As controversial as it was, Rolling Stone's July issue featuring an attractive photo of Boston bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev on the cover was a hit for the magazine. Adweek reports:
Rolling Stone posted a preview of the cover on Rollingstone.com on July 16 and posted the cover story “Jahar’s World" the following day. (The practice of posting cover articles online is relatively new for Rolling Stone, which has been upping its digital game lately.) Together, the stories brought a sizable traffic surge: During the week ending July 21, the website attracted 1.5 million unique U.S. visitors, according to comScore—a 41 percent increase over the previous week’s traffic. For all of July, Rollingstone.com traffic was up 20 percent year over year, with 3.6 million uniques.
Sales for that issue also jumped 102 percent over the average issue sold within the last year.