Developer marketing examples

The best dev tool marketing campaigns, designs, and copy
that I found on the internet

copy
developer experience
landing page
hero section

Header design from Mux

Mux does a few things beautifully in this header.

Value proposition:

  • The "what" is explained right away: "Video API", "live and on-demand experiences"
  • Super clear on persona "developers" and job to be done "build online video"

Animated visual that is really good for dev tools:

  • that have an API/SDK
  • that have a UI where the results of that API calls go
blog
call to action

Blog CTA from Novu

The idea behind this conversion play is to put an "Aside CTA" that is unrelated to the content early in the article.

And get that clicked.

But obviously, if you do that it will be pushy and intrusive.

So?

Nevo David from Novu shared this idea on one of the podcasts:

  • Put a small section right after the introduction
  • Add memes to catch attention and disarm the "I hate ads" reader (a little bit)
  • Make an explicit ask. Make it human and somewhat vulnerable

Btw, Nevo says that cat memes work best.

developer experience
copy
pricing

Start Free Pricing plan from CircleCi

Why not highlight your free plan?

Most companies highlight their middle paid plan saying it is "most popular".

First thing, yeah, sure it is your most popular plan.

But more importantly, most visitors will not convert to your paid plans right away.

So why not try and capture as many devs as possible on the free plan?

If they like your dev tool there are many things you can do to convert some of them to paid plans.

But if they leave that pricing page and go with some other free tool, you are not converting anyone.

@CircleCI highlights free and they are in the mature, competitive market of CI CD tools.

Idk, it really does make a lot of sense to me.

If people need more advanced features they will choose higher plans anyway.

But if they want to get things started with the basic plans they will choose free or go elsewhere.

I'd rather have them choose free than none.  

campaigns
github
product led growth

GitHub PR growth loop from Snyk

Beautiful growth loop that uses GitHub PRs to spread awareness even internally in the org.

And just one dev needs to sign up for the product to start it.

Works like this:

  • New user signs up for Snyk
  • they connect their GitHub account
  • Snyk finds vulnerabilities in their repositories
  • Snyk-bot creates Snyk-branded PR to fix them
  • other devs in the org see and interact with the PR
  • some follow links to check out Snyk
  • some of them sign up for Snyk

Heard about it on Lenny's podcast episode with Ben Williams (the story starts at 20:53)

... and then signed up to see the actual PR.

I really love this one as it allows you to spread inside the organization even if everything is on-prem and you never get to see it.

Those PRs are just working behind the scenes doing marketing for you.

Brilliant!

developer experience
social proof
landing page

Social proof from TailwindCSS homepage

Understand who is reading. Add social proof that speaks to them.

Social proof is about showing people/companies who are similar to the reader that they got success with the tool.

Company logos can be good if your reader knows and likes those companies.
But if those are random companies, I am not sure how much value does it bring.

Devs care what other devs who use your product have to say about it.
That's why I like testimonials.

Not the crafted, clean ones with features and values.
But the real stuff. Real devs sharing real stories.

Bonus points for "Okay, I get the point" button copy.
It changes from "Show more" when you click.

Nice!

developer experience
github
call to action
social proof

Sticky "star us on GitHub" from Posthog

OK, the best way of getting GitHub stars is by creating a project that solves real developer problems well.

I assume you have done that already and the metric that people love to hate ⭐ is growing organically.

What do you do now?

I mean you got to ask people in one way or another.

Many companies put it in their navbars or hello bars.

Posthog adds a sticky banner at the bottom of the page that follows you as you scroll.

It also shows a start count which at their size (11k + stars) acts as social proof.

You can close it and the next time you visit the page it will be off not to push too much.

I like the concept makes sense to test it out this way imho.

ads
brand
billboards

vercel billboard ad

Just an awesome billboard/ad format for a dev too company coming from Vercel.

What I like about it is:

  • you catch attention with something different
  • those who are in your audience get it, maybe they feel more seen
  • you reinforce that your brand is very developer-focused
  • you don't forget to put the "obvious" branding in there
  • and there is a CTA to get people to do something

Simple and beautiful.

Btw, they actually run similar ads on Reddit and it makes a lot of sense IMHO.

developer experience
github
hero section

GitHub Repository Readme.md design from Prisma

I like how it has a proper "hero section" feel to it but it adds a developer-focused twist:

  • Explains in simple words what the tool is
  • Adds a lot of navigational links (website, docs, examples, blog)
  • Then it goes into detail about what it does

The rest of the Readme is great as well but the hero section is gold imho.

social posts
product launch

Vercel product announcement on Linkedin

I like the simplicity of this announcement.

What: "Vercel Edge Middleware"

Why: "Start delivering dynamic, personalized content without sacrificing end-user performance."

Visual supports this but is super minimal.

campaigns
social posts
swag
linkedin

Big prize swag campaign from NannyML

Is it better to do one big prize or many small prizes?

This is a decision you have to make when thinking about running a swag campaign.

Turns out that a  small number of huge prizes can get you way better ROI on the same budget.

And NannyML has done it brilliantly here.

They are a monitoring tool and they give away monitoring setup.

This is something that actually can go viral. And it did.

swag
conferences

Swag with CTAs from Union.ai

How to get more ROI from your dev conference booth? -> Add obvious CTAs.

Yes, giveaway stuff.

Yes, make it nice and branded.

Yes, make it funny, shareable, and cool.

But give people an easy and obvious option to give back and support you and your goals.

I really liked how Union.ai approached it at the recent MLOps World conference:

  • A simple folded paper info with CTAs right next to your giveaway
  • CTAs to GitHub stars, Linkedin, and Slack community

Just a nice little tactic but I bet it squeezed a bit more of that ROI juice that we all need in 2023 ;)

copy
developer experience
call to action
landing page
hero section

Header content CTA from Plaid

Sometimes you have an article, report, or event you want to drive people to.

And it is important that they read it.

What Plaid did here is an interesting way of putting it right in the hero section without making it overwhelming or distracting.

I like it.

ads
reddit
social posts

Meme Reddit ad from Zesty

Developer-focused Reddit ad. 33 upvotes, 30 comments.

So @Zesty is a company that targets devops folks and helps with cloud cost optimization.

And they decided to run Reddit ads.

So they:

  • Chose the format that works with devs on (some) subreddits
  • The funny message that connects to their main value prop
  • Made it clear that they solve that problem in the copy
  • Added clear(ish) branding

And they got 33 upvotes and 30 comments.

Some of the comments were technical.

