Medium is one of the most recognized writing platforms to earn a steady income, grow a writing business, and build an audience. The good thing about the medium blogging platform is that it’s here to stay. So, expect it to be at the top of its game in the foreseeable future.
Think of Medium as a writing platform that embraces all and sundry. Whether you’re there to write or not, you can access the platform. Evan Williams started Medium in 2012.
Upon starting out with a blog, a lot of people will do something called guest posting. Some will go to a bunch of different reputable websites in their niche and pitch them a post to write as a guest blogger.
Others will put a call to action at the end of the post, and get people to sign up to their email list. That is a strategy that works. SEO always works when it comes to getting more readers and subscribers.
But in all these, none come close to having a built-in audience of millions of people. Medium is one of the top traffic-generating websites in the world.
It gives you access to people who are already looking for the kind of content you put out. With Medium, you get to put yourself out there so you can attract readers and drive a large audience.
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Why You Should Use Medium?
Although many platforms abound for you to build your writing career, it is advisable to use Medium. Here’s why:
1. Medium Has a Massive Audience Base
Medium is a platform with a built-in audience that will give you a higher chance of building a large audience. You can use your large audience for different things pertaining to your writing business.
The Medium partner program lets you make money directly from Medium. You can earn extra dollars by creating content that intrigues your readers.
And also use Medium to build your audience for a future project. You may explore Medium to build your email list and post updates to other social media platforms.
Whatever it is you want to do, Medium is one of the best places to earn massive traffic. So, if you grow your audience on Medium, you get to make some money. You also get to siphon a bit of that audience off to suit other projects.
2. Medium Opens You to Opportunities
This is another reason Medium is such an amazing and viable platform. You get opportunities if you are dedicated to your writing and consistently put out impressive content.
When you impress readers with your work, they can get in touch with you to write for them. You can get hired as a writer on the Medium platform.
Agents and people in different niches always look for writers, and Medium is one of their go-to sources. Agents comb through the talent pool at Medium to see if there’s something they can explore.
You can get tons of ghost-writing and freelance projects if you know how to display your top-notch work on Medium. Your work will expose you to lots of different opportunities.
Medium connects you to people, once you become persistent with your craft. If you post useful content on a regular basis, lots of people including writers will want to reach out to you.
So, that way you get to make friends and establish a network of mutually beneficial relationships.
On the Medium platform, what you bring to the table through your writing is what attracts people to you. If you are a like-minded person, your audience will love to build strong bonds with you.
Your initiative thought process, and personality gives the potential audience a peek. It’s an attractive thing when people see you demonstrate your knowledge and show your talent.
How to Start with Medium
Creating An Account
As I mentioned earlier in this piece, the Medium platform is open to everyone. Even if you’re not a member because you don’t have an account with them, you can still access the site.
But then, not having an account implies that you’re limited to some functionality on the platform. For, instance, they don’t allow you to like or comment on posts if you’re a guest user.
To sign up on Medium, the first thing you need to do is log on to Medium’s official website (medium.com).
As soon as the page loads, it welcomes you with two sign-up options. The first option is to register directly with Medium; while the second option lets you use social media to register.
It is more convenient to register using any of the social media platforms as a proxy. That way, you get an audience base on the go. If you have social media friends on the Medium platform, that’s an added advantage.
Even if you don’t use social media to register, you can always link it to the platform whenever you want. After creating your account, you can then proceed to the settings menu and update the account.
When updating your profile, try as much as you can to add a face to your profile by uploading your picture. That way, people get to take you seriously and connect with you.
Some Terms Associated with the Medium Platform
Think of Medium as a community where people come together to interact and share things. It is similar to the likes of Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.
But in this case, Medium is for writers. In terms of functionalities and how users interact with one another, the Medium platform threw in some initiatives.
