interview with Tom Kuegler of Finding Tom and Post Grad Survival Guide.

This is an interview with Tom Kuegler of找到汤姆and Post Grad Survival Guide.

1. Hey, Tom. Tell us a bit about yourself and what you do.

I am a blogger and a little bit of a vlogger.

I’ve been writing on Medium since 2016. If you don’t know what Medium is, it’s basically just like Instagram for bloggers, except you post blog posts and not pictures and you can follow your favorite writers and get their stories on your homepage.


I’ve been able to make a full-time income blogging on Medium and I’ve also been able to make a full-time income selling courses about how to grow on Medium.


I also have a publication on Medium calledthe Post Grad Survival Guidewhere I try to make content that will appeal to the younger generation and people that just graduated from college.

I also have a vlog on Facebook and YouTube. On Facebook I have half a million followers, but I haven’t been vlogging lately and mostly I just make videos about my adventures in the Philippines. That’s pretty much everything.


Jeez, I think it was freelancing. I was freelancing way back in 2014 or 2015, right when I was graduating college, and I did pretty good.


I wrote for some pretty big websites like the Huffington Post, Inquisitr, who has a pretty good, decent payment system for writers. I wrote for this oil and gas website for a while. They were paying me like $50 an article to write there.

I was just a freelancer from the beginning and so I hardly ever made over $500 to $600 per week. So, freelancing was my first side hustle!




I don’t think I was so keen on reviewing certain cities or telling people what to do, or what things to eat. I was more keen on just being able to travel.

I wanted to write about what I was learning and the transformation that I was undergoing as a 20-something, and I remember I wanted to sort of have a travel blog that wasn’t really a travel blog, so my idea was to have the website called, but to my dismay somebody already had that domain name, so I had to figure out what was something else that I could make, so for me it was I decided to go with because I love Finding Nemo. That’s one of my favorite Disney movies, and so I decided to just play off of that and call it



我记得这正是我想做的事。我的WordPress Site FindingTom.com根本没有得到任何牵引力,而且我就像,“也许我应该去写下媒介,看看会发生什么。”

当我在2016年在美国的公路旅行后回到家后,我决定说,“All right, I’m going to write on Medium for one month. I’m going to write one post a day and I’m just going to see what happens.”


I was over the moon. I started my publication, the Post Grad Survival Guide, right then in 2016. It started growing. I was getting like 20 to 25 followers per day for some reason. I was just like, “Wow, I’m finally getting traction here. I’m just going to go all in on Medium.” And I did.

5. Tell us about starting The Post-Grad Survival Guide and growing it to over 40K followers.


This is easy to do on Medium. You can just call for submissions, ask writers if you can publish their story in your publication and you can sort of just poach for stories on Medium.


I remember posting one of the first posts from a Green Beret, and he was talking about all the things he learned as a Green Beret, and it was just a super interesting article.


I remember in 2018, I believe, I hired an editor to help me come on and take care of the submissions, because it was getting to be too much for me. My editor Stephen was been able to get us really focused and we started to write content about making money online, investing, personal finance, jobs, how to crush it on interviews, how to be a better worker, etc.

We went from getting maybe 50,000 to like half a million views monthly. From 2018 just up until now we’ve been averaging about that volume of views, so yeah, it’s been just an amazing thing there.

6. How do you manage your time between the 2 publications?

My editor helps me out. I needed to hire him because it would be impossible for me to grow my own personal business, my online course business, and also deal with my own sort of publication as well.

He does about two hours of work every day, just sifting through submissions, working on submissions with writers and making sure they are of the utmost quality. It’s been such a great hire for me.


The Price I Pay After a Decade of Personal Development

Life back when I was freelancing was fun but stressful.

It was very freeing in that you never know when your next client’s going to come. You never know what your next job is going to be, and you’re always doing something new, it seems. You’re always writing about something new every day because you never know what your clients need from you.


有这种freel流浪的方面ancing for me back in the day. So I wrote blogs, I was a copywriter, I handled email marketing, I handled social media marketing. I did a lot of that kind of stuff and I was mostly just a freelance writer for people.


还读:Freelancer vs Blogger vs Course Creator: Which Business Model is Right for You?