One comment that got 67 upvotes was actually

"Okay, this ad is pretty funny"

And I agree, this is a pretty funny ad that I am sure brought them some brand awareness and clicks.

developer experience
landing page

Before / After design from AhoyConnect

Very nice design solution on the homepage.

Classic communication of the world before using your tool and the world after.

Really liked how it felt messy before.

And is nice and clean after.

ads
reddit

Stack trace ad from Sentry.io

I really like this Reddit ad from Sentry.

Powerful simplicity.

They don't do:

• long value-based copy
• fancy, in-your-face CTAs
• creative that feels "professional

They go for:

• focus on the pain
• creative that speaks to that pain
• low-key CTA ", get Sentry" rather than "Get Sentry Free!"
• building rapport with the dev with copy "If seeing this in React makes you 🤮"

And through simplicity and focus they deliver a message:

• Stack traces in React are not much fun
• They seem to understand that
• Sentry helps you solve that

Good format.

developer experience
landing page

Auth0 developer portal Getting started cross-section

This body cross-section is just awesome.

It makes it obvious that I can connect it to my workflow.

This is a must for dev-focused pages imho.

What I like:

- there are many integrations listed

- I can see the code and that it is easy to use

- The CTA is to integration docs, awesome!

video
landing page

Streamlit explainer video

Streamlit has an amazing explainer.

They show how to go from:

  • Writing your first line of code
  • To creating data dashboard
  • To deploying it across the web

In 42 seconds.

No audio, just code and a simplified result window.

Amazing stuff.

developer experience
hero section

Pricing page header from Mux

Many dev tools have complex pricing and packaging.

Say your dev tool/platform has many product offerings.

And you offer usage-based pricing but also enterprise plans but also per-product options, and additional customizations.

But you want to present it in a way that is manageable for the developer reading your pricing page.

Mux solves it this way:

  • they direct people to the proper parts of the page in the header
  • they give self-served prospects a link to the calculator and metering
  • they give enterprise/high volume people a "talk to us" CTA
  • they give people who want just a single tool (not the whole platform) a CTA to a dedicated pricing page
  • they squeeze in a "start free" CTA + info about free credits
  • they give navigation to FAQ, features table, and the calculator

Extended headers on pricing pages are not common as they add friction.

But sometimes adding friction is exactly what you need to do.

Mux managed to make this page (and their offering) easy to navigate by adding a little bit of friction at the beginning.

Maybe you don't browse plans right away but at least you don't waste energy (and attention) on the parts of the page that doesn't matter to you.

Good stuff.

developer experience
video
youtube

Hand-drawn tutorial video style from Robusta

I really love this hand-drawn feel.

It makes it super authentic.

Also, starting from scratch (not a ready diagram) makes following it more fun and less overwhelming.

Great stuff.

BTW the tool used for this is called excalidraw.com

developer experience
copy
call to action
landing page
hero section

Auth0 developers portal header

Great above the fold

The subheader explains the value proposition.

Header handles major objections:

  • is it easy to implement?
  • can I extend it?

Then we have 3 CTAs but they are super focused on devs: 

  • Signup (using action-focused copy)
  • See docs which is exactly what many devs want to do before signing up
  • See examples, again exactly what most devs want to see before signing up

Then it goes on to explain how it works with a simple, static graphic.

This whole thing makes me feel peaceful.

copy
landing page
hero section

Auth0 header copy

Classic Auth0 campaign coming back in 2023.

I love how simple and powerful this message is.

You can outsource a dull but important problem of authentications to them.

That is all the say.

But it is enough to get you interested and understand what they do.

social posts
twitter

Hand written diagram tweet format

Share an idea about a new concept.

Explain the concept in simple terms.
Back it up with a visualization.

I like the "hand-written" style of this viz that makes it less formal.

developer experience
navbar
github

"Star us on GitHub" navbar design from Supabase

A nice example of making navbar more developer-focused.

Ask for GitHub stars with a link to the repository.

It does three things:

  • shows where your repository is and that you have something I can see
  • lets me see that you have a popular repository
  • reminds me that I can star it (if I am a returning user)
copy
campaigns
hacker news
product launch

fly.io Hacker News launch description

Hacker News developer audience doesn't love promotion to put it mildly.

But some dev tool companies manage to make this audience their biggest ally.

Fly.io is one of those companies.

And they had a super successful product launch a few years back.  

So how did they do it?

  • "Who"
  • "Problem"
  • "What" and "How"
  • *Speak "dev to dev". Spec no fluff.

Let's go through these in detail.

Who are you? Why should I listen?

  • show your face
  • Say who are you and
  • hint at why should I trust you

What is the problem really?

  • Describe how you discovered the problem
  • Agitate that pain, explain technicalities deeply
  • Share your stories dealing with that problem (ideally obvious solutions that didn't work)

What does your product do and how does it work?

  • Say what it is, like a technical spec.
  • Say what it does, like really, low-level job to be done
  • Explain how you solve it, be deeply technical

Speak "dev to dev"

  • use technical jargon and relevant terms: "docker image", "global router", "VMs", "root filesystem"
  • don't explain like I am 5, explain like I am 5 years in my dev journey "we convert docker images into a root filesystem, boot tiny VMs..."
  • Don't use words that don't really mean anything and just take space. Speak MECE (mutually exclusive, collectively exhaustive)

By doing it this way you have a chance of gaining love from the prolific HN crowd.

Fly.io definitely did, and is still reaping rewards with constant HN exposure.

copy
call to action
landing page
hero section

Great developer-focused CTAs from Plaid

Action-focused copy is usually better than "sign up".

But sometimes it is hard to find a good copy for this.

Some teams like Vercel or Auth0  do "Start building "  

But that doesn't always work.

I really like this "Get API keys" CTA copy.

Now for the Hero section I really like those two CTAs:

  • Main CTA: Sign up, again expressed with action-focused "Get API keys" copy
  • Secondary CTA: See docs, I like how "See API docs" makes it even more concrete.

Really great job imho.

social posts
twitter

"Divide people" tweet format

Say what we are all thinking.

This tweet is great as it states something that most of us feel.
It is something that you may have had a discussion about with someone recently.
You might have fought about one tool or another.
But at the end of the day tools don't matter.

You can share it with someone as:

  • sorry, we had a stupid fight
  • rub it in your face :)

social posts
linkedin

Toolstack diagram post on Linkedin

Architecture diagrams are awesome.

They have this smell of value that makes you want to share them with others.

