Once you recognize the need for a developer community, the next step is putting together a list of wants and needs for your community. We created the following list of things every great developer community needs.
- Make sure the community software provider you work with is focused solely on developers.
Focus is key. If I need my sink repaired, I’m calling a plumber, not an electrician who also fixes sinks. Find a company that knows developers and has a proven track record of creating spaces where devs can collaborate.
- Elimination of knowledge loss through gamification
Find a tool that makes sharing knowledge rewarding. Be it badges, leaderboards, or actually sending digital or physical gifts to top contributors, you need to give your developers something in order to get the most back.
- Is it customizable?
You need to be able to make changes, and for that to happen, you need SDK & API access so you can customize and build upon the tool, making it your own.
- Do you keep the data?
It’s your data, why would anyone other than you own it? You need a tool that gives you the data with no if’s, and’s, or but’s.
- Build brand affinity.
A developer community is a perfect way to move users to super-users to advocates. Make sure your developers know how important they are to you by sharing your roadmap, listening to their suggested changes, and then actually implementing their suggestions.