Ryan Duffy

Head of Growth Marketing 


As Head of Growth Marketing, I oversaw a total transformation of Medium’s approach to creative and technical marketing. During my tenure, new marketing projects generated millions of dollars of ARR, significantly contributing to the company’s (projected) first year of profitability in its 12-year history. 


Head of Growth Marketing Email marketing strategy Content marketing strategy Newsletter strategy Sales and promotions Design direction Design Positioning  Copywriting Editorial  App Store optimization (ASO) Creator relations Live events  


  • Added millions of dollars of ARR directly attributable to marketing projects
  • Launched Medium’s first-ever promotional discounts leading to the most successful week in company history (as measured by total new subscribers) and number-one ranking in App Store ‘News’ category
  • Launched first winback campaigns in company history to resurrect churned subscribers and salvage abandoned carts 

  • +2000% monthly volume 
  • +1400% monthly frequency 
  • +450% email marketing reach 

  • +50% free-to-paid conversion rate 
  • -40% unsubscription rate  

App Store optimization
  • +13% app impressions  
  • +15% product page views 
  • +9% total downloads  
  • +25% conversion rate

Content marketing

Prior to assuming the role of Head of Growth Marketing, Medium‘s marketing machine was underutilized and inefficient. The business model relies on converting free users to paid subscribers, but we weren’t doing enough to demonstrate the value of the subscription product once users entered the top of the funnel, and we weren’t nurturing users across the full lifecycle. 

To win more conversions, we needed to prove our value every day by showcasing our best and most timely stories to more readers, more frequently — especially via email, one of our most powerful channels. 

My approach was guided by the belief that the quality of the content would speak for itself. If we delivered value every single time, users would be persuaded to subscribe — no heavy-handed sales tactics necessary.
I devised, launched, and tested multiple new email formats focused on delivering high-quality, human-curated stories timed to current events, written by authoritative voices, and designed to feel more premium and editorial with the goal of elevating readers’ perceived value of Medium and incentivizing them to convert.  

Substance + Urgency + Authority + Beauty = Value 
As part of this project, we scaled the volume, frequency, and reach of our non-programmatic, editorially-curated content marketing emails by orders of magnitude, reaching more users, more often with relevant, interesting, and beautifully-designed content that showcased the best of Medium.  

Subscription hygiene

Prior to stepping into the role of Head of Growth Marketing, Medium was surrending value by not practicing basic consumer subscription hygiene.

There was no machine in place to resurrect churned subscribers, salvage abandoned carts, or incentivize users to upgrade from monthly plans to higher-LTV annual plans. 

To solve for this, we built new internal tools to make it easy for our team to offer discounts to churned subscribers, abandoned carts, and other high-intent user cohorts, and to make it possible for users to upgrade from monthly to annual subscription plans with just one click. 

Select marketing projects

Newsletter strategy
App Store optimization
Medium Day live event 

Made in Los Angeles