Lead image for Announcing Social Collateral from Draft.dev

Announcing Social Collateral from Draft.dev

Most of the developer tools companies we work with generate the bulk of their traffic from two sources:

  • Search engines - By targeting the right keywords, you can systematically build a content machine that generates consistent traffic, but it typically takes 6-12 months to see results.
  • Social media - If you’ve built a large following of customers and fans already, you can leverage this audience to generate traffic faster but less predictably.

While the most successful companies we work with employ both strategies for each piece of content they publish, I realized that many of our clients were completely neglecting social media.

So, last month, we officially added social media collateral to our service offering. To learn more, book a call with me, or keep reading to get an overview of our service upgrade.

Social Media Marketing for Developers

I spoke to several clients over the past year about how they use social media to promote their content. While a few were effectively using it, the majority did very little to promote their content on social media.

When I dug into this, the most common objection I heard was, “We aren’t sure what will resonate with developers on social media, so we avoided it.” There are really two components to this objection, so let’s dig into this a bit more:

1. Where Do I Post This Content?

The first roadblock our clients had about promoting their blog posts and technical content on social media was that they weren’t sure where to post it.

Twitter? Our company account? Our developers’ accounts? Reddit? Facebook?

If you’ve been in marketing for long, you know that developer marketing is tricky. They have their own niche communities like Reddit, Stack Overflow, and Hacker News that are rarely used by other demographics.

Additionally, some of these communities are rather insular.

“Reddit remains a bit of a mystery for most, including most corporates looking to tap into what makes stuff go ‘viral’ on this network…What you get is a potpourri of the web’s most interesting, weird and controversial content.” - Business Today

Still, Reddit and Hacker News are powerful traffic generators if you know how to use them. This is where having our industry expertise can help.

2. What Should We Say?

The second problem was that many of our clients weren’t sure how to talk about the topics we cover in a way that would be authentic and resonate with software developers.

Some of our clients don’t have the technical expertise to write social media content for these topics, and even those who do rarely have time to sit down and think about five or six different social updates for each post across multiple channels.

We also find that some of the pieces we write for clients are rather difficult to write social collateral for. If you’ve never used an API to build a Slack Bot, how would you talk about this kind of tutorial on social media? What snippets are worth extracting and sharing?

Again, having subject matter experts who can guide you is the key. If your developers can do it, great, but if they don’t have time, we’re here to help.

Our Offering: Social Media Collateral for Technical Content

To solve both of the above problems, we’re now including social media collateral in our service offering.

For each article that we write, Draft.dev will provide clients with:

  • Social media posts that you can schedule on your company Twitter and Linkedin accounts
  • Subreddit suggestions and headlines for Reddit
  • A Hacker News submission
  • A detailed promotional checklist

The idea here is that your non-technical marketing associates can use these updates to help get your content out there. While making an article go viral on Hacker News is not guaranteed, you have to plant the seed if you want any shot at your content taking off.

Does Social Media Work?

We’ve already seen good results using this strategy for our own content at Draft.dev. While Google search traffic is our largest traffic driver, Twitter and Reddit rank just behind it for our developer-focused content.

The truth is that social media can work for developer marketing, but like all forms of B2D (business-to-developer) marketing, you have to know your audience and be genuinely helpful in your approach. Having great content written by subject matter experts is a start, but we’ve spent years learning how to communicate with and grow developer audiences on social media.

Learn More

Having Draft.dev’s keyword research, technical blog posts, and social media collateral is a great way to kickstart or augment your technical content marketing efforts. To learn more, book a call with us today.

Karl Hughes

By Karl Hughes

Karl is a former startup CTO and the founder of Draft.dev. He writes about technical blogging and content management.