How to Attract Software Developers to Use Your Product
Business + Managementposted by ODSC Community February 22, 2023 ODSC Community
Software developers are professional builders (programs and related tools) in their organizations, and as such, they have a unique relationship with their tools. Unlike business leaders, who may be more receptive to marketing campaigns targeting them specifically, software developers tend to react poorly toward marketing. In short, experts have suggested that these developers don’t like marketing.
Developers are typically more hands-on in their work than other personnel, reflecting how they purchase products. Marketers should take a bottom-up approach when selling their products to software developers. The builders will show their leaders how efficient they are by providing them with access to the tools and resources they need.
Below are some tips and related information that will help you successfully attract software developers.
Developer marketing to attract software developers to use your product and service
Developer marketing is designed to do more than capture the attention of software developers. It’s a series of principles, tactics, and strategies companies use to increase awareness of their products and services among various technical audiences. The goal of successful developer marketing is for these individuals—software developers to learn about your product’s features and how it can help them solve problems. This ultimately leads to software developers’ increased usage of your product (attracts them).
Understanding why it is hard to appeal to software developers to use your product
Most software developers hate branded messages and marketing; they don’t like interruptions caused by marketing and are likely to call the companies to stop it. Many experts have already suggested that there are no rules for marketing to software developers (they do not exist). Developers have become increasingly influential in the software purchasing process, and sometimes they have authority over budgets or are responsible for testing products before recommendations are made to management. They can even purchase their product outright.
- Software developers negatively react to advertising due to strong emotions like hate and contempt. Consequently, it can be difficult for them to remain rational when assessing your ad’s effectiveness. Additionally, running ads may have far-reaching consequences, even if you receive short-term results.
- Developers are most likely to use ad-blocking software. Apart from just typical ads or YouTube ads, they even block sponsored content within videos. Estimations suggest that many developers are currently using such ad blockers.
The best way to market your product or service to developers is by starting with data. You can create content that resonates with them by understanding what motivates them. In many cases, data-driven content marketing and social media storytelling are found to be the only effective ways to reach out to software developers.
Tips to appeal to software developers to use your product
How can you attract their attention if you need to market your product specifically to developers? Sadly, normal approaches do not work for software developers. To engage developers and get them interested in your product, you need to stop approaching them coldly or forcing them to watch a sales demo where they cannot try out the product themselves.
1. Know all about your audience and their requirements.
When marketing to software developers, you will only be successful with a traditional approach. It is true for all developers, but not all are the same, as there will be different types of developers. You can also find front-end and back-end developers using different programming languages. Thus, developer marketing agencies must tailor their message based on their target audience.
To make effective marketing campaigns that target developers, you need to know what they want and how to reach them. You can do it by using surveys to find out what developers are interested in and what they need. Furthermore, using social media analytics platforms to learn how people communicate online, where they spend most of their online time, and where articles and blog posts are most frequently shared.
2. Always be concise, and ensure that you speak their language.
While marketing to software developers, it is important to use language they understand. It would help if you used easy language for them to understand without unnecessary jargon or filler words. Additionally, it is also important to refrain from resorting to sales-y language. Software developers are used to hearing overblown hype in marketing material. So, as soon as something sounds like it’s trying too hard to sell them on something, they’ll lose interest quickly.
If you want to communicate with them meaningfully, you need to think and talk like them. It means understanding what approach works best for them, what material will stimulate interest, etc. Thus, being concise and keeping your tone straightforward will make your content more credible and trustworthy in terms of its true intent.
3. Use data for developer marketing.
It would be helpful to provide evidence – data of your claims while marketing your products to software developers. It can include customer testimonials, third-party research, case studies, and related information. You demonstrate credibility and competence in developer marketing by providing data supporting your assertions.
4. Try to build trust with the developers – employ developer advocates.
Building trust with the developers is one way to attract software developers to use your product efficiently. But you must show the developers that you are not merely trying to sell or market a product. One way to do so is by employing developer advocates, who can bridge developers and the development company.
Software developers should be listened to and empathized with and have their voices represented in your organization. Developer advocates ensure that their concerns are addressed promptly and effectively. They work to humanize the brand and product, ensuring that developers can communicate with them directly about issues they are experiencing. These advocates can also offer recommendations on how to utilize your software effectively.
From the information provided here, one can take several actions and gain insights to improve the B2B marketing strategy targeting software developers. It is important to remember that these developers will only be interested in marketing content when they are talking to you. So, to be successful, you must create content that offers value to them. As part of your strategy, consider what is top of mind for developers.