eBook Released: How to Market an API Bill Doerrfeld September 30, 2016 We’re happy to announce a new eBook release! We’ve assembled our best advice on API marketing, developer relations, and platform advocacy into a single volume. Grab a copy of How to Successfully Market an API for free HERE, or name your price on LeanPub. The bible for project managers, technical evangelists, or marketing aficionados in the process of promoting an API program. In it we reveal how to plan an API-first business, how to make it discoverable, promote it to press and developer networks, establish quality developer relations, and advocate on behalf of your users to spark adoption and long-lasting integrations.FREE DOWNLOAD HEREPrefaceIn the widening API sphere, marketing an API business involves knowing your community intimately, and fine-tuning your developer support channels to help users excel. With APIs continuing to surge in importance across all industries, spreading API knowledge becomes increasingly important. More APIs equals more competition, meaning that API evangelism, the job of promoting a developer-centric program, now needs its own strategy.This eBook is the first of it’s kind. A compilation of advice and research geared specifically to DIY marketing for a public web Application Programming Interface or similar developer-oriented program. These aren’t tips for amassing hundreds of developer emails – no. This is about creating a usable frontend for your API platform that employs healthy developer outreach to naturally increase the prestige of your Software-as-a-Service. We’ve taken a holistic approach to marketing in this volume, with the end goal to help readers extend reach and onboard more developers to their API.API Marketing is one of the Nordic APIs 6 Insights to API Practice; a core facet of providing an API. Thus, we’ve collated our best advice within this book to explore the Marketing Insight from four important angles:Part 1 – Planning: Tips on starting your program, understanding your target consumer segmentation, market research, and more using the API canvas model to position an agile API business.Part 2 – Developer Relations: Discussions on onboarding and quality developer experience when it comes to overall API design as well as documentation and developer portal resources.Part 3 – Promotion: Outlines emerging API discovery techniques, API directories, and relevant press resources that will help spread awareness of your product, as well as ideas for creating informative content that informs and engages potential API users.Part 4 – Advocacy: Lastly, we define community building best practices, the roles of program advocates, tips on holding your own developer conferences, API demoing, as well as case studies into developer relations failures and successes that companies have had in their public API programs in recent years.Table of ContentsPrefacePart One: PlanningBuilding from the Ground Up: Tips for Starting Your API ProgramClarify Your NeedsGet Buy In (From Everyone)Aim for a Public MVPAct on FeedbackBuild your PracticeFinal ThoughtsDefine Your Target Developer AudienceWhy Create a Developer “Persona”?The Developer BrainBut Plenty of Other People Are Interested in APIs, Too!Expanding our Portal: Developer End User EvangelismVarying Industry BackgroundsLocation & DemographicsAPI Use CasesTechnology PreferencesLessen The Corporate BrandingDeveloper ExperienceBuild it And They Will _____Understand Your AudienceDeveloper Experience is a Key Ingredient of Quality APIsAPI Model Canvas – offspring of Lean CanvasDevelopers are the Rockstars of the API EconomyAddressing the Entire API Model CanvasCase Study: National Library of FinlandMVP for next stepGain speed and make it funFinal ThoughtsPart Two: Developer RelationsIngredients That Make Up a Superb Developer CenterGetting Started GuideAuthentication GuideAPI DocumentationTesting EnvironmentDeveloper ResourcesSupport ChannelsPlatform PolicyCater Your Home Presence to Non-Developers TooFinal ThoughtsCrafting Excellent API Code Tutorials that Decrease On-boarding TimeSetting the ContextExploring the DetailsCreating an ApplicationFinal ThoughtsWhat is the Difference Between an API and an SDK?Define: APIDefine: SDKSquares and RectanglesExamplesApples and OrangesDeveloper Resources: SDKs, Libraries, Auto Generation ToolsWhat Are Helper Libraries?Why Not Just Let Them REST?Data ProblemProgramming Language TrendsDiscover What Languages Your Consumers are UsingWho Should we