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Turn Hobby Into Money - The Story of Cards Against Humanity

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turn hobby into moneyDo you have a passionate hobby? You may be able to turn hobby into money, after you read this story of “Cards Against Humanity”.

Are you one of those “horrible people” who are addictive to the party game “?

Named as “the party game for horrible people”,  Cards Against Humanity and its  expansion packs have been among the top best selling toys and games in Amazon for a long time. The outlandish card game makes jokes of politically incorrect and other ridiculous topics. It has become an extremely popular game at campuses,  at bars and  adult parties.

How to Play Cards Against Humanity:

It is very simple to play the game:

Each round, one player with a black card asking a question, or a blank to be filled in. Other players with white cards answer the question with the funniest white card they each have. The black card holder decides who is the winner for the round. The cards can be mixed and matched for the most ridiculous and hilarious responses.

turn hobby into money - cards against humanity

The Story of Turning Hobby into Money

Behind the game is a Chicago-based company owned by eight game-creators in their mid-20s.  They created this game accidentally during their break time from college in 2009. Playing card games and inventing new card games were hobbies of these youngsters back then. When the winter break was over, each of them brought the newly invented funny and hilarious cards game back to their own campuses.  Each creator quickly summoned more and more college kids into the game. The popularity of the game soon ballooned and spilled from campuses to bars and beloved by more and more adults who love horrible jokes.

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Offer it for free

To let more people play this cards game and have fun time gathering, the eight game-creators set up a website dedicated for this game, the website offers a free PDF downloadable file to let others print out their own decks. The cost of printing is around $10. This helps to fuel the fever of the card game even more. The file has been reportedly downloaded over 1.5 million times so far.
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Sell physical cards on Amazon

However, there were always people asking to buy physical cards from them. So in 2011, after a successful fundraising through Kickstarter, they contracted with a cards maker to produce their first 2000 box of cards. Their “Cards Against Humanity” first appeared on Amazon in June for $25. It was sold out in one month.  They knew they had something big in the making. The sales volume has been accelerated afterwards, the same 2000 cards shipment got sold out in one week, then in 3 days, then within 24 hours…..
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Let Resellers scalp the card game

Their then cards manufacturer in Shenzhen couldn’t produce enough cards in time to catch up with the ever growing demand from Amazon buyers, the reseller market started to boom, with one deck of card sold for up to $100, quadrupling the Amazon price.  This scarcity phenomenon acted like a loud buzz to create more consumer frenzy for this card game.
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All free marketing

A creative hobby has turned these octet into eight millionaires in a short time. Aside from the successful business of Cards Against Humanity, all the eight founders still have their own day jobs.

“It’s a hobby for all of us,”One of the founder said during an interview.

They haven’t spent a dime on marketing so far. The free PDF download is a good promotion machine. After the accidental Scarcity payoff,  they once launched a “pay as you like” sales campaign to allow consumers to buy with whatever price they like and donated all the proceeds to a charity. This campaign alone helped to get their game and brand to reach thousands and thousands of more new fans.

As a group of fun-loving people, the eight founders had a weird Black Friday sales campaign last year. Against the mainstream of chopping price for more sales, they priced the original cards deck to $30 instead of $25,  and announced ” Today Only! Pay $5 More. ” This funny sales tactic surprisingly didn’t hinder their cards sale on the day, however understandably, generated more news coverage on this unconventional business idea.
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Do you wish to own a deck?

You can download a free PDF file of the cards and find a printing company to print out yourself. The estimated cost will be around $10. The physical cards are sold and fulfilled by Amazon. The original box of 460 white cards and 90 Black cards is priced $25.  There are more expansion packs available on Amazon for sale.  The group of twenties are still working on designing more expansions and introducing more niche topics jokes.
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No topic is off limits

However, there is one rule: “It has to be funny,” Temkin, one of the founder said. “We’ll continue writing new expansion packs for the game as long as people think they’re funny.”

The success of Cards Against Humanity is a great example of turning hobby into money, a lot of luck, a lot of creativity, full of inspiration. This story could be the seed to nurture more “making money dreams” come true. 


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**Disclosure of Material Connection:
Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally or believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials.”

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