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Developers Hate Marketing

Earlier this week we attended the Developer Marketing Summit by the Product Marketing Alliance, and there was a lot to learn!

If you’ve been part of the developer community for any length of time, you’ve probably heard that developers don’t like marketing. Well, if there’s one point that most speakers seemed to agree on, it was that this is true, but only if you’re talking about traditional marketing efforts like ads or aggressive email campaigns.

Here at Okteto, we’ve always believed in the concept of Developer Experience (DX) over traditional marketing, which is why we spend our time working on relevant content, videos, tutorials, and building a community. We’re also always interested in hearing feedback from our community on what they like best.

If, like us, you’re also building a product for developers, here are some tips for making sure your marketing efforts are effective for your audience.

Developers want content that is educational or inspirational

Developers don’t like fluff pieces, and they won’t stick around for irrelevant content. Your content should teach them how to use your product effectively, or it should show them cool things they can do with your product once they know how to use it.

We also heard the message loud and clear that developers don’t want a lot of marketing emails. Newsletters with good and useful content are welcome, but sales emails won’t get very far with a group that is anti-spam in nature.

Developers want community

Building developer communities was a big topic at the conference. It’s not just about building new communities, but also about engaging with existing communities. If a strong community around what you’re offering already exists, be a part of those conversations as well. It’s also important to remember that a community takes time to build and success won’t happen overnight. Be authentic, helpful, and engaging, and your community will continue to grow.

Invest in DX

Rather than spend a bunch of time and money on things like ads (which developers rarely click on), invest in building a great Developer Experience instead!

This looks like content that is focused on developers, community, and also the product itself. If your product provides a great experience for the developers using it, they will naturally share it with others. Developers are much more likely to try something new based on recommendations from other developers, rather than seeing a random ad and clicking on it.

Another way to ensure a positive DX is to get feedback from those using your product. Developers enjoy helping improve products they already enjoy using. However, if you’re going to ask for feedback, you have to be ready to take action on what you learn!

What are some lessons you’ve learned as you market to developers? Do you agree that developers hate marketing? Join us over at Twitter @oktetohq and let’s chat about ways you use both marketing and community in your business.

Melissa WilliamsView all posts

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