Day 2 2013Reflection John Bell Global Managing Director March 2013
@SPREDFASTThe Software as ServiceIndustrial Complex has landed everywhere Salesforce completely made-over HandleBar as the Cloud Bar – new paint job and all. BazaarVoice held their 2 Day customer summit a few days before SXSW started – excellently done. Spredfast threw a party with almost 1000 people next to their centrally-located HQ. The Dachis Group now a software and services company held their Social Business Summit. This is serious business. Those companies enabling the expansion of social-related services – the new marketing – were here in full force.
Sessions on Brand Fans and Advocacy are busting at the seamsAs always, the session subjects are all over the map. There aren’t that manyclearly focused on brands. Those that had a ‘brand fan’ or advocacy-relatedlabel were teaming. This included the session featuring Shiv Singh from Pepsi.That session shared about the Super Bowl program and the ‘Do Me a Flavor’crowdsource program for Lays. The panelists were great about offering insightsinto the work and not simple platitudes.
The Gems are in There… SomewhereIn terms of actual sessions, it is a complete haystack. In the spirit of mixedmetaphors, finding the gems in the haystack is all about luck. The signal-to-noise ratio is high. I attended a session on “Tech-first Brainstorming” led by WillTurnage from RGA. The headline didn’t do the session justice. I left filled withideas about how to apply bits and bobs to what I do. Not going to sessions at allwould leave you gem-less and noisy.
Hospitality touch-downs have become sooo wonderfully awesome Brands and tech companies know that the ever-growing SXSW Interactive (24K?) is stressful. And then it rains. So, many have set up great touchdowns. Spreecast had one in the W. My favorite was Mass Relevance. An Austin Ventures-backed company with a great UGC-management tool, they opened their doors to friendlies who need a place to take a meeting, tackle some work, just plain sit down or….have a warm cookie.
Serendipity turns SXSW into magically worthwhileI ran into Jory and Lisa from BlogHer, David Sifry from Technorati, The guys fromM80. And here’s the topper: Tony Hsieh, CEO of Zappos, gave an inspiring talk abouthis Las Vegas project at the SBSummit. A few years ago, I introduced Tony as akeynote at WOMMA. I did the introduction from inside the Weinermobile, which wehad parked inside the hall. A whip-smart woman – Alana - was the team leader ofthe Weinermobile. Turns out she sat next to me at the Social Business Summit atSXSW and now she works for Blippar - the awesome AR app that is taking FMCGsby storm. Even as it grows, you will always make great connections at SXSW.
THERES A LOT TO SORT THROUGH AT #SXSW FIND THOUGHT LEADERSHIP HERE