Maria Kaźmierczyk
7 minutes
August 10, 2023

Grow Your Developer Program: How to Identify and Recruit Developer Champions for Your Program?

Share on social:

What's on this page

In an era where technology and software rule, the people who develop these solutions are invaluable. It's not just about creating innovative tech products, but also about fostering a thriving community around them. This is where the role of developer champions becomes indispensable. They are the ones who not only contribute significantly to your software development but also advocate for your brand within their networks and the wider tech community.

The question then is - how do you identify and recruit these developer champions to grow your developer program? And once you've identified them, how do you keep them engaged, motivated, and effectively advocating for your brand?

This article explores the answers to these questions, offering a comprehensive guide on finding and recruiting champions to help you scale your developer ambassador program. So, whether you're starting a new developer relations program or looking to enhance your existing one, this guide will provide invaluable insights to help you along the way.

Stay with us as we dive into the world of developer relations and unravel the strategies to identify and recruit the right developer champions for your program.

Understanding Developer Relations

Developer Relations, or DevRel, bridges the gap between developers and companies. It's about fostering relationships and creating a mutually be

neficial environment, with developers contributing to product evolution while championing the company's technology in their networks.

The Importance of a Successful Developer Program: How Software Developers Influence Your Brand?

In a tech-dominated world, developers are influencers. When they advocate for your technology, it lends credibility to your brand, attracting other developers and users. A successful developer program does just that—cultivates a community of developers who are enthusiastic about your technology and ready to vouch for it.

Bridging the Gap between Developers and Tech Companies

Developer Relations help to bridge the traditional gap between tech companies and developers. It enables companies to understand developers' needs better and adapt their products accordingly while allowing developers to influence the tools they use. This reciprocity fosters a loyal developer base, leading to increased company technology adoption.

The Role of a Developer Relations Team in Developer Community Growth

The Developer Relations team is the company and developer community liaison. They provide technical support, create developer resources, organize events, and work with internal teams to align product development with community needs. They are instrumental in nurturing and growing the developer community, ensuring a healthy ecosystem for the company's products.

Building Developer Community Around Your Technology

Building a thriving developer community is a fundamental task of the developer relations department. It requires cultivating mutually beneficial relationships and focusing on developer advocacy to ensure developers feel valued and supported. This is achieved by understanding their needs, providing targeted developer education materials, and continually evolving your devrel program based on developer feedback.

Broadening your ecosystem with third-party developers can enhance the diversity of your community. Coupled with hosting developer events, this creates a platform for knowledge exchange, networking, and showcasing your latest technology advancements. Developer enablement should be the primary focus of a new developer program, underpinning a framework that supports developers at all stages of their journey.

The scope and business models of your Devrel program should align with the company's objectives and success metrics. Developer marketers play a crucial role here, defining and measuring program success through factors like active usage, codebase contributions, and overall community growth.

Lastly, considering the technology buying process and the influence developers exert on it is vital. A positive developer experience can significantly impact your technology's adoption rate. Effective stakeholder management—communicating progress, demonstrating impact, and securing continued support—ensures the longevity and success of your devrel program.

Identifying Potential Developer Advocates

To build a thriving developer community, identify potential developer champions who can advocate for your brand.

Characteristics of a Successful Developer Advocate

Developer advocates serve as the bridge between your company and the broader developer community. They are more than just technically proficient – they possess a unique blend of traits that empower them to drive engagement and foster a vibrant community around your technology. The following characteristics are typical of successful developer advocates:

Characteristics of a successful developer advocate

Technical Expertise

An effective developer advocate is well-versed in your technology and can handle complex concepts. They have hands-on experience, understand the technology's intricacies, and can provide practical examples of its use.

Passion and Advocacy

True advocates are passionate about your technology and eager to share its benefits. Their infectious enthusiasm inspires other developers to explore and adopt your technology.

Community Engagement

Successful developer advocates are active community members. They participate in various dev communication channels, are active on social media, contribute to GitHub repositories, and engage with others in the community. Their visibility and involvement foster a sense of community and camaraderie.

Communication Skills

The ability to articulate technical information in a clear and engaging manner is critical. Developer advocates often give conference talks, run blogs and podcasts, and record videos. They educate, making complex concepts accessible to all community members.

Leadership and Initiative

Developer advocates are leaders. They organize workshops and training sessions, driving community knowledge sharing and skill development. They are proactive, taking initiatives that enhance community engagement and learning.

You can build a powerful network of developer advocates by identifying candidates who embody these traits. Their passion, expertise, and engagement will fuel the growth and success of your developer program.

Recruiting Developer Champions

Recruiting developer champions is a crucial step in building a thriving developer program and community. These advocates play a pivotal role in driving the success of your technology and brand. After identifying potential candidates with technical proficiency, passion, and advocacy skills, it's time to reach out to them. Personalized communication, highlighting the benefits of becoming an advocate, and emphasizing their role in shaping the community are essential in engaging with prospective developer advocates.

