#7: CTAs, dev marketers on Linkedin, and learnings from HN comments

Hey, how was your month?

Mine looked like this:

  • Went home to spend some time with my family. Should probably do that more often. But with work, dmp, and being a new parent I keep finding excuses. See, did it again :)
  • We had our first viral posts on the neptune.ai Linkedin page. One with 300+ likes, a few more with 100+ likes. We are onto something.
  • My article about Supabase Twitter strategy got to the first page of HN. Interesting to see that some devs absolutely hate memes :)

Here are my insights this month.

10 developer marketing insights

1. Learnings from 170+ comments on my HN post
Remember that Hacker News post about advertising to devs that got a ton of comments on HN?

I went through those and extracted what (HN) devs think about marketing and ads.


  • Devs do hate advertising. The level is extreme, unreasonable even.
  • Devs love swag. Unreasonably so.
  • Devs appreciate good tutorials and blogs.
  • Devs only really trust other devs.
  • Say what you don’t do to build trust.
  • Devs use a lot of ad blocks.
  • Podcast ads work.
  • Say what you do, let me try, wait for me to reach out.
  • Devs think marketing == promotion and ads.

Read article

2. Developer-focused CTA from Plaid
Action-focused copy usually converts better than generic "sign up".

Some teams like Vercel or Auth0 do "Start building " but that doesn't work for any dev product.

I really like how Plaid uses "Get API keys" CTA copy which is super dev-focused and explains well what will happen on the other side of that button.

See plaid page

3. Content from Adam Frankl
Found an awesome developer marketing creator Adam Frankl.

As he says (probably a bit too often): "I have been the first Marketing VP at 3 dev-facing unicorns: Neo4j, Sourcegraph, and JFrog."

So yeah, he probably knows a thing or two.

Went through 30+ of his short essays (which he also publishes on LI/Twitter) and they are gold.

4. Dev marketing creators on LI
Speaking of folks who talk dev marketing on Linkedin.
I also enjoy reading:

5. "Subscribe" CTA from the Interrupt blog
CTAs on developer-focused blogs are tricky.

You don't want to be pushy but you do want to push to the next action.

I came across the Interrupt blog from Memfault which is loved by edge developers.

Their "subscribe to newsletter" box, after the intro and before TOC strikes a great balance imho.

See interrupt blog

6. Carly Brantz CMO of Digital Ocean Youtube talk
DigitalOcean is known for great developer marketing.

In a talk from "SaaStr build" DigitalOcean CMO Carly Brantz explains her building blocks of marketing to devs:

  • Provide value to the community
  • Prioritize simplicity
  • Stay agile on the journey
  • Center growth your customers' growth

7. dx.tips!!!
New(ish) resource from one of the most knowledgeable developer experience people out there Shawn @swyx Wang.

From diving into what developer experience is, through looking at the DX market, to tactical tips on setting up a developer-focused company Youtube channel.

dx.tipx is a must read/follow imho.

8. Developer Experience Infrastructure (DXI)
Really comprehensive article:

  • Describes components of DevEx + explains what good means per component
  • Explains what are the expectations for solid DevEx in 2022
  • Shows a landscape of tools in DevEx

I like that we are at a point where companies are starting to pop to help teams deliver on developer experience.

Excited to see what happens in this space.

Read the article

9.  How Assembly AI approachs content
On the latest Scaling Dev Tools podcast, Dylan Fox, founder and CEO of Assembly AI lays down their view on creating developer content.

Basically, it goes like this:

  • write things that are interesting for your ICP. You don't need a clear conversion path.
  • if they like your content some/many will check out your homepage to learn what you do.
  • explain the problem you solve clearly on the homepage
  • when they have that problem, they will think of you

Listen on Spotify

10. New and improved developer marketing examples
I revamped my dev marketing swipe file:

  • added tags and tag selection
  • added meaningful titles to each swipe
  • added links and separate pages for each swipe to make viewing/sharing easier.

Got to say I like this resource way more now.  

See swipe file

1 Pear Fact 🍐
My favorite pear tree is on the backyard of my partners' parents' house.
Looks awesome, right?
I know, that idiot is blocking the view, but still.