So, you’re new to blogging. There is a LOT to take in.
Just have a quick count up for me: how many times have you read articles by professional bloggers saying that you MUST have your own self-hosted blog, and you MUST have a custom domain name, and you MUST have a premium theme?
I’ve read this advice a hundred times. I believed it with my heart and soul until one day I realised it was bollocks.
This the internet kids. The rules are: THERE ARE NO RULES.
Guess how many times I’ve read articles telling me not to bother and to shove it all on Medium, where it’s free and people make thousands of pounds a month.
I get the logic, but it’s flawed. Sure you own your and it’s yours, but not everyone can afford it, and not everyone is sure they even want to blog.
They just want to try it out for a bit, see if it’s a good fit. They don’t need a year’s worth of Bluehost hosting.
So if you’re new, and you’re skint or unsure about blogging, start on Medium!
It’s free, it’s easy, and there’s potential to make cash.
What’s not to like??
Medium has no barriers to entry
I know that reading Medium articles isn’t free, but you don’t have to be a member to write.
It’s all very well saying that you have to spend money to make money, but that really doesn’t help if you, I don’t know, DON’T HAVE ANY MONEY.
Imagine telling someone down to their last £50 that it’d be best spent on an investment they’ll see no return on for about six months. Oh, and they’ll have to their arse off to see any return at all.
Couldn’t be me.
But say someone’s been made redundant and have managed to pick up a few shifts in a coffee shop or something — Medium is perfect. They can get started without potentially wasting money they don’t have, and if it goes tits-up, so what? They can try something else.
Medium pays out in cash
I don’t know of any other blogging platform where you get paid every time someone reads your article. One person read one of my articles last week and I got 15p.
Adsense isn’t interested until you have thousands of pageviews, so it’s nice being about to make money (however little) straight away.
Oh, and they actually send you the money too, rather than waiting until you reach a threshold of £50 or whatever it is.
Whilst realistically it’d take a while to make decent cash on Medium, that little boost early on is great for your ego.
You can learn how to write online content
I love Wordpress, but good Lord, it’s a learning curve. I’d already given up on two blogs before I really got to grips with it.
Medium is suuuuper simple. Even adding images is easy peasy. You don’t need to worry about page speeds or DNS or anything like that.
Just write the words, as if you were writing in a Word document.
Writing for the web is different to writing essays or newspaper articles. The formatting is completely different.
We practically start every sentence on a new line.
It’s also a learning curve, as is adding in subheadings and bolded words and quotes etc etc etc.
So if you’re learning both formatting and Wordpress simultaneously, it’s…a lot. Get acquainted with formatting on Medium, and learn Wordpress on the side.
Adding images is easy
I know I mentioned this in the point above, but this would have been a gamechanger for me when I first started blogging (Medium didn’t exist then *sob*).
I’m no photographer and I have no desire to be one. My first blog was a beauty one, so I had to spend hours taking terrible, grainy photos on my phone, upload them, resize and edit them (badly) in Pic Monkey, and then add them to my blog.
I just wanted to write. I didn’t care about pictures.
(‘Why blog about beauty then, you idiot,’ I hear you hiss. I have no fucking clue.)
I made me resent blogging. It also made me believe that once I saved up for a Canon 600D (that ages me) and learned how to use manual mode, I’d be rich in a matter of weeks.
Nope, not the case. The photos were still crap, and I was £350 down.
In Medium, Unsplash is right there and waiting when you click on the magnifying glass. Just add a search term and it’ll send you some options. It even credits the photographer AUTOMATICALLY. It is the DREAM.
Great for building up a writing habit
Medium is perfect for writers that don’t really want to blog but would like to build up a writing habit.
There’s already a community of writers here, armed with thousands of productivity and time management tips, ready and willing to help.
Or, at the other end of the scale, there are people who are desperate to blog but haven’t decided on a niche. Medium a platform where you can try things, out and see how they do.
There is, of course, criticism levelled at Medium — you don’t own your blog, it could be removed at any time, ‘real’ writers have their own websites…
Whilst I own my self-hosted websites, what if all the hosting companies shut down? I’d be fucked. I haven’t a clue how to do anything remotely techy, as the angels at Siteground who have to answer my many many questions will attest (nine times out of ten they just do whatever it is for me).
The internet is young. We can’t 100% rely on our blogs, just like we can’t 100% rely on emails lists.
What we can do is build our own brand, so we’re recognisable wherever we are, and you can absolutely do that here on Medium.