This one is particularly good-looking imho.

campaigns
seo
product led growth
free tools

Snyk Advisor SEO growth loop

Great example of programmatic SEO from Snyk.

They created a page called snyk advisor.

It is a repository of pages about open-source packages.

Each page is created automatically out of publicly available information.

Enhances it with Snyk-generated security scans and reports.

It builds awareness for other Snyk products in the security space.

A lot of those pages rank high in google for the {package} keyword which is incredible.

And when people land on the package report page the CTAs to Snyk products push conversions.

social posts
twitter

"Nostalgic" tweet format

Make it about belonging.

Something some people can deeply connect with.
Nostalgia is a very strong emotion.

It feels good to be a part of something as well.

blog
call to action
seo

JTBD blog post from WorkOS

This is how you write dev tool JTBD blog posts.

Masterclass of writing this type of content from @WorkOS imho.

Deep 2000 word guide that explains how to add webhooks the your application.

Goes into examples, best practices, everything.

One thing it doesn't do?

It doesn't push the product left right and center.

In fact, the only CTA is hidden in the very last sentence of the very last section.

Why?

Because most likely, the reader's intent is around understanding the problem at this point.

They want to understand what adding webhooks to their app really means from the practitioner's standpoint.

And they did that beautifully.

Could you have pushed the product a bit more? Sure.

But by answering the actual questions devs came here for they managed to build trust.

And I am sure got their fair share of click-throughs and signups anyway.

swag
conferences

Swag donations

What if your next swag was a donation? That's what Cockroach Labs did.

Ok, so the typical way of doing swag at a conference is to give out t-shirts for badge scans.

And then folks either wear them or throw them away (or keep wearing them when they should have thrown them away but that is another story).

After the conference you take leftovers with you, ship them home or, you guessed it, throw them away.

A lot of throwing away for a badge scan if you ask me.

Cockroach Labs decided to do something completely different.

They donate a few $ to a great charity @Women Who Code for every badge scan they get.
I love it.

An extra benefit (and where the idea originated) is that with this, you can do virtual badge scans too.

developer experience
landing page

Feature tabs header pattern from PostHog

Which feature/product to show in the header?

How about all?

Many dev tool products are feature-rich. And you want to show those awesome features.

But it is easy to overwhelm the reader when showing so much info.

That is why I really like the header tabs pattern that @PostHog uses:

  • You have clickable tabs with product names + descriptive icons
  • Copy + Supporting visual (UI, code etc) and a call to action in each tab
  • Supporting visuals are in vastly different colors to make it obvious you switch tabs.

This pattern is especially powerful when you want to communicate completeness.

Posthog definitely wants to do that. If you are on that train I'd strongly suggest considering/testing it.

developer experience
copy
docs
landing page
hero section

Header search docs CTA from TailwindCSS

"See docs" is one of my favorite secondary CTA on dev-focused pages.

TailwindCSS takes it to the next level by inserting docs search right into the header CTA.

This takes devs directly to the page they are interested in rather than have them try and find things for themselves.

They could have searched the docs in the docs, of course.

But this is just this slightly more delightful developer experience that TailwindCSS is known for.

developer experience
docs
hero section

Docs header diagram from Hopsworks

A docs header worth a thousand words.

For a dev platform or infrastructure tool it is hard to explain where you fit, what you do quickly, and how you connect to existing components quickly.  

Hopsworks docs team does a great job here.

So instead of using words, they use a diagram:

  • You get a solid overview of where your tool/platform fits larger context
  • It shows you which part of the workflow/infra the platform solves
  • Every part of the diagram is a clickable docs link
  • Shows where you can deploy it
  • Shows what backend you can use.

All of that in a single diagram.

Now that is a dev-focused header visual.

copy
developer experience
social proof
landing page
hero section

Landing page header from MedusaJS

There are many things that I like about it.

  • A clear value proposition: Explains what it is: an open-source alternative to a well-known product Shopify.
  • Shows code and what the code does visually. Great product explanation.
  • Adds a social proof with "#1 JS ecom platform on GitHub:". When you have 16k stars you should use it!

Overall with very little effort, I understand what it is, and what it does.

And I can go and dig deeper for myself or spread the word with my circles.

campaigns
video

Cloudflare TV

A freaking developer TV.

They took this "be a media company" to the next level.

They created entire TV around their company, audience, and products.

I respect people really going all in.

copy
developer experience
call to action
landing page
hero section

Auth0 developer portal Hero section CTAs

There are three CTAs actually.

Common knowledge suggests doing one, maybe two, they do 3:

  • build
  • see docs
  • see examples

Devs want relevant and practical.

Also, devs love docs and examples and check them before signing up.

Action-focused copy is great as well.

copy
developer experience
social proof
landing page
hero section

Powerful landing page messaging from Flighcontrol

Simple and powerful messaging.

They say what they do. Zero fluff.

They make it easy for devs by explaining how they are different than (obvious) competitors.

They add a little developer-focused social proof.

social posts
twitter

"Disagree with status quo" tweet format

Articulate a deeper thought.

Sometimes you want to tell the world something but you don't know how.
When somebody articulates what you were thinking you just want to share that with them.

This is what this tweet is about.
A deeper thought with some parallel examples to back it up.

developer experience
landing page

1-2-3 how-to section from Appsmith

How easy it is to get started is a big conversion factor for any dev tool.

Devs want to test things out and if it is hard to do they will be gone testing a competitor that made it easy.

And so a good how-to section on your homepage can make a big difference in getting devs to that first experience.

Appsmith does it beautifully with their 1-2-3 How-to section:

  • 1-2-3 format: Connect data -> Drag and drop -> Customize with code
  • Interactive GIFs with code snippets and UI elements
  • CTAs to integrations, widget library, and docs
  • Dev testimonial at the end to make it real

It is so engaging and just beautifully designed. And the CTA to additional resources like integrations, widget library, and docs make the message land. I do believe it is easy to set this up.

Great pattern to copy-paste imho.

docs
hero section

Stripe docs starts with one product

What to say when you have many products? 

Dev tool companies over time grow from one product to suite of products to platforms with products built on top of the core one.

The result is that it is harder to communicate without going full-on fluff mode (my fav "built better software faster").

But for most companies, there is this core capability/product where people start.  The entry product. Why not use that?

I really liked what Stripe did on their docs page here:

  • They have maaaany products: billing, tax, radar, identity etc.  
  • But all of them are built on top of their core payments product
  • So they focus on getting folks to start with the payments
  • And make it clear that there are many other products

Even though this is docs, the same applies to homepages and other dev comms.

