I have noticed that followers seem to trickle in the more I write (thus the more volume is out there for discovery). I think I started out with about 250 followers, which was a direct migration of Twitter followers who also happen to be on Medium. The bulk of my followers has come since I started doing this whole one post a day for a year thing. I’m almost 150 days in, so that’s a lot of volume buildup.
I think the main thing that drives high numbers of views is sharing outside of Medium via social networks and also the greater viewership of some of the publications. Even when I had featured articles in one of Medium’s categories at the top of the feed, it didn’t boost views that much. So I agree. This place is weird all right!