After a long stint in journalism covering consumer technology, I've pivoted to content strategy for Hashnode, a blogging platform for people in tech. So, I'm no developer — and I'm not a content strategist by training.
But I'm not going to let that get in the way of this incredible opportunity to enable and inspire a vibrant community of people to share their ideas about building software that will shape our future. And so, I'm embarking on this journey by learning in public — and sharing those lessons with you. Let's ride together.
What should Hashnode's content strategy look like?
Shaping content strategy for a platform is somewhat different to how you would approach strategy for a SaaS product, consumer goods, or services. We're not selling you anything, but rather inviting you to create content, share your ideas, and engage with our community. There are certainly lessons to be gleaned from other user-generated content (UGC) platforms — everything from YouTube to Medium — but from what I've seen, there's no playbook or course to teach you exactly what to do.
That means I've got to identify and reverse-engineer a lot of content efforts that have worked for various UGC platforms, implement those that align with our goals and the needs of our audience, and discover content opportunities for a property as unique as Hashnode.
Given that our audience comprises software developers and development-adjacent practitioners, this job will also overlap greatly with what is known as Developer Relations aka devrel. It's important for me to engage with folks in this space and understand why they'd care to blog in the first place, what success might look like for them in their content creation efforts, and how we can enhance their experience on our platform.
Jono Bacon, former director of community at GitHub and a collaboration consultant said on his YouTube channel, you don't need to be a developer to do devrel — but you do need to understand the priorities and culture of the people you'll interact with. To that end, I'm doing all I can to immerse myself in all forms of content aimed at developers, and engaging with people in developer forums to get a sense of what makes them tick — ad what makes them want to blog.
Ultimately, it boils down to enabling success for dev and dev-adjacent bloggers through helpful and inspiring content. If we can make blogging fun and easy, and stimulate you to do it often, that's a win for us.
Join me on this journey of discovery, and I'll continually share my learnings, experiments, and ideas that you could apply in your own content strategy efforts. Godspeed us.