If you have many products, figure out what is the most important one, the one where most people enter. Focus on that. "Upsell" to other products later.

swag
copy
brand

"It doesn't suck" shirt from Bare Bones

A classic "It doesn't suck" campaign.

Afaik, Barebones ran the first version of this campaign 20 years ago and it was a huge success.

It is so simple, it just speaks to that inner skeptic.

It doesn't say we are the best, we revolutionize software.

It says it doesn't suck.

That is way more believable and makes me think that there is a dev on the other side of that copy.

And there is something cool about this message that makes me want to wear it to the next conference.

Good stuff.

copy
pricing
developer experience

Retool pricing page copy

Most dev tools have two deployment options:

  • SaaS
  • On-prem / private cloud

And then companies present it on their pricing page with some flavor of two tabs.

And you need to name them somehow. 

And how you describe those things sometimes adds confusion for your buyers:

  • You put “your server” > then does it scale to a more robust infra?
  • You put “on-prem" > then can I deploy on private AWS cloud?

I like how nice and simple solution Retool used on their pricing page:

  • "Cloud (we host)"
  • "Self-hosted (you host)"

Explicit, obvious and to the point.

Love it.

developer experience
landing page

How it works crossover from Mux

The problem with presenting API is that it is hidden. It gets the job done in the background.

So it is not "attractive" in the way some other dev tools can be.

But you can:

  • show the end result and how it gets the job done.
  • show how easy it is to use.
  • let people play with something interactive to make it real.

That is how Mux, video API, solves it.

Found this awesome crossover on their homepage.

They give you:

  • devvy language that just says what it does without high-level fluff
  • code, input/outputs
  • end result of your API call, to make it real
  • demo to get the feel real-time

Love it!

developer experience
navbar

Navbar product tab design from Posthog

How to design the navbar product tab? This is what @PostHog does 👇

Figuring out what to put in the navbar is tricky:

  • How should you name tabs
  • What should go where
  • Should you have "resources" or divide it

The "Product" tab is especially tricky.

It can get overloaded with a ton of content.

  • Some teams put docs, and product videos there.
  • Some show features, integrations, and code examples.
  • Some go with solutions and per person per industry pages.
  • Some just put everything in there ;)

I like how Posthog approached it:

  • They use the word "features". Most devs like it more than other options.
  • They show the data stack with which the tools integrate. That is an important obstacle handler pretty much always.
  • They include customers in the product tab. Most devs want to see the product and may not go to the "customers" tab. This is a nice way to add social proof and increase conversion to user stories pages.
  • They show customer logos and the results they got from the product. Again more social proof without clicking out.
  • They use "customer stories" rather than "case studies" which again feels more devy .

I like it.

copy
ads
linkedin
brand

Joke ad format with a transitional CTA from sdworx

Dorky joke right?

But it does two very important things beautifully.

It gets a smirk (from some people) and when it does you know you just moved someone closer to your brand.

It has a clear CTA which is hard to do with joke-format ads.

This subtle call to conversation/check us out does the job.

Love it!

social posts
video
linkedin

Vercel feature video on Linkedin

I like how they use the black dot to show the mouse movements in the UI.

Simple but powerful and clear.

copy
campaigns
vs competitor
blog

Convex vs Firebase blog

This is one of my favorite our dev tool vs competitor blog posts.

With these pages, you want to explain when you are better.

But you don't want to berate your competitor.

And above all, you want to help people make a decision.

Chances are (almost 100% ;)) that you are not better for every use case. And your developer audience knows it.

But there should be use cases, tool stacks, or situations when you are the best option.

Talk about those. Dev to dev.

@Convex did a great job in this post that I think can be a template for how to write these:

  • They start by saying what is the same. That sets the context.
  • Then they say good things about their competitor. Shows respect and understanding
  • They follow by listing 3 key differences/situations when you should consider them
  • And they go ahead and explain each of these differences deeply

After reading that post you are fairly convinced that if your situation matches the one described and if it makes sense to use it.

Love it.

developer experience
landing page

Feature section design from TailwindCSS

I love the design of this crossover section on the Tailwind homepage.

I see the code and the result next to each other.

I see how I can get that result with code.

It is interactive and catches my attention.

It makes me feel inspired.

Great job Tailwind team!

ads
linkedin
social proof

V7 "testimonial" ad on Linkedin

It's a nice template for ads on socials.

So you have:

  • Value
  • Testimonial about the value/benefit
  • Person
  • CTA

Ideally, I'd make it dark to stand out in the feed and make the CTA about that value as well.

But still, great ad imho.

brand
campaigns
ads
billboards

snowflake billboards

Ideating how to do dev tool billboards?

I like these from Snowflake.

Especially the customer showcase ones as the format can almost be copy-pasted ;)

One more interesting thing about those billboards though:

  • folks from Snowflake placed just a few of them strategically in the cities
  • And changed content of the billboard often

By doing that they seem to have billboards everywhere, fight ad fatigue, and stay top of mind.

Love it.

landing page
developer experience

Interactive feature tiles from clerk.dev

How to present many features at once?

Sometimes your dev tool has many features/products that you want to show.

❌ Showing all of them as separate sections doesn't work with more than 3. It just gets too long very quickly.

✅ You can go with the tabs pattern where each tab has copy+visual for a feature.

💡 But there is another option that makes a ton of sense when you have many features to show.

Interactive tiles of different sizes.

💚 I like the implementation of that pattern coming from Clerk:

  • Each tile is a combo of feature name + one-liner description + an interactive visual
  • When you hover over each tile it starts playing the visualization explaining the feature even more
  • Some of the tiles are bigger which makes the entire section more interesting. It could be one (core feature or differentiator) or a few if you present many.

That pattern can work really well on blogs or learning centers too but I think we're going to see more of it on dev tool websites.

campaigns

GitHub Skyline campaign

Very cool project.

You type in your GitHub name and see your history in 3d.

  • engaging 3d viz
  • cool music
  • button to share it on Twitter

And Voila!

You have an intrinsically viral brand awareness campaign.

Just brilliant.

video
youtube
campaigns
brand

"Between to Nerds" Video from SST

This is one of the most interesting content pieces I have seen in dev tools recently 👇

Comes from @SST and believe it or not is a comedy video created to promote integrations.

That's right.

So SST integrated with Astro and instead of creating "just another how-to use X+Y" video they created this:

  • A copy of "Between Two Ferns" comedy show
  • With one of the founders of Astro framework which they integrated recently
  • Where they don't really talk about integration too much ;)
  • And reportedly got a ton of signups from this

It was a fun brand play but got way more views than a tutorial ever could.

