PR and communications professionals are constantly on the lookout for new and useful services to enhance their work. Although Medium, the writing and networking platform, has been around for a few years, it has recently caught fire.
What is Medium? Cofounder Ev Williams calls it “a new place on the Internet where people share ideas and stories that are longer than 140 characters and not just for friends.” Anyone with a voice and point of view should consider posting on its well-read site. Important influencers have also used the site in interesting ways such as when Amazon wanted to rebut the now infamous “everyone cries at their desk” piece in The New York Times, it didn’t take to traditional media but to Medium to slug it out publicly.
Improve your writing by reading. Medium is the place for some of the best writing out there by journalists with whom you’re already familiar via The Atlantic, Wired or the New Yorker. Sign up to Medium and peruse and choose from several topical groupings (much like mini-magazines) and start to receive curated “Daily Digests” of cool articles, such as this story about the tech industry and gun control.
Soak up all the on-point social media and “tech tools” advice. After reading well-written essays and fact-packed news stories, read the writers who offer on-point social media and “tech tools” advice that will improve your work. This piece about the importance of “backlinks” in SEO is an excellent example and points to another great feature of the site — the stories all include the number of minutes it should take to read.
Produce your own engaging content. Start writing for yourself, or on behalf of the exec voices you represent, and see how beautifully Medium publishes. Start by checking out the Medium Responses function to comment and join a conversation that actually builds on the original post and takes the article in new directions.
Leverage “breaking news.” A study showed that Medium’s “breaking news” feature delivered top headlines quicker than any other notification platform. This is a PR dream come true. The feature assists with company and industry monitoring as well as providing “news-jacking.” Download the app — but beware it’s addictive.
Become more knowledgeable about PR. Put PR into Medium’s search engine and enroll in a “crash course” on the subject. There are case studies, strategy pieces and provocative critiques to learn from. Ideally, this will spur comments and new dialogues as well as the opportunity to re-purpose existing content such as this post we recently did on PR and pitching podcasts.
Here’s a great place to start on Medium, and it’s just a quick four-minute read.