How to Communicate With Your Developer Groups Like a Pro

Communicate Like a Pro

Let’s face it—third party developer groups are essential to your platform’s success. Operating simultaneously as builders, platform evangelists, mentors and documentarians, they’ve already become a mega force for companies like Google, Amazon, Apple—and it’s no small wonder. Companies see a clear advantage in forming a developer relations program to recruit, engage and mobilize their third party developers. A healthy third party software ecosystem enriches products and make them more robust; it helps companies penetrate new markets leaving more time for a company to focus on its core competencies.

1. Recruit: Attract & Retain Top Developers

Even with a dedicated team of developer relations professionals, recruiting and inspiring developers to build for your platform is, well—hard. For one, how do you get started? Many companies aren’t even sure who all their third party developers are, what they’re currently building, or even what languages they code in. Developer information may live across different spreadsheets, emails and private correspondences. In some cases, a developer directory may not exist at all. The challenge of recruiting and communicating with many disparate, global developer groups at scale can seem insurmountable. Mobilize is a group communication solution, so you can run your developer groups like a pro.

Registration Form – Mobilize creates greater efficiency in your workflow because the platform is essentially a partner CRM. Mobilize makes it easy to create a smart, customizable registration form you can share through existing communication channels; you can share it as a link on social media, on your website, through email, or whatever method you use recruit your developer community. As soon as your developers fill out that form, their data is enriching your database. The registration form allows you to capture relevant details about your developers from the point of applying to your community. Add custom fields to identify what kind of app they are building, or what languages they code in. One customer, Salesforce Dev Groups, asks their community for their t-shirt size and Meetup URL in their registration form. Another customer of ours, Docker, is actively recruiting and mobilizing developers with a simple Mobilize registration form.

Developer Directory – Mobilize helps bring together your diverse and dispersed group in one place. Instead of developers living in a maze of web forms, surveys, and dashboards, you’ll have a customer database and member directory with actionable information about each person in your community. Import your members from a spreadsheet, or even connect your own database to Mobilize through our API so that all of the data and lists about your members reside in one place. One system of record. One source of truth.

Easy Segmentation: It’s all connected: your system of record and your system of communication are all going to benefit from accurate segmentation and grouping, thus making future operations more seamless. With Mobilize, a directory and map of your groups make it easy to visualize and make sense of your network. You can segment your groups any way you choose, and assign group managers to different groups based on your needs. Gaming Insiders recruits gaming developers asks them what platforms their games are built on, then organizes those members easily into segmented groups.

When you’re past the recruitment & organizing stage, empowering your developers to be successful will be easier. You’ll know exactly what types of content and events will be useful to your developers and you can communicate with the right people, at the right time. You will have a comprehensive understanding of who your developers are—and what they’re building.

2. Operations: Empower Community with the Resources it Needs to Succeed

With Mobilize, it’s easy to give the right developers only the information that empowers them.

Communications Dashboard: You need an easy way to support your developers as they’re building their apps, ensuring the apps they’re building are high quality. Mobilize connects all your member data with your communications, helping you to streamline the communication process and ensure that the right information goes to the right developers every time. Need to send screencasts only to your iOS developers to use in their meetups? Easy. Need ask your Android developers what resources they need to complete their apps before a certain deadline? Totally doable.

  1. File sharing. Mobilize makes it easier to coordinate education materials between you and your developer community. Share training resources and make them available for any new or existing developer. Pin posts with links and files and create a series of posts or emails for them to finalize their training.
  2. Email blast. Keep all your developers informed. Share release notes, use mail merge to add personalization and create CTAs to ensure that they take action.
  3. Private messages. Our 1-on-1 chat features enable you to provide your developers personalized support so you can make yourself available while building personal relationships at scale. Track their progress, help them get their new app to the finish line by removing roadblocks, and easily connect them to the right internal resources to answer specific questions.
  4. Event invitations. Our events feature makes it easy to invite the right people to briefings, webinars, and more. Simply filter invite only those people developing apps in a specific domain/language and invite them to a webinar about a new feature you’re releasing in the next version—and how to use it.
  5. Polls. Poll your developers to ask for feedback, pick a date for a meeting, or to gauge their interest in a topic. Plus, it’s easy to create a smart follow-up message only to those who have selected a specific poll response.

Belonging: Make every developer a valued and engaged evangelist of your community

When your recruitment and operations workflows are all connected in one place through Mobilize, it’s easy for you to give personalized love to each and every one of your developers. You’re in a good place to really amp up brand ambassadorship in your group. Mobilize makes it easy for developers to connect, discuss, and collaborate with your company’s platform. Award your top community members with exclusive event invites, priority access to beta programs, or give feedback directly to the product team.

Personalize Communications: -Mobilize makes it easy to filter your developer database by current release, version, or platform or operating system. Send the right message to the right developers every time. Developers hate spam 🙂 Don’t spam your wonderful developers.

Connection & Collaboration – If you want to grow a sense of belonging in your community, create a subgroup and use permissions so that there is a separate space member can voluntarily opt-in to and join the conversation.

  1. Discussion. Make your Mobilize group a place where your developers can learn from each other, find mentors, get expertise, and discover speakers for their own meetups and share their passion for development with one another. Your community doesn’t need to login to reach each other and you. They can simply reply to your email, or start their own thread via the group alias. You decide exactly how the permissions work, which means that when you want your communications to be interactive—they can and will be.
  2. Member directory. A public database makes it easy for community members to find each other for private communications.
  3. Polls & product feedback. Collaboration between internal teams and your developer community also benefit from Mobilize. It’s easy to poll leaders in your community to weigh in on the future of your product roadmap. Follow up with only the people who voted, thank them for their feedback, and follow up on the results of the poll, thus making your most active developers feel rewarded for participating in the community.

Evangelism – While brand ambassadorship and brand evangelism does not happen overnight, managing your brand ambassadors using Mobilize is easy and powerful.

  1. Training & meetup kits. Want to empower your developers to teach others about how to develop for your platform? It’s easy to use Mobilize to preload training blog posts and share downloadable playbooks with your developers—available as soon as they join your group.
  2. Special events. If your developers really enjoy getting together in person, you’ll love using Mobilize to streamline the meetup and events process for yourself and members of your groups. Mobilize events are bound to increase attendance because your developers won’t need to click any buttons to get your event to appear on their personal calendar. For conferences, example, you can invite the right developers to the right tracks every time. Everyone will get a personalized agenda on their calendar—at scale. During Dreamforce, our customer, Salesforce Dev Groups, used Mobilize to invite their developers to relevant events within the larger conference. In addition, they used the platform to coordinate with 100 different sites globally to watch relevant livestreams during Dreamforce, thus engaging developers all over the world during Salesforce who couldn’t make it to the conference.
  3. Swag & rewards. Need to streamline your process for sending out end of the year swag and rewards as part of your brand ambassador program? It’s easy to collect details about your developers like t-shirt size and home or work address, making it super easy to send out those end of the year gifts that make your developer group feel extra special.

Work with experts who build successful communities

Mobilize is made up of community experts who have launched communities for the likes of the National Restaurant Association, United Nations’ SDSN, Dermalogica, and more. We work with you to align your business goals with a tailored community strategy to ensure its success.

Whether you’re just getting started or are looking to improve outcomes with your existing community — we have strategies and industry-tailored programs to help you get things done. Schedule a demo for a personalized walk-through of our technology and learn about our expert-led strategy services.