Model?HTTP is Language Agnostic5 Tips for Helper Library DesignLast Line of API Code: Your API is Never Really FinishedA Human’s Guide to Drafting API Platform PolicyKey ThemesDefining ResponsibilitiesSetting ExpectationsDescribing Good BehaviorsFinal ThoughtsCreating A Brand Guide for Your API ProgramPlatform Strategy Dictates Brand RequirementsBrand Guide ComponentsFormatting Your Design GuideThe Effect of Zero or Poor Branding GuidelinesFinal ThoughtsExamples of API Branding Guides in the Wild:Part Three: PromotionPerfecting Your API ReleaseWhat do I release?Time Your ReleaseWiden Your Potential AudienceHave the Right Monetization planHave a DemoHave Awesome BrandingTips to Make Your API More DiscoverableSEO Approach: Optimization of API HomepagesService Discovery AutomationCheat Sheet of 10+ API Directories to Submit Your API toImportant Press Networks and Developer Channels in the API SpacePress Release DistributionAPI-Specific Blogs, Thought Leaders, and DigestsGeneral Tech & Developer NewsNordic Tech Press/NewsSocial BookmarkingAPI EventsThe Everpresent CommentatorUtilizing Product Hunt to Launch Your APIAlpha, Closed Beta, Open Beta, or Full Release?Preparing for a ReleaseOffering Exclusive Deals: The Gold StarActually Submitting a Profile on Product HuntThe Launch: Introduce Yourself, Play Nice, Get the Word OutThe Unanticipated LaunchThe Return on InvestmentThe Internet’s Watercooler is Product HuntResourcesPart Four: AdvocacyDay in the Life of an API Developer Evangelist8 Important Job Roles of a Software EvangelistWhat does an Evangelist do each day?Evangelism vs AdvocacyQ&A SectionConclusionInterviewees:How to Offer Unparalleled Developer SupportThe Importance of Developer OutreachEmail and Social MediaEvent Hosting and AttendanceDocumentation and Knowledge BasesConclusionAccumulating Feedback: 4 Questions API Providers Need to Ask Their UsersWhy Feedback is ImportantWhat Do You Expect From This API?What Is Your Greatest Frustration with the API?Why Did You Choose Our API?If You Could Change Our API, How Would You?Methods to Use for Accumulating FeedbackThink As a UserHow to Hold a Killer First Hackathon or Developer ConferenceTypes of Get-TogethersWhat is a Hackathon?What is a Developer Conference?What’s the Difference?How to Host an EventWhat Makes an API Demo Unforgettable?1: Describe the API, in a few words.2: Convince we all share the same values of the API3: Impress with how great and easy your API is4: Interact with the audience5: Live coding mastery6: A theater-like scriptPreparation for potential technical flawsConclusionCase Study: Twitter’s 10 Year Struggle with Developer Relations2006 – 2010: The early days2010 – 2012: OAuthcalypse, competing with third party apps and other perceived betrayals2012 – 2013: Token limits and open war on traditional clients2013 – Present: Post-IPO controversiesWooing back developersNew releases and optimism going forwardOther social networksReviewTL;DR ChecklistEndnotes What’s Next?Stay tuned for our next volume: The Art of API PracticeRoy Fielding once describe REST as “software design on the scale of decades: every detail is intended to promote software longevity and independent evolution. Many of the constraints are directly opposed to short-term efficiency.” Essentially, he acknowledged how developers often execute short term design without long-term design in mind, which causes inadaptability as technology evolves.In October 2016 Nordic APIs will be holding a Platform Summit centered on this theme, bringing together API industry thought leaders to share their insights on what it means to architect and design Application Programming Interfaces on the scale of decades. The event will especially detail RESTful design techniques for longevity, operational components of sustaining an API, and topics like DevOps, microservices architectures, developer relations, and new business methodologies for keeping your platform aware, stable, and innovative.The Art of API Practice will gather the best information shared by speakers at the Platform Summit – so even if you can’t afford to attend, you can catch a part of the experience! We’ll feature articles by our speakers, highlight recurring conference themes, and explore what longevity means from the perspective of 6 the Nordic APIs Insights; API Design, API Platforms, API Strategy, API Design, API Marketing, and API Security.For now, please enjoy How to Successfully Market an API, and look out for more from the Nordic APIs writing team!