How Ally McBeal paid for a two year holiday

Kevin Gibbons of SEOptimise, is running a Meme regarding the first time you made number one on Google.

Ally McBeal popped my cherry. Myself and others put together a celebrity stock market game website, it was pretty sweet, and I threw up a few celeb biogs, pics and stuff. Pretty much forgot about it. This was back in 1999 and I didn’t even know you could get into search engines then, I thought it was all very weird, it took a while to get my head around it all. I’m not really a techy, more a word geek than a gadget geek.

I was living in London at the time, a place called Notting Hill which used to be a cool, working class, riot torn, arty farty place, now it’s all trust fund brats and arsewipe media types. I thought I would take a break. I nipped over to San Diego for a month to hang with Barbara who was doing her PHD at SDSU at the time. I would go sit in the University computer room and go online checking stats and then.


Ally Mcbeal hit number one, wow, how the hell did I do that.

I was all excited, so after a month with Barb, I nipped back to London and implemented a strategy which now has a name, “the long tail”. You take a celebs name and stick bikini after it, you make another page and stick “hair” after the celebs name. Rinse and repeat. Pretty soon I had a few thousand pages, 30k uniques a day and a lot of wonga. I had a weird affiliate set up at the time which I wont go into. It was all legal, just weird. Those days it was like the Wild West.

I decided that ten years in London was enough and Notting Hill no longer had the downbeat, scruffy attraction after all the pubs had been turned into trendy wine bars and Starbucks had moved in. So I went to live in San Fransico for two years, a place called Nob hill, which of course everyone back in blighty thought hilarious. I made the mistake of not building on success and instead of nose to the grindstone I had one hell of a time. So thanks, Google and Ally.

Thanks Kevin for taking me back.

2 thoughts on “How Ally McBeal paid for a two year holiday”

  1. Nice story, Lyndon.

    Don’t you miss San Francisco? I haven’t visited but hear it’s one of the best cities in the States.

    I’m not sure about you, but I don’t think Scotland’s getting a summer this year. Makes me contemplate a switch in career, heading back to Cambodia and opening up a hostel by the beach.

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