It’s happening! I’m starting a 100 day journey to finding success on Medium. Whatever happens, whether failure or success, I’ll be documenting everything I learn here in complete transparency.
This is a journey I’ve planned for years. Ever since working on Rabbut two years ago, a tool for collecting emails on Medium (now defunct), I wanted a way to share my thoughts, experiments and lessons learned from publishing on the Medium platform, but it wasn’t untilreading Groove’s 500k startup journey that I realized that that was exactly how I wanted to share my journey.
Groove’s own journey is a huge inspiration for me, and as such, I’ve decided to model my journey after it. Instead of a monetary goal however, or a trackable metric like page views or reads, I’ve decided to just focus on pushing out content first, simply because I’m not exactly sure of what to expect on this journey yet.
I’ll be documenting everything I do on this journey from hacks to experiments. If you’re interested in following along as this journey progresses, do consider signing up for the weekly newsletter here.
I started using Medium in early 2015?, and in 2016, with my friends, built the first email collection tool for Medium called Rabbut. As a product dependent on the Medium platform, it made sense to promote it there so we started re-publishing the old posts we had written 1–2x a week. Within 5 months, we were gaining 1000–3000 in monthly traffic (measured by page sessions) back to our own blog.
Medium was by far the number one source of traffic to our site. Since it was working and we knew we hadn’t reached our limit yet with the number of posts we were publishing, we decided on double down on our efforts and write even more.
Our growth continued and at the peak, before we shut down Rabbut mid-2017, we were seeing close to 20,000 in monthly page sessions.
Medium did a lot more than just drive traffic back to our blog. It gave us opportunities we couldn’t have imagined — it helped us grow the loyal audience we needed, created ad sponsorship opportunities, led to job offers, boosted our SEO (15,000+monthly organic views), and allowed us opportunities to write on Huffington Post and Fast Company.
I believe Medium still has potential and the opportunity for growth. Tiffany Sun, one of my co-founders at Rabbut, continued to write on Medium even after Rabbut shut down and this is what her growth looks like after two years:
Looking by these stats alone and judging by the success she and other writers have already found on Medium, I daresay that there’s still yet opportunities to be found from writing on Medium.
Why 100 days?
“On average, it takes more than 2 months before a new behavior becomes automatic — 66 days to be exact.”
The number 100 is really just a number. It’s long enough for me to have hopefully built a habit by then but short enough for my expectations to remain low, and thus increasing my chances of committing to the journey.
I don’t like writing. I understand the benefits but for me, it’s just a way to express my thoughts and ideas, to tell a story, a means to an end. The biggest challenge for me throughout this journey will be to write consistently for a prolonged period of time in order to even begin generating any kind of data that’s worthwhile and meaningful.
I hope this journey exceeds far beyond 100 days. I believe that 100 days is enough time for some lessons to be learned, but to really obtain the kind of data that can truly make an impact, we’ll need at a minimum a year or two.
The anticipated challenge for this 100 Days of Medium will be growth in the initial stages.
It’s been over two years since I’ve really written on Medium and despite having a 10,000+ following count on the platform, it’s going to be a struggle. Most of the Medium users who have followed me in the past are no longer active on the platform, and topics that were once easy to rank for are now highly competitive and over-saturated with posts. Further taking into account the changes Medium has made to their algorithm in the past two years, it’ll be nothing short of a steep learning curve in figuring out what will or won’t work.
There are traditional methods of marketing that can lower the learning curve. One of them is to offer free incentives (ebooks, guides, checklists, etc.) in exchange for the readers’ emails and presumably, the greater the email list we can build, the higher the engagement per post, assuming that post is featured in the weekly newsletter. To a certain point, if the email list continues to grow, there might even be a possibility in self-engineered virality.
It’s hard to determine how things will turn out at this point. Everything is at best a mere speculation; the only thing I can guarantee without a doubt is that this journey will be hard grind. How long that grind will be will boil down to how fast I’m able to adapt to Medium’s changes in the past two years.
The ultimate goal of the 100 Days of Medium journey is to be able to share what I’ve learned so others may follow along my footsteps and hopefully avoid the same mistakes I’ve made.
Sharing this journey in a way helps me as well; it holds me responsible for delivering higher quality content because I’ll know for a fact that someone else is actually reading it. Not to mention that any exposure gained from documenting this journey will have added to the success of the journey itself.
As this journey progresses, there’s one thing I’d like to ask your help with: engage with me to tell me what you’ve found helpful, ask questions, suggest topics you want me to expand on, and offer constructive criticism on how I can further improve this journey in providing even more value. Two minds are always better than one, so your help will always be appreciated.
This isn’t just my journey. It’s ours. Without you, there’d be nobody to share with in the first place. So, with that said, thank you in advance and welcome aboard.
Let’s get this journey started.
Next posts on our 100 Days of Medium journey:
- Should I Write for Money or Exposure?
- How Much Money Can You Really Make from Medium’s Partnership Program?
- Why You Should Create Your Own Medium Publication