Conveying Authenticity in Marketing with Sharone Zitzman

Episode Summary

Today’s guest doesn’t mince words and always reads the manual. Sharone Zitzman, CEO and/or Chief Manual Reader at RTFM Please, begins by discussing her decision to start a company. Sharone talks about what led her to marketing in the first place, then Sharone and Corey discuss the importance of showing product value over explaining what’s “under the hood.” Corey asks what themes Sharone has seen lately and what companies are currently getting wrong. The conversation concludes with a discussion about the value of utilizing community in marketing and what the point of being involved in community really is!

Episode Show Notes & Transcript

About Sharone
I'm Sharone Zitzman, a marketing technologist and open source community builder, who likes to work with engineering teams that are building products that developers love. Having built both the DevOps Israel and Cloud Native Israel communities from the ground up, today I spend my time finding the places where technology and people intersect and ensuring that this is an excellent experience. You can find my talks, articles, and employment experience at Find me on Twitter or Github as @shar1z.

Links Referenced:

Announcer: Hello, and welcome to Screaming in the Cloud with your host, Chief Cloud Economist at The Duckbill Group, Corey Quinn. This weekly show features conversations with people doing interesting work in the world of cloud, thoughtful commentary on the state of the technical world, and ridiculous titles for which Corey refuses to apologize. This is Screaming in the Cloud.

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Corey: Welcome to Screaming in the Cloud. I’m Corey Quinn and I have been remiss by not having today’s guest on years ago because back before I started this ridiculous nonsense that, well, whatever it is you’d call what I do for a living, I did other things instead. I did the DevOps, which means I was sad all the time. And the thing that I enjoyed was the chance to go and speak on conference stages. One of those stages, early on in my speaking career, was at DevOpsDays Tel Aviv.

My guest today is Sharone Zitzman, who was an organizer of DevOpsDays Tel Aviv, who started convincing me to come back. And today is in fact, in the strong tradition here of making up your own job titles in ways that make people smile, she is the Chief Manual Reader at RTFM Please Ltd. Sharone, thank you for joining me.

Sharone: Thank you for having me, Corey. Israelis love the name of my company, but Americans think it has a lot of moxie and chutzpah. [laugh].

Corey: It seems a little direct and aggressive. It’s like, oh, good, you are familiar with how this is going to go. There’s something to be said for telling people what you do on the tin upfront. I’ve never been a big fan of trying to hide that. I mean, the first iteration of my company was the Quinn Advisory Group because I thought, you know, let’s make it look boring and sedate and like I can talk to finance people. And yeah, that didn’t last more than ten seconds of people talking to me.

Also, in hindsight, the logo of a big stylized Q. Yeah, I would have had to change that anyway, for the whole QAnon nonsense because I don’t want to be mistaken for that particular brand of nuts.

Sharone: Yeah, I decided to do away with the whole formalities and upfront, just go straight [laugh]. For the core of who we are, Corey; you are very similar in that. So, yes. Being a dev first company, I thought the developers would appreciate such a title and name for my company. And I have to give a shout out here to Avishai Ish-Shalom, who’s my friend from the community who you also know from the DevOpsDays community.

Corey: Oh, yeah @nukemberg on Twitter—

Sharone: Yes exactly.

Corey: For those who are not familiar.

Sharone: [laugh]. Yep. He coined the name.

Corey: The problem that I found is that people when they start companies or they manage their careers, they don’t bias for the things that they’re really good at. And it took me a long time to realize this, I finally discovered, “Ah, what am I the best at? That’s right, getting myself fired for my personality, so why don’t I build a business where that stops being a liability?” So, I started my own company. And I can tell this heroic retcon of what happened, but no, it’s because I had nowhere else to go at that point.

And would you hire me? Think about this for a minute. You, on the other hand, had options. You are someone with a storied history in community building, in marketing to developers without that either coming across as insincere or that marked condescending accent that so many companies love to have of, “Oh, you’re a developer. Let me look at you and get down on my hands and knees like we’re going camping and tell a story in ways that actively and passively insult you.”

