Great summary of your efforts on Medium. Thanks for the mention. I think your strategy is very realistic — grow your own audience. I am fascinated by Medium’s ad-free environment. I think it is very conducive to writing for both beginners to established authors. There are no shortcuts to audience building.
My approach has been to build trust and engagement with fellow authors and get exposure through them. As a technologist, I am building a set of tools to make exposure and audience building a little bit easier for authors. Authors & Peeps is a great experiment so far. I have reached out to a dozen authors and so far, only one turned me down!
With Authors & Peeps, I am trying to get a dialog started for the authors and their readers to get to know each other better. I have expanded it to an Apple iTunes Podcast as well. I am considering building a YouTube channel for Medium Authors too! Authors helping the author is a model I think will work well in getting the word out! What do you think?