And it connected with their audience in a human way that will be remembered (and shared).

Nice.

developer experience
blog
call to action
social proof

Devy blog design from Bun

This is one of the more devy blog designs I've seen in a while.

It has this docs-like feel.

But is just a bit more fun and loose than most docs would allow.

Here is what I like:

  • smells like there could be value with code all over the place
  • shows visuals taken from another devy channel, Twitter/X
  • hints at social proof through Twitter/X engagement

And if your posts are code-heavy, then a docs-like experience is where you want to be anyway.

But you can spice it up with things that wouldn't fit the docs.

Like a Twitter/X embed or a meme.

developer experience

Updates modal from Discord

Modal with updates.

Adding a modal with "what happened lately" for users who come back to the app.

Good idea for re-activating users by showing new features or examples.

+ a link to a deeper resource.

copy
call to action
product tour
product led growth
landing page

Axiom "Playground" CTA

With infrastructure tools, it is notoriously difficult to show people the value quickly.

To really see it they would need to set up everything at their company infra, create dashboards for their use case, and so on. 

A lot of work.

That is why creating a sandbox experience is a good way of giving people a taste.

I like the way Axiom calls it a playground and says "Play with Axiom" and "Launch playground".

This copy is good because:

  • they acknowledge it isn't a real thing (but a playground)
  • it conveys that it will be interactive and you'll be able to click around
  • it makes it feel like less work and more, well play :)
copy
hero section
landing page

Snyk narrow initial positioning

In dev tools, you really can solve the problem for a narrow market and extend to adjacent markets over time.

Use that -> Snyk did.

Their value proposition stayed pretty much the same for 7 years!

"Find and fix vulnerabilities in open-source software you use."

But the market they served got so much bigger over time:

  • They started super narrow with just one Javascript framework, Node.js
  • They focused on solving that pain very well before moving to the entire Javascript language
  • Then to other popular languages like Ruby, Java, and Python
  • Then to the entire Open Source dependencies
  • Then fast forward to today and they do Open source + containers +IaC

Again, their core value prop is the same in 2023 as it was in 2016.

But their target market (and revenue share) grew by... a lot ;)

Isn't that just beautiful marketing-wise?

So the takeaway is this:

Start narrow, solve the problem, and extend to other frameworks/languages/tech can still work.

campaigns
hacker news

Early CockroachDB articles on Hacker News

𝗛𝗼𝘄 𝘁𝗼 𝗰𝗿𝗲𝗮𝘁𝗲 𝗴𝗼𝗼𝗱 𝘁𝗲𝗰𝗵𝗻𝗶𝗰𝗮𝗹 𝗰𝗼𝗻𝘁𝗲𝗻𝘁 𝘁𝗵𝗮𝘁 𝘁𝗵𝗲 𝗛𝗮𝗰𝗸𝗲𝗿 𝗡𝗲𝘄𝘀 𝗮𝘂𝗱𝗶𝗲𝗻𝗰𝗲 𝗹𝗶𝗸𝗲𝘀?

The general tip is simple. Create content that the HN audience finds interesting.

𝗧𝗵𝗮𝘁 𝘁𝘆𝗽𝗶𝗰𝗮𝗹𝗹𝘆 𝗺𝗲𝗮𝗻𝘀:

  • Something that feeds curiosity (how does X work, why did Y happen, what is it like to do Z)
  • Something real, transparent, and written in first person (real stories)
  • Something technical and focused on the dev or founder crowd

But how do you actually do that?

𝗢𝗻𝗲 𝗼𝗳 𝘁𝗵𝗲 𝗽𝗹𝗮𝘆𝗯𝗼𝗼𝗸𝘀 𝘁𝗵𝗮𝘁 𝘀𝗼𝗺𝗲 𝘁𝗲𝗰𝗵𝗻𝗶𝗰𝗮𝗹 𝗳𝗼𝘂𝗻𝗱𝗲𝗿𝘀 𝗱𝗲𝗽𝗹𝗼𝘆𝗲𝗱 𝘄𝗮𝘀 𝘁𝗵𝗶𝘀:

  • Get your technical founder or core developers to write articles
  • Those articles are focused on the technical challenges of building your product
  • Again, don't write what your product does but rather how you build it. Mistakes you made, ideas you tried, technical challenges you had to overcome.
  • Share real value with that dev audience. And to give people real value, you need to have folks who actually understand their problems. Those are typically senior devs/founders.
  • You will inevitably hint that you are building a product and the folks who are interested in your product and you will go deeper.  

That was exactly what folks from CockroachDB did at the beginning.  Heard about it on one of the episodes of the Unusual Ventures podcast with Peter Mattis from Cockroach Labs.

𝗘𝘅𝗮𝗺𝗽𝗹𝗲𝘀 𝘁𝗵𝗮𝘁 𝗵𝗶𝘁 𝘁𝗵𝗲 𝘁𝗼𝗽 𝗼𝗳 𝗛𝗡:

• "CockroachDB Stability Post-Mortem: From 1 Node to 100 Nodes"
• "Serializable, lockless, distributed: Isolation in CockroachDB"
• "How CockroachDB Does Distributed, Atomic Transactions"
 
Kudos Cockroach Labs team and thanks for sharing!

social posts
linkedin

Make {DevOps} cry post format

Make a {X} cry in 5 words or less.

Great Linkedin (or Twitter) post format.

This is one of those fantastic self-selecting mechanisms as well.

People who understand the joke are the people you are looking for.

You may get the exact people you want to follow your profile.

With a nicely targeted joke.

Love it.

navbar

Great navbar design from Auth0

Navbar is a hugely important conversion lever on the dev-facing website. I saw it move the needle by x times in some cases/conversion events.

So, what does a good one look like?

Auth0 did a great job on their developer portal. But the learnings can be applied to your marketing website too.

What I like:

  • They have an explicit division between docs and resources (you can do without it but I like it)
  • Community (with all the events, forums, support etc) is clearly emphasized and discoverable
  • When you click on the navbar tab you get an extensive mega menu with many options
  • Each item in the mega menu gets a one-sentence description of what you'll find there

That makes it easy for devs to explore. Without having to click out to see what each tab/item means. And when devs know what you mean they are more likely to actually click out. And convert.

call to action

Vercel NEXT.js conf registration CTA

How to promote your important company event? How about right there in the header.

A typical approach to promoting events on your site is to have them in the Hello bar (right above the navbar). This is a solid option of course.