No, you have always gotten that pitch-perfect. The world was your oyster. And for some godforsaken reason, you looked around and decided, “Ah, I’m going to go out independently because you know what I love? Worrying.” Because let’s face it, running your own company is an exercise in finding new and exciting things to worry about that 20 minutes ago, you didn’t know existed. I say this from my own personal experience. Why would you ever do such a thing?

Sharone: [laugh]. That’s a great question. It was a long one, but a good one. And I do a thing where I hit the mic a lot because I also have. I can’t control my hand motions.

Corey: I too speak with my hands. It’s fine.

Sharone: [laugh]. Yeah, so it’s interesting because I wanted to be independent for a really long time. And I wasn’t sure, you know, if it was 
something that I could do if I was a responsible enough adult to even run my own company, if I could make it work, if I could find the business, et cetera. And I left the job in December 2020, and it was the first time that I hadn’t figured out what I was doing next yet. And I wanted to take some time off.

And then immediately, like, maybe a week after I started to get a lot of, like, kind of people reaching out. And I started to interview places and I started to look into possibly being a co-founder at places and I started to look at all these different options. And then just, I was like, “Well…. This is an opportunity, right? Maybe I should finally—that thing that’s gnawing at the back of my head to see if, like, you know if I should go for this dream that I’ve always wanted, maybe now I can just POC it and see if, you know, it’ll work.”

And it just, like, kind of exploded on me. It was like there was so much demand, like, I just put a little, like, signal out to the world that this is something that I’m interested in doing, and everyone was like, “Ahh, I need that.” [laugh]. I wanted to take a quarter off and I signed my first clients already on February 1st, which was, like, a month after. I left in December and that—it was crazy. And since then, I’ve been in business. So, yeah. So, and since then, it’s also been a really crazy ride; I got to discover some really exciting companies. So.

Corey: How did you get into this? I found myself doing marketing-adjacent work almost entirely by accident. I started the newsletter and this podcast, and I was talking to sponsors periodically and they’d come back with, “Here’s the thing we want you to talk about in the sponsor read.” And it’s, “Okay, you want to give people a URL to go to that has four sub-directories and entire UTM code… okay, have you considered, I don’t know, not?” And because so much of what they were talking about did not resonate.

Because I have the engineering background, and it was, I don’t understand what your company does and you’re spending all your time talking about you instead of my painful problem. Because as your target market, I don’t give the slightest of shits about you, I care about my problem, so tell me how you’re going to solve my problem and suddenly I’m all ears. Spend the whole time talking about you, and I could not possibly care less and I’ll fast-forward through the nonsense. That was my path to it. How did you get into it?

Sharone: How did I get into it? It’s interesting. So, I started my journey in typical marketing, enterprise B2B marketing. And then at GigaSpaces, we kickstarted the open-source project Cloudify, and that’s when I found myself leading this project as the open-source community team leader, building, kind of, the community from the ground floor. And I discovered a whole new world of, like, how to build experience into your marketing, kind of making it really experiential and making sure that everyone has a really, really easy and frictionless way of using your product, and that the product—putting the product at the center and letting it speak for itself. And then you discover this whole new world of marketing where it’s—and today, you know, it has more of a name and a title, PLG, and people—it has a whole methodology and practice, but then it was like we were—

Corey: PLG? I’m unfamiliar with the acronym. I thought tech was bad for acronyms.

Sharone: Right? [laugh]. So, product-led growth. But then, you know, like, kind of wasn’t solidified yet. And so, a lot of what we were doing was making sure that developers had a really great experience with the product then it kind of sold itself and marketed itself.

And then you understood what they wanted to hear and how they wanted to consume the product and how they wanted it to be and to learn about it and to kind of educate themselves and get into it. And so, a lot of the things that I learned in the context of marketing was very guerilla, right, from the ground up and kind of getting in front of people and in the way they wanted to consume it. And that taught me a lot about how developers consume technology, the different channels that they’re involved in, and the different tools that they need in order to succeed, and the different, you know, all the peripheral experience, that makes marketing really, really great. And it’s not about what you’re selling to somebody; it’s making your product shine and making the experience shine, making them ensure that it’s a really, really easy and frictionless experience. You know, I like how [Donald Bacon 00:08:00] says it; he calls it, like, mean time to hello world, and that to me is the best kind of marketing, right? When you enable people to succeed very, very quickly.

