Medium vs Wordpress
Where should you post and why?
The brilliance of Medium
Medium is the self publishing platform built by the Twitter founders, ‘a beautiful place for reading and writing’ says Ev Williams. It’s brilliance for writers lies in the ease of publishing, where the words you write appear on the screen in the same manner they will be read. For Medium readers, the source of joy starts with the beautiful interface. Content is organised by collections that make it easy to discover, browse and consume content. It solves two problems Wordpress writers will be familiar with:
1. Writing without distraction - Medium doesn’t require any backend login or preview to view what your next article will look like in its final form. There’s no barrier to entry or ‘left brain’ technical friction once you’re writing.
2. Getting your content seen - Medium is a digital content destination in itself, reducing the need for your content to be found via social funnels or search engines. You can write just for the sake of it.
A third perhaps intangible effect, was a feeling that any writing contribution must blend in with the great content already available on Medium. Subconsciously, I felt a higher minimum standard is required.
Writing on Wordpress
Most writers that call Wordpress home, do so because it allows them total control over all aspects of the content visually and reader syndication. Readers have a reason to keep coming back to your specific site and often do so habitually when new articles are shared via social funnels or search engines. I’m writing this on ByWord for publishing to Wordpress. Then I’ll republish on Medium and cross link (more on this later). Wordpress has two key advantages over Medium:
1. Helps me build my own audience around my own personal brand. Every ry@n page displays branding alongside the messaging.
2. Wordpress is home for my readers and potential clients. It’s the destination for social and search funnels.
The full creative control also extends to search optimisation such as permalink URL’s, categories and Google+ authorship. If your purpose for writing also has a desired business outcome attached, these search attributes can’t be overlooked.
Cross Posting to both Wordpress and Medium
Why not cross post each written article to both platforms? Good question. On the face of it, you would get the benefits of Medium readers discovering your article, that would also then discover your Wordpress site. But on the flipside, your Wordpress article has now got a duplicate on Medium which Google may see and mark down as duplicate content.
What I’m trying to weigh up is whether the benefits of crossposting for audience building, at least for a certain amount of time, outweigh the downside of producing duplicate content in the eyes of Google.
For now, I’ve decided to only cross post select articles to Medium, that I feel have relevance in the Medium community (to Google be damned!). So, I think there’s four ways of benefiting from each platforms depending on your purpose or stage of writing:
1. Writer extraordinaire with 100+ articles published
You have already established your own niche community around your own Wordpress content. Search engines love you, your email list open rates are awesome and social funnels are hanging on your every word. Try writing a couple of articles on Medium as a way of reaching out to a new audience. You may even grow your own fan base.
2. Love Twitter - want to contribute in longer form
Medium is a natural progression for fans of Twitter that would like a place to share more than 140 characters while steering clear of technical hurdles to writing. You can tell your Twitter fans about content you’ve written and be up an running in a couple of hours.
3. Building your empire
A self hosted Wordpress platform is one of the best ways to go to build your personal brand or busines, because of the ecosystem support and malleability of the platform. With over 420,000 sites - you’ll be in good company. You’ll benefit from reading up on some more technical aspects, but with that mastered, comes complete flexibility. Having a inbound marketing goes hand in hand with building your brand or business.
4. Help people benefit from your experience
The great thing about Medium, is you can write once or when you feel like it. There’s no ‘consistency’ and ‘quantity’ mantra like Wordpress. One well written article that explores an opinion or experience can be magic to discover and read.
A few writing tools I like
Mac ByWord for distraction free display writing before posting to Wordpress, adding photos and hitting the publish button.
A large 27" screen and comfortable chair. Your body is your working capital - take care of it. Big screens and comfortable chairs do this.
Sonos speakers with streaming music makes the whole writing process more pleasurable. The Sonos control panel is full screen on my laptop, leaving the big screen clear for writing. I can’t write without music playing.
As with Twitter, I’m sure Medium is just getting started and that the community will determine where it goes as much as the initial vision that brought Medium to life. I’d love for you to comment on how you use Medium and Wordpress together and will update this article with your feedback.