As a developer blogging on Medium can be a great income stream next to building software for an employer or yourself as a freelancer. There are multiple ways to expand your income streams as a developer, but blogging is my favorite.
I started in 2016 by writing on Medium. And since 2020, I have started earning money with that. In 2,5 years, I earned ~$4000. I recently looked at that data and learned a few things by analyzing that data.
But let's start with a bit more context on how I got here blogging as a senior front-end developer so you can get the complete perspective.
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History Of My Blogging Journey
I have been blogging since 2011 and started as a professional developer in early 2010. It all started with a blog I contributed from my employer back then. It started with a seed and planted a passion for which I'm very grateful.
Later I started blogging about front-end development, my passion since the early days of Internet Explorer 7, and the border-radius we build with images and tables 🐵. Since then, I have written blog posts as a helpful guide for less obvious challenges I encounter.
In 2016 I discovered Medium. Back then, I liked the idea of a platform for content for all topics. At that time, there were a lot more developers writing on Medium. 2020 was a year full of happenings in the world, but that year, I discovered the option to earn money with my writing on Medium.
And I can tell you I don't regret any of that! But enough about my history, let's get back to the cream and butter on how I earned that $4K.
Data Of Earning $4K In 2,5 Years
Analysing the data
When analyzing the data, we see a couple of things. (If you see more exciting things, let me know 😉).
- The quantity of posts influences earnings
- Consistency is important
- In 2020, I earned more per month than now
- In 2020, 67 stories earned slightly more ($1787.96) than 39 in 2021 ($1746.60)
- The amount of followers hasn't had a lot of impacts
- In June & July, I attended a program where I had to write a minimum of 4 posts to receive a minimum of $250
What Can We Learn From The Data?
I've posted this screenshot also in the Facebook Group "Medium Writers Lounge" (Highly recommend this group to meet other great Medium writers!) and Joel Brown came up with excellent analysis. (Thanks, Joel 🙏)
You do have some interesting insights there. Looking at the image, you do appear to have better earnings around the months you more actively publish. But must have some good long tail stories which pick up regular revenue as well.
You note "consistency is important," and I believe this is a key. This looks like it even points back to why you might have earned more in 2020 than now. Based on this data above, you published over half the stories from the past two years in 2020 (63 by my count). Where as in the past 12 months, you have published just a third of that count (18 Sep '21 to Aug' 22). It would be rather interesting to see how Consistency might affect your earnings. For example, if you could publish four posts a month over a longer period. Rather than these bursts of 9 or 11 some months and 1 or none other months.
And I think Joel wrote some great learnings. Let's sum them up so that we can all learn from them.
- Consistency is critical. The amount is what you decide, but spread it over a month so you can keep posting weekly, for example.
- amount of followers is not the most important. As we can see, I earned more when I had fewer followers than I have right now.
- ~3+ stories per month will get me in a sweet spot. When I had ~40 stories published in a year, I earned on average as much as when I posted 67 stories in a year (~5+ stories per month). This is based on my data, but I wonder if that's the same for others. Because I see a lot of people post four stories per day (That's not my pace 😅)
What Are My Next Goals?
So now that I have the data on some key lessons, I have to define my goals. With some of them, I have already started (diversifying in topics).
1. Improve Consistency
In my data, you can see that I have bursts of creativity and a head-space to write. But, publishing bursts are not helping me grow my followers, viewers, and earnings. Just like receiving bursts of emails from one person 😅
With this goal, I want to improve my Consistency by publishing 1 or 2 stories a week. I can achieve that by creating a buffer in my favorite writing tool, Notion.
2. Diversify topics
When you look at my Medium profile, you can see that I write mostly web development-related stories and tutorials. I know I can diversify on that because a developer is so much more than only a technical, nerdy, or non-communicating person 🙈
For my whole life, people have known me as an optimist. I love personal development and the psychology behind human behavior. Next, I love the Side hustle, Earn Money Online thing, so I will also explore those areas.
3. Get 2K Followers (and beyond 🏆)
In the last years, I've received many followers 🙏 (Thanks for that!), but I love to inspire more people with my technical and motivational stories. I love to share good things and a positive mindset with everyone!
After reading this story, I hope you learned something new or are inspired to create something new! 🤗 If so, consider subscribing via email (scroll to the top of this page) or follow me here on Hashnode.
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