Corey: Yeah, there’s something to be said for the ring of authenticity and the rest. Periodically I’ll promote guest episodes on this, where it’s a sponsored episode where people get up and they talk about what they’re working on. And they’re like, “Great. So, here’s the sales pitch I want to give,” and it’s no you won’t because first, it won’t work. And secondly, I’m sorry, whether it’s a promoted episode or not, I will not publish something that isn’t good because I have a reputation to uphold here.

And people run into challenges an awful lot when they’re trying to effectively tell their story. If you have a startup that was founded by an engineer, for example, as so many of these technical startups were, the engineer is often so deeply and profoundly in love with this problem space and the solution and the rest, but if they talk about that, no one cares about the how. I mean, I fix AWS bills, and people don’t care—as a general rule—how I do that at all if they’re in my target market. They don’t care if it’s through clever optimization, amazing tooling, doing it on-site, or taking hostages in Seattle. They care about their outcome much more than they ever do about the how.

The only people who care about the how are engineers who very often are going to want to build it themselves, or work for you, or start a competitor. And it doesn’t resonate in quite the same way. It’s weird because all these companies are in slightly different spaces; all of them tend to do slightly different things—or very different things—but so many of the challenges that I see in the way that they’re articulating what they do to customers rhymes with one another.

Sharone: Yeah. So, I agree completely that developers will talk often about how it works. How it works. How does it work under the hood? What are the bits and bytes, you know?

Like, nobody cares about how it works. People care about how will this make my life better, right? How will this improve my life? How will this change my life? [laugh]. As an operations engineer, if I’m, you know, crunching through logs, how will this tool change that? What my days look like? What will my on-call rotation look like? What will—you know, how are you changing my life for the better?

So, I think that that’s the question. When you learn how to crystallize the answer to that question and you hit it right on the mark—you know, and it takes a long time to understand the market, and to understand the buying persona, and t—and there’s so much that you have to do in the background, and so much research you have to do to understand who is that person that needs to have that question answered? But once you do and you crystallize that answer, it lands. And that’s the fun part about marketing, really trying to understand the person who’s going to consume your product and how you can help them understand that you will make their life better.

Corey: Back when I was starting out as a consultant myself, I would tell stories that I had seen in the AWS billing environment, and I occasionally had clients reach out to me, “Hey, why don’t you tell our story in public?” It’s, “Because that wasn’t your story. That was something I saw on six different accounts in the same month. It is something that everyone is feeling.” It’s, people think that you’re talking about them.

So, with that particular mindset on this, without naming specific companies, what themes are you seeing emerging? What are companies getting wrong when they are attempting and failing to market effectively to developers?

Sharone: So, exactly what we’re talking about in terms of the product pitch, in that they’re talking at developers from this kind of marketing speak and this business language that, you know, developers often—you know, unless a company does a really, really good job of translating, kind of, the business value—which they should do, by the way—to engineers, but oftentimes, it’s a little bit far from them in the chain, and so it’s very hard for them to understand the business fluff. If you talk to them in bits and bytes of this is what my day-to-day developer workflow looks like and if we do these things, it’ll cut down the time that I’m working on these things, it’ll make these things easier, it’ll help streamline whatever processes that are difficult, remove these bottlenecks, and help them understand, like I said, how it improves their life.

But the things that I’ve seen breakdown is also in the authenticity, right? So obviously, the world is built on a lot of the same gimmicks and it’s just a matter of whether you’re doing it right or not, right? So, there’s so much content out there and webcasts and webinars, and I don’t know what and podcasts and whatever it is, but a lot of the time, people, their most valuable asset is their time. And if you end up wasting their time, without it being, like, really deeply valuable—if you’re going to write content, make sure that there is a valuable takeaway; if you’re going to create a webinar, make sure that somebody learned something. That if they’re investing their time to join your marketing activities, make sure that they come away with something meaningful and then they’ll really appreciate you.

