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Developers speak their own unique language. So, along with our technology, our language characterizes our commitment to and relationship with developers. Our voice sets a developer’s expectation for the efficient and valuable experiences, resources, information and interactions that IBM provides. Our voice is a declarative call to action and a dependable guide.

Conversational tone

It’s a myth that developers can’t be marketed to. The fact is, they just don’t like to be marketed to badly. Their clock is always ticking—leaving no time or tolerance for hype or nonsense. Our communications need to conduct genuine conversations with the international developer community. What we say and how we say it matters. Our voice should tell developers that IBM is a side-by-side collaborator, as well as a launchpad for efficient forward motion.

Deliver content. Not discontent.

Developers invented the all-nighter, so they don’t like to tiptoe around topics and subjects. They prefer to face matters straight on. They’re builders—so they want to know exactly what you can do for them, understand how the whole thing was built and know why it will work.

External messaging

Long-form copy example

The IBM Developer community is built on more than just code. We’re here to help provide you with the essential tools and technologies to build smart and create solutions to solve the problems you’re facing.

How you spend your time writing code matters. Stay up to date on the leading tech and languages, from Java to Quantum, and open-source projects with tutorials, blogs and documentation published by top experts.

Access more than 100 open-source projects and code patterns on Designed with common combinations of technologies and services, code patterns are comprehensive and maintained open-source projects that solve reusable use cases, so you can get right to coding and accelerate time to production.

Collaborate with our global network of developer advocates online and offline in forums and at meetups and conferences to help change the way the world works with code.

Call-to-action example

As a sign-off for long-form messages, be sure to include the very crisp, efficient call to action for our brand.

Build smart. Build secure.

Short-form copy examples

Short messages typically run one to two sentences in length. These examples might work on social media.

Version A

IBM Developer is a community built on more than code. We’re here to help provide you with the essential tools and technologies to build smart, build secure, and create solutions to solve the problems you’re facing.

Version B

IBM Developer is here to help provide you with the essential tools and technologies to build smart, build secure, and create solutions to solve the problems you’re facing.

Action-oriented sentences

Our language, especially in short message format, such as banners and posters, must be direct and efficient. Check out how these action-oriented sentences get succinctly to the point.

Get hands-on at
Get the code at
Start building at

Tips and techniques

  1. Edit until it’s essential.
  2. Avoid overselling, extraneous words, hyperbole or embellishments.
  3. Express cause and effect by highlighting the implications and impact of code. Consider the kinetic nature of dialogue and language.
  4. Be conversational. Create a dialogue. Write the way people speak.
  5. Use “we” as much as possible. It’s inclusive and identifiable.
  6. Data points and numbers can be headlines, too.

Way with words

Because we know developers and their love for a direct, no-nonsense approach, it’s critical to know how the brand uses words. Our brand declaration is the basis for our branch of the IBM brand. From it, we derive our way with words. When the source declaration is elegantly direct, the pattern for variations is simple to emulate.

Build smart.
Build secure.
IBM Developer


These examples demonstrate how a brand declaration can be adapted to address different needs for communication across events, event invites, social media posts and recruitment while maintaining our voice.

Think. Build.
IBM Developer

Coding Creativity
IBM Developer

Sign up.
Turn out.
Join in.
IBM Developer

IBM Developer
Connected by more than code.

Today smarter.
Tomorrow sooner.
IBM Developer

Content for coders.
Lessons for leaders.
IBM Developer

Line-by-line. Side-by-side.
IBM Developer

Develop and deliver.
IBM Developer

Build with trust.
Run with transparency.
IBM Developer

Build at scale.
Launch at light speed.
IBM Developer

Access everything.
Build anything.
IBM Developer

Open source.
Enterprise grade.
Long term.
IBM Developer

This is your domain.
IBM Developer

Enterprise-grade code.
Open-source technology.
Long-term collaboration.
IBM Developer

Push progress.
IBM Developer

Clarity in action

Every messaging opportunity is a chance to uphold the IBM Developer brand with clear and direct language. Check out the difference in tone between the examples shown here for social media, podcasts, conferences and meetups.


NASA runs on Python.
You can, too.
The IBM Developer Python
programming tutorial.

Python provides a number of useful features. Which one is the most important? This article introduces and demos some of the many ways in which you can simplify difficult programming tasks. Check it out.

Podcast or Webcast

Acclaimed thought leader, writer and editorial strategist Paul Ford on what prose and code have in common. Listen here.

What happens when you gather experts in a room, give them a few questions to get them started, then let them go? You get an informative, spirited discussion like this one.


IBM Developer presents code. Elegant solutions for dynamic development.

Build Smart. Build secure.

Our events are focused on developers and the advancing of your technical skills.


Listen. Learn. Loop. IBM Developer is hosting BrooklynJS.

Understanding weather and traffic conditions can reduce the number of people affected by mobilizing them effectively.

Universal language

Like music, code is a universal language, capable of transcending linguistic, national and generational divisions. To represent this universality, along with using city icons, IBM Plex® can be translated into a growing number of international languages. This versatility allows us to localize our brand activities and communications. Data points and numbers can be headlines, too. Learn more about the availability of international languages on the IBM Design Language Typeface page.