I've been on the road at various conferences this week, which has resulted in a lot of fascinating conversations about what DevRel is (and isn't). Per usual, there's the standard argument of "DevRel isn't marketing" but I've also been talking to folks about whether or not all DevRel professionals have to have a technical background (I believe strongly that you don't). There have also been conversations around copying a certain "model of DevRel" of one company or another, and whether or not the principles from one company can be applied directly to yours (not always!).
It's clear that people still have a lot of questions about what exactly the purpose of DevRel is at their company, which is understandable given that its primary metrics will change depending on the company goals and initiatives. But at the end of the day, the overarching purpose of DevRel is to build relationships with the developer community, putting their needs, interests, and concerns front-of-mind. This can overlap with projects from Marketing, as well as Product, and Engineering, which is why it's so hard to find a home for DevRel. The community touches almost every part of the organization.
And what exactly is our community? A community is a group of people who not only share common principles, but also develop and share practices that help individuals in the group thrive.
If we can keep those two things front-of-mind, it makes the rest of the decisions easier. We want to build relationships with developers, resulting in a group of people who can help each other. With that as our north star and our company goals to guide our own metrics, it's hard to go wrong!
Have fun following your north star and continuing to build amazing communities.