Write • Build • Scale with Sinem Günel

👻 I'm warning you

Published 7 months ago • 3 min read

Hey Reader,

I've been writing on the internet since 2018.

I've been making a living by writing online since 2020.

90% of my time at work is spent writing - mostly writing content on Medium and writing emails like this one. 📨

💰 This is how I make money:

  • I write long-form content on Medium and get paid through the Medium Partner Program. This year, I made an average of $250 per story. 👩‍💻
  • I use a call to action at the bottom of my articles to encourage readers to join my email list.
  • I run promotions for my paid offers 2–3 times per year. The rest of my time is spent creating content and growing plus nurturing my audience. 🗓

Most new writers who want to publish their work on Medium think about their earnings from the Partner Program as the end goal.

They want to make more money on the platform, which is fair - I'm all in for writers getting paid for their work. 💪🏻

But the truth is, the content you publish on platforms like Medium should be the starting point, not the final destination.

You should write on Medium to:

  • 📣 Share your message, ideas, passion, or expertise with the world.
  • 👯‍♀️ Grow an audience of readers who appreciate your work.
  • 🏅 Build credibility.
  • 🧲 Attract opportunities like clients, speaking gigs, book deals, and much more.

➕➕➕ and on top of all that, you're getting paid.

While you can pursue most of these goals on any other content publishing platform, you won't get paid.

The fact that Medium is paying you if your stories get discovered and read is quite unique, but most writers don't understand how to make the most of this opportunity.

The Medium team recently published an update clarifying what the Partner Program should be (and what it isn't) - here's a line that resonated with me:

Our recommendation is that the Partner Program is considered a supplement, rather than a replacement, to a consistent and predictable full-time income.

Expecting an external platform like Medium to make up a predictable and consistent portion of your income is naive. I'm not saying it's impossible - dozens of writers make thousands of dollars each month just by writing on Medium, but it's not necessarily a strategically smart goal to pursue.

Platforms are meant to be your starting point. 🛫

They help you figure out what you want, test your ideas, and grow your audience. In Medium's case, you're even getting paid. But you're still responsible for making sure you can consistently grow your income without being dependent on an algorithm or platform.

You want to have several income streams, independent clients, or products and services that help you make money despite algorithm updates and platform changes. ✅✅✅

The great news is, you don't have to have everything figured out right away.

You'll do it step by step:

  • 📝 Start writing to test your ideas, build momentum, and get feedback. (I'd choose Medium as my primary platform over and over because of the unique opportunity to get paid.)
  • 📨 After 1-3 months, start a newsletter to build an email list of readers who genuinely like your work.
  • 💰 6-12 months later, try different monetization options. (E.g., approach writing clients or develop your first products/services.)

Most people overcomplicate it.

They try to be on dozens of different platforms and think their audiences will grow faster if they "repurpose" their work. Sadly, that's not how it works.

The easiest way to grow your audience and income fast is to follow the rule of one:

  • 1️⃣ Write about one specific topic
  • 1️⃣ For one audience
  • 1️⃣ On one platform

If you do it right, you'll have a significant audience and a proper writing business within a year - it's no rocket science.

My newsletter is growing 30% faster thanks to recommendations 📈

I just published an in-depth guide on how to use Converkit's Creator Network to grow your audience faster on autopilot:

You'll learn:

  • 🚀 What free recommendations are and how they help creators grow their audiences (much) faster.
  • 🏆 How I got featured next to entrepreneurs and authors like Tim Ferriss, Ali Abdaal, and James Clear.
  • ✅ The exact steps you have to take to use free recommendations to grow your newsletter.

Big love from my screen to yours,

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Write • Build • Scale with Sinem Günel

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