Here are some terms associated with the platform:
- Publications – On Medium, publications refer to a compilation of stories. Anyone can make these publications. When you make a publication, you are eligible to add authors to it. You can also edit and post stories that your authors submit. As an author of a publication, you can choose new authors if you want
- Tags function like the typical hashtags you have on Twitter. For each publication you make, you are allowed to add at least three tags to your story. Choosing a tag shows you stories of the same category with that tag and also suggests other tags you may like
- Recommend – This is similar to the ‘like’ function that other platforms use. It has a ‘heart’ symbol which is green around the edges but turns fully green when you hit the symbol. If you’re reading a story that you like, you can recommend the story by hitting the heart symbol
- Share – You can share stories on social media platforms (Twitter & Facebook). To share a story, hit the icon you see that takes the form of a small arrow protruding from a box
- Bookmark – You can bookmark a story within the Medium platform for later use. The platform features a bookmark page that contains the stories
- Write Responses – Interacting with the Medium community is centered on writing responses. On the Medium platform, the responses you give reflect both on your profile and under the stories as well
- Text highlight – When you highlight a portion of text, you get four options prompting you on what to do with the text. The platform notifies the author of the story when you highlight a portion of it.
1. Speech bubble icon that lets you respond to the portion of the story you’re highlighting
2. Pencil icon that highlights the texts you select in green
3. Bird icon that lets you capture the text you’re highlighting as a screenshot
4. Padlock icon that lets you contact the author of the story privately
Mistakes That Can Lead to Account Suspension on Medium
If you’re new to Medium, you might just know it as a blog. It’s a great place to publish your work for a fantastic audience to see. But what makes Medium different from other blogs is something they call “curation”.
Curation is when a curator looks at your work on Medium, gets impressed with it, and decides to distribute it. When a curator puts your work out there, you:
- receive more audience
- get more recommendations
- And even earn some money.
In this section, we shall have a look at the term “curation jail”, and also how to avoid letting this problem ensnaring you as a beginner. A curation jail is simply a term that refers to when Medium stops looking at your work to curate.
This in turn has its adverse effects. It starves you of the audience, which is detrimental to your growth on the platform.
Normally, there are tons of people on the platform. These people always look to write and get the curators to put their content out there. This means the curators on the Medium team have a lot of work to do.
They have to filter all these pieces of content.
Here are three mistakes you have to avoid so your content doesn’t get blacklisted by curation:
1. Importing old stories from blogs – Medium features an importation tool and there’s nothing wrong with it really. But the problem is that when stories are too old, Medium automatically disqualifies them without even looking through them.
No matter how well you write your stories, as long as they’re old, they won’t stand a chance. So, endeavor to avoid making this mistake.
2. Medium is looking for creative writing and doesn’t permit blatant advertising of your website or product through your content.
3. Be careful with formatting – Sometimes, Medium can get fussy about the way they like their stories to look. The website is beautiful and without ads. Medium provides you with tools to make your stories look pretty, so you have to know what you’re looking for.
The main thing you have to know about Medium is the formatting. So, you have to get your headers right, apply images where applicable, and include lots of white spaces where necessary. Also, make sure that you credit the images you use because it’s very vital.
4. Stay away from Ads, Click baits, and Spam – What many people like about Medium is that the platform is free of ads. If you write ads in your story, include click baits and spam, the curator won’t even read your story.
Although the temptation will always be there to write click baits, I guarantee you that it doesn’t help. So, err on the side of caution and write titles that are descriptive.
1. The chief reason most writers suffer account bans or suspension on Medium is that they add affiliate links. Generally, adding affiliate links is not a problem but the actual problem is when you don’t give a disclosure.
It is advisable to always give a disclosure to your audience when you add things that are promotional. Bear in mind that whatever you disclose must be useful to your audience.
2. When airing your opinions, do so in a respectable way and not in a rash manner. You have to bear in mind that you are on a platform that contains different people. The platform brings these people from diverse cultures and ethnicity together.
So the people are bound to have different ideologies. When you form the habit of constituting a nuisance on the platform, you’ll be kicked out.
4 Alternatives to Medium
Ultimately, not everyone will like a particular thing. Overall, it’s just a matter of preference. So, if you don’t like Medium for one reason or the other, here are alternatives to Medium:
With the sites above, you can also make money. There are millions of active users on the sites. So that implies you’ll get a lot of traffic.
Medium is a central hub where people are looking for talent. It’s more efficient to use a place that aggregates a bunch of talent, than scouring the internet to look for writers.
In terms of getting pure eyes on your writing, your best bet would be to use Medium. There are different ways you can get people to view your writing. That way, you get a lot of views on your blog through Google.
Medium defines itself as a community of writers and readers who offer unique perspectives on either large or small ideas. So, if you want to start writing, or you’re looking for different writers, Medium is the place to be.
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Have you had experience with Medium, share your thoughts in the comments.