[PL Part 7] $349,000 in a brown paper bag

Previously on Project Luck…

Part 1 – The blood-stained paper read…YOU DONT HAVE WHAT IT TAKES
Part 2 – How to lose 1.9 million dollars
Part 3 – And then I got a staph infection…
Part 4 – The night the zombies attacked
Part 5 – I’m flawed…obviously
Part 6 – Welcome to Sephora. How can I help you?


I stand facing the bank. Staring from across the parking lot.

“Holy crap what am I doing?” I mumble to myself.

I’m shaking like a leaf. Scared to death. I feel like I’m in a movie.

Again mumbling to myself, “No one is ever gonna believe THIS story.”

I take a deep breath and take my my first step towards the bank. I’m carrying an old brown paper bag. The kind they give you at the grocery store.

I grip it with an iron fist. The top is rolled down tight. It holds $349,000.

[sp_font family=”Sketch Rockwell” size=”28px”]In cash.[/sp_font]


12 years later…

As I sit here recalling that moment in my life I’m struck by how naive I was. I really thought I could do that forever. It was ANOTHER moment in my life when I was spending the millions in my head before it was even made.

Yeah we had just made just shy of $1.2 million in only a few days but that ended up being the peak. Craziest part it was all in CASH!

[sp_font family=”Sketch Rockwell” size=”28px”]Too bad it’s not repeatable.[/sp_font]


12 years and one week previously…

I’m surrounded by a cheering mob of people. Easily 50-75 people are gawking in amazement all around me.

The security guards are holding them back but it does little to quiet the voice in my head.

“What if these people just decided to jump me?” I thought.

On the table in front of me is almost $540,000 in casino chips. I’d just won it over about 12 hours of playing high stakes blackjack.

The Friday night crowd at the Luxor casino in Vegas is amazed at all the money on the table. It’s a mountain of $1000 and $5000 chips. The stack of trays is almost 18 inches high.

You just don’t see that every day.

Now we just have to get from the table to the cage so I can cash out. How the hell are we gonna get through that mass of people without getting robbed?


So today’s lesson is about traffic and social media (Facebook).

What the hell does high stakes blackjack and today’s lesson have to do with each other?

Let’s find out. (Lots of cool lessons here so pay attention!)

See I’ve always been one to think outside the box. In the late 90’s, through a VERY long series of circumstances, I’d come across a way to beat blackjack.

The very first program I ever wrote was teaching Excel to play blackjack on it’s own and analyze the results. It would play by itself of hours on end, millions of hands at a time.

It would look at the results, optmize the betting strategy and then run again. All automated. After many weeks of testing and tweaking it finally popped out the optimum strategy to beat blackjack.

[sp_font family=”Chunk Five” size=”28px”]WITHOUT CARD COUNTING! (Yep it’s true.)[/sp_font]


After practicing for a couple weeks in my office, my best friend and I tested it at the local casino and made $3500 in just a couple hours. Me being me, I immediately said, “Time to go to Vegas.”

I’d never even BEEN to Vegas! In fact, I’d only ever been in one casino in my life just a few days earlier. Man I was SO naive!

While this all makes for great stories, with what I know now, I would not do it again.



Back at the casino 12 years ago…

We made it to the cage safely and I get cashed out. I’m met at the private cage room by the every-so-friendly casino manager.

I’d gotten to know him pretty well over the last week or so as we played blackjack at $3,000+ per hand. That gets you noticed by the people that really run those places. Most people never even see these folks, much less talk to them.

He’d been very friendly all week but as he walked up he was not smiling. My heart dropped when he said very coldly, “Come with me please.”

I follow him into a room deep behind the cage. Three security guards are following me. It’s all getting very creepy. Like something you see in a mob movie.

He leads me into a small but nice office. He closes the doors as the security guards wait outside.

“Sit down Mr. Trainer,” he snorts. Before I can ask anything he blurts out, “We have a problem.”

Oh crap. Here it comes.