And it’s the same idea behind the whole DevOpsDays movement with the law of mobility and open spaces that people if they find value, they’ll join this open space and they’ll participate meaningfully and they’ll be a part of your event, and they’ll come back to your event from year to year. But if you’re not going to provide that tangible value that somebody takes away, and it’s like, okay, well, I can practically apply this in my specific tech stack without using your tool, without having to have this very deterministic or specific kind of tech stack that they’re talking about. You want to give people something—or even if it is, but even how to do it with or without, or giving them, like, kind of practical tools to try it. Or if there’s an open-source project that they can check out first, or some kind of lean utility that gives them a good indication of the value that this will give them, that’s a lot more valuable, I think. And practically understandable to somebody who wants to eventually 
consume your product or use your products.

Corey: The way that I see things, at least in the past couple of years, the pandemic has sharpened an awful lot of the messaging that needs to happen. Because in most environments, you’re sitting at a DevOpsDays in the front row or whatnot, and it’s time for the sponsor talks and someone gets up and starts babbling and wasting your time, most people are not going to get up and leave. Okay, they will in Israel, but in most places, they’re not going to get up and leave, whereas in pandemic land, it’s you are one tab away from something I actually want—

Sharone: Exactly.

Corey: To be doing, so if you become even slightly boring, it’s not going to go well. So, you have to be on message, you have to be on point or no one cares. People are like, “Oh, well what if we say the wrong thing and people wind up yelling about us on Twitter?” It’s like unless it is for something horrifying, you should be so lucky because people are then talking about you. The failure mode isn’t that people don’t like your product, it’s no one talks about it.

Sharone: Yeah. No such thing as bad publicity [crosstalk 00:14:32] [laugh]—

Corey: Oh, there very much is such a thing is bad publicity. Like, “I could be tweeting about your product most days,” is apparently a version of that, according to some folks. But it’s a hard problem to solve for. And one of the things that continually surprises me is the things I’m still learning about this entire industry. The reason that people sponsor this show—and the rates they pay, to be direct—have little bearing to the actual size of the audience—as best we can tell; lies, damn lies, and podcast statistics; if you’re listening to this, let me know. I’d love to know if anyone listens to this nonsense—but when you see all of that coming out, why are we able to charge the rates that we do?

It’s because the long-term value of someone who is going to buy a long-term subscription or wind up rolling out something like ChaosSearch or whatnot that is going to be a fundamental tenet of their product, one prospect becoming a customer pays for anything, I can sell a company, it will sponsor—they can pay me to sponsor for the next ten years, as opposed to the typical mass-market audience where well, I’m here to sling Casper mattresses today or something. It’s a different audience and there’s a different perception there. People are starting to figure out the value of—in an age where tracking is getting harder and harder to do and attribution will drive you nuts, instead of go where your audience is. Go where the people who care about the problem that you have and will experience that problem are going to hang out. And it always is wild to me to see companies missing out on that.

It’s, “Okay, so you’re going to do a $25 million billboard ad in spotted in airports around the world talking about your company… but looking at your billboard, it makes no sense. I don’t understand what it’s there for.” Even as a brand awareness play, it fails because your logo is tiny in the corner or something. It’s you spent that much money on ads, and maybe a buck on messaging because it seems like with all that attention you just bought, you had nothing worthwhile to say. That’s the cardinal sin to me at least.

Sharone: Yeah. One thing that I found—and back to our community circuit and things that we’ve done historically—but that’s one thing that, you know, as a person comes from community, I’ve seen so much value, even from the smaller events. I mean, today, like with Covid and the pandemic and everything has changed all the equilibrium and the way things are happening. But some meetups are getting smaller, face-to-face events are getting smaller, but I’ve had people telling me that even from small, 30 to 40 people events, they’ll go up and they’ll do a talk and great, okay, a talk; everybody does talks, but it’s like, kind of, the hallway track or the networking that you do after the talk and you actually talk to real users and hear their real problems and you tap into the real community. And some people will tell me like, I had four concrete leads from a 30-person meet up just because they didn’t even know that this was a real challenge, or they didn’t know that there was a tool that solves this problem, or they didn’t understand that this can actually be achieved today.