8. What was the turning point to going from a freelancer to a blogger?

I freelanced until late 2017. I started in 2015. I started blogging on Medium in late 2016, so after about a year of blogging on Medium I had about 10,000 followers on there.

I remember looking around and getting a lot of comments from people asking me, “How do you grow a Medium publication? How do you grow a Medium profile? How do you get more views on your articles? How do you write better articles?”, etc..

And I was like, “So nobody’s talking about how to use Medium? Nobody’s talking about how to grow a medium? Why don’t I make an online course about teaching people how to grow on Medium?” Since I had already done it, you know?


I got an email from this oil and gas website one day and they told me, “We’re actually shutting down the website, we’re not profitable, we’re not making any money and so the investors have decided to just pull the plug on it.”

Overnight I lost all of my freelancing revenue and I felt so sorry for myself.这是2017年10月。

After two years of freelancing and bouncing around from client to client and having people hire me and then drop me, and then I wasn’t really needed all the time, I was just like, “I’m done with freelancing, I hate freelancing, this is so annoying. I have to keep bouncing from client to client.” I was sick of that whole world.我想要一些稳定的东西,所以我决定了一晚,我将在您的在线课程中培养媒介,这是它将成为的方式。

I researched this one person called Mariah Coz. She had this website called, which was super cool, really great name, and she talked about webinars and online courses and how you could sell online courses with webinars. I remember reading her blog and she pretty much taught me the whole process from start to finish.

I implemented exactly what she said, I watched other people’s webinars, I watched Jeff Goins’ webinar to see how he sold things. And I decided to create my own webinar and sell my own course about how to grow on Medium and how to use Medium because everybody was asking me questions about it and nobody had an online course about it.


I was over the moon. I was so happy. People are actually showing up live for this thing!


9. When did you start your YouTube channel and what role does it play in your business now?


不久之后,我去了菲律宾。我呆在那里一个月,他们的文化和人民对我有很多影响了我,我开始制作关于菲律宾的视频,我的旅行。Before I knew it, I started going viral with these videos, so I had my first million view video on Facebook in late 2018.

I kept vlogging for the next couple years and made tons of videos about the Philippines and a lot of them went viral.








我在我的vlogging career中拍了很多博客课程,并将标题技巧纳入了我的Facebook上的视频。该平台迄今为止,这是我最大的增长司机。我已经在Facebook的方式比YouTube更多地去了病毒。

11. What are some elements of a viral video on YouTube?

For me, the two main things that are so important arethe headline and the thumbnail


It’s an art form in and of itself. I to edit my images and it’s super helpful. I think it’s like $7.99 per month to be able to edit images.

But I learned that if I have my face in the thumbnail, and I have this in-picture image of whatever I’m talking about, that’s good.I put that next to my face and also add words on the thumbnail that spark some controversy.


I think for one of my recent videos one of my phrases I put over top of my thumbnail was, “Wait, what?” So I just try to see what little phrases will capture people’s attention and get them to click.



每天我每天都在获得5,000名订阅者。这只是天文的增长,所以我想you have to just be patient and understand that just because a video’s not going viral on YouTube right now does not mean it will never go viral.因为去了我病毒的视频是像几个月的上传,过去的月份和月份。

12. How do you find the time, focus and creative energy to do both vlogging and blogging?




Juggling all of that stuff at one time is exceedingly difficult and so I find journaling is just this amazing thing that can help me take stock of everything that I do

I just list out in my weekly journal all of the major things that I work on. That’s vlogging and my blogging on Medium and on my website. Then I write down what I did that week, and then if any of those big projects in my life are lacking, I decide to prioritize it the following week.

13. Why Facebook and Instagram, and how did you build a big following there?

I talked a little bit about square videos on Facebook. Those have been crucial to helping me build a following there, and I think Zuckerberg made Facebook free for all Filipinos. He made the data free for them so that they can watch whatever they want on Facebook data free and they don’t have to pay for it, which is just ridiculous. It’s incredible.


I think it’s a better platform. I was a diehard YouTuber back in the day, even when I was only getting a couple hundred views per video, so I decided to take them up on the Facebook offer.

