Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Working for the Weekend

Man, the weekend needs to hurry it's weekend ass up.

Fantasy football geeks out there should mosey over to Donkeypuncher's and sign up for the fantasy football league he's running on Yahoo. It's been a few years since I've been in a league but I thought what the hell and signed up. Details on his blog if you're interested.

Countdown continues to the planned poker jaunt to the Grand Casino in Coushatta, Lousiana on August 25-27. Mourn's going to be there, too, plus whatever other area degenerates show up. I'd offer a ride to any interested Austinite's but I'm leaving at some ridiculously early hour on Thursday morning, as I have to make a side venture to San Antonio on the way there, and I'll be coming back Saturday afternoon, which I imagine are pretty ackward arrangements for other folks.

Had a nice poker day on Monday, basically broke even yesterday. As the PokerTracker database swells it's pretty interesting to look at stats for other players. I've got many thousands of hands on a guy/girl that's a regular in the 15/30 games that has pretty average stats, on the surface. 17% VPIP, AF of 1.8, PFR of 9%. Except he/she has won a little over $25,000, with a BB/100 just over 5, largely due to the fact that he wins 68% of his hands that go to showdown (with a WSD of 34%). Nothing else is unusual or out of line, as far as numbers. Dude/dudette just wins all the freaking time when a hand is shown down.

On the flip side, there's some poor guy/girl I'm seeing a lot at the tables lately that's stuck about $40,000 over the last couple months. Not a good player. At all. Isn't really getting any better, either. But he/she keeps burning through chips. And yeah, I know, many people play for fun, and if you're loaded it's a small relative price to pay for entertainment. But really, how fun can that be, bleeding money? Yeah, I could be catching them on a downswing, and they could have been lucky enough to be up huge from before I started data mining, but it still boggles my mind that people can hand over sizable chunks of money like that without seemingly making any attempt to play better poker.

Maybe I'm missing something in all the talk about the madness of reciprocal link requests, but the situation seems fairly straightforward to me. If you don't want to link to something, don't link to it. Getting angry because people ask you for things, unsolicited, is a zero sum game, as you waste as much energy getting angry as they did by pinging you in the first place.

If you're worried about PageRank or getting people to read you, well, here's a secret. I'll just tell it to you, too, instead of charging $99.95 for a limited trial offer. The best way to optimize PageRank is to write about something you enjoy, and do it every day. That's it. That's all there is to it. Write about something you enjoy and write something every day. Much traffic will follow.

I've tried hawking every affiliate program imaginable online, from pills to porn to pet medication to Pampers, employing some ridiculously elaborate link strategies, scripts, and SEO techniques more black than white hat. And in the end the most successful strategy by far is the simplest. Write about something you enjoy and everything else will sort itself out.

Another interesting side effect of stepping up in limits is that I have less and less respect for the current loyalty programs of most sites, given that I'm much more aware of the rake I pay as the number gets larger and larger. I mean, really, what the hell? Most sites currently seem consumed with trawling for the lower-end traffic, as far as offering bonuses to generate traffic and accepting the inevitable churn as players hop from site to site. Yes, indeed, they still make a profit, as long as they structure the promotions correctly, and it's a pretty hefty profit overall.

But that's sort of an ass-backwards approach, as far as expending such effort attempting to retain largely un-retainable players. Especially since those accounts are lower margin, too, as compared to people playing at mid and high limits. A few sites are slowly realizing and addressing that fact (such as Party and Empire rolling out VIP and Royal Flush programs that offer halfway decent reward programs) but at some point one would think that other sites would get on the trolley. You could give away a Vegas weekend travel package for RT airfare and lodging at a decent hotel for every player at 15/30 that played 5,000 raked hands the month before and still make a buttload of money off them. Yeah, I know, the current system ain't broke, and you're already making a buttload of money as it is, but man, sites could easily lure some of the higher end/higher margin players away with minimal effort if they just tried.

Makes me want to move to Curacao and start up a poker site.


Drizztdj said...

Think they could offer me a bus ride for me to go to Davenport, Iowa as a comp while playing the $1/$2 tables? :D

the new said...

I'm not a high roller by any means, but it never made sense to me why poker sites didn't cater to the richer crowd. All these reload bonuses and first deposit bonuses are geared toward people with a bankroll of under $2000.

A lot of players with large br's spread it out over a few sites like UB, Full Tilt, and PokerStars. Why hasn't one of them decided to secure all the big players ... and by that I mean all except the pros who have signed with said sites.

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