Or there’s so many interesting technologies and emerging technologies. I’m privileged to be able to be at the forefront of that and discover it all, and I if I could, I would drop names of all of the awesome companies that work for me, that I work with, and just give them a shout out. But really, there’s so many amazing companies doing, like, developer metrics, and all kinds of troubleshooting and failure analysis that’s, like, deeply intelligent—and you’re going to love this one: I have a Git replacement client apropos to your closing keynote of DevOpsDays 2015—and tapping into the communities and tapping into the real users.

And sometimes, you know, it’s just a matter of really understanding how developers are working, what processes look like, what workflows look like, what teams look like, and being able to architect your products and things around real use cases. And that you can only discover by really getting in front of actual users, or potential users, and learning from them and feedback loops, and that’s the little core behind DevRel and developer advocacy is really understanding your actual users and your consumers, and encouraging them to you know, give you feedback and try things, and beta programs and a million things that are a lot more experiential today that help you understand what your users need, eventually, and how to actually architect that into your products. And that’s the important part in terms of marketing. And it’s a whole different marketing set. It’s a whole different skill set. It’s not talking at people, it’s actually… ingesting and understanding and hearing and implementing and bringing it into your products.

Corey: And it takes time. And you have to make yourself synonymous with a painful problem. And those problems are invariably very point-in-time specific. I don’t give a crap about log aggregation today, but in two weeks from now, when I’m trying to chase down 18 different Lambdas function trying to figure out what the hell’s broken this week, I suddenly will care very much about log aggregation. Who was that company that’s in that space that’s doing interesting things? And maybe it’s Cribl, for example; they do a lot of stuff in that space and they’ve been a good sponsor. Great.

I start thinking about those things in that light because it is—when I started having these problems, it sticks in your head and it resonates. And there’s value and validity to that, but you’re never going to be able to attribute that either, which is where people often lose their minds. Because for anything even slightly complicated—you’re going to be selling things to big bank—great, good on you. Most of those customers are not going to go and spin up a trial in the dead of night. They’re going to hear about you somewhere and think, “Ohh, this is interesting.”

They’re going to talk about a meeting, they’re going to get approval, and at that point, you have long since lost any tracking opportunity there. 
So, the problem is that by saying it like this, as someone who is a publisher, let’s be very clear here, it sounds like you’re trying to justify your entire business model. I feel like that half the time, but I’ve been reassured by people who are experts in doing these things, like, oh, yeah, we have data on this; it’s working. So, the alternative is either I accept that they’re right or I sit here and arrogantly presume I know more about marketing than people who’ve devoted their entire careers to it. I’m not that bold. I am a white guy in tech, but not that much.

Sharone: Yeah, I mean, the DevRel measurement problem is a known problem. We have people like [unintelligible 00:20:21] who have written about it. We have [Sarah Drasner 00:20:23], we have a million people that have written really, really great content about how do you really measure DevRel and the quality. And one of the things that I liked, Philipp Krenn, the dev advocate at Elastic once said in one of his talks that, you know, “If you’re measuring your developer advocates on leads, you’re a marketing organization. If you’re measuring them on revenue, you’re a sales organization. It’s about reach, engagement, and awareness, and a lot of things that it’s much, much harder to measure.”

And I can say that, like, once upon a time, I used to try and attribute it at Cloudify. Like, I remember thinking, like, “Okay, maybe I could really track this back to, you know, the first touch that I actually had with this user.” It’s really, really difficult, but I do remember, like, when we used to go out into the events and we were really active in the OpenStack community, in the DevOps community, and many other things, and I remember, like, even after events, like, you get all those lead gen emails. All I would say now is, like, “Hey, if you missed us at the booth, you know, and you want still want a t-shirt, you know, reach out and I’ll ship it to you.” And some of those eventually, after we continued the relationship, and we, you know, when we were friends and community friends, six months later, when they moved to their next role at their next job, they were like, “Oh, now I have an opportunity to use Cloudify and I’m going to check it out.”

