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How I Earned $422.83 in One Month With the Medium Partner Program

And how you can too

My earnings summary for October 2018

It’s been said that you make a living from 9–5 and you make a life from 5–9. Part of that life for me is now making money on Medium.

At least after my kids are in bed. My Family comes before Medium!

First, many thanks to Tom Kuegler for his email course that helped me get started, Jeff Rose, CFP® for inviting me to commit to an entire year of blogging, and the many of you who have been reading my articles.

At first, I was hesitant to start putting my income out there. Then I watched this video from Pat Flynn, one of the first bloggers to post income reports:

The tl;dr version of this video is that Pat is now earning too much money and his income reports don’t really help the little gals and guys like you and me who are just getting started. He details his plan moving forward in the video, which is pretty sweet and should still be helpful to all of us newbies.

So what does this article have to do with me sharing income reports?

I’m all about helping people, and I realized an income report might be one thing that could do that.

I also love trying new things and taking risks, which has been a large part of my success here on Medium as well. I treat this as an experiment, like a brain dump, you could say, although with a little more care and attention to what I publish.

I still remember succinctly the moment when, with a little hesitation, I asked my wife:

Do you think I should do this Partner Program thing?

And now, after just four months I make more per hour writing on Medium than I do at my full-time job.

The non-technical side of this, which consists of all the things that I was doing before Medium that led me to my little bit of success so far, is here:

I strongly encourage you to check out this article first because in it I explain what really helped me get set up to be successful as a Medium writer before I started writing.

Now, here’s the technical, Medium-related stuff of how I’ve gotten to where I am today. This will be a little quick and dirty version of what I’ve done. If you’d like more information feel free to ask and I’d love to share more.

The 5 Steps to Success on Medium

Commit to writing 3–5 articles per week for an entire year

I mentioned commitment in How to Make Money Writing Online, and I say it again here because it’s really that important.

Commit to an entire year at first. I’ve committed to 18 months.

I’m also going to again harp on the principle of consistency. You have to keep up with it. You can’t achieve any increase in earnings without a constant stream of stories. It’s just not possible.

Every dip in my views, reads, and fans has occurred on days when I have published no articles, and every time that my stats have gone up has been when I’ve been publishing consistently.

Consistency is the single most important reason for my success.

Follow and interact with people every single day

Medium is really all about the community and the relationships with the people you interact with. Find quality writers and readers to follow, and do so every day.

I follow new people nearly every day. I also enjoy reading, commenting, and especially, giving 50 claps on every article I read that I enjoy, which is most of them!

Join and publish in publications constantly

Use www.smedian.com to join publications, or you can go right to the main page of the publication that you wish to become a writer for and search for their submission guidelines.

You can even Google it if you’re having a hard time finding it.

Tom Kuegler has been a big part of helping me to get where I am today. He wrote this article that I regularly reference to see what big publication I want to get into next. I’m going for all 10 of those top 10 publications.

Use the same tags frequently to become a “top writer”

When you complete a story you can add tags. After hitting “Ready to publish?” under the “Prepare your story for readers” section you can add your tags. I suggest picking 10 that you’d regularly like to use, then alternate between all 10 of them to become a top writer.

After publishing in those tags for a while, you will get a nice little “Top Writer” section in your profile with the tags next to it.

Becoming a top writer isn’t as important but I still recommend it because of the tiny amount of work it requires to add tags each time you publish an article.

Systematize the process with a Google Sheets document

As I began writing, I became hungry to learn all I could about being successful on Medium. I still am.

I was getting so much information from webinars, other articles, and other Medium writers, that I decided to systematize it into a Google Sheets document.

I have the following tabs in the document, and I hope some of these ideas help you create your own:

Headline generator- A work in progress, but is designed to produce headlines for me. I don’t use it super often, to be honest, I usually just work on titles as I go.
Every day checklist- This has been critical for systematizing the whole process. When I get on Medium, I know exactly what I need to do because I’ve refined this to the essentials (what you see above).
Persuasion generator- Also a work in progress, and less finished than the headline generator. When it’s finished it will generate persuasive statements to use in my writing.
Quotes- Over time I’m compiling my favorite quotes to add to my articles.
Top tags- The list of my tags I would like to become a top writer in and that I regularly use when I publish articles.
Lessons learned & ideas- Just a place to throw ideas in so I can sort them out later.
Top publications- I took Tom Kuegler’s list of the top 10 publications and listed out which ones I’m in and what ideas I have to get articles into the ones I’m not.
Earnings and spendings- What I’ve earned and what I’ve spent. I just broke $1000 total!

In Summary

First, you have to commit yourself and own who you already are that makes you a great writer. I can’t overstate the importance that has had on my success.

Then publish consistently, interact with the community, write for publications, and become a top writer by using tags. Finally, systematize the entire process with a Google Spreadsheet or other document.

This is how I made $422.83 after just 4 months of writing in the Medium Partner program.

You can get there too.

And I hope you do.