How can we decide if we should introduce DevRel? The desicion is actually very easy to make.
I often hear people say that they want to create a developer community for the service of their company. I also often hear people say that while it is good to make a community, they just don’t seem to go well. The problem here is most likely thinking of a community as a qualitative thing, and working it out by feel. Because of that, it becomes hard to tell if more support is needed, or to discover points which require improvement.
The 6th Techbook Fest is coterie event for people who would like to write their own technical books. We went to it as DevRel Meetup in Tokyo. This is our second time going to the event, after going to the 5th Techbook Fest last year. We would like to do a reflection and sum up on this experience.
The larger an event becomes, the more satisfying and larger the sense of accomplishment for those on the operations side. When you are able to say that you have assembled 200, or 300 people for a single event, the sight of all those people gathered in one place is surely impactful, and most likely spectacular as well. However, if you were to ask if that would absolutely be a good thing, that is not necessarily always the case. The most important thing to the developer community is passion, even more than the number of people. The number of persons and the level of passion exist in relative relation to one another, and in the case of smaller numbers of people, you end up with situations where people with a high level of passion are mingling with those with a low level of heat.
MOONGIFT has been in the business of outsourcing for DevRel, including the outsourcing of evangelists, since 2014. Over the past five years, an increasing number of companies have come to employ evangelists and advocates (hereinafter referred to simply as “evangelists”) as full-time staff, which is really exciting. Meanwhile, there are some areas of concern. Thinking in terms of such concerns, this article will present the advantages of the option of outsourcing evangelists.
It’s possible to classify events into several types. First, there are in-house events. Famous examples are Build, de:code, and AWS Summit. Of course, the event’s scale doesn’t have to be that large. Also, it may be user-driven even though named as a company service event like well-known examples such as JAWS DAYS and Backlog World.
DevRel is an abbreviation of Developer Relations, which can be described as the developer version of Public Relations. So what exactly is Public Relations? In Japan, it means publicity. Many usually understand publicity as work where one broadcasts oneself. However, Public Relations, in addition to publicity, also has the role of hearing out the public. In a sense, publicity alone omits that role.
If DevRel is looked at as a “marketing method to spread products and services targeting developers,” one might think that it cannot be used if such services are not being made. However, DevRel is something that forms good and continuous relations with developers, so it is an initiative that has a large range and can be used more.
While DevRel is one sphere of marketing, its nature is of closeness to the developers. There are many actions which would bear no consequence for someone in a different line of work yet are unthinkable for someone working with the developers. I often hear stories of those who, failing to understand this, tread unwittingly on the tiger’s tail, to say, causing great despair for the developer.
For a community to grow steadily it needs to have a large number of new participants. In offline events, event venue capacity will most determine the number of participants. For example, if 80 people gather in a venue with a capacity of only 50 people, there’s no doubt that there will be a number of people standing and sitting on the floor—not a problem when the environment allows for it, but nobody would ever want to sit on a dirty floor.
You will receive news and updates about DevRel via email.