And it’s very long relationship that you have to cultivate. It has to be, you know, mutual. You have to be, you have to give be giving something and eventually is going to come back to you. Good deeds come back to you. So, I—that’s my credo, by the way, good deeds come back to you. I believe in that and I try to live by that.

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Corey: So, I have one last question for you and it is pointed and the reason I buried it this deep in the episode is so that if I open with it, I will get letters and I’m hoping to get fewer of them. But I met you, again, at DevOpsDays Tel Aviv, and it was glorious. And then you said, “This is fun. Come help me organize it next year.”

And I, like an idiot said, “Sure, that sounds awesome because I love going to conferences and it’s great. So, what’s involved?” “Oh, a whole bunch of meetings.” “Okay, great.” “And planning”—things I’m terrible at—“Okay.” And then the big day finally arrives where, “Great, when do we get to get on stage and tell a story?” Like, “That’s the neat part. We don’t.” So, I have to ask, given that it is all behind-the-scenes work that is fairly thankless unless you really screw it up because then it’s very visible, what is the point of being so involved in the community?

Sharone: Wow, that’s a big question, Corey.

Corey: It really is.

Sharone: [laugh].

Corey: Because you’ve been involved in community for a long time and you’re very good at it.

Sharone: It’s true. It’s true. Appreciate it, thank you. So, for me, first of all, I enjoy, kind of, the people aspect of it, absolutely. And that people aspect of it actually has played out in so many different ways.

Corey: Oh, you mean great people, and also me.

Sharone: [laugh]. Particularly you, Corey, and we will bring you back. [laugh]. And we will make sure you chop wood and carry water because eventually it’ll fill your soul, you’ll see. [laugh] one of the things that really I have had the privilege and honor, and having come out of, like, kind of all my community work is really the network I’ve built and the people that I’ve met.

And I’ve learned so much and I’ve grown so much, but I’ve also had the opportunity to connect people, connect things that you wouldn’t imagine, un—seemingly-related things. So, there are so many friends of mine that have grown up with me in this community, it’s been already ten years now, and a lot of folks have now been going on to new adventures and are looking to kickstart their new startup and I can connect them to this investor, I can connect them to this other person who is maybe a good, you know, partner for their startup, and hiring opportunities, and something—I’ve had this, like, privilege of kind of being able to connect Israel to the outer world and other things and the global kind of community, and also bring really intelligent folks into the community. And this has just created this amazing flywheel of opportunity that I’m really happy to be at the center of. And I think I’ve grown as a person, I think our community has grown, has learned, and there’s a lot of value in that, I think, yeah. We got to meet wonderful folks like you, Corey. [laugh].

Corey: It has its moments. Again, you’re one of those rarities in that it’s almost become a trope in VC land where VCs always like, “How may I be useful?” And it’s this self-serving transparent thing. Every single time you have deigned to introduce me to someone, it’s been a productive conversation and I’m always glad I took the meeting. That is no small thing.

A lot of people say, “I’m good at community,” which is sort of cover for, “I’m not good at anything,” but in your case, it—

Sharone: [laugh]. [I’m an entrepreneur 00:24:48].—

Corey: Is very much not true. Oh, yeah. I’m a big believer that ‘entrepreneur’ and ‘hero’ and other terms like that are things people call you; you don’t call yourself that. It always feels weird for, “Oh, he’s an entrepreneur.” It’s like, that’s a pretty lofty word for shitposting, but okay, we’ll roll with it.

It doesn’t work that way. You’ve clearly invested long-term in a building reputation for yourself by building a name for yourself in the space, and I know that whenever you reach out to me as a result, you are not there to waste my time or shill some bullshit. It is always something that is going to, even if I don’t love every aspect of it or agree with the core of the message you’re sending, great, it is never not going to be worth my time, which is why I’m so glad I got the chance to talk to you this show.