But what if this is a super duper important event that you really want to push?

Put it in the header.

The header is the most viewed part of the most visited page on your site.

Doesn't get much better than that.

But you don't want to distract people from your value propositions and main CTAs too much.

How do you do that?

This is how Vercel did with last year's NEXT.js conf.

  • above the H1 headline so as not to break the flow
  • prominent but not more distracting than it needs to be
  • has conference logo, crystal clear copy, and an event CTA

Nice execution on that pattern.

free tools
seo

JSON Web Tokens from Auth0

Marketing through free tools is powerful. And Auth0 implemented it beautifully.

In an old article from Gonto I read about some free tools that Auth0 created years ago.

And those tools are still generating traffic and leads today.

And they are helpful to developers and make the Auht0 brand even more appreciated by the community.

One of those tools is JSON Web Token Debugger.

So how this works for them is this:

  • You understand that your target dev audience has a problem
  • You realize that helpful blog posts can only do so much
  • You create a small tool that helps solve that problem
  • You create content that explain the concept to help build SEO
  • You link out to that content on the home
  • You add links to your core product/events or other offers in the navbar
  • You wait for devs to come ;)

Now, Gonto suggested that is important to do it on a separate domain to make it less promotional.

I am not sold on that especially when I know there are companies like @VEED.IO that build "SEO tool clusters" in the /tools/ subfolder of their page and crush it in search.

But either way, if you can solve a real problem your target devs have, no matter how small, you should be able to get some developer love (and $) from the value you created.

social posts
ads
reddit

Funny Reddit ad from Aporia

An ad that doesn't feel like an ad.

I like that this is almost a meme.

But it still explains what the company does.

Love it.

social posts
twitter

"Education focused" tweet format

Explain a concept clearly.

Good visual with concrete numbers makes this example easy to understand.

Because it is beautifuly explained people want to share this with their network to be perceived as helpful (and smart).

video
youtube
ads
campaigns
brand

Postman "We did this" campaign video

How to do a dev-focused brand video and get 10M+ views?

Making a memorable brand video is hard.

Doing that for a boring tech product is harder.

Doing that to the developer audience is next level.

Postman managed to create not one but three of those brand videos that got from 4M to 10M youtube views.

The videos I am talking about are:

  • "I am gonna push some buttons"
  • "Together"
  • "We did this"

So what did they do right?

  • They are all short playful stories touching on values coming from a centralized API platform.
  • They hint at the motif of space which is a clear part of Postman's branding
  • They do show the actual UI of the product

Honestly, I am not exactly sure what special sauce they added but those are just great videos that you watch.

And I definitely remember them and the company which is exactly what you want to achieve with brand ads.

developer experience
call to action
blog

Great article in-text CTA from DigitalOcean

Adding CTA in dev-focused articles is hard.

You don't want to be too pushy, but you do want to get conversions.

DigitalOcean strikes a great balance with its in-text article CTA design.

They make this CTA look like an info box that you'd typically see in the documentation.

It is clear that it is a Digital Ocean CTA but it doesn't feel pushy.

It feels like a piece of potentially useful information.

Love it.

copy
landing page
hero section

Header copy from Supabase

Say what you do and how you do it.

What:

  • Supabase owns it with an "open-source firebase alternative"
  • They don't streamline project delivery or anything. 

How:

  • Value proposition around speed of set up
  • Then jargon that hits the spot with your ideal developers
  • Short, and to the point. 

CTA (bonus):

  • "Start your project" action-focused
  • Documentation. With devs, this is always a good alternative CTA
developer experience
call to action
blog

Developer-focused blog slide-in CTA from Snyk

An interesting option to push people to read the next article.

You use a slide-in triggered on a 75% scroll with a "read next" CTA in the bottom left.

On the aggressive side for sure but when the article you propose is clearly technical it could work.

And if your articles are not connected to the product explicitly you do need some ways to keep people reading and see more of your brand.

call to action
landing page

Posthog funny CTA

Beautiful mockery of classic conversion tactics from PostHog website.

So what do we have here:

  • "3 people would have..."
  • "Not endorsed by Kim K"
  • "Eco-Friendly"
  • "$0 FREE"
  • ">1 left at this price"
  • "Act now and get $0 off your first order"

I have to admit I chuckled ;)

And I bet many devs who don't think of marketing very highly chucked too.

That builds rapport. (hopefully) makes you one of the tribe rather than another faceless corpo.

BTW, they used it as a bottom of the homepage call to action.

I like it.

Most of the people who scrolled there are not going to buy anyway.

But they may share the website with someone who will.

social posts
twitter

Twitter code tweet format

Nice and clean code example.

Clear copy, what it does etc.

Calls to action with links to Github and website.

Really long code example which looks great when clicked on.

pricing
developer experience

Presenting flexible self-served plan from Resend

How to communicate the flexible part of your plan?

Many dev tools have 3 plans:

  • Free
  • Team
  • Enterprise

Especially the ones doing some flavor of product-led-sales or open-source go-to-market.

Now, the Team plan is often a self-served version.

And for many dev tools, this part is partially or entirely usage-based.

So how do you present it?

You can just have "+ what you use" and explain it in the big table below.

But if you have just one usage dimension then why not do it here?

Resend does it beautifully communicating right away that it starts at 20$ / month and grows with the amount of emails you send.

Very clear. Very nice.

social posts
linkedin

"Code + UI" post format from Aporia

Nice post format.
I like it for dev tools that have both API and UI components.
You show code and what it produces in one view.
You can add additional things to the vis part of it for more context.

ads
copy
vs competitor
campaigns
twitter

Vs competitor Twitter ad from Convex

VS competitor ads are hard to pull off with devs. Not impossible though. 👇

So the problem is that:

  • You want to list problems people have with the competing tool.
  • But you don't want to come off as too negative and aggressive.
  • And you want people to not think those are just "some bs claims to sell your tool"

@Convex does it really nicely here:

  • They start positively by acknowledging that some people do "Love Firebase"
  • They tag the competitor to build trust in the claims they are making
  • They list problems people have with the competitor explicitly in voice of customer: "request waterfalls", "weak react support", "managing end-to-end consistency"
  • And they link to a deeper vs competitor page for details

And even though this is by a "aggressive" competitor marketing hundreds of devs liked/bookmarked this tweet.

Good job!

developer experience
landing page

Multi-tab GIF cross section website design from Supabase

I like the design of this crosshead.

