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Content marketing case studies you can actually use. Updated daily.

123 case studies in 17 categories. Last updated Tuesday, Oct 17th.

Introducing Detailed Pro: Please Don’t Share This

Proud. Nervous. Excited.

Today I’m excited to announce that something I’ve been working on for a very long time is now available: Detailed Pro.

When I say “Please don’t share this”, that isn’t some kind of marketing gimmick.

I’m not running ads, sending emails, writing tweets or updating Facebook about today’s news. This is an exclusive opening just for people who already come to Detailed.com ‘naturally’.

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The Ingenious Way This Bicycle eCom Store Got People Talking

Picking Up Links in Tough Industries

I’ll be honest: Today’s case study isn’t going to blow you away with how many links or social shares it picked up.

In fact, the example I’m about to share with you “only” picked up 67 links from 10 different websites, which is possibly the least successful piece of content marketing I’ve ever shared here.

That said, those 60 links were from some powerful and highly-relevant sites, and it’s never easy to get links to internal pages on an eCommerce store like they did.

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How to Combine This Idea + Your Niche to Pick Up Thousands of Backlinks

4,370 Backlinks / 1,450 Referring Domains

As you’ve likely seen time and time again with my updates here at Detailed, some of the most successful content marketing case studies are incredibly simple.

That rule rings true with todays example from Canva.com, who provide a tool that gives you suggestions on which fonts go well with any other font that you input.

If you don’t trust your own creative eye when it comes to web design, Canva help make sure your site has a clean look throughout.

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How to Copy the Success of The Best Article I Read Last Month

Hundreds of Tweets from 'Influencers'

The post is so new that I don’t have any impressive statistics to share, but I’ve saw a number of ‘big names’ posting this on Twitter (as did I) that I had to share it here.

The article is so good that I’m going to link to it right now so you don’t have to click that little grey external link icon if you so please.

It’s fair to say that the premise is simple, but not fair to say that writing the post was easy. Author, Will Hoekenga, put together an in-depth post highlighting the copy and design lessons you can learn from 13 years of Basecamp.com homepages.

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How to Attract 14,000 Facebook Shares By Comparing Two Similarly Priced Products

14,000 Facebook Shares / 136 Referring Domains

Links are great. They help with Google rankings, send traffic from the site that links to you and make you feel good about something that you’ve written.

They’re even better when they suddenly help you to start ranking for an additional 2,800 keywords in Google, for a single article.

That’s what happened this year when SLR Lounge decided to compare a $4K iMac versus a $4K custom made PC.

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This New Weather Side-Project Has Already Picked up 25,000 Backlinks

24,400 Backlinks / 370 Referring Domains

Who knew that a new website about raining would be drowning in link juice?

Terrible opening sentences aside, the side project I’m about to share with you is almost like a weather version of DownforEveryoneorJustMe.com which lets you know if a website is online or your internet is playing up.

IsItRaining.In let’s you – you guessed it – check any city to see if it’s currently raining in that area. Simply put a forward slash and type in a city name and you’ll get results for a particular area.

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It Seems Like Every Member of the ‘Blawg 100’ Is Happy to Link Back

161,000 Backlinks / 560 Referring Domains

I’ve been doing quite a lot of link building in the law / legal niches lately and there’s one thing I keep seeing over and over again: Websites linking back to ABA Journals list of the top 100 bloggers in the space.

If you click on the Awards category in the sidebar of this site you won’t be surprised to see how lucrative hosting awards for your industry can be, but this example is perhaps the most successful I’ve seen yet.

While “just” 560 websites link to this internal page on the ABAJournal.com website, because those sites link from every page of their site, it has amassed over 160,000 backlinks.

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I Purchased an $80 Plugin Today Because of Content Marketing

It's Easy to Forget Why We Do This

While I put in a lot of hours to make sure that Detailed updates highlight side projects, blog posts and tools that picked up a lot of traffic and links, it’s easy to forget what they’re all for: To make more sales.

There’s no point in getting tens of thousands of people to your website (like getting on the homepage of Reddit) if they aren’t actually going to purchase, subscribe, promote or at least bookmark your content for future reference.

Today I headed over to the Wordfence blog – a company I trust to secure my WordPress websites – for advice on managing WordPress backups.

As Detailed Pro begins to grow, I wanted to make sure we have multiple levels of backups (it’s not installed on the same place as Detailed.com) as our data is becoming increasingly valuable by the day.

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This Seasonal School Website Absolutely Dominated Google for Three Months

3.5 Million Visitors in a Single Month

Though I like looking into the SEO success of other websites, I don’t want to reveal too much about today’s success story.

I don’t think it’s fair if they suddenly get a lot of competition from my post, so instead don’t see this as a site to copy, but view it as proof that there’s a lot of traffic to be had if you focus on a seasonal topic.

School-supply-list.com went from practically no traffic to over 3 million visitors per month recently, no doubt helped by the number of children going back to school and not knowing what items to bring with them.

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Five ____: Fill in the Blank for an Incredible Side Project Idea

1,620 Referring Domains

It’s funny. I have over 300 content marketing case studies in my spreadsheet to write about here at Detailed, and then I find a cool site on Twitter and it instantly jumps to the front of my publishing queue.

That’s what happened today when my friend Rob shared FiveBooks.com, a site with the simple aim of sharing the five best books on (literally) any topic.

The site has picked up 117,000 links from over fifteen hundred websites, and has faired well on social media with the homepage picking up 4,000 Facebook likes as well.

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The Powerful Reason This Site Has 741,000 Links From Just 494 Sites

741,000 Backlinks / 1,700 Facebook Shares

When I started out online, before there was Facebook and Twitter, I would browse message boards (forums) on topics I was interested in.

Message boards back then allowed people to include images and links in the signature of your posts – and many still do – that people would use to share details on their life.

One popular thing people would add to their forum signatures were countdowns, to certain milestones in life.

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This Free and Open Website Reaches 6 Million Monthly Visitors

6 Million Monthly Visitors / 4.5 Million Backlinks

I honestly think that if you came across the website I’m about to share with you randomly, you wouldn’t stick around for long.

I don’t mean to be harsh, but it looks a bit plain and simple, and the kind of website that torrents PDF’s of books so you don’t have to purchase them.

Because I found them when looking through SimilarWeb data, I was able to learn they reach six million monthly visitors before clicking away from the site, which encouraged me to dig deeper.

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This Job Board Concept Can Be Applied to Anything (And It’s Really Smart)

51 Referring Domains in Two Weeks

If you click on the ‘Job Board’ category in the Detailed sidebar, you’ll find an example of a job board which has picked up thousands of links.

While today’s example has “only” picked up 231 links, it did launch this month, which makes those low numbers actually quite impressive.

Limbo does something quite different to any other job board I’ve seen: People looking for a job share their skills and dream position anonymously, and then let employers pitch them.

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The Financial Website That’s Calculating a Killing

64,000 Backlinks / 1,300 Referring Domains

Few things in life are as reliable as a calculator. As long as you input the correct information, you can always rely on them for the right answer.

Wouldn’t it be great if writing viral content was as easy?

Somebody who definitely has a winning formula is “PK” from Don’t Quit Your Day Job.

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