“Mr. Trainer we’ve been trying to figure out what you are doing all week. We know you aren’t card counting. We know you aren’t cheating. In fact we only think you are a ‘B’ player.”

He continues, “All we know is that you win way too consistently and we can’t beat you. Because of that, you are welcome to stay here in the penthouse as our guest as long as you like. Play any game you want.”

And then he drops the bomb…

[sp_font family=”Sketch Rockwell” size=”28px”]”We just can’t allow you to play blackjack anymore.”[/sp_font]


Bam. Done. Game over. Just like that.

It’s not repeatable. It’s not scalable. It’s not sustainable.


Back to today. With LESS EFFORT and LESS BRAINS it’s MUCH easier to just buy some traffic and send it to something that converts.

Tweak the page, the copy, the email series and then let it rip. Then scale it up and make money while you party, travel and sleep.

No casino to stop you. No limit on how much you can make. The only limit is your brain and skill set.

That’s really all there is too it. So many people try and fail though. What’s the difference?

Mindset. They approach it all wrong.

Here’s the main problem. Everyone thinks that there is such a thing as traffic “quality”. They believe there is “bad” traffic and “good” traffic.

I think that’s a load of crap. Traffic is people. If the “bad” traffic is not converting then it’s YOUR fault.

You annoyed them. You didn’t solve their burning issues. You didn’t give them a solution. You didn’t connect.

This is usually because you didn’t understand the traffic (people) you are buying.

[sp_font family=”Sketch Rockwell” size=”28px”]You didn’t do your research.[/sp_font]


Facebook traffic is a classic example. I hear people complain constantly that Facebook traffic is “horrible” and doesn’t convert.

I believe the EXACT opposite. You just have to do your research and know how to connect with the mindset of people on Facebook.

Look at Facebook like a party at your house. People at a party are there to socialize, share stories, escape everyday life, be entertained. That’s it.

Any “advertising” at that party is nothing but a disruption of that flow. So you have to treat it that way. Grab attention but make it relevant. Make it entertaining if possible.

Sort of like yelling to the crowd at your party, “Hey I have this cool new widget to show anyone that’s interested! Come in the next room with me if you are!”

Most will be annoyed but a few may come but only because it’s your party and you “targeted” them. Once there you better connect with them somehow and fast or they will just want to leave.

If you think of social media traffic (especially Facebook) this way then you will be WAY ahead and it will be much easier to make it work.

Here’s the coolest part. Banners (media buys) are damn near the same thing as that Facebook traffic! So once you can make Facebook traffic work, your campaign is WAY close to working just as well with a media buy.

That’s when you can truly scale and break the bank!

So guys, let me say this again. Traffic is easy. Don’t give it the “holy grail” mentality like so many people do.

You just buy traffic. That’s it. Everything else is the hard part. You only buy the traffic to test everything else.

There are only so many parts. You test the ad, the landing page, the offer, the email series. That’s it.

If the ad is getting a good click-thru-rate (CTR) then it’s fine. If the landing page is getting a good CTR (conversion) then it’s fine.

If you aren’t getting good CTR or conversion rate it’s because one of those elements is not working. If you have tracking in place (you always SHOULD) you can tell where it’s failing. Make a change and test it again.

You can test ALL of this stuff for just a couple hundred dollars so it’s not like it’s expensive.

It’s really freakin’ simple guys. Like Nike says, just do it.


Back at the bank 12 years ago…

I walk in the door. Armpits sweating from shot nerves (and the Vegas heat). I walk up to the teller and dump out the mound of cash onto the counter.

Her eyes widen and she flinches bit. She won’t even look at me.

She picks up the phone and says,

“Umm…can you come up here? I have a…ummm…problem.”

[sp_font family=”Sketch Rockwell” size=”28px”]Oh crap. I’m in trouble.[/sp_font]


Tomorrow I’ll finish the story and let you know what happened.

It gets WAY more interesting (and sketchy).

Tomorrow’s lesson is how to scale out traffic to really crush it. Find out why most people never do that (even with a profitable campaign) and how to solve it.

