When someone first said use Medium for content marketing, I said “which medium?” I knew little about Medium a few months back. As faith would have it, I tried Medium.
Thanks to Tony Young @tkwyoung who manages “Business Daily” – a Medium Publication which has close to 10K followers. Tony spotted one of my infographics on Entrepreneurial tips and invited me to join the publication as a contributor. A Publication in Medium is simply a collection of content on a specific topic.
I went from nobody to somebody; I am by no means an influencer 😉
What is Medium?
- A Platform to Read, Write & Blog
- Medium is NOT a Social Media Site
- A Platform where Ideas are Important, Authority is Not – Anyone can create content and submit it to any publication; whether the content gets approved in the publication is a different issue.
- Is a Network for Collaboration – you can ask Medium users to review your draft before publishing content. You can also create collaborative content in Medium.
Why Use Medium?
1 – Quality Content Wins – Medium focuses on quality content. In theory, you should find the best content for your topic regardless of how old or new a piece of content is in Medium. It is a bit like a smaller scale Google with no ads, squeeze pages or sales websites – just content.
2 – Content can Spread Like Wild Fire – The success of any online marketing platform depends on the number of engaged users and Medium certainly has this covered.
3 – New Opportunities and Connections – Like any platform increased visibility brings in new followers and potential customers.
4 – You Don’t Need a Blog to create content in Medium (Although it is better to have your own blog).
5 – Simple to Create Content – This is a big plus in Medium.
6 – No Cost to Use – Nada, free, zilch.
7 – Can Integrate Custom Domains – You can now have your own domain and setup a blog in medium for those who are interested. Again this is not for everybody and you need to understand the pros and cons.
8 – Built in Audience & Marketing with 665,000+ users. I couldn’t find an accurate stat on the number of Medium users but all Medium users by default follow @Medium & the number is growing rapidly. I did contact Medium regarding the user numbers but the answer was “unfortunately, we are not releasing any numbers publicly at this time.”
9 – Includes Statistics for each of your Stories – number of views, reads, read ratio and recommends.
How Does Medium Work?
- People Read and Recommend a Story. Viewers can also highlight text they like and suddenly your simple text content has become interactive.
- The More Recommends the Better Visibility. If someone recommends your story – all their followers will also see that story in their Medium feed and emails.
- Stories are tagged to Categories. People follow categories they are interested in and will see your content based on category selection. You can select up to 3 categories similar to Inbound.
How to Get the Best out of Medium?
Publish Detailed Posts Not Just a Summary
Medium users like to read and interact. If there is just a summary then readers won’t find much text to highlight. I used to post just summaries and tried to drive traffic to my blog but have since changed my approach. People come to Medium to read and write that’s it; so take advantage of the engaged audience.
According to Ali Mese (a Medium success story – case study below) here is a perfect trio:
- Long form content (1000 – 1500 words),
- Data-backed and
- Lessons learned.
Find Publications to Feature Your Content
Each story can only be published in one publication and your chances of success within Medium depends on finding a publication. For example – Business Daily is a publication about start-ups and business development with over 9.9K followers.
Provide Targeted Links
Simply treat Medium stories like a guest post and provide relevant links to your website within the content.
Incorporate a Punchy Headline
Check out the Top 100 posts for each month on Medium. Be bold, creative and incorporate numbered lists where possible.
Use Visual Content
You don’t have to stick to just text content in Medium; you can use visuals to grab attention and break up the text.
Include a Call to Action
Like any blog post; ask for comments, social share, visit my blog or subscribe to my newsletter in a call to action.
Case Study – Ali Mese – A Simple Story Teller
Ali is a simple story-teller and while reading his posts, I kept nodding and agreeing with him every step of the way. He has this magical ability to connect with readers with his uncomplicated approach. This is what Ali achieved with one of his Medium story:
- 6.2 Million Page Views
- 1 Million Visitors
- 144,920 Followers
- 32K email subscribers (Ali was late to collect email addresses and he still managed this feat)
Life was never the same again for Ali after this story.
Ali’s Page Views in Medium
My Take on Medium
The 1st Thing – Get a Blog (Self Hosted)
Don’t get me wrong, I am not saying start your blogging career in Medium. In fact, I am 100% in favour of having your own (self hosted) blog for brand ability and monetization options.
If you ever want to include rich media like infographics, videos or even podcasts – you need your own blog. A blog also gives you flexibility for future expansion and growth.
When you own your platform you can do anything with it – you can even sell it! (Not that I am recommending it.)
The 2nd Thing – Content Matters
Your content still matters – Medium is not going to give you hordes of visitors if your content sucks – period.
The 3rd Thing – Expectation
Don’t expect million page views or overnight success unless you are extraordinary. Use Medium to boost your content outreach and it should NOT be treated as the only marketing channel for creating exposure.
One Last Thing – Find a Publication on Medium
Your chances of creating visibility on Medium greatly depends on getting your content accepted into a publication which has reasonable following.
Wrapping Medium’s case for Content Marketing
Integrate Medium into your marketing Strategy. Like any other marketing avenue the more time and effort you put in the better the results. Quality content and a publication that can get to your destination faster like a plane ride are imperative. Enjoy the ride, hopefully it’s not just MEDIUM.