WebVixxen Goes South by Southwest

Austin, Texas (RPRN) 03/13/11 — WebVixxen at South by Southwest – #SXSW – part One

By Ane Howard

South by Southwest (SXSW) started in 1987 and is this year celebrating its 25 year as one of the most sought-after film, interactive and music festivals and conferences. It  happens every spring in Austin, Texas, and literally changes the landscape of this lovely city with a swarm of musicians, filmmakers, and geeks-type all looking to learn, exchange and promote their goods and ideas.

This is the WebVixxen first time at SXSW and  we came in hope of learning and share some of our knowledge, establish new contacts and get a pulse of what is new and hot in the interactive landscape.

How is it going so far?For starter, the planned ahead schedule has been thrown out the window.  Appointments are missed, and new ones are spontaneously made.

So much happen on the spur of the moment here. It is literally a mash of fantastic events, too many  keynote speakers to choose from, bad audio, and people from all walks of the entertainment, business and interactive world thrown together for a week for what has to be the most intense networking sessions possibly imagined.  That is if you know how to maneuver around the crowd and get into the core of SXSW. What is important here is the people, and what happens after the sessions. The parties!

Words of advice, send your friendliest most open team-member to SXSW, not necessary the highest ranking member of your company, but the one who can stand among strangers turn to his right and to his left and start a conversation with the person standing next to him, knows when to stop and move on to the next one. That individual will do more for your branding, and bring you back greater insight than someone whose ego won’t let him learn from a competitor who may have a better approach to a problem, understand the market better, or possess certain skills that he doesn’t, as so often heads of companies are. If you let it be, if you know how to listen, this is a place to learn, and to grow.

Go West! Go friendly!

The Power of Social Media

Recent data shows that celebrity endorsements are no longer a “sure thing” when it comes to promoting a product, getting noticed, or increasing sales. Celebrities are losing their advertising power. Ads featuring celebrities aren’t performing as well as they did in the past proving that celebrities aren’t as “worshiped” as they once were. When it comes to purchasing a product or paying for a service people pay much more attention to the opinions of the people that they trust, like friends, family, and colleagues. Social media has certainly made it easier to share and connect with other people that share your interests. Social media outlets provide access to lots of people and lots of opinions and users are more likely to pay attention to those in their social circle than they are of a celebrity that they really can’t relate to.

Social sites like Twitter and Facebook were created with sharing in mind. People can share just about anything, whether it is the details of the outfit that they are currently wearing, or an interesting article about a new product. Average everyday “Joe’s” now have a captive audience. People are paying attention to “Joe”, which means that “Joe” has power. Whereas this power was once reserved for celebrities and spokespeople, social media has turned the normal folk into spokespeople, sometimes without them even realizing it. A Facebook user may notice that a friend of theirs “likes” something. They trust that friend and value their opinion, so they may check it out too. Without even knowing it, the original “liker” just endorsed a product.

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