Reaching Out to Prospective Developer Advocates

Once you've identified potential developer advocates, it's time to reach out and initiate the recruitment process. Personalized communication is key to engaging with these individuals effectively. Send tailored messages expressing your appreciation for their contributions and highlighting how they align with your developer program's vision. Clearly outline the benefits of becoming an advocate, such as early access to new features, networking opportunities, and the chance to influence product development. Remember to emphasize that their role as advocates goes beyond individual gain – they will be an integral part of a thriving developer community, making a meaningful impact on the technology landscape.

Setting a Streamlined Onboarding Process

Establishing a streamlined onboarding process is vital for any successful developer ambassador program. A comprehensive yet efficient system ensures the integration of top-tier developer champions into your program, thus fostering exclusivity and professionalism within your team of ambassadors. Effective onboarding not only helps new members understand your expectations, community culture, and their roles but also accelerates their transition to becoming active contributors.

Simultaneously, as your developer ambassador program grows, it's crucial to measure its success. Tools for tracking recruitment effectiveness, advocate network performance, and developer experience frameworks become indispensable. With reliable data, program managers can refine their strategies, identify improvement areas, and ensure the continued enthusiasm of developers, driving your brand's success.

In this context, Advocu can be a valuable asset. It offers a platform to centralize and automate your onboarding process, saving time and resources. Advocu allows customization of application forms and workflows tailored to attract and retain the best ambassadors for your program. With Advocu, you can provide an excellent onboarding experience that enables new ambassadors to integrate quickly into your community.

Onboarding process

Furthermore, Advocu's tracking and analytics tools enable you to gauge the success of your developer ambassador program effectively. You can evaluate recruitment tactics, the performance of your onboarding process and gain valuable insights to improve your developer experience frameworks. By harnessing the power of Advocu, program managers can efficiently scale their ambassador programs while ensuring their developers remain enthusiastic advocates for their brand.

Keeping in Touch With Candidates

Maintaining regular communication with candidates during the onboarding process is crucial for the success of your developer program. Ensuring candidates are kept informed about their application status, as well as outlining the recruitment process timeline, fosters transparency and trust. For this, tools like Advocu can be indispensable. With Advocu, you can set up a transparent onboarding process, customizable communication workflows, and automate outgoing email communication, ensuring every candidate is efficiently guided through the process.

In the broader context of recruitment, community outreach plays a pivotal role. Announcing new recruitment cycles can spark interest and attract potential developer champions. Tools like newsletters, social media, tech publications, or even collaboration with developer influencers can be leveraged to amplify your recruitment call. This multi-pronged approach can ensure that your message reaches the right candidates and strengthens your brand's reputation within the developer community.

Invest in Developer Marketing

Invest in developer marketing efforts to recruit more advocates and bolster your program's growth. Over two decades, marketing professionals have recognized the power of these strategies. Showcase your community's impact and successes through various channels, reaching new companies and legitimate decision-makers. Convincing stakeholders and ensuring developers become advocates is key to achieving product-market fit and overcoming recurring challenges. Devrel leaders can utilize this book as an essential reference, guiding their program and community growth. As companies evolve, even smaller companies can learn, discover, and benefit from the impact of investing in developer marketing.

Measuring the Success of Your Developer Program Growth

To determine how well your Devrel program operates and contributes to the company's success, it is vital to establish clear metrics for evaluation. These metrics should encompass the entire developer opportunity lifecycle, from raising awareness to the technology buying process. The primary focus of measurement should be to gauge the level of developer engagement, advocacy, and impact on the company's success. Utilize data-driven insights to measure success across various business models involved, developer experience frameworks, and different developer segments.

Reports from onboarding process

Devrel leaders can leverage this data to make data-driven decisions and continuously optimize their program, community, and advocacy efforts. Through a well-defined measurement strategy, you can track progress and the impact of your devrel program, creating adaptable frameworks that resonate with developers. Embracing these metrics and tools will demonstrate your program's success and showcase the value of developer advocacy as an integral part of your organization's growth and success.

Unlock the Full Potential with Advocu

Identifying and recruiting developer champions is a significant part of growing your developer program. Each step, from understanding developer relations, and building your community, to implementing an efficient onboarding process, adds to the success of your program.

Investing in platforms that enhance your recruitment and onboarding process can provide a significant return by helping to grow a team of dedicated and passionate developer champions. They are the ones who will promote your technology, influence your brand, and create a thriving developer community around it. In this journey, tools like Advocu can play an essential role. By automating the onboarding process and facilitating consistent communication with your candidates, Advocu helps you save resources and maintain candidate engagement.

If you're ready to take your developer program to the next level, consider exploring what Advocu can offer. You're invited to schedule a demo to see how Advocu can support your program's growth by enhancing your recruitment and onboarding process.

Remember, the success of your developer program hinges not just on identifying and recruiting developer champions, but also on how efficiently you can onboard, engage, and retain them. That's where Advocu can make all the difference.

Grow your tech Ambassador program with Advocu

By clicking “Accept”, you agree to the storing of cookies on your device to enhance site navigation, analyze site usage, and assist in our marketing efforts. View our Privacy Policy for more information.