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The First Interview
This is my first ever time interviewing someone on this blog and I’m proud to say, the first ever interviewee is Leith. One of the biggest sellers on Black hat World & owner of Ghost Rank, Spook SEO & Yeeha SEO. So without further ado, here’s my interview with Leith –
You’re known most prominently on BHW for your multiple Private Network Services, how did you get into Internet Marketing & more Specifically Black hat SEO?
I actually started internet marketing about 5 years ago and it was an accident really. At that time, if you had asked me what SEO was, I would of laughed and shook my head. It wasn’t until I found out that people could make money online, using SEO and other internet marketing techniques did I embark on my journey to learn more. Like most other people, I read books, read forum posts and pretty much anything else I could do to get better. It wasn’t until a year later that I actually began implementing the techniques I’ve read. Did I start black hat SEO straight away? No, I did not.. but as time went past I started reading more into it and it did intrigue me. Till this day, I’m probably well known for my black hat approach of things but that’s not to say I don’t participate in search engine friendly strategies. A few of my personal sites and personal clients do not follow black hat practices so for those who are wondering.. yes, I’m a bit of both – although strictly speaking, I find the black hat approach more fun, interesting and of course, rewarding.
Who are you and where are you from? Give us a little Background about yourself!
My name is Leith (no medals for guessing that), and I’m originally from London, UK. I probably started actually making some money from Internet Marketing around the ages of 17/18 but it wasn’t until a year or 2 later when I really divulged into the black hat scene. There’s nothing really to say about my life apart from the fact that I love what I do and plan to do it for the foreseeable future. When I’m not ranking sites and drawing up new techniques in my laboratory, you may find me enjoying a game of football or tennis with a few friends or sweating myself out at the local gym. I wouldn’t say I’m young, but definitely not old.. so there’s still a lot of things for me to learn. The ride so far has been entertaining and a hell of a roller coaster and I hope it continues this way.
A lot of people have seen and loved your SAPE tutorials, how did you come about using SAPE and how powerful would you say it is?
It’s probably been over a year or so since I discovered and started using SAPE. I discovered it from a few friends of mine and after spending a month trying and fighting hard to get into the network, that glorious day finally arrived. I got in. The first thing to do was take a look around, make sure that you know how to use the system. The fact that the site was in russian and translators didn’t really “translate” the page well was a challenging thing but in the end, with a few clicks here and there, I was ready to try the links out. How powerful would I say it is? It can be as powerful as you want it to be and as dangerous as you want it to be. In the right hands, with the right techniques, it can do some good for you if you have a churn/burn site (a throwaway site used for quick ranking intentions). However, use it wrong and you may find yourself receiving a nice pleasant email from Google, and finding out that you’re ranking are falling off faster than the time it takes for you to rank them. In summary here, SAPE is very powerful and this is another reason why some search engines (you can guess which one!) go after it. Hit enough sites inside SAPE to create a worldwide panic attack and people stay away from SAPE forever. SAPE is powerful, if used well and correctly.
Your blog’s been down for just over a month now, any plans for it’s future?
The blog was a hobby and whilst I never made any money from it, it was a fun ride while it lasted. Unfortunately, due to other personal projects and side jobs I had to discontinue it. Will I recontinue it? I’ve got a back up saved so whenever I feel is the right time to do so, I will definitely be blogging again. I met a lot of great friends whilst I blogged and made a lot of relationships with some big names. It sucks that we can never get enough time.. so whenever I do find more time, you can find me blogging again for sure.
Search Engine Land recently stated Google had “Significantly Penalized” your Ghost Rank 2.0 Network, what’s your “reply” to this?
I’d like to start of by letting SearchEngineLand know that Ghost Rank 2.0 wasn’t a “network”. It was a service selling links from the “network”. It depends how you define the word “severely”. Knowing SearchEngineLand and their silly posts sometimes, their definition of severely is completely wrong. However, yes, a portion of our clients did get hit in this ferocious update, but that’s not to say we were the only ones. Many other services were taken down in the update too but it’s funny how sources such as SearchEngineLand don’t mention those. Whoever made the post, not naming names, needs to probably improve his research skills a little more. Apart from that, I feel good that Google got real mad at us to the extent of simply trying to take us down. It shows that we were doing something right, and something so right that Google had to launch an update to “try” take us down..
I know you’ve run a number of BHW Services
a) Which has been your favourite to run so far?
By far, my favourite to run so far has been Ghost Rank, and Il let you figure out why. It’s been a crazy few months and it has been an interesting ride the whole way. With all the recent news attention and shout outs, it makes me think deep that we actually created a service so big that it needed all this attention. Ghost Rank has been a fun ride, and whilst we’re currently working on a relaunch, it will still be remembered in my heart for a long time to come!
b) Which has been your most difficult to run so far?
Again, the answer has to be Ghost Rank. Carrying out different PR checks, deindexed domain checks, etc wasn’t easy and compared to my previous BST’s offered in the marketplaces around different forums, this service was by far the one where we spent a lot of our own time planning and analysing different links.
Do you run the BHW Services as a fulltime living or do you run other Businesses as well?
I get asked this question a lot of the times and the answer is no. I do not make my business just from the services I offer on forums. Like I said, I never keep my eggs in a single basket. I have private clients, along as other campaigns I run whether thats CPA or Affiliate Marketing.
Thanks from Leith
I want to thank everyone for taking the time to read this and thanks to Charles for the opportunity.
For those who may be wondering, yes, we’re working on something stronger. This is the game we play when we enter the black hat scene. We need to be prepared to adapt to sudden changes in the industry and that is what we’re doing right now.