They say it’s your birthday
We’re gonna have a good time,
I’m glad it’s your birthday
Happy birthday to you
Wow, a whole year. To paraphrase the Grateful Dead, what a strange trip it’s been. We launched DevOps.com a year ago today with perhaps the naive notion that DevOps was going to really change the way organizations do IT and business. That it was almost inevitable that DevOps was going to move beyond the realm of early adopters and visionaries, beyond startups and Unicorns and see adoption by enterprises and businesses of all sizes and shapes. You know what? We were right!
DevOps has skyrocketed onto the mainstream IT consciousness and we were lucky enough to have a first row seat here at DevOps.com. We are even proud of the fact that maybe we even played a small part in this adventure.
But let’s be real. It hasn’t been all sprinkles and smiles. We have learned a lot of lessons along the year and usually the hard way. But sometimes the hard way is the best way to learn them. We knew that our audience was going to be a technical group. They would want to hear about and from people who had problems and issues similar to their own and how others solved or addressed the issues. We knew that they liked to find out about different tools that can help you keep the IT machine humming along.
We defined our mission as pitching a big tent for DevOps. I said it in the very first post one year ago today. To me personally pitching that big tent meant that we weren’t just about the existing DevOps community, many of which were early adopters, thought leaders and visionaries in the space. In my mind this group represented only about 15% at most of the eventual DevOps community. I realized that though some people were talking about and instituting DevOps principles for some years already, the majority of our audience was going to be new to DevOps. I wanted DevOps.com to have a place for everyone interested in DevOps.
That right there has also been the source of some of our biggest mistakes and angst over the year. We definitely took some time finding our legs under us. Finding people with the credibility that others would respect, striking the right tone, fine tuning the mix of articles and topics. At each step along the way we made some missteps. Many in the community didn’t mince words in pointing out what they didn’t like. Others remained silent and just ignored us. We took our lumps for sure, but we just kept putting one foot in front of the other, putting out new fresh content every day.
Many times readers or just people piling on via Twitter took us to task about what people wrote in their articles. We had and still have no problem with readers disagreeing with what an author writes here on DevOps.com. It is healthy to have debate. But we were surprised that people would think that we wrote the particular post or article. Or that is what we espoused. Just not the case. We don’t agree with what everyone writes here. However we think people have the right to write what they believe in. We think giving people a place to write means not censoring or telling them what to write.
Finally we started catching stride. Since the summer months our entire business has been on a rocket like trajectory. Here are some salient metrics:
1. We are on track for a 100k view month for March. This represents a 100% increase over just November 2014.
2. Our twitter, facebook, Google +, Linkedin following has grown exponentially
3. We have published over 630 articles in the past year, by well over 125 different authors!
4. We have produced or been media sponsor for 10+ events (with many more coming this year)
5. We have produced 8 webinars
6. A DevOps salary survey
7. Fulfilled our goal of becoming the single largest collection of original DevOps related content on the Internet.
8. We published over 50 newsletters and now offer several options on how you want to receive your DevOps.com news.
At a time when media companies like GigaOm are going under. When other media outlets are laying off paid writers, relying on unpaid bloggers, DevOps.com is adding to our featured writers. At the same time continuing to publish more fresh, original DevOps content than anyone. Other sites have taken to syndicating blog posts from others, republishing stories from elsewhere. At DevOps.com you can be sure that when we publish a story it is the first time that content has appeared on the Internet.
We have spent a lot of time thinking and planning for the coming year. We think that 2015 and 2016 will be big years for DevOps. We want to make sure we do our part and continue our growth. Look for many new features and new takes on distributing DevOps content and engaging the community this year.
If you look in our about section today you will see a near final draft of our editorial calendar. Our new media kits is also almost ready. You can see a near final draft of that in our sponsor page. Yes, 2015 promises to be even better than 2014. I am sure there will be some missteps this year as well. Hopefully we have learned from our past and there will be less.
Most of all on behalf of everyone associated with DevOps.com, I want to thank each and every one of you reading this article for your support this year. Without your support, none of the amazing things that has happened so far would be possible.
So happy birthday DevOps.com. Here is to many more. Also did I mention the first 50 people who tweet with #happybirthdaydevopsdotcom will receive a special edition t-shirt. Thanks again!