I am definitely going to need some advice from you guys here, so let me start with a few - as I see them - grounding facts:
1) Marketing is important
2) Continuous marketing is very important
3) You will never truly know when you hit that critical mass
4) Your best marketing tactic may be the exact opposite of what's worked for others
Now, I've got two priorities when it comes to marketing my serial towards my singular goal of building a community around it. I'm defining success here as publicly available fanart/fanfiction. That's my personal metric and it's obviously not everyone's, but - hey. It's me.
So the priorities here are to a) direct attention to my website, and b) tap the people who like to giggle and obsess about stories enough to run away with their own ideas.
Because of these priorities, I'm trying to get involved with fanboy/fangirl heavy areas: TV Tropes, Reddit, definitely looking into Tumblr more and more, considering GoodReads again... I'm also sort of axing my ideas to publish on other serial hosting sites: no Wattpad, Jukepop, FictionPress or whatever else. I feel like it might split the readers too much to bring them together in one place later. I'm using me as an example: if I'm on THIS site, I ain't going to THAT site.
The other big consideration I've been... uh - considering is how my serial comes off to new readers. I've got 14 (HELL YEAH) parts up. That's incredibly easy to binge read. Too easy. I want the reader's first time to be, "Aw, that's all? Man, I can't wait for more. I loved everything so far!" instead of, "Wait, that's it? This was just getting started! I'll check back in ten months, I guess."
With that, I've got some questions for you folks:
a) How far into your serial did you start 'advertising'? Not just giving casual mentions to people who seemed interested, but actively piquing the interests of people who never heard of you.
b) How much did you have written before people stopped asking, "That's it?"
c) Are you publishing on other websites or keeping to your own? If not your complete story, what about it are you releasing into the wild?
d) I keep getting stuck talking to other writers. I want to talk to other fans. Blast me with any and all your advice.