Christian Heilmann

Update to the Developer Evangelism/Advocacy handbook almost complete

Tuesday, December 15th, 2020 at 2:46 pm

Writing Setup

Eleven years ago I wrote the Developer Evangelism Handbook .Last month I was approached by a publisher who is interested to print it in another language. Whilst flattered, I also couldn’t let that happen as there are parts of the book that are quaintly outdated now. Some of the products I promote aren’t available any longer and there are big differences in the way we use social media and the web now compared to 2009.

So I spent a few evenings polishing the book, removing a lot of outdated material and adding new things that are more relevant now.

I added materials about virtual conference participation, code hosting, recording your own videos and screencasts, and incorporated some of the posts and materials I created since first publication. Currently it is at roughly 40000 words and the letter sized Word Doc would me 85 pages.

For now, I will publish the book online again, chapter by chapter and also consider creating some ebooks for those who prefer using readers. There’s a dark and light theme and it will work across all resolutions and platforms. I’m using jekyll/eleventy with GitHub pages and learn a few new things on the way.

Here’s the new table of contents:

  • About this handbook
    • About this version
    • About the author
  • What is Developer Advocacy / Evangelism?
    • Defining Developer Advocacy
    • Start with the right mindset
    • Find your role and play to your strengths
  • Work with your own company
    • Prepare for prejudice
    • Deal with company changes
    • Be there for internal developers
    • Work with PR and marketing
    • Be known as an outward channel
    • Train other advocates and developers
    • Share useful technology
    • Balance your personal and official channels
    • Remove the brand
  • Working with your competition
    • Work with the competition
    • Show respect to the competition
    • Acknowledge when the competition is better
    • Know about the competition
    • Build examples using and try out competitive products
  • Prepare for outreach
    • Get your facts right
    • Know the audience and their needs
    • Have expert backup
    • Choose the right medium
    • Plan for failure
  • Get speaking opportunities
    • Take part in podcasts
    • Take part in panels
    • Go to Grass Roots events
    • Go to Meetups
    • Write articles
    • Offer Brownbags
    • Ask questions at conferences
    • Be a presenter people want to invite – publish your presenter terms
  • Travel and conference participation
    • Getting your travel and accommodation sorted
    • Who pays what?
    • Be at the event
    • Give the event some social media love
    • Use the event to build a network
    • Keep track of your conference participation
    • Work with the conference buzz
    • Be a part of the conference you talk at
    • Release immediately
    • Write about conferences
  • Deliver a talk or workshop
    • Be yourself
    • Invite communication
    • Prepare takeaways
    • Plan time for and own the questions and answers
    • Be honest and real
    • Follow up communication
    • Delivering presentations tips: timekeeping and more
      • How will I fit all of this in X minutes?
      • Less is more
      • Your talk is only extremely important to you
      • Map out more information
      • Live coding?
      • Avoid questions
      • Things to cut
      • Talk fillers
      • Planning Your Talk Summary
    • Things not to say on stage – and what to do instead
      • “This is easy…”
      • “I’ll repeat quickly, for the few of you who don’t know…”
      • “Everybody can do that…”
      • “X solves this problem, so you don’t have to worry about it”
      • “As everybody knows…”
      • “This is just like we learned in school…”
      • “That’s why Y(your product) is much better than (competitor) X”
      • “This can be done in a few lines of code…”
      • “If you want to be professional, do X”
      • A quick check
  • Write great posts and articles
    • Simple is not stupid
    • Say what it is – don’t sugar-coat it
    • Size matters
    • Add media
    • Structure your content
    • Time-stamp your content
    • Cite to prove
    • Pre-emptive writing
    • Ending on an invitation to learn more
  • Write excellent code examples
    • Solve a problem with your example
    • Show a working example
    • Explain the necessary environment
    • Write working copy and paste code
    • Have the example as a download
    • Write clean and clever examples
    • Build code generators
    • Hosting code and demos
      • Version Control is your friend
      • Automated Hosting
      • Code showcases
      • Code Sandboxes
      • Live coding environments
  • Prepare great slide decks for presentations
    • Know your stuff
    • Start with the content – not the slides!
    • Start with a highly portable Format – Text
    • Quick Presentation creation tip: unpacking bullets
    • Pick a presentation tool that helps you present
    • Illustrate, don’t transcribe
    • Use and find images
    • About code examples
    • Sound and videos
    • Don’t bling it up
    • Keep it brief
    • Consider the audience
    • Corporate and conference templates
    • Don’t reuse without personalising
    • Share and enjoy
    • Additional presentation tips
      • Introduce yourself
      • Use humour
      • Build bridges to the real world
      • Pace yourself
      • Avoid “Hello World”
      • Be fresh
    • A checklist for more inclusive, accessible and understandable talks
      • Talk materials
      • Format
      • Content
      • Tracking
      • Insurances
      • Bonus round
  • Keep a record of your work
    • Record the audio of your talks
    • Shoot video
    • Link collections
    • keep a conference participation list
  • Know and use the (social) web
    • Find great web content
    • Redistribute web content
    • Be known on the web
    • Use powerful social web sites and products
    • Use the web for storage, distribution and cross-promotion
    • Hint, tease and preview
    • Track your impact
    • Build a network
    • Create or take part in a newsletter
    • Create or take part in a podcast
  • Working from your own computer
    • Get a decent setup
    • Screencasts and screenshots
    • Streaming
    • Taking part in live online chats
    • Attending live online events
    • Technical issues to prepare for
    • Design limitations to prepare for
    • Personal issues to prepare for
    • Recording your own talks
      • Check your setup and your surroundings
      • Record the different pieces of the talk separately
      • Remember that you need to share the screen with your slides
      • Use accessibility features to add extra video value
      • Record in the highest possible quality
      • Keep originals and make it easy to get your video
  • Final words

Chris Heilmann on his desk writing

Until then, I hope you have a great time and take some time off!

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