Anyone who wants to earn money on Medium needs to join the Medium Partner Program and stay within the guidelines set for writers. But why does this program exist in the first place?
Medium is a membership site that needs content to show its subscribers. Writers can earn money by writing high quality content that members want to read.
Let’s break this down a bit and consider why this is a good strategy.
Medium is a membership site
Like many other sites on the web, Medium charges a fee for full access. Non-members can read a limited number of stories per month but will then be asked to join the site as a paying member to continue reading unlimited content.
But, like many other sites on the web, Medium charges a fee for full access. Non-members can read a limited number of stories per month but will then be asked to join the site as a paying member to continue reading.
This type of subscription model is becoming more and more popular and is a viable alternative to generating revenue strictly through ads. As someone who is also a member of Medium and not just a writer, I appreciate the fact that Medium does not serve ads to its readers and instead generates revenue through memberships.
Ad revenue can be unreliable and fickle, but recurring membership fees can be a reasonably constant source of income.
Medium needs content to show subscribers
But what good is a membership site if you don’t have content for your members?
Medium understands that there needs to be a constant stream of new material for members to read and that if the pool of content gets stagnant, readers will get bored and leave the site – potentially costing Medium significant money.
But who is going to provide that content?
In order for Medium to generate enough to keep its readers happy, Medium would need to hire a full time staff of writers in nearly every niche and topic. You can imagine that this would be a massive additional expense, and in light of the recent layoffs at Medium, that doesn’t seem very likely.
Alternatively, Medium could outsource the creation of that content, paying those who write the kind of content members want to read.
And that, dear reader, is the purpose of the Medium Partner Program.
Rather than maintain a full staff of full time writers, Medium pays people like you and me to write content, and we earn more or less depending on how well our content performs. If Medium’s paid members spend more time reading our content, we earn more money. If they spend less time, we earn less.
That seems fair.
The Medium Partner Program allows Medium to create an unending stream of fresh content that will keep subscribers happy while incentivizing the writing of high quality, popular stories that attract readers.
How to join the Medium Partner program
To join the Partner Program, you’ll need to meet the program’s requirements. Once you meet the requirements, you can head over to Medium.com/earn and apply.
The application process itself takes just a minute or two, but it might take a few days to hear that you’ve been accepted or that your application has been rejected.
If you’ve been rejected, don’t stress. There’s usually a good reason that you can easily fix. Being rejected from the Medium Partner Program doesn’t mean you can never get in, as long as you can meet the requirements eventually.
Once you’re accepted into the program, you can set your stories to “metered” to put them behind the paywall and start earning money from them. It’s important to remember that even if you’re in the Partner Program, your stories won’t earn anything unless you put them behind the paywall.
Why do you have to apply to join the program?
Some may ask why it’s necessary to apply to join the Medium Partner Program in lieu of the program being completely open to anyone and everyone who has an account on the site.
I think the answer to that is pretty simple: Medium doesn’t want people posting and getting paid for junk. So there’s a review process.
If Medium were to allow anyone to post absolutely anything and earn money from it, that could quickly spiral into mayhem, and that wouldn’t be good for Medium, its writers or its members. So Medium cares very much about making sure the content that is posted on the site is high quality and offers value.
One way they do that is to ensure that those who join the partner program are people that readers trust, and a way to gauge that trust is by looking at the number of followers someone has.
Medium wants high quality content
The most important thing I want to get across here is the fact that Medium wants to fill the site with high quality content. Make sure that what you write is the type of content that deserves to be read – not low quality, junk posts that don’t really provide value.
Whatever your niche, make sure that you’re spending time writing in complete thoughts, checking your spelling and grammar and making sure that what you’re posting is great and provides value to your readers and the community as a whole.