SXSW 2015 – Music, Film and Interactive Festival
I was super lucky to head out to SXSW earlier this month and be invited as a mentor, I’d never been before and wasn’t sure what I would get out of it, I came back a huge advocate and fan. Here are a few things taken from my recent trip.
1. You can create positive brand associations when you give away free stuff. There were so many brands at SXSW wanting to get in on the positive associations of new music, independent films and latest tech. The way they all seemed to do it was to set up camp, giveaway free food and booze and put on some live bands. It really seemed to work, everyday people were following the “free” and not only getting exposed to the brands but they were constantly talking about them, not only in the real world, but also all over social media, with even some businesses set up purely to allow people to track down the free stuff.
2. Americans like to see people succeed. Being from the UK, networking can be hard, people often hold their cards close to their chest because they have had to work hard to get those particular cards. In the states they want to introduce you to people and they don’t just say it, they do it there and then, which can only mean that their creative industries prosper from all of these connections. It becomes more about who you are and what you can do, rather than who you know (although that always helps).
3. It’s a truly international affair, with all of the countries representing the very best of their talent across all 3 disciplines, so if you are in any way associated with interactive, film and music, get in touch with your countries trade and industry department as they could help support you attending.
4. Sometimes it takes a while to finish a project as we all know, but no matter how long you think a project is going on for, spare a thought for these guys, it took them over 25 years to complete their homage to Indiana Jones http://raidersguys.wix.com/raidersguys.
5. I didn’t realise Australia did cool bands http://www.jackladderandthedreamlanders.com/
6. With so many influential people in one place, it is still a festival that can impact the uptake of an app as was seen by the buzz that slowly seemed to be happening with Meerkat, and by the end of the festival there were people everywhere with their phones held aloft, by next year I’ll be surprised if there isn’t a constant stream of footage covering the festival in live time.
7. There is an app that is set to revolutionise music, allowing artists to gain more control, due for launch at the end of the year. http://www.crowdmix.me/
8. Flatstock 48 was worth the airfare alone. If you like gig posters, check out the site http://sxsw.co.uk/exhibitions/flatstock
…and finally, it is completely acceptable to drink margaritas for brunch. Every single day.
SXSW you were a hoot. Looking forward to 2016 already.
Posted by Ross Popejoy