You never know when you may have overlooked a venue that could help promote your comic. There really is something to be said about finding your audience. These days there are a lot of options online that you could try to get your comic’s name out there. Of course the odd one can be a dead end, but you shouldn’t let that discourage you. After all, you’re doing something that you love. You’re just looking to find a group of readers who will appreciate it as well.
This is our first weekly update to our Friday Artist Talk category. Here you’ll be able to find art related articles that will hopefully inspire you in various ways. Be sure to comment below to let me know what else you’d like to hear about. I have quite an extensive background from drawing and animation, to conventions and panels. I’m here to help, let me know what you’d like to read.
5. Make a Facebook page.
This one is pretty small, but you’d be surprised who may get involved. After all, if it’s your page, the people you reach first are your friends. You’re offering a free product online after all. Maybe they’d appreciate your update notifications on when a new page is up. From there, it’s something you can link to on your site or wherever your web comic is hosted. Fans can then like your page and keep up with you when they’re looking through their Facebook feed. It should be noted that Facebook has changed how pages work and unless fans have certain settings active, they may miss your updates. That however seems to be for larger pages, so in your early fan gathering stage, that shouldn’t be a problem.
4. Twitter is your friend.
Having a twitter account for your web comic may seem redundant if you have a Facebook page, but it is actually a good way to reach a different audience. By adding a variety of hashtags (preferably related ones) to your tweets, you can reach new people. Last time I was using a newer account on twitter, it did take awhile for tagged tweets to start showing up, especially if they included a link in them. So you will want this to be an ongoing project to add into your update cycle. It’s either a certain amount of time or tweets that brings you up to the status of having your tweets visible. The main reason for this it seems is to avoid spam accounts. If you have a friend with an account in good standing, or another one of your own you’ve been using for a long time, you can retweet your posts via that account.
3. Blog your updates Tumblr.
Now I don’t mean current updates, but you could always post some older content to roll out on your Tumblr blog and then link to your main site where you host your comic from there. Of course too, you can just post character art or other sorts of content to show Tumblr users what your comic is all about. Like Twitter, you can use tags on Tumblr to bring in potential newcomers to your artwork. Try different things and see what works for you. Tumblr allows for likes and reblogging, so it’s a way for newer fans to reach a broader audience for you as well.
2. Have a special promotion.
There’s nothing wrong with offering rewards to try to get new fans to visit your comic. Maybe you’ll pick a random person among people who comment on your latest comic pages. Perhaps you’ll select someone from those who have just liked your Facebook page. You could reward them with something as basic as a simple character commission of one of your characters. Of course too, be sure to be impartial when picking a winner. You don’t want to be doing stuff like choosing your friends or something like that. After all, the person you pick just may be so delighted they post your commission up all over and tell everyone how excited they are with what they’ve won. They might not, but there’s always that chance. Meanwhile the promoting itself will bring people in. You could even tier it on something like a Facebook page and claim you’ll pick a winner once you reach 100 people liking your page.
1. DeviantART is a great community.
I know, you were expecting to see TWC at the top of this list. That’s important too, and I definitely encourage you to sign up on here and ask your fans to vote daily for your comic. No one starts at the top and you’re drawing your comic anyway. May as well give it a go. Back to the topic at hand however.
You may have different experiences with DeviantART depending on who you meet up with on the site. In general though you can find a lot of fun people to interact with. By doing art trades with other creators, requests, and hosting your own gallery of artwork, you’ll create an online presence seperate from just your host alone. Your fans will in turn probably want to see what your web comic is like. Obviously you don’t want to be spamming the site. You’ll want to post works to your gallery you’re proud, or even sketches that you think fans would enjoy seeing. It’s something to build on. While you may not get instant results, it’s a community to get involved in. Through groups, fans favoriting your artwork, and communicating with other artists, you can build up quite the rep just from participating on DeviantART with the regular art stuff you’ll do anyway.
Obviously these aren’t the only ideas for promoting your web comic, and some may not work as well for you as others. However it is a good place to start if you havn’t tried much promotion on social media yet. It’s something to take your time with. You don’t want to be forceful here and be posting tons upon tons of updates in a desperate attempt to get attention. It may work to draw some new people in, but depending on the site it can drive your followers crazy that you have gained along the way.