My first Facebook video that I uploaded got like 2,000 views. I couldn’t believe that and I turned from a YouTuber to a Facebooker over night. I was like, “Oh, Facebook is the place to be.”



The algorithm favors creators. The organic reach is way higher than YouTube. You could share a video on Facebook and then it goes to a lot of your followers, they can share it so it’s easier to go viral.

YouTube, it’s up to the gods of the algorithm to give you that space on the homepage, and that’s about it. But on Facebook you can get shares and you can do all that kind of stuff.


14. How do you monetize your Medium publications, and how much do you earn from them monthly?

I definitely want to give you some exact numbers here. As far as my Medium publication, I have never been able to monetize that, weirdly enough. Medium for a while was handing out contracts to big Medium publications and they’ve paid them X amount of dollars per month based on how many views they generate.





It doesn’t really matter, but at scale if you get thousands, tens of thousands, maybe even hundreds of thousands of views, you could really make a killing on Medium.


But basically, just recently, I average about $1,500 to $2,000 monthly, just to give you some hard numbers there.


My first course is called中等掌握

It’s about how to use Medium, how to grow on it, how to create Medium publications and write better headlines and just become a better writer that’s in touch with the story you want to tell.


16. How are you selling it on the back end?


Whenever they sign up for one of the webinar spots, that’s when I sell them on my course–on the webinar itself.

我在周二,周三和星期四(使用进行自动化网络研讨会插槽。I use Teachableto host a landing page and the payment system so people can land on my landing page and then pay through there.



17. What’s your absolutely favorite business activity, and your favorite way to make money online?

我爱写作。我喜欢写博客。我爱斯蒂ng down at my computer every morning for an hour or two and writing out whatever I want to write about.



18. What was your first hire and how did you know it’s time to outsource?

That was the editor of my publication The Post Grad Survival Guide. I hired Stephen in 2018 and I knew it was time because I was just getting so annoyed looking through drafts every day.


I was too busy growing my own online course business so I knew I needed to hire somebody. I hired Stephen to come on and basically just take care of that for me, and he’s done a phenomenal job helping me grow it.




I also have a virtual assistant who helps me look over messages that I get on my Facebook page, LinkedIn page and my email.

I also just recently hired someone to help me redesign the website. He’s probably going to be a long-term hire just to help me look over my website and stuff like that.


Such a great question. I love the Philippines. It’s helped me to get away from where I grew up. It’s helped me to figure out how to live on my own.


I learned a little bit of Tagalog. I could speak with some of the locals there.

I grew up in America, and there’s this whole world out there that a lot of people just don’t get out of. And for me to spend not just a couple weeks, but two years in another country, is just mind blowing.


When you go back home, it’s like everything is awkward. You don’t even know how to live there anymore, because you’ve lived in another place for so long. For me that changed who I was down to my core, and I loved how Filipinos do things. I spoke their language. I partied like them, I spoke like them, I rode in their types of transportation, and I lived how they live for two years. That was just life altering and mind altering.

I think that more Americans need to go visit other countries for longer periods of time if they can manage it.


去第三世界国家是一个非常重要的经验。The Philippines is a third world country, and while I don’t want it to be, while I hope that they can manage to claw their way out of that, I think it’s still just really important to go to get a perspective on all of the stuff that we typically complain about in America.


One time I saw a kid that was laying on the street on a cardboard box. This kid was like 11 years old. Dirty, sleeping right in the middle of the sidewalk. I couldn’t believe it. It’s a whole other world out there.

I’ve seen stray dogs get hit and die. I’ve seen a lot of crazy stuff that Filipinos have to go through, and it’s a whole different world over there that I think people need to go and witness. It’s changed me on a whole number of different levels and I am so happy that I was able to spend two years there.


I really want to grow my own blog,找到汤姆




I find my joy from writing my story and giving people an inside look into what I’ve learned in my life. If I can figure out a way to make money just by doing that, then I think I’ll be the happiest I’ve ever been.

Whether that’s writing a book one day or else, I know for a fact if I want to get there I have to build my platform outside of Medium. That’s my main thing. Growing my platform outside of Medium, both on YouTube and Facebook with my vlog, and also on my personal website.