  • Starts with the gif to catch my attention
  • When tabs change the copy, CTA, gif change
  • The figs have a nice click cursor that shows what I am doing
  • CTA is very "silent", non-intrusive
pricing
developer experience

Very simple pricing from Userfront

How do you make your dev tool pricing simple?

I really like this one.

Saw someone share a pricing page from Userfront some time ago and really liked it. They changed it now but I really like the thinking behind the older version.

It is just remarkably simple while hitting all the boxes:

  • You have tiers aligned with buyer persona: Free, Self-served (team), Custom (enterprise)
  • Your usage metric is obvious (Monthly Active User)
  • For Enterprise you just go with "Contact us" CTA (which is what enterprise buyers expect anyway)

Just a very good baseline.

developer experience
copy
vs competitor
landing page
pricing

Competitor comparison page from New Relic

Sometimes your product just wins on price.

I like how New Relic owns it on this page:

  • They show you price comparison graphs
  • The CTAs are focused on helping you compare the prices
  • They use jargon specific to the category to drive the price argument: "peak usage", "overages and penalties", "SKUs"

After reading this I'd trust them to give me a solid price estimate and that it will likely be cheaper than Datadog.

Obviously price is not the only reason why we choose tools, but if that was a problem I had with Datadog, they have my attention.

blog
developer experience
call to action

Blog CTA from v7

Interesting dev blog CTA idea from V7.

CTAs in technical articles is a tricky subject:

  • Go too aggressive and "obviously an ad" and devs ignore it or get angry
  • Go too subtle and you may not get the readers attention at all

I like how V7 approached it here:

  • They add a separate (aside) section but it is subtle, feels like a part of the article
  • They use a GIF image creative that catches my attention and simply shows the product
  • They used various  anchor link CTAs. Interestingly these often get more clicks than buttons

What I'd change/test is making this CTA not a generic value prop but something closely connected to the rest of the article.

developer experience
blog
call to action

Article header from Teleport

There are a few developer experience gems here:

  • RSS feed: many devs love rss, let them consume your blog that way
  • Search: some devs will immediately know this article is not for them. Let them search and stay.
  • Clear branding: Some devs will read the article and leave. Make sure they at least remember your brand.

Also, their design is super clean, non-invasive, and simple which makes for easy content consumption and more developer love.

copy
blog
call to action

ShiftMag Newsletter CTA copy

Funny dev newsletter CTA. From shiftmag .dev by Infobip.

It starts with a chuckle-worthy:

"Sarcastic headline, but funny enough for engineers to sign up"

Then they follow up by disarming the "is that spam" and building more rapport with:

  • "Written by people, not robots - at least not yet."
  • "May or may not contain traces of sarcasm, but never spam."

They end with an alternative call to action. RSS feed.

Most newsletters don't do RSS.

But for many devs RSS feed is the preferred content subscription.

Great job!

call to action
blog

Aside CTA from ExportSDK

One of the top-performing conversion flows in dev-focused articles.

"Aside CTA" in the "How to do {jobs to be done}" article.

You know the drill:

  • Explain how to X without your tool
  • Add an "Aside" CTA showing that it can be done with your tool

And Export SDK executes it (almost) perfectly:

  • They subtly move you from article to CTA but show that the article ended
  • They explain what the tool does and what the offer is
  • They show a visual of how the tool solves it
  • And they give you a clear link to click

One thing that could be tested and changed is putting this "Aside CTA" mid-article and not at the end (tip from Martin Gontovnikas).

A good thing to try if you are running the "How to do {jbtd}" article strategy.

campaigns
copy
developer experience
ads
reddit

"We blew our budget on X" format

Funny ad, that makes fun of ads.

But it actually communicates that you don't care about the ads but more about something else, like:

  • docs
  • code examples
  • integration
  • backend
  • UI
ads
social posts
reddit

Reddit ad format from ClearML

Code-style ad format on Reddit.

Code can speak louder than words (sometimes).

It makes your value prop real and concrete to the right audience. 

campaigns
product led growth
free tools

Hacker News search by Algolia

Algolia gets over 80% of referral traffic from a single free tool they created called Search Hacker News.

But why does it work so well for them?

Hacker News doesn't really have a native search experience.

Algolia gives devs an amazing search experience out of the box.

So folks from Algolia created their own website where you can search Hackernews... with Algolia search engine.

Of course, when you click on "Search by Algolia" you get directed to the website and can learn how to set up a similar search, which you have just used yourself.

What I love about this:

  • solves a real problem for the audience Algolia is after (many software devs read hacker news)
  • it shows rather than tells how Algolia's search works. And it works amazingly.
  • it feels almost like an extension of HackerNews with the same brand colors and design.

And looking at the results it delivers.

brand
youtube

What is Segment video

Came across this classic What is Segment brand video while watching an interview with one of the folks behind it, Maya Spivak (she is awesome btw).

What I like about it is that:

• it is fun, not formal, builds rapport
• it introduces the core problem the tool solves
• it shows the tech and explains it in a way that is simple but not simplistic

And it follows a flavor of the classic AIDA format:

  • Introduce problem
  • Agitate it, make the viewer feel it
  • Explain obvious solutions + problems with it
  • Show how your product solves it
  • Tell people how to start

Putting all that in 90 seconds is hard.

And even though this video is 4 years old it could easily still work today IMHO.

Really solid baseline to s̶t̶e̶a̶l̶ get inspired by ;)

social posts
linkedin

"Big code" Linkedin post format with an interesting scroll stopper

I like how this starts with a [WHAT IT IS ABOUT] scroll stopper.

That is coupled with a big block of code that has:

  • input -> code
  • output - > results from console

(presumably) when you click "See more" you get the rest of the text post.

developer experience
copy
blog
call to action

Developer-focused blog CTA from Snyk

Pushing cold blog readers to try your tool rarely works.

So you need a transitional CTA, something that worms them up.
But it needs to be aligned with the goals of the reader.
And I think pushing folks to a community discord is a solid option.

I like the copy "Discuss this blog on Discord" as it is very reader-focused.
Some folks read the article and have more questions.
They want to discuss it somewhere.

And while you could just do a comments section, a community gives you more options to get people closer to the product.

developer experience
call to action
blog

Newsletter subscribe CTA on Interrupt blog

I like that this is both strong and subtle.

It comes right after I've delivered a smell of value with a technical intro.

And I can see that there is more value to come after thanks to the table of contents.

The CTA itself feels like an info box in the docs rather than a typical subscribe CTA.