Sharone: I appreciate that. It’s something that I really believe in, I don’t want to waste people’s time and I really only will connect folks or only really will reach out to someone if I do think that there’s something meaningful for both sides. It’s never only what’s in it for me, also. I also want to make sure that there’s something in it for the other person and it’s something that makes sense and it’s meaningful for both sides. I’ve had the opportunity of meeting such interesting folks, and sometimes it’s just like, “You must meet. [laugh]. You will love each other.” You will have so much to do together or it’s so much collaboration opportunity.

And so yeah, I really am that type of person. And I’ll even say from a personal perspective, you know, I know a lot of people, and I’ve even been asked from the flip side, “Okay, is this a toxic manager? Or is this a, you know, a good hire? Is this”—and I tried to provide really authentic input so people make the right decisions, or make, you know, the right contacts, or make—and that’s something I really value. And I managed to build trust with a lot of really great folks—

Corey: And also me—

Sharone: —and it’s come back to me, also. And—[laugh] and particularly you, again. [laugh].

Corey: If people want to learn more about how you see the world and the space and otherwise bask in your wisdom, where’s the best place to find you?

Sharone: So, I’m on Twitter as @shar1z, which is SharoneZ. Basically, everyone thinks it’s such a smart, or I don’t know what, like, or an esoteric screen name. And I’m like, no, it’s just my name, I just—the O-N-E is… the one. [laugh].

So yes, shar1z on Twitter, but also my website,, you can reach out, there’s a contact form there. You can find me on the web anywhere—LinkedIn. Reach out, I answer almost all my DMs when I can. It’s very rare that I don’t answer DMs. Maybe there’ll be a slight lag, but I do. And I really do like when folks reach out to me. I do like it when people try and make contact.

Corey: And you can also be found, of course, wherever find DevOps products are sold, on stage apparently.

Sharone: [laugh]. The DevOps community, that’s right. @TLVCommunity, @DevOpsDaysTLV—don’t out me. All those are—yes, those are also 
handles that I run on Twitter, it’s true.

Corey: Excellent.

Sharone: So, when you see them all retweeting the same tweet, yes, it’s happening within same five minutes, it’s me.

Corey: Oh, that would have made it way easier to go viral. My God, I should have just thought of that earlier.

Sharone: [laugh].

Corey: Thank you so much for your time. I appreciate it.

Sharone: Thank you, Corey, for having me. It’s been a privilege and honor being on your show and I really do think that you are doing wonderful things in the cloud space. You’re teaching us, and we’re all learning, and you—keep up the good work.

Corey: Well, thank you. I appreciate that.

Sharone: I also want to add that on proposed marketing and whatever, I do actually listen to all of your openings of all of your shows because they’re not fluffy and I like that you do, like, kind of a deep explanation, a deep technical explanation of what your sponsoring product does, and it gives a lot more insight into why is this important. So, I think you’re doing that right. So, anybody who’s sponsoring this show, listen. Corey knows what he’s doing.

Corey: Well, thank you. I appreciate that. Yay, “I know what I’m doing.” That one’s going in the testimonial kit. My God.

Sharone: [laugh]. That’s the name of this episode, “Corey knows what he’s doing.”

Corey: We’re going to roll with it, you know. No take-backsies. Sharone Zitzman, Chief Manual Reader at RTFM Please. I’m Cloud Economist
Corey Quinn and this is Screaming in the Cloud. If you’ve enjoyed this podcast, please leave a five-star review of your podcast platform of choice, or if it’s on the YouTubes smash the like and subscribe buttons, whereas if you’ve hated this show, exact same thing—five-star review wherever you happen to find it, smash both the buttons—but also leave an insulting comment telling me that I’m completely wrong which then devolves into an 18-page diatribe about exactly how your nonsense, bullshit product is built and works.

Sharone: [laugh].

Corey: If your AWS bill keeps rising and your blood pressure is doing the same, then you need The Duckbill Group. We help companies fix their AWS bill by making it smaller and less horrifying. The Duckbill Group works for you, not AWS. We tailor recommendations to your business and we get to the point. Visit to get started.

Announcer: This has been a HumblePod production. Stay humble.

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