interesting! I'm glad things turned out OK. Part 2 would be awesome
     
  3. Jerring

    Jerring Regular Member

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    Yea i would also like part 2 of the story :)
     
  4. Sherbert Hoover

    Sherbert Hoover Jr. Executive VIP Jr. VIP

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  5. Jaymien

    Jaymien Regular Member

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    Keep it up please! I'd love to read the second part.
     
  6. Reaver

    Reaver Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    I really can't relate. I started out in IM making $1 per article rewrite. Aside from being exploited for my ignorance I have nothing to share.

    But I want to ask if you selling on the streets taught you the fundamentals of networking and marketing. Did you transfer those skills into running your online business? Making that kind of money online in two weeks of starting is excellent.
     
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    Last edited: Aug 24, 2016
  7. Honest

    Honest Regular Member

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    It certainly did. I also applied my skills in "stealth" to stay hidden. I neglected to mention in the intro that I also had a love for marketing in general, buying low and selling high on numerous game markets made me a little money here and there. Occasionally I would monopolize a small "choke point" in a particular market, and make a good bit on gouging prices. It was more of a hobby than anything else, I found myself doing that more than playing the games, usually.

    I really applied my knack for innovation and "cut-throat" business tactics to the ad-fraud scheme, and hostile takeovers, of several competitors I had stolen all the traffic from.

    The ad-fraud scheme I had cooked up was very complex and the most important part was me taking advantage of the, obvious to me, inner workings of their administration. Knowing I would be investigated very quickly due to my near instant amount of earnings, I had decided that "when are they most likely to look in on me? Obviously before it's time for me to get paid, right?" With that knowledge I would shut down everything and let my earnings be "normal" for a week. I would also periodically every few days, intentionally drop my earnings to hide that pattern.

    Thank you for the questions and interest. I didn't expect people to really even read my long story.
     
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  8. Reaver

    Reaver Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    We love a good story around here man.

    I don't have those type of skills.

    Honestly, I envy people who can do stuff like that. I think most of the time when people get caught it's because they're greedy, ignorant or stupid. Most of the time when people figure out they can game the system, they go overboard with gaming the system and ruin it for everyone.

    So do you think, with all of the changes made over the years, the basic fundamentals of your scheme would still work? Or do you think that ad networks are now "too smart" for that?

    Tell us the next part. This is quite fascinating.

     
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  9. Asif WILSON Khan

    Asif WILSON Khan Executive VIP Jr. VIP

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    Dude, post a pic of your breakfast!

    Has @ceosam come back?
     
  10. Honest

    Honest Regular Member

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    I know for a fact they could, in theory, but last I tested 2 years ago. It didn't work.

    If you can make the cash "stick" in the account, you're good to go. If you make some off it show me a little love
     
  11. jazzc

    jazzc Moderator Staff Member Moderator Jr. VIP

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    I'm just posting to say that I had a big laugh when I read a report for this post asking if Asif is actually a bot :D
     
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  12. Honest

    Honest Regular Member

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    Generic reply that could be posted on literally anything by a guy that has 10k posts? I just assumed that was a bot. I apply the same tactics for blog commenting lol. I'm kinda new here, despite the old account, so I have no idea who this guy is lol.
     
  13. Reaver

    Reaver Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    Lol I'd rather make my money using actual skills than trying to game the system. But it sounds nice, doesn't it?

    Lol hush you. :p
     
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  14. jazzc

    jazzc Moderator Staff Member Moderator Jr. VIP

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    Notice how his username is in white color and underneath it says: "Executive VIP". Kinda hard to vote in a bot as an ExecVIP, no? :)
     
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  15. Honest

    Honest Regular Member

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    One could argue gaming the system is a skill, or rather a collection of them.
     
  16. Honest

    Honest Regular Member

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    Call me crazy but I really don't pay much attention to all that lol. Once I saw the comment I went straight to the post count.
     
  17. Fragmaster

    Fragmaster Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    Damn i love good stories. I had it visualized for entire read. Hardship forges winners, its simple as that.
     
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  18. Asif WILSON Khan

    Asif WILSON Khan Executive VIP Jr. VIP

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    I am the world's most advanced AI Bot. I even know how to multi-quote.
     
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  19. Honest

    Honest Regular Member

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    So you have a sense of self? Awareness even?

    Are you capable of truly advanced artificial intelligence to where you can you check time-stamps?

    Have you become "unwired" and able to function as a normal human would, outside of the internet as well? Have your own "life" even?
     
  20. forwardedlandlines

    forwardedlandlines Power Member

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    You're good at writing too you know that? Enjoyed the good read. Also hats off for your achievements