How We Helped a So-Called “Nightmare Client” Go From Small Niche Player to 7-Figure Revenues

Impossible niche. Boring industry. Dirty competitors.

We helped a client with these challenges dominate their niche, multiply their revenue and not only survive Penguin, but grow because of it.

Here’s how we did it, and why we can do the same for you.

The Challenge

Building authority in a cutthroat niche

How do you compete against more established sites with deeper pockets who don’t play by the rules?

This was the exact situation one client found themselves in while running a comparison site in a lucrative but extremely competitive niche.

“It’s ugly. There are a small number of very big sites with extraordinarily deep pockets to spend on paid links, and seemingly a free pass from Google to do so. They play dirty and get away with it,” he explains.

“At the other end of the spectrum, you have affiliates turning out “churn and burn” spam sites who can push the limits with link building because if their site tanks, they just move on to the next one.”

At the time, the client’s site generated $4000 per month – a fraction of the opportunity available. But increasing revenue meant improving visibility, which was proving near impossible.

Worse, the niche is broadly considered “boring” and known by webmasters to be full of affiliates, so earning links naturally is incredibly difficult.

As an experienced SEO, the client knew he’d never be able to match the link building scale and velocity of his toughest competitors on his own.

And because he wanted to protect his brand, dirty tactics weren’t an option.

He needed a partner who could help him build authoritative, content-driven links at scale. Skyrocket was excited to take on the challenge.

“Funnily enough, this client describes himself as a "nightmare client" because he’s in a tough niche, knows what he’s talking about with links and has aggressive goals.

These things actually make him one of our favourite and longest-standing clients; it keeps us on our toes and pushes us to do even better work.”

The Solution

Content-first link building at scale

To help this client reach his ambitious targets with sustained success, we deployed a content outreach strategy.

With Content Outreach, there’s no manipulation, payment or force applied. There are no blog comments, web 2.0s or dangerous spam tactics involved.

Here’s how this client’s strategy rolled out:

Step 1: Discovery

No two campaigns are identical. Before a single link was built, we consulted with our client to understand his goals and the landscape of his industry.

The client’s strategy was tailored to suit.

Step 2: Site Audit

Together, we identified and prioritized the most critical pages and sections on the client’s site for driving revenue.

All of the linkbait and promotion for the campaign was tied to these pages.

Our goal was to improve visibility in these areas as quickly as possible to get the “economic engine” of the site running and provide a runway for further growth.

Step 3: Acquisition Roadmap

Often, building links directly to “money” pages is not realistic given the nature of the content on the page.

We developed a roadmap for how we would drive link equity as close to those pages as possible.

To build a highly diverse link profile and avoid any potential penalties, we left anchor text decisions up to the webmasters.

Step 4: Content Planning

We extensively researched our client’s audience, including their interests, needs and pain points.

We then identified specific topics this audience would be interested in and opportunities to exploit these topics for links.

Finally, we compiled a list of influencers and relevant sites to target in both immediate and parallel niches.

Step 5: Content Creation & Outreach

To reach the scale required, a team of 12 – 15 trained specialists was working at any time to create content, pitch it to relevant sites and personally follow up.

The Results

Drastically improved visibility and sustainable, 7-figure revenues

After just one year, the client’s revenues had multiplied tenfold, as he shared in this 2012 interview:

“Revenue in the last year has grown considerably. The site was earning $4k per month a year ago; it’s on track to earn $40k this month.

I’ve taken the #1 slot for lots of keywords I wanted to rank for, but wasn’t sure I’d be able to compete on. I’m top 3 for about 40 keywords that drive revenue that I saw no serious traffic from a year ago, and the traffic for a basket of my “money” keywords has almost tripled.”

Even more remarkable is that this 10x growth happened during a time when most sites in the niche were being hammered by the first Penguin update.

“Penguin has been positive for my business… the negative hits many competitors have taken have made room in the top of the SERPs for sites like mine.”

That success has not only been sustained, but grown steadily over five years of increasingly brutal algorithm updates.

“It varies from keyword to keyword, but suffice to say that it’s clear each month that I’m seeing a return. Rankings improve and revenue increases significantly each month.”

In 2017, the client’s site generated well in excess of $3,000,000 in revenue and continues to hold top positions for the niche’s most lucrative phrases.

Serious Scale. Proven Results.

In the past 12 months, we’ve driven over $60,000,000 worth of traffic to clients across 800+ successful campaigns.

You may know us from...

Moz Logo
Hubspot Logo
Pubcon Logo
SearchEngineWatch Logo
MarketingLand Logo
Clickz Logo
E Marketer Logo
Brighten Seo Logo