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How Medium is Murdering The Modern Blog and Why We’re All Better Off For It

Photo credit: Unsplash

On almost a daily basis, someone on Quora asks me how they can monetize their blog or better build an audience for their writing.

I almost always give the same exact answer — stop writing at your own personal domain name or WordPress site and start posting on Medium instead. I don’t know if they ever listen, I just know they should.

Before I discovered this wonderful place my writing has called home for over the last year, I too dreamed of having my own domain name where I wrote at.

I’d fantasize about how awesome it would be to have my own website I designed myself. One with all the bells and whistles, appropriately and arrogantly named after none other than myself. I’d say it out loud — www.BrianBrewington.com —and oh what a ring it had to it.

Imagine my disappointment when I discovered a photographer with my same name already owned the domain. Or when I abandoned my WordPress site for higher ground, bought a domain name anyway and spent nearly 18 hours building a basic page where I transferred all my existing posts to, manually. Only to have it receive a handful of views in its entire existence.

Then I began writing here on Medium and everything changed, almost immediately. I was able to build an audience organically through simply reading and writing. Posts received feedback from readers and other writers alike. I was quickly able to see it was the community sites like WordPress never quite figured out how to become. And not an ad to be found anywhere.

Building a worthwhile site is hard work. It’s either an investment of your time or money, if not both. If you build your site yourself, you have to be willing to invest the time it takes to do it right. When I did so, it took me almost a full day to get it anywhere close to where I wanted it. Not a full work day but an actual day. I was a mad man on a mindless mission. I was dead set on launching a site I had no idea how I was going to advertise or market other than the occasional social media share. I was doomed from the start for sure.

Though many people who go into such an endeavor are certainly better prepared, organized and most likely have a larger budget for doing so than I did — my argument is simply writing here on Medium is not only free, you can get paid to do it. You can network on a daily basis with truly wonderful people and brilliant writers with remarkable stories to tell. While I enjoy giving the powers that be at Medium a hard time occasionally, I truly do love it here.

The reality is less and less people are venturing off their social media and mass content platforms to visit an individual personal website or blog and even those who do are doing it less often. Not to mention, most people’s hope for their website is to eventually attract sponsorships and advertising money. While it’s clearly possible and profitable, many fail to bring in the amount of traffic it takes to gain advertising interest and remain unprofitable.

The time you spend building your site and trying to use it to find a way to turn a profit could have been used to build you a valuable platform here on Medium. A platform the highest paid on the stage made $14,000 on last month. Not only that but the amount of information and great stories you come across while here really is invaluable. I’ve never found this amount of literary value in one place and I’m truly grateful I gave up on the idea of trying to host my own site for the foreseeable future.

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Brian Brewington

Brian Brewington

Writing About the Human Condition, via My Thoughts, Observations, Experiences, and Opinions — Founder of Journal of Journeys and BRB INC ©