If you can make $20 a day on Facebook (and this is STUPID easy) then you can make $2000 or $20,000 a day or more by scaling.

There are roadblocks of course. You just have to know how to go over them. I’ll teach you that too.

Til tomorrow,
[sp_font family=”Sue Ellen Francisco” size=”28px”]Matt “Blackjack” Trainer[/sp_font]

P.S. I hope you are enjoying this series. I’m getting some great feedback but interestingly I’m also getting some hate mail.

Seems like I’m polarizing people. The people that are complaining are saying that what I’m teaching is too much work and not realistic for most people.

Huh? That’s so ridiculous. That’s just a limiting mindset.

I wasn’t born with this. I wasn’t born with connections. I wasn’t born wealthly (quite the opposite in fact). I wasn’t born some amazing work ethic.

Even if I WAS born with all that. Guess what, IT DOESN’T MATTER!

Remember my first email in this series when I shared this:

You don’t have it.

You don’t have that DNA.

You’ve never hustled.

You didn’t grow up with the right opportunities.

You think growing up with opportunities matters.

You don’t know how to take currently available opportunities.

You complain a lot.

You don’t see the big picture.

You might have a map, but you’re really bad with directions.

You expect handholding. “Oh if only someone would show me how…”

You think you’re entitled to rewards.

You place blame on others instead of taking control and figuring out what went wrong.

You half ass projects and say they’re failures.

You rarely, if at all, launch projects in the first place.

You don’t seek specified knowledge.

You buy a lot of information – courses, webinars, seminars, conferences – and let it all go in one ear and out the other.

You haven’t learned the very basics of doing work online.

You think “I’m not a techie” is a good excuse.

You haven’t learned the slightest bit about how a real business works.

You don’t enjoy producing content.

You’ve never studied classic marketing or sales literature.

You’ve never written an advertisement.

You’ve never made a sales call and expect to make thousands of dollars in sales overnight.

You waste a lot of time on things that don’t matter and then whine that you don’t have enough time to do the things that do.

You spend your free time thinking about doing something.

You tell anyone who will listen what you’re going to do.

You never do anything.

If you hate me now, it’s only because some of that was true (or maybe all of it).

Again, by now you should know how to make it all false.

[sp_font family=”Chunk Five” size=”28px”]YOU create your own luck.[/sp_font]

See you tomorrow.




Wow this was a long one huh!  🙂

Matt Trainer

Click Here to Leave a Comment Below

Dylan - April 17, 2012 Reply

Okay Matt, so where is this excel blackjack software today?
Why aren’t you sharing that?

It would help validate your story on this as well.
I mean, if you have something such as this excel program that “beats blackjack” that you said you created & works. That would be an outstanding share to your readers.

But more importantly, take away any doubts about this story…..well, is it just a story?

From Matt: I can assure it’s all true and verifiable. But you are asking the wrong question. You should be asking for THE SYSTEM not the spreadsheet. After 12 years of talking about it, I’m finally gonna give that away. Stay tuned.

Chris Hughes - April 17, 2012 Reply

Hey Matt,
I’m anxious to see what all happened. I’ll definitely be back to read the rest.


Chad Van Norman - April 17, 2012 Reply

Interesting. Can’t Wait!

Justin - April 17, 2012 Reply


Hey man really enjoying the email series. I can’t tell you how much I appreciate them. Just by implementing a few strategies about connection in my offline business, i can see things moving a bit different in such short time. This shit absolutely works. As for this who thinks its to much work, bottom line is your a bit lazy if you don’t think the prize is worth the fight. maybe your bank account reflects your work ethics?


Tony P. - April 17, 2012 Reply


It’s 1:30 a.m.
I’m laying in bed with my girlfriend, who’s sleeping with her head on my chest, and my arm is gently cradling her head.

And I’m reading your email series!
I should be asleep, too, but I just can’t stop reading your shit.

