Marketing is hard. Sometimes, we just don't know where to start or are stuck in a rut. This is a curated list of 26 actionable marketing tasks for devs.
If I'm completely honest, as a developer I'm not the biggest fan of marketing... The problem is, nobody will just magically find the products and services we developers are passionately building. The following list is meant as a kickstart for marketing averse developers (me 🙄) or just people stuck in a rut.
Learn to sell, learn to build, if you can do both, you will be unstoppable.
- Naval Ravikant
I only included actionable items in this list and some include a small elaboration. This means you should have a clear idea where to start. Some tasks require more work, some require less. Most of them are not one-offs. I highly recommend reading the whole list, picking a few items and developing a strategy and plan to execute on them.
Pick something that works for you. Don't start a podcast if you don't have the time to stick with it.Pareto is your friend.
If you end up benefiting from this list, please consider sharing it with someone you want to help as well 🙂
- Launch your product or service on various relevant websites
The most important one right at the top. Launch! Do it now! Launching isn't restricted to Product Hunt. You should also consider launching in relevant Reddit communities (subreddits), relevant forums in your niche, IndieHackers, HackerNews (Show HN), BetaList, or private communities you are a part of (Slack, Discord, Facebook groups etc.).
Bonus: Click here for a cool directory with 100+ sites you can launch at.
If you are launching in a community, please make sure to read the community rules first. Some subreddits for example don't appreciate self-promotion, or outright ban it. Be nice. I'm sure you don't want to be part of a public/private community and be spammed with promotional material every second. Be genuine and offer value specific to the community:
Hey, I'm an independent indie hacker, and I made this tournament organizing tool for archery clubs. Let me know if you like it.
Side note: Besides the launching task, this list isn't ordered by priority. Launching is the exception.
- Create memes around your customer pains and post them in relevant communities
- Write a relevant blog post (on your own blog, Medium, or Ghost, etc.)
- Write a newsletter issue (Revue is a free newsletter tool, Ghost costs money but includes a blog as well)
- Write tweets or threads related to your customer pains
- Build-in-public on Twitter
- Create a brand Twitter account for your product and post regular updates
- Record video about problems in your niche
- Record video tutorials for your product
- Talk on podcasts, and/or create your own podcast
- Post your product designs on inspiration websites (Dribbble is one that I visit a lot)
I personally think video is what we are currently shifting towards. Don't get me wrong. Writing a good blog article or newsletter issue will still be valid. That said, it was never easier to create and distribute videos than now. If you haven't, you should look at tools like TikTok, YouTube shorts and longer form videos for YouTube for the video tasks above.
- Code a side project related to your core product
- Optimize your landing page for conversions
- Improve your website SEO (use tools like ahrefs to analyze your website)
- Add a sharable section on your landing page
- Add a share feature to your product (Share to Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, etc.). I have got a guide on how to do that
Code, code, code 😊. Yes, this actually counts as marketing 🙌. Don't underestimate the power of publishing a free complementing tool to your core service for extra traffic. Banks for example offer mortgage calculators. I'm sure you can think of something to build.
Bonus if you are struggling to decide when to do marketing:
I find Jon Yongfook's approach brilliant. He alternates between dedicated marketing and coding weeks. He even built a small website for you to never lose track which week you are in. Cool guy definitely check him out:
- DM people that might benefit from your product (Twitter, Discord, Reddit, etc.)
- Engage with communities on Slack, Reddit, Facebook, Discord, etc.
- Talk to your best users about their problems - are you solving their problems adequately? Maybe you find out that there is a complementing tool you can build to drive traffic to your service.
- Start a community around your product
- Create a help center (You can use dedicated tools like HubSpot, or create your own community/forum)
- Run giveaways for your users/audience
- Comment on tweets relevant to your business
Community building is a big one. It takes consistent work and engagement but the payoff can be immense. Personally I would look at Discord or Slack if you want to start your own community, but you could also start groups on forums such as Reddit (create a subreddit) or IndieHackers. Facebook is also an option.
- Create on-boarding email sequences
- Create Drip email campaigns for your product
- Run ads, or sponsor newsletters
26 actionable marketing tasks you can right now to get you rolling. Be aware that most of these aren't one off tasks. Try to pick a few and develop a strategy that works for you. Measure the results: signups, revenue, customer satisfaction, or whatever metric is important to your business. If it doesn't work the way you hope, change your strategy. Keep working on it consistently.
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