Good stuff.

developer experience
landing page

How it works as a timeline from SST

I like this idea of showing how your dev tool works.

With developers, you almost have to explain how it works on your homepage.

Many products do some version of Step 1 -> Step 2 -> Step 3 -> Success.

I really like how @SST approached it with a timeline.

I find it more engaging than those disconnected steps.

And when I follow this journey the final and logical step is to try it out. Get started.

developer experience
landing page
hero section

Auth0 developer portal hero section visual

I love that it is static and it blurs everything I don't need to get the concept.

For the dev audience, static graphics, when done well, are better than

  • videos
  • screenshots
  • or happy faces of happy customers :)

Tell me what you do in 1 sec, not 60

reddit
social posts
copy

Great Reddit post format

Nicely done Reddit post that went viral on r/MachineLearning.

Reddit dev communities are notoriously hard to market in.

You need to have something really valuable to say to that dev crowd.

But even if you do, it is so easy to screw it up and get trolled or downvoted for "obvious promo".

I know that from experience. So painful to watch.

This is a really nice example of how to do it right:

  • Start with an interesting, attention-grabbing but not yet a clickbaity title.
  • Say who you are and why you have something (new) and valuable to say here.
  • Go straight to the point, to the (technical) value. I like the obvious numbered list delivery.
  • Drop emojis, bolding, and extensive formatting if you want to "keep it real".
  • Make sentences short. Cut all the fluff. State your opinions and facts "as they are".
  • Do implicit CTA. Drop the explicit one but hint at something that those interested may want.

Try something like that next time you post and see what happens.

Obviously, it is nearly impossible to do when:

  • You have no real experience to share
  • You have nothing really valuable to say
  • You don't have opinions and/or facts on the subject

But then why would you even post something?

ads
video
youtube
social proof

CircleCI video testimonial ad

Testimonial ads are a format that helps you move people from "I know what you are doing" to "I trust you enough to do business with you".

Video testimonials are even better.

You see the person who has a similar role that you do saying things about the product you are considering.

CircleCI did a solid job here.

And so if you are running remarketing to people who went to pricing but didn't sign up, or signed up to a free trial but haven't converted yet this is a good format candidate.

Just watch it.

blog
call to action
developer experience
brand

"Top of article" CTA on the blog from Eartlhy

Need one more call to action idea for your dev tool blog?

How about starting an article with it?

Sounds weird but if done right it can work. Even with devs (or maybe especially with devs).

Earthly did and they are known for great dev-focused content.

Ok, so how does it work?

You start your article with a contextual call to action where you explain:

  • Who you are and what your product does
  • And how that is relevant to the content of the article
  • Link out to more product-focused pages, ideally relevant to content

And then you let people read.

Those who find the topic important will remember you and/or maybe click out to see more.

I like it. It's explicit, transparent, and actually noninvasive.

copy
swag
reddit

"Did X and all I got is this lousy t-shirt"

This is a solid swag copy template that resonates with devs.

"I did X and all I got was this lousy Y"

Why this works imho is:

  • it is snarky
  • it is a little self-deprecating
  • it brags a bit about the work/expertise

Very solid start if you run out of ideas.

navbar

Supabase product navbar tab design

Really good product navbar tab from Supabase.

The product tab in your navbar is likely the most visited one on your site.

And there are a million ways of organizing information in there.

But ultimately, you want to help people understand what this product is about at a glance.

Even before they click. Even if they never click.

And how do you explain your product to devs?
By answering common questions:

  • "What are the capabilities/features, specifically?"
  • "What do people use it for in producution, specifically?"
  • "Ok, so how is it different than ... I used before/use now?"

Supabase does it really nicely:

  • They show features + give a one-liner explanation
  • They show customer logos + a one-liner on what they got from it
  • They list the most common competitors with links to deeper comparisons

Very solid pattern imho.

What I'd improve:

  • Make the third testimonial copy more dev-centric, more specific -> It reads "... to become top 10 mortgage broker"
  • I'd add a link to a page with all comparisons -> what if I don't see mine?
campaigns
hacker news

Newsjacking by GitGuardian

Newsjacking is a great marketing tactic.
Especially when you can connect it nicely to your product.

And GitGuardian, a tool for secrets management does it beautifully here.
They ran a story on how Toyota suffered from a data breach.
Because they didn't manage their GitHub secrets properly.

Brilliant.

call to action
landing page

Open-source project homepage CTA from Astro

What CTAs should you choose for your open-source project homepage?

Was always wondering what is my default.

There are many options: "See docs", "Get started", "Sign up", "Start X"

But in open-source you want people to start playing with it, install it.

So what should you choose?

Recently came across Astro homepage and loved what they chose.

"Get started"

  • Takes you to the quickstart in the docs
  • Is action-focused copy
  • Sets obvious(ish) expectations

Install code

  • Gives you copy-pasteable install command
  • + it shows the code to make it more devy

Whatever I choose I will actually get my hands dirty.

I think this will be my default from now on.

campaigns
seo
product led growth

Product-led SEO tactic from Cronjob

Great SEO tactic.

What folks from Cronitor did is:

  • For every combination of "cron +" they created a website
  • Those simple websites rank for particular keywords like "cron every 11 minutes"
  • When you land on the page you get a command you need that solves your problem
  • And you get a nice explanation of their paid tool for monitoring cron jobs

This can be used for many dev-focused tools as by definition they use commands which can be templated.

I've heard about it originally from Harry Dry over at https://marketingexamples.com/seo/cronitor

social posts
twitter

Question/joke tweet format from Supabase

Create a connection with your ideal customer profile.

"Wrong answers only" questions are great for that imho.

ads
reddit
social posts

Meme Reddit ad from Featureform

How to run developer-focused Reddit ads that get upvoted?

Reddit is well known for anti-promotional sentiments.

Just post something along the lines "you can solve that with our dev tool" and see.

So running ads on Reddit feels even more like a no-no.

Especially if you add problems with bot clicks and attribution as most devs will have some sort of blocks.

But you know your audience is on Reddit.

And for some of us, it may very well be the only social platform they are on.

So what do you do?

This is how @Featureform approached it to get almost 100 upvotes on an ad:

  • They start with a simple conversational copy pointing at their target users pains
  • They agitate target users pains in their language (lots of jargony terms, tools and problems)
  • They use very devy language, likely rooted in deep user understanding (voice of customer)
  • They don't talk about their product in the meme
  • They show clear branding so that you can connect the dots.

If you are going for brand awareness rather than a direct conversion those types of ads can work very well.

I liked it for sure.