From a strictly pot odds perspective, this would be similar to calling with a draw in that you want there to be enough money going into the pot such that the money you're putting in is at a good "price". For example, if you have a draw that is 33% to hit, you'd want a minimum of 2 callers to be OK with the bet (you're putting in 1/3 of the chips).
In practice though, you probably never know how many callers to expect which makes it different from calling with a draw where you have a better idea of how many people are staying in (at least one!) Betting a draw with the expectation of getting callers is also different from calling because when you are calling, your pot odds also include what's already in the pot. For instance, if there's 100 in the pot already and somebody bets 40 to you, your pot odds are 140:40. On the other hand, if it was checked to you and you're thinking about betting, you only consider what you're betting plus the calls you get--the 100 in the middle already doesn't help your pot odds because you already had a share of it! In other words, just checking instead of betting gives you 100:0 odds. Betting or raising to build the pot can be +$EV with enough callers but yes, it will increase your variance.
In actual games it's better to bet with draws when there is the added chance of everybody folding or if it helps to set up a bluff for a future street if you don't hit the draw--in no-limit holdem I wouldn't do it with the sole purpose of building a pot.
On the other hand, in limit holdem, I could see the following scenario where it might be good: you are on the button with the nut flush draw and there's a bet and 4 callers ahead of you--you can go ahead and raise here knowing that most of the other 5 people in the pot will probably stay in, giving you good odds on the bet. Likewise, there are actually many times in split pot games such as Omaha Hi/Lo or 7 Card Stud Hi/Lo where you might not have a made hand but have multiple draws that could possibly win both the high and low. In fact, you can sometimes be a favorite in the hand with a monster draw so it's better to be betting and raising "on the come".