I love this stuff. It’s exactly what I needed to hear.
So thank you for the stories, your great style of writing, and your teaching.

I can’t wait to see the rest.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, duty calls! 😉


From Matt: Haha! Thanks for the compliments. Glad you are liking it.

Ben Hulme - April 18, 2012 Reply

This is very interesting indeed… I love stories like this… Thats one heck of a lot of money to be carrying around with you.. Looking forward to hearing more… Thanks man.

Ed - April 18, 2012 Reply


You say you wouldn’t do the blackjack thing again, but you could do it at a smaller scale (not making so much in a short amount of time), repeatedly, and at different locations, don’t you think?

It’d be less obvious than making $1.2 million in a few days lol.

From Matt: Everyone always gets caught up on the blackjack thing. Did you miss the whole message? You can MAKE MORE and DO LESS and IN LESS TIME by just buying traffic and sending it to something that converts. More coming on that.

Trevor Mauch - April 18, 2012 Reply

Epic man.

Ha, I love the open loops and tying a seemingly unrelated story to the lessons in
the stuff… love it. You’ve def got me wrapped into the whole damn story now…
damn you. 😉

Killer use of ARM 2.0 man… just re-solidifies the power of story telling in writing.
I need to up my game again.

Keep crushing it man. I’m hooked on the story now (and am learning in the process
which is really cool).

– T

From Matt: Thanks Trevor! Keep reading. More cool stuff coming. 🙂

Thomas - April 20, 2012 Reply

Dear Matt,
Thanks for sharing. They’re fun reads.

I’ve been following you, Amish and Frank Kern recently and was wondering how much of programming skills do you guys utilize to create a profitable product launch? I know Amish is a pretty skilled programmer. Not sure about Frank but I’m sure he knows some – definitely a genius copywriter though.

I wanted to ask how much coding/programming (or what age did you start) did you have to know to get started with internet marketing? Where to start?

Please, please let me know. Thank you so much.


From Matt: That’s SO FUNNY! It’s funny because Amish nor Frank are not programmers at all! Amish and I partnered in a couple projects years ago because he needed my help with programming. Same with Frank. Yeah I’m a programmer but you don’t need ANY programming skills at all. You just need to know marketing. That’s it.

Phil Squires - April 23, 2012 Reply

My background is in IT (technical), which kinda means I drank the ‘kool-aid’ of which ever corporation I was backing that year… you know software OS or hardware whizz bang router doesn’t matter

So when I ‘discovered’ Internet marketing I was blown away. Problem is I still had that mindset to be hands-on, to make myself feel smart by getting semi-good at a NEW techie skill… this is poor mentality which thankfully I have shaken off… one might even say learning to get out of my own way was humbling… you know what I mean 😉

Good News – I am learning to understand the story a little better and that this is truly how to connect. Not through own self-importance (of mastering new tech skill) but rather taking the time to try and know who you are truly intending to speak, write, blog with.

Thanks for the wicked good stories and helping connect the dots

Nicol Jolie - June 24, 2012 Reply

Matt, this is hilarious. I used to cocktail in Vegas. That’s a short skirt story to go along with the $100k I had mentioned …

I do ‘organic’ connecting on FB and it’s served me ok with this pre-launch, albeit, I find that chat box just isn’t really that effective… go figure. 😉 You talk about the mindset of FB. I’m wondering if I’m missing the ‘link’ that’s right in front of me – you said it best here:

If the “bad” traffic is not converting then it’s YOUR fault.
You annoyed them. You didn’t solve their burning issues. You didn’t give them a solution. You didn’t connect.
This is usually because you didn’t understand the traffic (people) you are buying.

Ok, so I’ve done the stupid sh*t, marketing like a mentally challenged caveman.

Would you recommend I forget about these lists I’ve accumulated from different affiliate offers and start fresh? Or is there some salvageable magic potion I can sprinkle on myself that will make my list know like and trust me, sans the short skirt and the duct tape. I know, that’s a long a** question. I figure I’d try my luck (pun intended).


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