Hello everyone! It’s Dave again bringing you what is perhaps our most special episode yet. Today we have Michael Jackness on the other side, this time as an interviewee. In these podcasts, we often hear Mike talk about his real-life experiences in running an ecommerce business. What many don’t know is that he got his start in digital marketing as an online poker affiliate back in the early 2000s. On this particular podcast, Mike shares what it was like to start this kind of business and scale it to become a highly profitable company. Aside from the highs, he’ll also delve into the lows of being in this industry and reveal the reason why he finally decided to retire.

Mike had a personal interest in poker from an early age. His grandfather and uncles gambled and he grew to enjoy it as well, particularly the thrill and skill involved in playing poker. He got started as an affiliate in early January 2004. While playing on an online poker tournament one night, he was also surfing online poker websites. While browsing within the PartyPoker website’s terms and conditions, he stumbled on the affiliate page. Essentially, the site was offering  $50 per person for people who can bring in 1-9 players a month and $70 per person for those who can bring in more than 10 people a month.

Mike thought he didn’t know enough people personally to make money out of this venture so he gave away a book through a penny auction on eBay. Around this time he reached out to PartyPoker and struck a deal that he would be paid $200 per person if he could have 200 people sign up on a monthly basis.

This was how PokerSource was born.

Mike founded this company with a cousin and a friend. In its heyday, it would reach profits in the seven-figure range. The trio would move operations to Costa Rica in 2006 but would suffer a setback shortly after due to the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act. He would retire from the industry at the end of 2010, which is great timing as the infamous Black Friday took place on April 15, 2011.

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Dave Bryant has been importing from China for over 10 years and has started numerous products brands. He sold his multi-million dollar ecommerce business in 2016 and is currently starting another ecommerce company. He’s also a former Amazon warehouse employee of one week.