I’ve been writing on Medium for over two years and have made upwards of $15K in that time with well over 500 hundred stories published. The first year was fairly low key as my poutput was low, but then I learned a few tricks and things started to happen. It’s not a fortune, but it certainly helps pay the bills!
If you’re an aspiring writer looking to earn some extra cash or establish a career in writing, then Medium could be the perfect platform for you. With its millions of users, the platform offers a unique opportunity to get your work in front of a vast audience and potentially earn money for your writing.
In this article, I’ll be discussing how to make money writing on the Medium platform. We’ll be exploring different strategies and tips to help you earn more money from your writing, whether you’re a seasoned writer or just starting.
Understanding Medium’s Payment Model
Before diving into the strategies and tips, it’s important to understand Medium’s payment model. Medium operates on a membership-based model, where readers pay a monthly subscription fee to access exclusive content on the platform. Writers are paid based on the engagement and reading time of their articles.
The more engagement and reading time your articles receive, the higher the earnings. Medium also has a Partner Program that pays writers based on the number of claps (Medium’s equivalent of a like) their articles receive. The Partner Program is open to anyone who meets the eligibility criteria.
Recent changes require a writer to collect 100 followers before they become eligible for the Partnet Program. That can seem daunting, but it’s important to keep your focus on quality. The followers will come!
Tip: You can republish your other work on Medium – maybe content from a blog or website, but be sure to include the canonical (backlink) link to the original. You’ll find that in the ‘More Settings’ when you publish your article. This will help you build your body of work.
The Importance of Reading Time
This greatly affects monetization of your stories. Reading time is one of the most important metrics on the Medium platform, and it can have a significant impact on the visibility and success of your articles. In essence, reading time measures the amount of time that readers spend reading your article. This metric is crucial because it helps Medium’s algorithm determine the quality of your article and how much it should be promoted to other readers.
The more time readers spend on your article, the higher the chances that it will be promoted by Medium’s algorithm, increasing its visibility to other users. This, in turn, can lead to more views, claps, and earnings for you as a writer.
Moreover, reading time is also an indication of how engaged your readers are with your content. If readers are spending more time reading your article, it means that they are finding it valuable and engaging, which can lead to increased following and a more dedicated readership.
Therefore, as a writer on Medium, it is important to focus on creating high-quality, engaging content that keeps readers hooked and encourages them to spend more time reading your articles. This can be achieved through the use of storytelling, providing valuable insights, and using compelling headlines and visuals to grab readers’ attention. I’ll cover these in more detail in a later post.
Now that you understand the payment model let’s dive into the tips and strategies to help you earn more money from your writing on Medium.
Choose a Niche
One of the most important things you can do as a writer on Medium is to choose a niche. A niche is a specific topic or subject that you specialize in. Writing in a niche allows you to establish yourself as an expert in that area, making it easier for readers to find and follow your work.
Writing in a niche also helps you to build a loyal following of readers who are interested in your topic. This will help you to earn more money in the long run, as your readership grows.
You will get the best results if you choose niches which you know about or are really interested in. Perhaps you work in software development, or may angling or even knitting are your hobbies.
Think about your life experiences and what you have learned along the way.
I write in several niches and there’s no reason why you shouldn’t.
Write High-Quality Articles
It goes without saying: To earn money on Medium, you need to write high-quality articles that engage and entertain your readers. Your articles should be well-researched, informative, and well-written. Make sure you proofread and edit your work before publishing it on Medium.
Writing high-quality articles will help you to attract more readers, leading to more engagement and reading time, which translates to higher earnings. It’s important to note that Medium prioritizes quality over quantity, so focus on writing high-quality articles rather than churning out low-quality content.
There is an ongoing debate about using AI to write. Medium frowns on this if you do not declare the use of AI and it could get you banned. I do occasionally use an AI assistant but when I do I always declare it.
This is the boilerplate I use:
Author’s note: The concept, structure, style and creative content in this story are all my own and I hope that is obvious to a reader. I do not employ third party writers. However, I do occasionally use an AI assistant to research and present small sections of factual content and data. All facts are checked where possible and sources quoted.
Engage with Your Readers
Engaging with your readers is essential if you want to build a loyal following on Medium. Responding to comments and messages from your readers will help you to build a relationship with them, leading to more engagement and higher earnings.
You can also ask your readers for feedback and suggestions for future articles. This will help you to understand your readers’ needs and preferences, allowing you to create content that resonates with them.
Publishing Your Article
You do not have to submit your article to a publication. You can publish straight off. But most people want to get the extra traction of a publication.
There are many niche-specific publications to which you can submit your articles for publication. That may give you extra traction but it can be frustrating dealing with editors and waiting for publication.
But one great thing about Medium is that you can set up your own publication and schedule the publication dates, giving you full control. That’s what I did – it only took half an hour.
However, without the extra set of eyes to check your work you will need to be extra careful about quality.
Promote Your Articles
Promoting your articles is essential if you want to reach a wider audience and earn more money on Medium. Share your articles on social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn to reach more people. You can also join Medium communities and groups related to your niche to connect with like-minded writers and readers.
Medium also has a built-in distribution system that promotes your articles to readers based on their interests and reading history. To increase your chances of getting your articles distributed, make sure you use relevant tags and keywords when publishing your articles.
Join the Medium Partner Program
As mentioned earlier, the Medium Partner Program pays writers based on the number of claps their articles receive and reading time with a big bias to the latter. To join the Partner Program, you need to meet the eligibility criteria, which includes having a Medium account in good standing and publishing at least one article on the platform. Plus 100 followers, but don’t give up yet!
Once you join the Partner Program, you can start earning money for your writing. Make sure you promote your articles and engage with your readers to increase the number of claps your articles receive, which will translate to higher earnings.
There are other ways to monetize your work on Medium and I’ll be covering them in a later article, so be sure to follow me.
Use a Call-to-Action (CTA)
Using a call-to-action (CTA) in your articles is an effective way to increase engagement and earn more money on Medium. A call-to-action is a phrase or sentence that encourages readers to take action, such as clapping, following, or sharing your article.
Make sure your call-to-action is clear and specific, and that it aligns with the goals of your article. For example, if your goal is to increase your followers, you can ask your readers to follow you at the end of your article.
Collaborate with Other Writers
Collaborating with other writers on Medium is a great way to reach a wider audience and earn more money. You can collaborate with other writers in your niche by co-authoring articles or guest posting on each other’s Medium accounts.
Collaborating with other writers can also help you to learn from them and improve your writing skills. Make sure you choose writers whose work you admire and who share your values and goals.
Read their stories and comment – you will learn a lot about writing styles and quality.
Making money writing on the Medium platform requires dedication, hard work, and a willingness to learn and adapt. By following the tips and strategies outlined in this article, you can increase your chances of earning more money on Medium and establish yourself as a successful writer on the platform.
Remember to choose a niche, write high-quality articles, engage with your readers, promote your articles, join the Partner Program, use a call-to-action, and collaborate with other writers. With these strategies in place, you can turn your passion for writing into a profitable career on Medium.
I have many more tips to share, so please be sure to follow me.
You can check me out at James Marinero on Medium
Get started now!