How long did it take you to establish a fanbase?

Pretty straightforward question. I'm curious how long it took writers here to establish a fanbase. Days? Weeks? Months? Even longer? Let's hear your stories.

I've been working on it since February. I'll get back to you once I've gotten anywhere.

fan base? i know i have a few regular readers - took about 2/3 weeks - some of whom are actually not friends or family :P does that constitute a fan base? when do you know you have one and how large should it be?? lol

i may have one, however miniscule. but i will only start working on its size when 'Riders' is further along and re-edited...

It was about a month before I started getting comments on Children of the Halo. It's hard for me to gauge how many readers I have per se, but over the past week I've had about nineteen people load the chapters up in sequential order. It's very hard for me to judge whether or not I have a fan base, but I have readers, and I get between 90-180 hits a day. That's all that's really important to me.

one thing that might facilitate fan bases would be discussion forums, extra content, and shameless advertising

speaking of the forum is there any way to integrate them into one's site?

If you're using wordpress, it's really easy to set up a page as a redirect to your forum. Check in the wordpress docs/forumstuff, I'm sure there's something.

As for fanbase, mine's been all over the place. My "best"

(non-friend of family) fan left her first comment 2 days after I posted the first chapter. I'd say it took around a month/ month-and-a-half to form the group of regular commentors that I have now. I don't memorize IPs though, so I have no idea about readers who don't comment.

I made a key mistake early one - I didn't advertise when the series was new, just a couple of links, and in some forum signatures - I didn't feel like I had the right to pimp my stuff until I had a decent backlog of chapters for people to read.

I got a decent readership through Mirrorfall - still mostly silent, as they are now, but I had the stats to prove that people were reading. However, when I killed a rather important character, a lot of people stopped reading (or rather, I lost a few of my vocal commentators). I was accused of character derailment, and even had one fan go one a diatribe about what I'd done wrong.

With Mirrorheart, I've had a decent number of comments (and some exceptionally brilliant ones as well), and the stats prove that the silent portion of my readership hasn't gone away, and may have even grown a little.

Every advertising push gets people doing archive binges, and that often turns them into regular readers.

Each chapter I have has been read hundreds of times, so I have fans...they're just quiet. >_>


>>I made a key mistake early one - I didn't advertise when the series was new, just a couple of links, and in some forum signatures - I didn't feel like I had the right to pimp my stuff until I had a decent backlog of chapters for people to read.<<

So you would recommend advertising at series launch. Buying ads, announcements in forms, etc. The works.

how does one go about doing such?

how does one go about doing such?

If you're talking about buying advertising, Project Wonderful is a good place to start. The web serials (and webcomics) that take advertising usually take Project Wonderful. Basically, you bid for a spot and you get it if your bid is the highest for a period of time.

Most Project Wonderful adboxes will have a place to click on to find a particular site's stats and current cost.

Yes, Project Wonderful is a great way to get your site exposed to readers of serials, webcomics, etc. of all types. Just don't expect a boatload of new visitors. You should be able to pick up a few fans, though.

hey, drop 10 or 15 bucks and you can expect a boatload of people. You can expect to waste a boatload of money that way too.

The best strategy I've found is very low, very long-term bids; that way, you know you're getting the best price possible whenever it's available, even if it's only for a couple of hours here or there. Some ad boxes do warrant higher bids (I highly recommend putting an ad up on Tales of MU for a few days, Exiern is a consistent pay-off as well.)

Really though, the most traffic comes from free sources, like WFG and Pages Unbound. The people who come from these types of places tend to stick around more as well.

Erm, well...two weeks? Much faster than I ever, ever expected.

I have a fan base of about a thousand readers, if Google Analytics is to be believed. About 230 registered users, a Facebook fan group with a little over 30 people, about 60 people following me on Twitter, about 60 people with me on their LJ friends list.

Secrets: Strategic advertising and clean livin', brother, clean livin'.