DEV Community

Cover image for 5 steps to build an authority for you and your repository
Nevo David for Gitroom

Posted on • Updated on • Originally published at

5 steps to build an authority for you and your repository

Authority is usually addressed as a brand is a way to reach people and gain their “automatic” trust.

When you have achieved some brand:

  • People trust you more.

  • People see you as a lower risk.

  • People want to collaborate with you.


If you want to grow your open-source repository, make sure you register for the GitHub20k newsletter.

This newsletter is good for you if:

  • You are considering open-sourcing your product (or building a new one).
  • You are considering opening a by-product and open-source it (to reflect on your main product).
  • You are in tech and want the growth without the stars / without GitHub trending.


I am the Head of Growth @ Novu.
In Novu, we have two brands, Novu and your humble servant Nevo.

Having a brand for the company is an automatic procedure after spending a long time in the market and promoting your brand. We are all trying to do it.

Your best clients/customers will usually come from a word-to-month you have gathered over the years.

And while a company brand is strong, I think a personal brand is more robust - as people connect with people, not companies.

I have achieved a personal brand both in Novu and GitHub20k - there are multiple steps you can take to do it. Let’s talk about them.

1. Put your face everywhere

Make it seem like one person runs that company. You don’t have to use your profile picture, even though I recommend it, as people can understand it’s not a bot - use the same profile picture everywhere (Linkedin, Twitter, Newsletter, etc.). You want people to remember that you have this single pattern. They address it to you. Here is where you will see me.

  • Every newsletter I send is from my name.
  • Every article I write is in my name - don’t fall into the trap of having many personas in the company writing articles. Post everything from your account.
  • Most tweets will go from my name and be retweeted from the company account. (post / reposted for the people that are new in X)


2. Run significant events and be the face of them

We run HackSquad every year, and even though I have the entire Novu team behind me, I am still in the spotlight.

Almost every post of the competition mentions me.
The same thing with ConnectNovu.

Events like that are essential because they can reach a broader audience - people who are not necessarily interested in notifications but the open-source community.

That’s why we managed to get 5,000 people last year (in 1 month), and we aim for 15,000 this year. (And yeah, it’s 15,000 people who interact with me daily).


3. Build in public

Share everything you can about the company, which can be any of the following:

  • Funding rounds.
  • The money you have made today.
  • The amount of PR got merged today.
  • The amount of contributors you have.
  • The next version of your app.

The more things you share, the more transparent you become, and people trust you more.


4. Share your secrets

In GitHub20k, I share almost every tactic I have “Hacked.”
This is one of the biggest boosters I have received lately that helped my brand grow. There are ups and downs to this.

The most extensive “up” is my transparency and credibility - if I offer you my tools, there’s a higher chance you will buy them from me as you trust me (more than the others).

The downside is that by telling my secrets - people start to use them, and over time, they will be less effective - I have to be creative and always find more secrets.


5. Build a personal brand

Personal brands are great.
You get to talk about things beyond the company's limits and increase your credibility even more.

There are so many examples of that, such as:

Authority amplifies other channels

When your personal brand works, other company channels will grow automatically - that can be your YouTube channel, ads, articles, etc.

You can see people interacting with the company knowingly who is behind it, so the intent is higher.


There are no shortcuts

I have learned that there is no shortcut to achieving brand - you can’t release your product and become a $1m company overnight.

The world doesn’t work that way.

In Novu, we went into a maturity phase - I felt it. After one year, more customers started to come, and more deals began to close, just because we had been a longer time in the market and kept doing marketing consistently.

Growth takes time.
The same thing happened to me with GitHub20k when I started.

I was at 0, and honestly, I was not even sure it could work - but since I knew the rule of growth, I kept going.

Short Cuts

Wanna get some more Nuggets? ⭐️

Follow me on X.
I share some nice nuggets about open-source growth:

In for tech

Have you built an authority for yourself? Can you share how?

Top comments (18)

nathan_tarbert profile image
Nathan Tarbert

Love the article @nevodavid!

There are quite a lot of takeaways here. Probably the biggest one for me is being the face of the company you work for. That's what I've been working towards for several months so it's a confirmation that I'm on the right track.

Thanks again!

nevodavid profile image
Nevo David

Thank you so much for reading 🚀

srbhr profile image
Saurabh Rai

Really nice post, Nevo. 💖🌺

In GitHub20k, I share almost every tactic I have “Hacked.”
This is one of the biggest boosters I have received lately that helped my brand grow. There are ups and downs to this.

This part takes courage. And you're doing a great job with them. Building and growing something with transparency takes a lot of courage. You take time to research some ideas. And when those work, you share them with everyone. 🔥

nevodavid profile image
Nevo David

It's always a hard decision

pizofreude profile image

Will try to wing it this coming Hacktoberfest with 30 Days Open Source Learning Challenge in conjunction with Fingers-crossed we'll how it turns out. Hoping to get some support for you guys too!

nevodavid profile image
Nevo David

Have you built an authority for yourself? Can you share how?

yogini16 profile image

Nice article! I really appreciate the detailed steps.
Thank you for your efforts !!

nevodavid profile image
Nevo David

Thank you for reading!

nevodavid profile image
Nevo David

Thank you so much for reading!

nevodavid profile image
Nevo David

I agree (it's not connected to the article's context).
But it's essential to have contribution in recent dates.
It reflects how much the library is up-to-date.

cliftonz profile image

How does number 1 work if you have someone else posting articles that are out of your expertise?
Like with in-depth infrastructure articles that Novu has been releasing recently by your architect?
I believe this would make it seem like there are multiple people in the company but where would the benefit come in?

nevodavid profile image
Nevo David

Hi Zac! Thank you for reading.
I like to say Do sh*t and then talk about it.

If you are writing about something without doing it yourself

  • You will lose credibility
  • People will not believe you.

Adding "Novu" means that you have done something within Novu - it's not generic. It's something with proof.

In case you are talking about ghostwriting as a different persona, in that case, the persona must have some connection and understanding of what you are talking about.

I am not an architect, but I read about your date bug article, and I can relate to and understand it.

It means that if you wrote the article and I publish it (and I understand it), I can give it a touch of my essence In the title, descriptions, comments, etc...

I don't think it's a problem that multiple people will post from the company as long as one persona is consistent with the posting without changing their current funnel (like we did in Novu.)

cliftonz profile image

Thanks for the insight, I think this would be a good topic for a follow-up article on how to manage multiple personas posting for a company and
What are the guidelines and tenets that everyone should follow.

jaredmeakin profile image
Jared Meakin

Nice article. I’ve looked into Novu briefly. While open source, there are no good resources for self hosting. So while there’s a “community edition” it’s kinda a farce, as it’s not usable. Sure you can spin up a docker locally, but what about deploying to AWS, DigitalOcean, or any other vm?

barrymichaeldoyle profile image
Barry Michael Doyle

Inspiring stuff! I don't have a product behind my name but I write anyway to practice the art of building my personal brand :)

cantillojo54982 profile image
Joiner David Cantillo Camargo

Great. looking forward to anther post from you.Thanks

oscarthomasss profile image

So insightful, thanks!